Classic Beauty Icons and Inspiration

On blogs I think it’s almost all too easy to focus on the here-and-now of the beauty world, the latest launches, product and people wearing them. But I thought it would be nice to take a little look at the gorgeous girls that I consider to be my classic beauty icons or inspiration. These are women who’s beauty often defines a decade or era, those that though the height of fashion at the time, still resonate and inspire today – and generally women that frankly, I’d give my left arm to look like. Or the women who are covering magazines now that you can just tell, will be the ones talked about long beyond the cover date.

This list is by no means extensive, there are many, many, beauty icons in my eyes that deserve a mention but for the sake of this post I’ve cut it down to three. But even just starting to research images for this I found about a gazzilion more – from the ‘obvious’ Marilyn Monroe/Audrey Hepburn, to Jane Birkin, Farrah Fawcett, Princess Diana, Gwen Stefani, Debbie Harry, Jackie Kennedy, Sophia Loren, Liv Tyler… the list is practically endless and I’d love to hear who you consider to be a beauty icon or inspiration to you!

Take a look at the three I’ve included below, and then tell me who your all time beauty icons are – new or old!
brigitte bardot icon


Brigitte Bardot

The classic blonde bombshell with her baby blonde hair, always with more volume than I could ever wish for, the centre part fringe and the heavily lined eyes and pouty lips. She’s absolutely gorgeous, timeless and I would gentuinely give my left arm to have just a little touch of that whole ‘Bardot’ thing. If I was going to choose one beauty and style icon I think she would have to be it (she’s the classic striped top wearer for Christ’s sake… what more perfect style icon for the girl who has more striped items than a jailhouse?!)

cameron diaz beauty icon

Cameron Diaz

A modern day beauty icon for me – I think Cameron is stunning. She has to define the whole ‘men want to be with her, girls want to be her/be friends with her’. The ultimate California girl, I genuinely believe that me and Cameron (as you can see, we’re on first name terms…) could be best friends. Or at least have a fun night out together. I am above all envious of her hair (oh, and her tan, eyes and smile, and surfer girl figure) but firstly her hair – it’s basically the picture I take to the salon and say ‘please give me her hair’. No, it doesn’t happen and certainly doesn’t mean I’d look like her courtesy of a cut and some highlights, but it’s the closest I can get.

I think the fact she seems to be a really friendly, bubbly person is what makes her a true icon though. Gives her personality beyond the pretty that means she will be beautiful beyond the present day.

elizabeth taylorElizabeth Taylor

Despite the fact that now when I say or hear the name ‘Elizabeth Taylor’ I always think of Charlotte’s dog in Sex and the City… the original Elizabeth Taylor is still the best and an ultimate beauty inspiration. If one woman was to embody glamour, I think she would be it. Despite the pictures I chose for the above being more casual (apart from the Cleopatra one…obviously). There’s just something in her eyes that draws you in – one of those faces that can tell a thousand stories or hide as many secrets behind the eyes. When browsing for pictures there were just so many options, the full on Hollywood Star, the young pre-fame, the relaxed/casual shots or the older years. In each and every one of them she’s gorgeous. And those eyes just say ‘don’t mess with me’ and I love that.

There’s just a sample of the beauty icons who I think are worth a mention – as I said at the star the list could go on and on! Who do you consider to be a beauty icon or inspiration to you?




  1. January 12, 2014 / 4:19 am

    I absolutely love Lily Collins. In the last year especially, she’s really matured in her makeup look and always has a classic look with a bit of an edge.
    Lovely Notions

    • Jen
      January 13, 2014 / 7:01 pm

      Thanks Sophie! Loved putting it together – might do something similar again in future 🙂 x

  2. Erin
    January 14, 2014 / 1:25 am

    Love this post!! Such gorgeous ladies! I’m a big fan of the modern boho look and I would have to say Nicole Richie and Vanessa Husgens are both killing it.


  3. Laura
    January 15, 2014 / 10:46 am

    This is an interesting post as I’ve always found both Brigitte to be sort of unattractive, I think it’s her teeth! I do like her relaxed 60s style though. Also, I find Cameron just plain weird looking. I prefer a classic beauty with perfect features.

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