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Get Her Look – Sophia Loren

January 23, 2010

Italian bombshell Sophia Loren, the second most awarded actress ever, is much more than a pair of eyes – but what a pair of eyes!

Sophia’s voluptuous curves may be famous, but her cat’s eyes make her an iconic bombshell and one whose ‘look’ is constantly copied.

It was perhaps fortuitous, that in the 1960s, when Sophia’s star was at its brightest, eye makeup was also enjoying one of its stellar moments. Lips were pale and non-existent, and sales of kohl had rocketed!

Sophia has been more philosophical about her eyes, over the years, quoted as saying ‘beauty is how you feel inside, and it reflects in your eyes’, and ‘if you haven’t cried, your eyes can’t be beautiful’. This bombshell must have shed buckets of tears then!

So just how do you get the ‘Sophia look’ – we asked top make-up artist, and beauty columnist with the Sunday Mail, Craig Alexander Wilson, to talk us, and you, through the steps to perfecting the Italian bombshell’s iconic look – and of course, those alluring feline eyes.

“Sophia very much had a signature look when it came to her make up and even now her colour palette and method of application seem to go unchanged,” says Craig. “She still rocks this look at 75, as we all saw recently at the Golden Globes.

“It really is all about ‘the eyes’  – if I had to name it, it would be ‘Feline and Flirty’ So, how to do it. Well,  first start by lining the innerlash line or water line with Benefit’s Eyebright pencil (£14,

BeneFit's Eyebright

“This will revive tired eyes, make whites whiter and provides a nice look to the end result – if you look at pictures of Sophia, you can see she uses something like this too.

“For eyeshadow, I’d use Revlon’s In The Buff Colorstay eyeshadow quad (£5.99,, Take the second lightest colour, the beige, from the quad and apply this to the lid and under the browbone. This will provide the perfect base and even out any lid discolouration. Next, on the lid alone, apply the mid tone brown. Blend evenly and sweep up gently as you reach the outside edge of the eye.For depth, take the darkest of your colours and with a little care, apply into the crease of the eye.

Revlon In The Buff Quad

“Working from the outside edge take this colour about two- thirds of the way along the socket line, blending as you go. Continue until you get the desired depth of colour.

“A little insider tip here – use a small but long-haired blending brush. This will make the application smoother, softer and more sultry.

“Next  comes the liquid liner. This is a make up must have to create this look and many retro styles, especially from the 1950s and 60s. Now they can be scary at first so have a go on the back of your hand to get used the the tip. There are many versions, from brushes to felt-tip style nibs. That’s the style of YSL’s Easy Liner for Eyes   (£22, ) which I would use here –  in black of course. I also like Bobbi Brown’s Long-wear Gel Eyeliner in Black Ink (£15,, which you apply with a brush.

“So, start from outwith the outside edge, positioning your brush at an angle above the lashline and draw a line eventually meeting the lashline and right into the inner eye. Now fill in the area between the lashline and the first stroke of liner. Repeat as desired to get I used YSL Easy Liquid Liner.

“My top tip here? Keep it quick, sharp and clean. Don’t be tempted to flick at the outside edge. Although exaggerated, the liner shouldn’t really flick or curl up. LIne along the bottom lashes as well, keeping close to the lashline.

“Next mascara, and use  lashing and  lashings of Dior’s Diorshow Blackout Mascara (£21.50, ).

Dior Blackout

Apply a coat and rock the wand to separate lashes as you apply – do the bottom first – one coat should be enough.  This look is very top heavy so apply a few coats to top lashes, allowing mascara to dry in between coats. Apply from root to tip and concentrate more on the outside lashes by your third coat. This will work with the shape of the liner for that feline look.You could also use false lashes here.

“For Sophia’s perfectly groomed brows, start them quite close in to the nose, unless your eyes are very close together, and curve them round, almost down the side of the eye.

Revlon's new Spring shade, out March

“Sophia would generally wear a pale lipstick – something very neutral. At the height of the 1960s, it would have been a very matte pale pink. Here I would use a MAC lipliner in Spice (£10,, for a natural enhancing of the lipshape,but with feathery strokes – not a big line round the lips – that is not a good look, trust me,  and then a neutral shade. For an on-trend touch to the look this season, you could add a hint of Revlon’s Lilac Pastelle Gloss which is launching in March – so keep an eye out for that!

For this look, the perfect foundation would be Estee Lauder’s Doublewear Light (£24.50, which has the great coverage we love from the original, but with a lighter, fresher finish.

Finish by dressing the skin with some bronzer  – I’d recommend MAC’s Matte Bronze, to keep that matt look,  (£16.50, and use the bronzer as a blusher, concentrating on the cheek bones. That’s it – wonderful feline eyes, just like Sophia!”

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