How Makeup Artists Make Grown-Ass Women Look Like Teens

In real life, it’s debatable whether anyone would choose to relive their teenage years. But on the big and small screens, adults revisiting high school (or the freshman dorm) is a common occurrence. Granted in a TV show or movie, the teen years are often glamorized — even the Pygmalion-inspired classic She’s All That skipped the awkward acne moments — although angst and overly articulate banter abound. All the while, makeup plays an integral part in transforming adults into kids. Just think about Regina George’s intimidatingly hot-pink lipstick in Mean Girls and Lyla Garrity’s no-makeup makeup look that even Tim Riggins wasn’t impervious to on Friday Night Lights.

Important note: This story is not about making “older” women look “younger.” Instead, we wanted to explore how talented artists skillfully created an effect of carefree, innocent teenage years through makeup — without it looking contrived or comical. Or like a super-meta Elizabeth Banks in Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp playing “24-year-old” undercover reporter Lindsay, who transforms herself into a 16-year-old summer-camp counselor just by clipping her hair into a side barrette.

Plus, we’d never say no to the chance to revisit these 11 characters from some of our favorite TV shows and movies, including Clueless and Pretty Little Liars.
Click through to read the behind-the-scenes secrets.