Donna Mills - The Eyes Have It (1986)

GURL, please. Put down the blue eye shadow and step away from the sparkly pink lip gloss. You are forty-six years old! Donna Mills proudly boasts that she does her own make-up. This video exists so she can demonstrate for we women of lesser competence, how to properly cake ourselves in layers of pasty opaque sludge. Cucumber slices on the eyes? Try an entire cucumber ON YOUR FACE. No really...

She repeatedly refers to her cosmetic style as "natural", while constantly looking like she's posing for a boudoir photo at Sears Portrait Studio. Fully airbrushed, contouring meant to cover a beard, hair teased to the heavens, Dairy Queen Glamour Shot Valentine's Day 2 for 1 special.

Then we get to see her do a little fashion show, take a bath and demonstrate the exact same make-up tips in different lighting and with colored contact lens'. C'mon Donna, you're reaching. She even shows us how to wash our own face, because we've come this far without having these skills.

I'm a fresh faced gal, do you want to know the real secret to looking young(er)? Try NOT spackling your face with nasty drywall clown paint. Eyes and lips? sure. A little concealer or powder on occasion, of course. But the Foundation/concealer/powder/blush quadroplaster? OY! She literally instructs people to PRESS POWDER FIRMLY INTO THEIR SKIN SO IT WON'T COME OFF. Just rub it in, fill those pores. It's fine, you can remove it with your phallic vegetable astringent.

In all sincerity, I fucking LIIIIIIVE FOR THIS SHIT. It's the kind of thing Shana Moulton is parodying in 'Whispering Pines', or material you'd find on 'Womans-Day', the greatest tumblr of all time. Donna Mills is selling a product you can't buy at the store. Something unattainable and phony. She's selling a false sense of self-worth. And yet, I could watch this aging soap actresses do her make-up and have fashion shows in her living room all day. This is a historical relic because, simply put, they don't make 'em like this anymore! Make-up tutorials are one thing, but we're not buying the instructions, we're buying Donna and basking in her frivolous bullshit lifestyle. If I didn't love it so much it would make me SICK. And for the record, I've been dying to play with my make-up ever since I watched this. I'm not immune!

So what have we learned today?

  • How to feather brown eyeliner 40 different ways (spoiler: they're all the same)
  • How to wash our face
  • How to NOT dry our face (pat, do not rub) 
  • The Mills' household has no shortage of over-sized cucumbers in the fridge.
  • Donna suspiciously doesn't seem to own any cats.
  • Frosted lip gloss is a friend to NO ONE.
  • Donna has a seemingly endless cache of lighted mirrors, and assumes that we all do too.
  • To be attractive you must be rich, coagulating in rouge, blonde and being white doesn't hurt.(Subtext, Donna. Not buying your "brown eye" tutorial for a second)
  • Donna is an asshole, one can only assume.
  • ABC Movies' of the Week clearly do not pay enough for Donna to hire someone to do her make-up PROFESSIONALLY.

The nefarious pink lip gloss, in action.

Don't forget to admire yourself for hours after, days even.

Shortly after my pal Warren bestowed this priceless treasure upon me, I found myself in this weird shop on Hollywood Blvd that sells nothing but old porno mags and shell art. A harmonious marriage of objects. Given that I'm both a collector of kitschy shell crap and any ephemera of interest, I had a good time digging around. I made an amazing discovery; a publication I was not previously aware of: "Valley Magazine" - a fashion mag for women who live in the Valley. That's the stuff dreams are made of. And who do you think graces the cover of this coveted holy book?

Miss Donna Mills, THE SAME YEAR AS 'THE EYES HAVE IT'! It was a busy year for our amateur cosmetologist. And now that you mention it, she so totally would live in the Valley. It's just glaringly obvious to me now.

I might add that this issue includes a Christmas shopping guide for the Sherman Oaks Galleria, aka: the Mall you've seen in EVERY movie from the 80's and 90's. Envy me, for I hold in my hands the mystic scroll...

As if your day couldn't get any better, here are some choice threads from the Winter of '86.


  1. Oh my god that last outfit! That pink monstrosity! I love it!

    I'm very jealous of that magazine. I want all of your stuff

    1. So much pink, so many monstrosities. This fiasco has consumed my whole day, but I'm not sure that I can let go...

      When will things ever be this good again.

  2. Good lord, 1980's fashion was its own kind of acid trip...flashbacks of pastel sweaters carelessly thrown across the shoulders, day-glo leggings and zero-gravity frosted hair... I lived through it once, and once was enough for me! :P