Beauty Secrets of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl


I’ve always wondered what would be inside the Manic Pixie Dream Girl’s makeup bag. Let’s start with the makeup bag itself. I’m thinking one of those hollowed out books or an old lady fanny pack. The theoretical MPDG would wear no makeup, but in practice, all MPDGs from Sam in Garden State to Claire in Elizabethtown have hints of pink in their cheeks and mascara on their lashes if you look close enough. The key to making up the MPDG is subtlety. I’d like to believe that the majestic MPDG walks over to her vintage vanity mirror and spread out is the toy makeup she purchased from Toys R Us, but I don’t think she’d be able to simultaneously lead and sidetrack the protagonist to and from his dreams without some actual adult makeup.

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She probably starts with a bareMinerals foundation, which she ordered when watching infomercials at 4 in the morning, waiting for the protagonist to show up at her door in the rain. Not that she needs foundation, considering she hydrates her skin with the tears of unicorns so she doesn’t get acne. Next she lightly dusts a shimmery bronzing powder from Physician’s Formula (she refuses to buy brand name) so that when she’s outside with the protagonist at 2 AM and the moon shines on her face, she looks like a moonbeam angel and simultaneously further distracts him from — and leads him to — his goals and dreams and hopes. She’ll then pick up her iridescent pink blush with hearts all over it, and rub it in on those unnaturally high cheekbones.

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Then she gets started on her giant doe eyes. She’ll need a skin tone eyeshadow because remember kids, she doesn’t wear makeup. Next she’ll draw on a barely visible line of eyeliner. This might be brand name because without the invisible eyeliner that she wears, her huge doe eyes would only be near-human size. Her mascara is one of those cool rotating brushes because she needs giant feathery lashes to frame those huge doe eyes. She bought it while surfing the internet on a huge desktop computer at the local library where she puts kind notes of encouragement inside self help books.

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 She wraps up her perfect face with a swipe of Lip Smacker chapstick in a ridiculous flavor like Girl Scout Cookie. After all of this, she spritzes one of those setting sprays all over her face so that her makeup lasts through all her tears, the protagonist’s tears, rain, snow, and happy endings. She also loves to rock the “dewy fresh-faced” look that the setting spray miraculously provides (I don’t know, it doesn’t do this for me but it totally would do it for her).

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As for her hair, we all know that MPDGs don’t wash their hair, because the more they wash their hair the grosser it gets, simply because their hair contradicts the hair of all other humans. MPDGs love to defy nature and physics and shampoo bottles. Because water cannot/does not touch their luxuriously messy locks, they hit the dry shampoo about once a week so their hair doesn’t get limp and frail like their tiny bodies. Once they’ve dry shampooed, MPDGs flip over their heads and a mass of perfectly in place curls appear, all soft and delicate, like those of a baby. Lastly they don a hat, a pair of headphones, or a delicate bow which eventually just becomes one with their head.

Now off with you! Time to go buy all the Girl Scout Cookie chapsticks! Yum.

Art by Sayada


About margeauxperkins

I think I'm funny. I like to write funny things. Someday I'd like to write for a sitcom. In the daylight I work in marketing. My favorite color's cerulean blue.


  1. Alexa

    this is beautiful

  2. Mo!

    Don’t hate me for asking….but what is a Manic Pixie Dream Girl?

    • It’s a female character in a movie who seems impossibly quirky and free spirited and effortlessly perfect. Like Zooey Deschanel in (500) Days of Summer. But the important thing about these characters is that the way that the male protagonist sees them and defines them is often not the same as reality. The MPDG’s personality is projected, and she doesn’t get to speak for herself to explain her perceived actions and intentions. Like, the more you watch (500) Days, the more you realize that Summer was never the person Tom insisted she was.


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