Alanis Morissette's Makeup Look Is a Modern Take on 90s Beauty

Isn't it ironic?

Alanis Morissette
(Image credit: Todd Owyoung/NBC via Getty Images)

Alanis Morissette is a musical and modern feminist icon, having staked her claim to fame with hits like “You Oughta Know,” “Ironic,” and “Hand in My Pocket.” Her third album, Jagged Little Pill, made her the first Canadian musician to go double diamond, earned her nine Grammy nominations (of which she won five), and has since been made into a Broadway musical. Morissette has made headlines since the 1990s for her musicianship and unapologetic outspokenness, and has also become known for her distinctive style: Her long, wavy brown hair falls down to her waist, and her sharp features are often accentuated by striking, dark, yet minimal makeup. 

Last Friday, Morissette graced us all with yet another beauty look while during her appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. She wore her long tresses loose with a middle part, as always, but embellished her typically natural look with heavy black eyeliner and a contour that flattered her naturally high cheekbones. 

The look both rang true with Morissette’s signature style and fell in line with some of the hottest beauty trends today—something that celebrity makeup artist Colby Smith considered when styling her look for the night.

Alanis Morissette

(Image credit: Todd Owyoung/NBC via Getty Images)

“The 90s bad ass woman look has never gone out of style, so keeping true was easy,” he says. “I think I modernized [the look] by pairing it with clean skin. The eye has a heavy black liner, so complementing it with dewey, next-to-bare skin, I feel, freshens the look.”

And when it comes to those striking cheekbones that look straight out of an ad for a contour palette? Turns out, they’re natural.

“Honestly, it was minimal contour. Alanis has incredible cheekbones,” Smith admits. “So just a hint of warmth from a bronzer complemented her structure that’s already in place. Going softer and letting her actual face show through—that looks cleaner and more youthful.”

Whether you’re among the minority blessed with Morissette’s high cheekbones or not, her striking look is well within reach. Below, some of the products you can use to get her updated 90s look, including some Smith’s personal recommendations.

Get the Look

Gabrielle Ulubay
Beauty Writer

Gabrielle Ulubay is a Beauty Writer at Marie Claire. She has also written about sexual wellness, fashion, culture, and politics both at Marie Claire and for publications like The New York Times, Bustle, and HuffPost Personal. She has worked extensively in the e-commerce and sales spaces since 2020, including two years at Drizly, where she developed an expertise in finding the best, highest quality goods and experiences money can buy. As a film school graduate, she loves all things media and can be found making art when she's not busy writing.