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Lipstick-and-Load Montage

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"Make up and dress up
I become very lovely too!"
Hatsune Miku, Sweet Devil

The Distaff Counterpart of the Lock-and-Load Montage. The heroine puts on her makeup and clothes while preparing for the Big Event. The key to the trope is that she applies her makeup with the same speed and seriousness as a soldier loading their guns—she's all business, and her business at the moment is looking good. May count as Mundane Made Awesome.

Often juxtaposed with a standard Lock-and-Load Montage. A Femme Fatale and/or an Action Girl might even do both simultaneously. The rare examples of a man doing this tend to be Played for Laughs. Alternately, a male Badass in a Nice Suit might be getting ready for business while making sure he looks as sharp as possible, but this doesn't usually involve makeup.

Compare This Means Warpaint and Makeover Montage.


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    Comic Books 
  • The Baroness gets one at the start of IDW's G.I. Joe: Cobra #1 before she infiltrates an enemy mansion in Ecuador. It is contrasted with a more standard Lock-and-Load Montage later in the issue.
  • In Giant Days, Esther gets such a montage before hitting a party during her first week at university, taking “just” one hour thirty-one minutes. It shows that she’s the most extrovert of the comic’s three lead characters.
  • In Hex Wives #1, an entire page is devoted to Isadora's morning routine to make her the perfect 50s housewife. This scene is repeated in the following issues to demonstrate how the illusion is breaking down.
  • In Jon Sable, Freelance #14, Sable is hired to get ballerina Anastasia Yurkovich out of East Berlin. A sequence contrasts Anastasia preparing for the ballet, putting on her costume and makeup, with Sable gearing up for the extraction.
  • Zatanna: Everyday Magic: Zatanna's introduced doing the finishing touches to her Stage Magician costume for her last show in Reno.

    Film - Animated 
  • Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted:
    • Seen as Captain Chantalle Du Bois is called out to capture Alex. We see her loading up briefly, and then she finishes by applying her lipstick and popping her lips.
    • Also with the Chimps; while the Zoosters are on their way, and the Penguins pillow-fight, the Chimps prepare their disguise as the King of Versailles — complete with Phil applying lipstick and popping his lips.
  • Used in Mulan when the soldiers are applying drag to infiltrate Shan Yu's guard in the royal palace the same way they prepared for war training (set to a brief reprise of "I'll Make a Man Out of You", no less!).

    Film - Live Action 
  • Angel (1984): The first time Molly comes home from school, there is a lengthy scene of her transforming herself from Molly the high school honor student to Angel the Hollywood hooker.
  • In the montage where Bridget Jones prepares to impress her boss Daniel at the upcoming book launch, she does the following: brushes up on conversational skills, studies up on current events, shave and wax, uses a body brush, rolls up her hair, picks out a sleek black dress and weighs the options between a control-top panty and a thong before deciding on the former.

    The sequel has a montage that includes more Fashion Hurts and the inclusions of such tropes as Of Corset Hurts in addition to a haircut that has to be ravaged by the damage done by a deluded hairdresser.
  • Camp X-Ray contains a Truth in Television version with Cole prepping her hair for the day, a necessary evil for females in the US military who want to keep their hair long.
  • In a non-comedic male example, Eric in The Crow has one of these right before going out to avenge his and Shelly's deaths, including putting on the famous black and white makeup. To The Cure's "Burn", no less!
  • The opening credits to Dangerous Liaisons has a montage featuring both the main male and female characters. It looks like they are dressing for battle, and they were.
  • Ghost Rock: The first appearance of Mattie Baker, the aging Miss Kitty of Ghost Rock, is her putting on her face for the day. This is juxtaposed with the town undertaker making up the face of a corpse in preparation for burial.
  • Shoshannah before the premiere in Inglourious Basterds, including putting her rouge on like warpaint, followed by loading a gun, and then fixing her hat, all set to David Bowie’s Cat People
  • Scorpio Rising: A gay male Spear Counterpart of this trope. The film shows a young biker getting dressed up in all his biker gear—boots, leather jacket, leather gloves, mirrored sunglasses, Nazi cap, the whole works—before going out to meet his friends at a party. It's possibly the Ur-Example of the Leatherman, and the whole sequence is made even more homoerotic by intercutting the shots of the young man getting dressed with shots of a much bigger, massively muscled biker wearing a leather jacket over a bare chest.
  • In Suicide Squad (2016), the Squad undergoes a Lock-and-Load Montage as they gear up before entering Midway City. Harley Quinn's doubles as a lipstick and load montage as she strips and chooses her outfit and applies makeup as well as selecting weaponry.

  • Subverted in Caliphate. There is a scene with Lee-as-Ling putting on his make-up before going to work vamping the Boer guards. Agent Matheson is seriously bothered, because he is so obviously enjoying himself playing the part of the wicked seductress.
  • In the Daughters of the Moon series (at least in the first two), before the big showdown against the Atrox, there's a sequence of the main character putting on beautiful clothes and makeup — but rather justified in the first, Goddess of the Night, because the character 1. Is going to a club, and oughta look good anyway, and 2. Describes it as battle paint — the psychological preparation is as important as anything else.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Angel. Gunn asks what type of equipment they'd need to burgle an auction house. Angel suggests repelling hooks, flashlights, aerosol spray — all against a montage of these items being prepared. Lockpicking tools, rope, a knife, and...lipstick? Turns out it's a female Classy Cat-Burglar who's after the MacGuffin as well.
  • The finale of season 6 of Game of Thrones opens with assorted characters getting dressed in preparation for the trial of Loras Tyrell and Cersei Lannister with a sharp contrast between the elaborate clothes of the nobility and the old sack worn by the High Sparrow. The montage lingers on Cersei for longer than the others as she is fitted in a new black leather and chains number because she is about to have them all killed by blowing up the Sept of Baelor where the trial is taking place.
  • Mr. Robot: "Legacy" has a rare male version, with a sequence showing Tyrell shaving and putting on a suit to look his best for Elliot.
  • The Tudors:
    • Katherine of Aragon, grimly dressing for the Legatine Court.
    • Anne Boleyn, grimly dressing for her execution. Ironically juxtaposed with Jane Seymour happily dressing for a visit from Henry at her family's home.

  • In Book XIV of The Iliad, Hera embarks on a long dress-up scene with lots of ambrosia and fancy clothes in preparation to distract Zeus from manipulating the outcome of a battle. Classicists have described it as an "arming scene" analogous to those of the mortal warriors like Achilles.

  • JT from the Cool Kids Table game Bloody Mooney gets one where he gets dressed in his clothes for visiting Keri's house, including a shot of him popping his collar. Josh compares it to a Megazord sequence.

    Theme Parks 

    Video Games 
  • Being A DIK has one in "Crossroads" if you romance Isabella, switching between the MC and Bella preparing for their first date. Notably, Bella's preparations include her Wedding Ring Removal and subsequent staring into her mirror with an expression of absolute terror, indicating just how scared she is of moving on from James.
  • In the opening of Street Fighter V (arcade version) Chun-Li calmly sits in front of her drawer and begins to apply lipstick before doing a spinning kick.
  • Parodied in Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros' Treasure. When we first see Captain Rose, we see her glitzing herself up so she can look her best while defeating the Sea Rabbits. At one point she puts on her signature lipstick... and then puts some on her cheek to make it look like Tribal Face Paint.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation