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Makeover Montage

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"I got rid of my glasses and they changed my hair. That's really all they did. They went shopping for me, so the clothes are different too. It wasn't like Extreme Makeover where I got a nose job or anything." - Clay Aiken

"We'll have you washed and dried
primped and polished till you glow with pride.
Trust my recipe for Instant Bride.
You'll bring honor to us all!"
Disney's Mulan

A.K.A. Torture Session Montage.

A girl with frizzy hair, pimples, braces and Nerd Glasses is plunked into a chair (maybe even tied down for good measure) in front of a mirror by well-meaning friends and attacked with a flurry of curling irons, combs, hair gel, blush, eyeshadow, eyeliner, lipstick, nail polish, and all manner of powders and waxes. Put her under a bright spotlight, like at a Jack Bauer Interrogation, for good measure. Just remember, before you're done, The Glasses Gotta Go. She never exhibits any allergic reactions from the multitude of substances that are put on her, and never stands up for herself if she doesn't want to have a makeover in the first place.

Voila, She Is All Grown Up! Often hypocritically paired with Be Yourself, as the glamorous version the person has never been before is their true self all along, really! Compare Lipstick-and-Load Montage. Comedic ones likely have a heavy overlap with an Improbable Hairstyle Sequence.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • A rather dark version of this occurs in Interstella 5555: The 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem, in which the kidnapped alien band are given a fully automated makeover to make them appear human: their skin is painted, their hair is dyed, their memories are replaced, and they are all fitted with mind control devices.

    Comic Books 
  • The Legend of Wonder Woman (2016): Etta begs Diana to let her do her makeup, but Diana doesn't tell her to go ahead and have at it until she requests that Etta find a look for Wonder Woman. Etta tries out a number of looks before truly feeling inspired and coming up with the one they go with.

    Fan Fiction 

    Film — Animated 

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Aquamarine: Claire, Hailey and Aquamarine go on a trip to the local mall, and of course this involves a sequence at the salon. It however just appears to be a day of pampering, and there are no major changes in appearance.
  • In Bride of Chucky, doll Tiffany dresses herself up using hair dye, black nail polish, makeup, adding a fake mole and even gets a "Chucky" tattoo on her breast and smokes, all to the tune of Blondie’s "Call Me".
  • Clueless: When a "clueless" transfer student named Tai Frasier arrives at the school, Cher decides to make Tai her next project by giving her a makeover with the help of Dionne, providing Tai with confidence and a sense of style.
  • Rita Hayworth gets one before her photo shoot in Cover Girl (1944). She doesn't look much different at the end of it, though.
  • In The Decoy Bride, Lara's make up artists give a reluctant Katie a makeover to prepare her for her time as Lara's stand-in. Katie hates it, but finds herself surprisingly pleased by the results. Steve shivers in horror and adds more veil to cover her up.
  • Descendants 2: After six months of putting on an act in Auradon as a Princess Classic, Mal returns to the Isle of the Lost and gets a badass makeover from Dizzy Tremaine that resembles her old villainous look pre-Auradon, including replacing her pink nail polish with black, gifting her a new studded leather outfit, and dying her hair back to purple. Mal is happy to look more like her old self, which she feels is her real self.
  • Dirty Dancing: Baby doesn't exactly get a makeover but her clothes get skimpier and sexier as her dance lessons progress.
  • Another rare male version in Dont Tell Her Its Me (alt titled: The Boyfriend School), in which the pre-makeover Gus is post-cancer bald and overweight, but in order to try to seduce the girl of his dreams, he spends months losing weight, exercising, getting tanned, and getting his newly grown hair cut and styled. He also gets a wardrobe change, contacts, and an accent to become the dream guy, Lobo.
  • Earth Girls Are Easy - an entire musical number as Julie Brown gives a (completely unnecessary) makeover to Geena Davis.
  • Rare and elusive all-male version in Encino Man, in which a caveman is miraculously transformed into a goofy 80s teenager by the two guys who found him. Complete with towel turban and bath beads (which, admittedly, the caveman ate).
  • Another rare male example in Fixing Pete, as Ashley (Brooke Burns) is assigned to make Pete (Dylan Bruno) have new clothes to make him more presentable for an upcoming book tour.
  • In Freaky Friday (1976), Ellen, in Annabel's body, gets Annabel's braces removed, then gets a haircut and some new dresses, so Annabel could look less like a tomboy.
  • He's All That: Can’t have a She's All That remake without one. Padgett buys Cameron new clothes, shaves off his facial hair and cuts his long hair.
  • It's Pat!: At one point, Pat goes to a hair stylist and asks to look more like Pat's own gender. This montage includes giving Pat a specific female hairstyle, a specific male hairstyle, and even making Pat bald, before Pat settles on Pat's old hair style.
  • Fern gets a new look and a new name in Jawbreaker to keep her silent about Liz's murder.
  • In The Mirror Has Two Faces, frumpy college professor Rose rebounds after getting sexually rejected by her husband by getting a makeover, exercising, changing diets, losing weight, and a wardrobe change.
  • Another rather creepy variant appears in Mirrormask, though whether the use of the Carpenters song "Close To You" pushes it into Narm territory is debatable.
  • Sandra Bullock undergoes one for Miss Congeniality. Waxing was involved. Her hair was thinned and trimmed, and her character went from the natural no-makeup looknote  to fancy makeup.
  • Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, wherein Miss Pettigrew gets a mud facial and eats the cucumbers on her eyes.
  • National Lampoon's European Vacation: The Griswalds go through one in Rome when they go through a bunch of new outfits to try on.
  • Parodied in Not Another Teen Movie, in which the makeover strictly consists of removing Janie's glasses and letting her hair out of its ponytail.
  • One Touch of Venus: Gloria and Molly give Venus a makeover to dress her in modern clothing, during the "That's Him" number.
  • Played with in Oresama. It's not directly a montage, but there's a scene where Miyavi gives Shinni a makeover, complete with his music playing as the background track.
  • In Pretty Woman, Vivian receives one with the assistance of Makeover Fairy "Bridget from women's clothing," who helps take her from an attractive streetwalker to a refined woman.
  • The Princess Diaries: Mia is given a princess makeover by Makeover Fairy Paolo and his assistants. She gets another makeover from the same trio in the sequel.
  • Samantha's sessions with the image consultant Mr. Blondell in Sam, which allow her to dress, look and move more like a woman.
  • Tank Girl. Rebecca making over the outside of her tank in a animated montage. If you look closely you'll notice that it gets made over from a PT-76 light tank to a M-51 Super Sherman.
  • In That Thing You Do!, Mr. White arranges for Faye to be outfitted and styled to the nines for the taping of The Hollywood Television Showcase.
  • Inverted in Tim & Eric's Billion Dollar Movie. Tim and Eric get a montage where they get rid of their expensive Hollywood makeovers so they can become PR businessmen.
  • The application of Aly's "fat" makeup and body suit in To Be Fat Like Me. Technically it's a "make under."
  • In A Very Brady Sequel, hairstylist Sergio and his coworkers try to give Carol a new hairdo. Her hair proves too stiff to restyle, so she still looks exactly the same at the end of the montage.
  • How the girls disguise R as a human in Warm Bodies. Lampshaded, of course. Doubles as a Mythology Gag, as in the book, R says "I wish in real life you could switch to a Makeover Montage".
  • In Wild Rose (1932), Jiang, wanting Xiao to make a good impression with his family, has her get a makeover in which she's dolled up and dressed in fancy clothes. But Xiao is still a Tomboy with uncouth country manners, and things go wrong at the dinner anyway.

    Live-Action TV 
  • 100 Things to Do Before High School: In "Be a Fairy Godmother Thing!", CJ gives a makeover to a girl named Scout as part of her attempt to be a fairy godmother.
  • Suggested by Abed in Community episode "Physical Education" when the group wants to get him to impress a girl.
  • Perfectly parodied in Crazy Ex-Girlfriend with "Put Yourself First," a makeover set to song all about how women should put themselves first...for men. "Don't think about it too hard."
  • CSI: The Teaser to "Under My Skin" has a teenage girl undergoing a makeover from her older sister. As this is CSI, it does not end well for her.
  • Parodied in the iCarly episode iGo One Direction, where they have a parody of typical teenage girl movie, including a makeover-scene. Considering the main audience of the show, this move was pretty ballsy.
  • Power Rangers Super Megaforce: Emma and Gia, the pink and yellow rangers, take new recruit Orion, the silver ranger, to get some new clothes and a haircut, as the alien was wearing ragged clothing and had let his hair grow out after his home planet had been destroyed by the bad guys.
  • Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin has one in Episode 2 when the Liars do their makeup and wear their dresses for the Spirit Week dance, to the sound of Bet You Wanna by BLACKPINK.

  • "Like the First Time" ("처음처럼" by 티아라) has a music video that is this. Five friends prepare their glasses & books girl for a 소개팅 (blind date).

    Video Games 
  • An optional scene in Final Fantasy VI has the group doing this to wild boy Gau.

    Web Comics 

    Web Originals 
  • Parodied in the Bone Mouth sketch "Makeover Montage Goes Awry" - First the recipient of the makeover is murdered by a man lurking in the closet... Then her murderer gets the makeover instead.
  • Parodied by Hardly Working. Sarah does one for David and Pat - into an ordinary black gown, which she says is the only thing she has. At the guys' insistence, she goes through the makeover montage. The resulting product in the end is that she looks a lot like Elphaba in a sweater.

    Western Animation 
  • Hey Arnold!: Helga does this to herself because she's sick of people forgetting she's a girl. The episode ends with her realizing why she always avoids this girly stuff — it's stupid.
  • The Loud House: In Really Loud Music, the song “Changing Luna” shows Doug and Michelle giving Luna a complete make-over into what they believe an artist should look like.
  • Over the Hedge has the other animals do this to Stella the Skunk.
  • Parodied in the penultimate episode of Clone High, in which several characters undergo this, to the accompaniment of a song consisting only of the word "makeover" repeated seven times as seen here.
    Cleopatra: Are you thinking what I'm thinking?
    Cleopatra/Joanne of Arc: Makeover!/Suicide!
  • The Simpsons:
    • In "The Two Mrs. Nahasapeemapetilons", there's a montage of Apu trying out different haircuts. For every variant, Homer gives Apu a thumbs up.
    • "The President Wore Pearls" parodies "Rainbow High" from Evita.
  • Magnificently spoofed in South Park: an episode spoofing Queer Eye for the Straight Guy features two makeover montages — the first one is pulled out of Queer Eye, and the second happens after The Reveal that the guys from Queer Eye are actually crab people. The boys must be made over into crab people as well and Hilarity Ensues.
  • Smurfette goes through this in The Smurfs (1981) story "Smurfette's Golden Tresses" with Barber subjecting her through various hairstyles before finally realizing that it's hard for him to improve upon perfection.
  • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated: Daphne undergoes one in "In Fear of the Phantom" when she instructs the Hex Girls to "turn her into a rock star".
  • Sofia the First: When Amber insists that Sofia’s slumber party guests have to fit in with the other princesses at the party, Sofia starts by having Baileywick give them princess makeovers, complete with fancy gowns, new hairdos, and tiaras.
  • UglyDolls puts the montage through a song, "All Dolled Up". Mandy helps the Uglydolls dress up to look like Perfection dolls and blend in, despite the fact that she's insistent that they don't have to do this. The makeover fails in the end for them, and only ostracizes them further.
  • The Venture Bros. episode, "The Bellicose Proxy", when trying to help Guild Stranger S-464 win back his love, Dr. Z suggests he and Dr. Mrs. The Monarch take him to get a makeover, which starts a makeover montage in a mall. It just turns out to be all in Dr. Z's head.
    Dr. Z: (laughs) Then we all get milkshakes.
    Mrs. Monarch: We're not going.
    464: I don't want to do that.

Alternative Title(s): Geek To Chic


King Dice in his finest

After loosing everything that made him, King Dice offers a deal with Cuphead and Mugman and they (along with Elder Kettle) freshen him up to his refined self again

How well does it match the trope?

5 (7 votes)

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Main / MakeoverMontage

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