I'm delighted to introduce a new feature called Bella Donna, where we pay tribute to beauty icons through the ages. A Bella Donna could be an actress, a model, or another prominent historical or modern figure. The only requirement is that she have a distinct and influential look. (Got an idea for a Bella Donna post? Tell me below.)

Since bob haircuts are back in full force, I thought we should take a moment to admire Louise Brooks, the silent film actress who put severe short haircuts on the map. Best known for her breakthrough role in 1929's Pandora's Box, Brooks' blunt-cut bangs and high-shine dark hair set off a nationwide trend. Perfectly manicured brows, pale skin, and dark velvety lips finished off her stunning look. In 1938, Brooks retired from Hollywood at a young age, and it's said that she was later discovered working at a sales clerk at Saks.

To see a gallery of this Bella Donna's influential beauty looks, read more