Let’s give mad beauty props to Mischa Barton, who has not looked this fresh and gorgeous in a looong time

Mischa Barton Beverly Hills Fashion Festival 2010

Mischa Barton has had a makeover. And this is a very, very good thing because every single time I’ve seen photos of her lately, it has prompted a silent “WTF?” in my brain. Yours too—don’t lie.

Of course, there is another reason to be happy that Mischa has corrected her lapse in beauty (although maybe not fashion) judgement. In an interview last month with OK! magazine, she admitted that she struggles with depression, but is finally in “a better place.”

Now, this is pure speculation here, but I think it shows. When you feel good, you are more inclined to want to look good. Because (sorry Mischa) this hairstyle was obviously not designed by a happy person:

Mischa Barton Polo Classic Lets give mad beauty props to Mischa Barton, who has not looked this fresh and gorgeous in a looong time

I hate to kick a girl when she’s down, but for purely instructive purposes may I just say? These are the very definition of Bad Hair Extensions. Bad colour, first of all, but most importantly, bad shape and texture. They just scream cheap, don’t they, when they hang like that without tapering at the bottom. I imagine they’d feel like those awful synthetic wigs you buy at Halloween stores.

Mischa Barton hair extensions Lets give mad beauty props to Mischa Barton, who has not looked this fresh and gorgeous in a looong time

But that’s what makes Mischa’s new look all the more wonderful. It’s as if she’s risen from the ashes like some sort of Beauty Phoenix:

Mischa Barton Beverly Hills Fashion Festival Lets give mad beauty props to Mischa Barton, who has not looked this fresh and gorgeous in a looong time

Incredible, right?

First of all, she looks a kajillion times better without all that fake-looking hair overpowering her face. (Although what, exactly, her hair is doing now is still unclear—I’m guessing it was damaged from years of extensions, so they had no choice but to give her this layered, wispy cut. Hopefully as it grows out she’ll even it up with a nice, blunt lob. Wouldn’t that look great?)

The colour is also better, because it is darker, warmer and more golden, and also varied in tone instead of a Girls Next Door-esque solid blonde mass.

F21 hairband Lets give mad beauty props to Mischa Barton, who has not looked this fresh and gorgeous in a looong time

The other thing is that for once, Mischa is unadorned with hair accessories. Who knows how long this will last, because as we all know, Mischa is a bit of a magpie and enjoys all manner of embellishments including hairbands, headbands, head scarves and fascinators. No simple black elastic band will do—not for Mischa.

It’s not that I don’t like hair accessories—they were actually one of my fave things about Toronto S/S ’11 fashion week—but they can very easily become costumey with overuse. And I think going without them… without all that artifice… makes Mischa look so much more fresh.

And the red lips, well, what more can I say except that they are fabulous?

Okay, maybe a product recommendation. For colour this rich and matte, the product you want to use is this chubby pencil from NARS:

NARS matte velvet lip pencil Lets give mad beauty props to Mischa Barton, who has not looked this fresh and gorgeous in a looong time

Can you believe Mischa’s beauty transformation?
Weren’t her hair extensions tragic?
Doesn’t her new look make you want to paint on a matte red lip, like, right NOW?

36 Comments

Jane
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 9:31 am

She looks gorgeous!!! Adore her fair skin, freckles soft eye make up and those lips! The glowing taupe/golden eye make up is perfect. Lashes slightly thick but nothing a comb after mascara application couldn’t help.

I swear I have to find the courage to rock a red lip. At almost 45 I have yet to do so….

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skybluesky
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 12:11 pm

Definitely try a red lip! Try many different kinds of reds and textures. A lip stain isn’t as dramatic and it’s a lot harder to wear off.

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Gimped
Friday, November 12/2010 at 2:41 pm

Do it, Jane! I was also hesitant about trying a red lip, but now I love it. I have DuWop’s Private Red, which is supposed to adjust to your own perfect shade. No idea if it works, but I like it :)

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:37 pm

Have you ever tried a lip stain, Jane? I think they’re a great way to ease into the brighter lip trend… not nearly as heavy or scary as a full-blown lipstick. Joe Fresh and CoverGirl make great, inexpensive ones (under $10). You can layer a gloss or balm over top.

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Elaine A
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 11:36 am

WOW she really does look amazing! She always looked very gaunt and tired to me in the past. She looks healthy and her skin is glowing!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:45 pm

I agree, her skin looks SO lovely here! Just really healthy and glowy. Maybe she has been taking cod liver oil :-)

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skybluesky
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 12:10 pm

Wow, she looks about ten years younger. I remember when I first saw her in The O.C., she was gorgeous. Then the last 5 or so years happened. This is why I don’t do drugs. I hope she continues to take care of herself.

I do question her choice of a top/dress/whatever she’s wearing.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:48 pm

Oh wow, drugs? It didn’t cross my mind before (I’m so naive about celebs) but yeah… would not surprise me at all.

Not liking this top either. It’s tucked into Mom pants (the equivalent of Mom jeans) – some kind of pleated, high-waisted khaki disaster. This girl has the WORST fashion sense!

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skybluesky
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 12:13 pm

Michelle, that is a great product recommendation! I have the NARS matte velvet pencil in Dolce Vita, it looks pink on my pigmented lips. It’s not too cool, not too warm…pretty much a universally flattering color.

That red is a great color for Mischa, it suits her perfectly and brightens up her face.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:49 pm

Ok now I want that colour! NARS do highly-pigmented shades so well!

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Gimped
Monday, November 15/2010 at 10:18 am

Are the NARS pencils drying at all? And the pencils are actual lipsticks, right, not liners?

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, November 17/2010 at 12:23 am

You know what, it’s been a long time since I’ve used mine so I can’t remember the moisturization factor. I don’t recall it being a problem… where I see these pencils are somewhere in between a lipstick and a lip liner. Def not as drying as a liner but maybe not quite as creamy as a lipstick. The colours are super intense though so you have to be ready for that. And also the matte-ness.
I’d give them a whirl at the counter before purchasing, just to make sure. You could actually get a pretty similar look with the Joe Fresh lip stain in red, and then just put a clear matte balm over top. That stain lasts forever!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Monday, November 22/2010 at 5:36 pm

Hey Gimped – just heard on Twitter today that NARS are coming out with a glossy version of these pencils!

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Skybluesky
Monday, November 22/2010 at 5:47 pm

Gimped, they’re not drying but not moisturizing either. I have dry flaky lips so they tend to settle into lip lines but they’re not super drying, either. They’re definitely matte.

Yeah, they’re more like matte lipsticks in pencil form…you could use them as lip pencils if you sharpened them and/or have good hand/eye coordination.

Michelle, way psyched to hear about the glossy version of these!

Haven’t written on here because I went on an epic hike. Am still sore.

Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Monday, November 22/2010 at 8:22 pm

You and me both, Skybluesky! I was too aggressive with my workout and today can barely walk up and down stairs!

I am pretty sure I will like the glossy version of this pencil better than the matte so can’t wait! Will post when I get more info.

Gimped
Monday, November 22/2010 at 10:13 pm

I checked out the existing pencils in Sephora the other day. They’re pretty nice!! I was debating on what colour to grab — maybe the matte collection will make the colour choice easier. I do have to be a bit careful about what I put on my lips. My lips are pretty nice …until you put product on them, then they start to dry out. No idea why …

Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, November 23/2010 at 12:52 pm

I have the same problem – lips are chapped from about now through March. Exfoliating the dry skin off helps a bit… but I usually stick with lip stains or pencils and then put a thick layer of balm on top.
Oh and I know we’re not talking about gloss, but Josie Maran’s lip gloss is insanely moisturizing.

Arianne
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 12:53 pm

That first picture is just perfection. Thank goodness she got her act back together. Well done, Mischa!

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Liza
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 4:04 pm

Definitely ‘beauty phoenix of the week.’ She looks amazing — great cheekbones, jawline, bright eyes, hair very unstraw-like. It’s even shiny.

But she’s a brunette, right?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSs7Yr9ZXV8

PS – yup, costarring w Jessica Paré, who’s now on Mad Men.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:51 pm

Holy cow, nice blast from the past! I actually love that light brown on Mischa, it’s very pretty. Even though I resist being brunette myself, it’s so refreshing to see when Hollywood blondes are a dime a dozen. (Yes, the Ombre is slowly growing on me.)

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Meghan
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 6:57 pm

I feel for the girl if she was going through a bout of depression. It’s hard to even get out the door when your mood is effected like that – I give her props for trying and putting herself out there while in a low place emotionally.

I DO love her new look though. Less is definitely more in this case and the red lips are perfect for the season. Thumbs up!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:52 pm

Oh I know – totally can’t blame her. I hope her new look means she’s feeling better now…

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makeup morsels
Wednesday, November 10/2010 at 12:52 am

It’s amazing how much difference the hair makes, because I take no issue with her makeup in those other photos. The red lips look good on her!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:55 pm

That’s true – in the “before” pic her makeup wasn’t so bad… it was really just the hair that threw everything off. It’s amazing what a difference the right colour can make – now her skin glows!

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ChickAdvisor
Friday, November 12/2010 at 2:17 pm

She looks fantastic!! I hope this naturally gorgeous and simple look is here to stay – reminds me of her O.C. days

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 8:56 pm

Totally! She looks so much younger.

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Eli aka Negra Cabreada
Friday, November 12/2010 at 3:22 pm

I feel sorry for her, it looks like she’s been going through quite a difficult time, with its ups and downs…I hope she recovers soon

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Liz
Saturday, November 13/2010 at 2:23 pm

I don’t care for the red lips with the plain eye makeup. I think i would gloss up the lips, add a darker brown pencil and some gold tone eyeshadow. The red on her looks misplaced without something on the eyes to add balance. But there’s my two cents!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 9:00 pm

Oh really? I actually quite like the bare eyes with the bright lip… it makes the whole look very fresh and youthful and not so “done.” (And was huge, huge, huge on the runways… see here: http://beautyeditor.ca/2010/09/14/new-york-ss-11-go-forth-and-purchase-a-bright-lipstick-any-colour-will-do/)
But glossy red + a bit heavier eyes would be great too – that’s more of an evening look, like this: http://beautyeditor.ca/2010/09/24/milan-ss-11-if-you-do-wear-red-lipstick-not-orange-or-pink-then-maybe-youd-like-to-give-it-this-smokin-hot-update/

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Liz
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 10:10 pm

Hi Michelle – thanks for providing these links – the evening look is the one I am crazy about!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, November 17/2010 at 12:23 am

yes! Those lips are very Robert Palmer, no?

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Gimped
Wednesday, November 17/2010 at 10:29 am
Cassandra Rae Ferguson
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 9:48 pm

She looks gorgeous. I do love the red lip!
I love the fact that she has alllowed the lip to dominate the look without overdoing the eyes and it really works. I wholly recommend wearing minimal eye & cheek makeup if you are dubious about plunging into a red lip!
Matte is best for those just starting out with red, and as others have said a stain is a good place to start. Another option is to mix the red with something softer, until you feel more comfortable wearing it alone.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, November 17/2010 at 12:25 am

I concur 100% Cassandra! I know Liz above isn’t a fan of the low-key eyes but I have to say, that’s one of my absolute favourite looks right now… super bold mouth and fresh/minimal everywhere else.
Great tips for easing into red as well…thanks!

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Liz
Thursday, November 18/2010 at 2:21 pm

Hey ladies!
Well I went ahead and did my own red lips on my website – I just got a tube of Maybelline Red Revival and gave it a test run. Let me know what you think. Ciao! Liz

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Thursday, November 18/2010 at 5:51 pm

Hey Liz – I tried to leave a comment on your site but it said I had to sign in (?) Anyway – that is such a pretty colour! Quite a pinky red, right? I love the Color Sensational line, it’s really good. Have you tried Revlon’s new lipsticks (designed by Gucci Westman)? They are also amazing!

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