It was never a good idea to emulate Hugh Hefner's harem, but it's maybe the worst thing, beauty-wise, to do now (are you listening Xtina, Paris and LiLo?)

Christina Aguilera Burlesque Madrid

If I could stage beauty interventions—which would be a wonderful, wonderful thing (can you imagine how FUN that’d be?)—Miss Christina “I’ve Just Filed for a Divorce” Aguilera would be my very first “project.”

I mention the divorce thing because breakups do crazy things to our beauty routines, as I’m sure you’re well aware. Hey—at least she has a good excuse. (Did she look so drag queeny before? I don’t think so, right?) Anyway, whichever way you slice and dice it, her hair and makeup are an unmitigated disaster and I wish to attack her with baby wipes, scissors and a box of hair dye immediately.

Unfortunately, Christina isn’t the only celeb who has fallen victim to the Playboy mansion notion of beauty. (You know: makeup applied with a trowel; platinum blonde hair extensions, etc.)

This has been Paris Hilton’s schtick for YEARS.

Paris Hilton MTV Movie Awards 2010 It was never a good idea to emulate Hugh Hefner's harem, but it's maybe the worst thing, beauty wise, to do now (are you listening Xtina, Paris and LiLo?)

The problem is that she hasn’t changed her look much (except to add breast implants) since 2004, the year when the bimbo look was arguably in its heyday.

These days, the paps—and the general public—care a lot less about Paris than they used to, and I have to wonder if not evolving her look had something to do with it. Paris, we’ve left you in the early ’00s with other embarrassing trends like low-rise jeans with thong underwear peeking out.

My last case study (although there are heaps more) is Lindsay Lohan.

Lindsay Lohan MTV Movie Awards 2010 It was never a good idea to emulate Hugh Hefner's harem, but it's maybe the worst thing, beauty wise, to do now (are you listening Xtina, Paris and LiLo?)

This one makes me the saddest of all, because I think Lindsay—if only she’d conquer her demons—has that elusive “it” quality that most actresses wish they had. It’s a real shame she traded her red hair for blonde (hopefully Emma Stone has better luck), got waaay too into tanning and lip injections… and of course we all know that drugs and alcohol do really bad things to your skin.

Now, just thinking about these three ladies, you may notice a theme here.

There seems to be an inverse relationship between the colour of your hair and the success of your career.

As in: the more your career tanks, the lighter and more platinum these celebs are tempted to dye it. Probably you know someone in real life who does this too, right? I totally get the blonderexia disease, but doing this is like putting a great big sign on your forehead saying “I Think the Best Years of My Life Are Behind Me.”

The other thing that perplexes me is that these people have stylists and makeup artists and hairdressers who let them walk out the door this way.

I mean, just going back to the title of this post, NEVER BEFORE has beauty been less about what these peeps are doing.

Instead, it is about:

SKIN—REAL, DEWY, RADIANT, NATURAL SKIN.

Natalie Portman It was never a good idea to emulate Hugh Hefner's harem, but it's maybe the worst thing, beauty wise, to do now (are you listening Xtina, Paris and LiLo?)

Natalie Portman (who, like I was saying the other day, rarely does ANYTHING wrong when it comes to beauty) is a perfect example of what skin should look like. Not the wax statue look that these fallen celebs are so attached to. (And I’m thinking Carrie Underwood is a borderline offender here, despite her new gig with Olay.) Nope, right now—and for the foreseeable future—it’s about wearing very sheer foundations with a bit of sheen and dewiness, and letting your natural skin texture show through. You only want the heavy coverage on blemishes or discolourations—not all over your face.

LIPSTICK, YES, BUT *ONLY* LIPSTICK.

Kate Bosworth red lipstick 2010 It was never a good idea to emulate Hugh Hefner's harem, but it's maybe the worst thing, beauty wise, to do now (are you listening Xtina, Paris and LiLo?)

Not lipstick and heavy brown blush and layers and layers of eye makeup (Christina? Ahem). Kate Bosworththe great wearer of eyeshadow—is also a great wearer of lipstick. This, peoples, with barely any other makeup, is how it is done. And yes, the same thing goes for emphasizing the eyeshadow n’ lashes. If you do that, you obviously want to go more nude on the lips (see: Natalie Portman, above).

AND HAIR MUST BE, ABOVE ALL, RICH AND SHINY AND PROBABLY MORE ON THE BROWN SIDE THAN BLONDE.

Denise Richards brown hair It was never a good idea to emulate Hugh Hefner's harem, but it's maybe the worst thing, beauty wise, to do now (are you listening Xtina, Paris and LiLo?)

This is perhaps the most significant movement of all away from the early ’00s bleached blonde thing. I mean, if Denise Richards has just gone brunette, you know change is afoot. (I missed her in my radical hair colour change post the other day, but I think I approve of this, as it’s still very warm and not that cool, dull brown that Cameron Diaz used to have.)

Anyway, extensions are OUT (unless they are very, very well done in colour, shape and length). Ombré (instead of visible, high-contrast highlights) is obviously IN. And colour, in a word, is BROWNER and RICHER. And I mean richer as in warmth and also as in your hair should look expensive.

So…

What do you think about the beauty transgressions of Xtina, Paris and LiLo? Bad, right?
Have you ever gone too far with makeup or blonding your hair—or do you know someone who does?
Are you happy to see makeup getting more natural and hair getting more brown?

14 Comments

Alyssa
Friday, December 10/2010 at 5:01 pm

Good post! I must agree! As women we spend so much time energy money into grooming thinking that we need to look like a kardashian on a daily basis but this new movement could really be called the ” men’s movement” ! I can’t express to you how many times boyfriends past and boyfriend present have told me they were attracted to me because of natural beauty. Not to say we should all look like schlumps but this is definately the new look and men will love it! Still groomed but definately less stress about it!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, December 14/2010 at 5:41 pm

I agree – most men kind of hate makeup. Or at least makeup they can *detect*.

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Alyssa
Tuesday, December 14/2010 at 9:52 pm

Yes exactly cause if we didn’t wear any at all they wouldn’t like that either lol!

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Kat
Friday, December 10/2010 at 7:15 pm

It’s a compelling theory! Denise Richards scares the crap outta me though.. Fergie would be a great example of going from porn to glam! She went from being just another blonde singer who was trying too hard, to this empowered brunette bombshell, and it earned her woman of the year (ok, maybe her talent actually weighed in a little.. ;)

Christina Aguilera, oh my… she has enough talent and natural good looks NOT to have to retort to the Jenna Marbles technique.. why oh god why, no actually HOW could she not notice her cheeks look.. I don’t even have words to describe how terrible they look. Brown? Really?!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, December 14/2010 at 5:46 pm

I don’t know about Fergie… I think I prefer her as a blonde. Makes the harsh angles of her face (and those eyebrows) seem a little softer. Or maybe she just needs to stop parting her hair so severely in the middle. I feel like whenever I look at her brown hair all I notice is the part!

Love that video by the way!

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kat
Friday, December 10/2010 at 11:48 pm

why did it have to be christina i totally luv her but this is just plain ridiculous all these celebs have access to the best makeup and hair and wardrobes and they come out of the house looking like this? yikes!
and not to mention but lindsay lohan is really young why are her boobs sagging already… kind of scary!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, December 14/2010 at 5:47 pm

Yep, Xtina needs to fire her makeup artist… and Lindsay needs to always wear a bra. (Does prolonged drug use make your boobs saggy? Maybe!)

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Tracy
Saturday, December 11/2010 at 4:56 pm

I don’t understand these celebs-who the heck is their makeup artist? I mean what the hell is with all that bronzer? I would NEVER leave my house looking like that especially if I paid someone to put my makeup on for me. If they did this to themselves, then holy crap-better take some lessons or get a book fast!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, December 14/2010 at 5:50 pm

You know what? I just had to Google who did this to Christina. Apparently her makeup artist is Kristofer Buckle – not sure if he did this particular look but maybe. http://www.teenvogue.com/beauty/blogs/beauty/2008/12/20-questions-with-makeup-artist-kristofer-buckle.html I would believe it because he looks like he wears quite a bit of makeup himself!

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Tracy
Tuesday, December 14/2010 at 7:30 pm

Hahaha-you are so awesome Michelle! Did you read those questions they asked him? They asked him if sometimes less is more with makeup and he said no! That less is always less! His philosophy is pretty apparent in that Christina look!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Saturday, December 18/2010 at 1:12 pm

OMG! Hilarious! Can’t believe he made it into Teen Vogue – wow.

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rachel
Friday, January 21/2011 at 3:16 pm

@Michelle and @Tracy…
Kristofer Buckle did not do the makeup on Christina that you see on this page. He does her for high profile music video shoots a la “Candyman” and the Golden Globes 2010, all of which she looks amazing.
He is one of the best and most respected makeup artists in the industry.
Working with everyone from Demi Moore, to Jennifer Lopez, etc.
As for making it into Teen Vogue, he does every major publication.
Best,
Rachel.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, January 26/2011 at 6:08 pm

Thanks for confirming Rachel – she is NOT looking good here so I wouldn’t want my name attached to this makeup job either!

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Bárbara
Saturday, May 11/2013 at 11:41 am

I know this is ancient history but I just need to articulate my theory that hair should never be lighter that skin.

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