Met Ball ’11: It’s a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Diane Kruger Met Ball 2011

Last night a Very Important Event took place. No, I’m not talking about the Canadian federal election—I’m talking about the annual Costume Institute Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Let’s call it the “Met Ball” for short.

Forget the Oscars, because THIS is the most exciting red carpet occasion on any Very Important Person’s social calendar. And on beauty editors’ calendars as well, because while most of the awards nights through January and February tend to… how do I put it?… encourage a certain conservatism with hair and makeup choices, the Met Ball is where you can REALLY go all out. There is high fashion! There are celebrities! And you know what that means? A whole bunch of fun new beauty looks for us to pass judgement on. Whee!

Just quickly: the trend appears to be very much a retro, Old Hollywood sort of look, which we haven’t seen for a little while… and I’m loving it. Now, go grab yourself a tea and a blankie and settle in, because I have a whole whack of photos to show you. Let’s begin!

BIG NEWS IN HAIR: RETRO WAVES AND DEEP SIDE PARTS

Diane Kruger:

Met Ball 2011 Diane Kruger 2 Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Biggest surprise of the night for me. When did Diane grow her hair this long? And wear red lipstick? It’s so nice to see her with such a radically different look for a change. If I wanted to be nit-picky, I’d say that the curls are a tad too separated and needs to be brushed together a bit more, as per Kevin Murphy’s wise words in this vid. But that would REALLY be nit-picking.

Gisele Bundchen:

Met Ball 2011 Gisele Bundchen Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

And here is Gisele, who is not only better-looking than you but also a better mother. Of course, she looks amazing—maybe the best of the night, although it’s not really fair for actresses to have to compete with models. I’m much happier with her colour here versus the last time we saw it. And this is a great way to do the retro look—the hair has the structure but not the stiffness, and then the face is quite bare.

Emma Roberts:

Met Ball 2011 Emma Roberts Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Roberts, like Stone, always looks gorgeous. Especially loving this hairstyle because like Gisele’s, it’s not too stiff or old-fashioned. Not sure what’s going on with the colour though… let’s hope it’s just the lighting, because she doesn’t suit the blonde.

Penelope Cruz:

Met Ball 2011 Penelope Cruz Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Even Pene got into the wavy hair action, although I see she couldn’t give up her signature eye makeup for a bold lip. See how there are lots of ways to interpret this look in a modern way? I just would’ve liked to see more hair across her forehead.

Blake Lively:

Met Ball 2011 Blake Lively Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Well, well, well. We get to have another peek at Blake’s new hair colour… and I’m afraid it’s not improving. I can’t even properly evaluate the makeup, it’s so distracting. Like Penelope, I wish her hair fell more over the forehead.

Lea Michele:

Met Ball 2011 Lea Michele Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

I hate to say this, but Lea Michele is looking better and better. I was a big fan of the bangs as I thought they really softened her features—but who knew how great she could look with this deep side part? She didn’t go for the waves, and rightly so, I think—the sleekness of this style suits her best.

Madonna:

Met Ball 2011 Madonna Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Okay, the cosmetic work scares me a bit, and I think an event like the Met Ball is more than worthy of touching up your roots—but otherwise, this look is classic Madge. Great hairstyle, great brows, great lips.

UPDOS CAN GO RETRO TOO, YOU KNOW.

Amy Adams:

Met Ball 2011 Amy Adams Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

I don’t know how I feel about this one. I adore Amy Adams, beauty-wise, and applaud her for taking the risk, but does that braid really belong there? Or is it the makeup that’s impairing my judgement? I do like the sultry eyes with the berry lips—just not sure all the elements are harmonizing together.

Taylor Swift:

Met Ball 2011 Taylor Swift Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Taylor’s go-to look is suddenly all the rage, do you see? She’s no longer the only one doing the lashes, lips and waves, so I guess I’ll have to zip my lips re: having seen this a billion times before. One positive change: she pulled her hair OFF the forehead, where she usually wears it. Baby steps.

Lucy Liu:

Met Ball 2011 Lucy Liu Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

This thin hairband is probably the best hair accessory of the night. Makeup’s fantastic too. Lucy does not age.

Eva Mendes:

Met Ball 2011 Eva Mendes Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Okay, so this is a different kind of retro, but it’s retro nonetheless. Gosh, Eva is posing hard here isn’t she?

HOLY HAIR ACCESSORIES!

Kate Hudson:

Met Ball 2011 Kate Hudson Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

This could’ve been cute if her hair didn’t resemble Nicole Richie’s circa season one of The Simple Life. Because I DO like the idea of using sparkly clips in your hair… just not hair that is ratty, multi-coloured extensions. Even just brushing it out would’ve been an improvement.

Jessica Alba:

Met Ball 2011 Jessica Alba Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

MUCH better. Maybe a bit princess-y still, but it gets a pass from me. (Aside: that pregnancy glow is no myth. Her skin is ridiculously flawless.)

BRIGHT LIPS GO MATTE OR SHINY…

Emma Stone:

Met Ball 2011 Emma Stone Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

And here’s my current favourite beauty crush surprising and delighting us again with this fluoro lip—VERY Diane von Furstenberg spring/summer ’11, don’t you know? With the flicky eyeliner, zillion-dollar earrings and texturey updo, it is perfection. As usual.

Jennifer Lopez:

Met Ball 2011 Jennifer Lopez Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

This is a really different look for Jenny from the Block—her skin is much less tanned than we’ve seen it, and then there is the big red lip, of course. I can’t help but wonder if there is shadow of too-dark lip liner happening at the outer circumference, but perhaps that’s a lighting thing. Overall, I think she looks pretty fabulous, and shows that you really CAN wear 17 different shades of red on your person.

Gwyneth Paltrow:

Met Ball 2011 Gwyneth Paltrow Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Does Gwyneth have rosacea? I’m serious—not snarking. Her skin is looking so red lately and maybe it’s nothing to do with laser resurfacing. I do like her makeup here, otherwise. We rarely get to see a bright lip on her, and if you look closely, it’s been paired with some really cool shimmery silver eyeshadow. Oh, and she has extensions now. I love long-haired Gwyn.

LINER AND/OR EYESHADOW IS ALWAYS APPROPRIATE ON THE RED CARPET.

Kristen Stewart:

Met Ball 2011 Kristen Stewart Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Say what you will about K-Stew’s surliness on the red carpet, but she really does employ a magnificent makeup artist to do her eyes.

Ginnifer Goodwin:

Met Ball 2011 Ginnifer Goodwin Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Yay! This is the most exciting eye makeup of the night. And how wonderfully creative is the focus on the INNER, not the outer corners of the eyes? That’s something we took note of at Giorgio Armani last year. I definitely prefer it in the turquoise though… and with the necklace, it is matchy-matchy in just the right amount.

Zoe Saldana:

Met Ball 2011 Zoe Saldana Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

A really low-key look for Zo Zo, but it works.

Leighton Meester:

Met Ball 2011 Leighton Meester Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Awww… my girl Leighton went for liquid liner in a BIG way. Too bad I feel like of meh about it. Don’t get me wrong, she made the right choice by keeping the rest of her face bare, and hair up—but since the latter is hands-down her best feature, I feel like she should always play it up, you know?

Jennifer Hudson:

Met Ball 2011 Jennifer Hudson Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Typical J-Huds gorgeouness. We’ve seen this hairstyle before, and probably the eye makeup as well, but I wholeheartedly approve.

Isla Fisher:

Met Ball 2011 Isla Fisher Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Best hair in the biz. (Okay, Leighton too.) Blake Lively, are you seeing this? Anyway… Isla really lets her hair BE the story here. The contrast against that blue dress is out of this world, and so she doesn’t need much other than the subtly-emphasized eyes.

Beyoncé:

Met Ball 2011 Beyonce Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

How is it possible to look this good with an inch or so of roots and your hair in a low bun? Not fair, Beyoncé. The makeup is a triumph of golds and browns.

Chloë Sevigny:

Met Ball 2011 Chloe Sevigny Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

This doe-eyed look kinda sorta reminds me of another Chloé—the fashion brand, whose fall eye makeup I fell head over heels in love with. I think it needs the long hair to go with… or something. I’m not feeling this helmet-like ‘do.

Sarah Jessica Parker:

Met Ball 2011 Sarah Jessica Parker Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

Clearly, SJP didn’t take my hint the other day about the eyeshadow. I’ve written about it before, too—when your eyelids are starting to go crepey, you absolutely do not want to draw attention to the area with shimmer. Matte shadow would’ve been a far superior choice. And maybe an eyelash comb, unless she’s channeling the new chunky mascara trend.

AND NOW FOR THE PERFECT ANTIDOTE TO THE 572 POUNDS OF MAKEUP (AND HAIR PRODUCTS) WORN ABOVE:

Dakota Fanning:

Met Ball 2011 Dakota Fanning Met Ball 11: Its a retro revival! Celebs are channeling Old Hollywood with red lips, long lashes, deep side parts and soft waves

I love me some Dakota Fanning. She’s 17 and looks like it. (Same school of thought as Hailee Steinfeld, obvs.) I kind of feel like a traitor to my trade by saying this—because I DO love all of that colourful makeup that everyone else is wearing—but I’m really feeling this fresh face all of a sudden. Like we saw above, Gisele did a grown-up version of it. And the entire concept of doing a dressy dress with a bare-ish face is a Kate Moss signature move.

So maybe I’m going to spend more time on my hair now, and less with my bright lipstick collection.

What about you?

Which Met Ball look is your fave?
Who disappoints you the most?
How do you feel about this whole Old Hollywood beauty revival?

23 Comments

Jennifer from ChickAdvisor
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 2:44 pm

I am definitely seeing a lot of retro looks lately too! I love the style of red lips and perfectly waved hair, with deep lashes. So glad this look is the new trend!!

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Nomadic D
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 2:50 pm

Wow, I really literally breathed a sigh of relief when I got to Dakota! I love me some makeup as much as the next girl, but it’s so refreshing to see a simple beautiful face like that. I thought Ginnifer (why didn’t she make it onto your list?) was pretty gorgeous too with that rockin hair of hers. What is the deal with Blake’s hair color though? The red’s already washing out or what?

http://nomadic-d.blogspot.com/

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 7:51 pm

Just added a few more – not all of the pics were avail this a.m. Ginnifer’s eye makeup is AMAZE. But yeah, Dakota is truly a breath of fresh air. It does look like Blake’s colour has faded as her blonde highlights are peeking through and not in a good way. It’s all too much the same colour as her face.

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Meg
Wednesday, May 4/2011 at 1:44 pm

THAT’s what’s so off! I was trying to figure out why Blake’s hair bothered me so much, and it’s because it’s so similar to her skin tone. Maybe Blake should break out the fake n’ bake?

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Kaite
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 6:06 pm

Dakota looks beautiful, it makes me wish I was young again… even if I’m only a couple years older then her lol. Really though I wish I was even half as beautiful at 17.

One of my favourite looks of the night that you don’t have here is Dianna Agron, she looked lovely…nothing too fancy but if it works it works :)
also I loved Isal Fishers look…and I don’t know how I feel about Blakes red hair right as of right now. It’s not hideous and it’s a fairly subtle red but it’s not exactly her best look either haha.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 7:58 pm

I couldn’t get a Diana pic yet but will keep looking. I agree – very simple but pretty!

It’s funny to contrast Isla, a natural redhead (I think?) with Blake. Isla wears it so well but on Blake it’s not working.

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Jenna
Wednesday, May 4/2011 at 5:53 am

Yep, she a natural red-head – she’s had that colour since she was on the Aussie soap ‘Home and Away’ in the mid-90s. And her parents are Scottish!

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QuiteLight
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 6:44 pm

While I am an Amy Adams fan, this feels like a So-close Miss to me. I like the retro ’20′s – ’30′s thing (smokey eyes, close to the head updo resembling marcelled waves?”), I feel like her eyeshadow is too cool (as opposed to warm), and teams up with her very cool blue eyes to fight with her coppery eyebrows.

Browns & plums would’ve made her eyes pop & harmonized more, I think. The purple’s just the wrong shade.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 7:59 pm

Yes, could be the colours… or maybe there’s just too much going on, full stop.

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Elaine
Wednesday, May 4/2011 at 2:50 pm

I agree with the too-much going on – Amy Adams’ hair with less makeup obvious makeup – more neutrals! would be divine

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Jen
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 9:14 pm

Ginnifer Goodwin is official my new makeup idol. And jewelry idol, too. STUNNING.

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Jen
Tuesday, May 3/2011 at 9:17 pm

*officially. I was so excited I missed some letters. Whoops.

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Marina (Makeup4all)
Wednesday, May 4/2011 at 2:40 am

I just LOVE Ginnifer Goodwin’s makeup, it’s amazing!

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Thomas
Wednesday, May 4/2011 at 11:12 am

Yay!! SO happy that celebs are finally going back to 1950′s Hollywood style. Dianne looks amazing. Also, I must say this, Emma Stone looks… Strange. Something about only have eyeliner on her top eyelid makes her eyes look huge, and rather scary. Not liking at all. However, to balance it out, Taylor Swift. Her skin is flawless and she looks like an enchanted princess, she looks absolutely gorgeous.

Huge fan, fellow blonderexic Thomas xx

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Thomas
Saturday, May 7/2011 at 4:35 pm

Quick note to add, you were right Michelle, Gwyneth Paltrow does indeed have rosacea, according to the Daily Mail anyway. Here is the article where I found this out if your interested – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1035515/Bare-faced-chic-As-Gwyneth-goes-au-naturel-celebs-pass-make-free-test.html

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, May 11/2011 at 11:28 pm

Oh wow, I love the British press! Great article with all of the au naturel shots!

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, May 11/2011 at 11:22 pm

No love for Emma? I heart whatever she does – although yeah, this isn’t my #1 favourite look on her. Tayls always looks great but she’s always the same… Emma takes risks!

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Diana
Wednesday, May 4/2011 at 12:14 pm

So many great looks but my fav hands down was Michelle Williams. Stunning dress, hair and makeup!
http://tinypic.com/r/24ll8uo/7

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Meg
Wednesday, May 4/2011 at 1:47 pm

Ginnifer Goodwin always looks gorgeous, I think. I wish I had a reason to replicate that eye makeup…

I read recently that she’s had a wig clause added to all her contracts so she can rock whatever hairstyle she chooses. I wish I could look as good as she does with short hair – I’d have a pixie right now!

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Vivien
Thursday, May 5/2011 at 12:09 am

Amy Adams just gave me the shakes. Ew ew ew.

Blake Lively irks me. Shes a pretty girl but the overtanned face is so overwhelming for her features. She looks way better pale. Hey at least she isn’t wearing that peach shadow beneath her brows as usual.

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Lime
Thursday, May 5/2011 at 2:02 am

Why do they all have such big ears???

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Courtney
Thursday, May 12/2011 at 1:28 pm

Where can I get Lucy Liu’s earings? love.

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Samantha
Sunday, July 24/2011 at 2:41 am

I’m sorry but I thought Emma Stone and Jennifer Lopez looked ridiculous. What’s up with Emma’s hair? And J-Lo’s makeup was way too dark and was trying way too hard.

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