5 Beauty Looks From Paris Couture Week That Actually Work For Real Life

From kohl liner to spiky lashes.
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Michelle Villett
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From kohl liner to spiky lashes.
Elie-Saab-Haute-Couture-SS12-makeup

Time for a break from all the red carpet coverage—did you know that Paris Couture Week just wrapped? It's like the little teaser enroute to the main event (Ready to Wear, which kicks off in New York next Thursday). Except with couture, everything is entirely hand-made and there is an inverse relationship between how much it costs (upwards of $25,000 per piece) and how often you can realistically wear it (I don't know about you, but my social life just doesn't have a role for ginormous floral headpieces).

But... surprise! The hair and makeup was a whole other story. Usually it's a spectacle—as over-the-top attention-grabbing as the clothes—but this time around, I'd actually wear these looks, and that's saying something. Think pretty lashes, faux bobs, bronzey eyes and smudgy liner. Come and get inspired...

So let's start with Givenchy. When it comes to piercings, this nose ring is THE piece to invest in this season.

Givenchy-Haute-Couture-SS12

Just kidding! Obviously I can only endorse the 25-pound earrings. Maybe that's why this model looks so pale.

Okay, let's be serious now. SERIOUS BEAUTY BIDNESS COMING UP.

Look #1: The faux bob at Dior

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For me this was easily the prettiest show, mostly because of the hair, but the makeup (by Pat McGrath) was obvi not too shabby either. Hair first: Orlando Pita prepped it with a liquid hair plumper before combing it into a deep side part and curling the ends under. I actually wrote a post in 2010 with a quickie faux bob how-to, so head on over here if you need more deets. I love that one, giant, bouncy curl at the front—so pretty.

(To copy the makeup, do some wingy black liquid liner, tons of mascara and some rosy pink cheeks and lips. Check out this post if you need help perfecting your cat-eye lining technique.)

Look #2: Blue kohl liner at Chanel

Chanel-Haute-Couture-SS12-makeup

For this show, Karl Lagerfeld's direction to Chanel creative director Peter Philips was BLUE, but in a way that the models "don't look like stewardesses." Enter kohl liner, in navy instead of the more common black. I've been in the habit of using a regular navy eyeliner on the lower waterlines only, but this is completely different, and I think I likey. It's a much thicker line, it goes all the way around the eye and it's slightly smudgy. Totes appropriate for evening.

The prodz used were Le Crayon Khol Intense Eye Pencil in Marine and Le Crayon Yeux Precision Eye Pencil in Blue Aerien, along with Illusion d’Ombre Long Wear Luminous Eyeshadow in Apparition (a grey-blue) through the crease and Destination (a silver-blue) along the brow bone and at the inner corners.

Look #3: Sleek, straight, half-up hair at Stephane Rolland

Stephane-Rolland-Haute-Couture-SS12-hair

I know, I know, this hair isn't exactly groundbreaking. But after seasons of textured, tousled 'dos, they did finally throw us straight-haired peeps a bone, and for that I say thank you. Can you believe this is couture?

Anyway, I'm guilty of constantly wearing my long, straight hair in the most boring side-parted style evah, but just pulling back the front section like this is très appealing in a same-but-different kind of way. Just make sure you've blow-dried it sleek but with a bit of volume, and maybe flat-ironed the ends. Then, create a part on either side of the section you want to pull back, and comb it back so it's tight to the head. I've got no idea what they used to secure the sections at this show, but I'm a fan of these:

Goody-Jenna-Barrettes

They're the Jenna barrettes from Goody, and a backstage fave.

Look #4: Bronze smokies at Versace

Versace-Haute-Couture-SS12-makeup

Oh, Lindsay Wixson, how I've missed you. (I Cannot.Wait for NYFW to start.) Anyhoo, this was another Pat McGrath achievement, and typical Versace in that it's glam, glam, glam.

I don't have a how-to for this one, so I can't tell you which prodz she used, but let's take note of a couple of things. First, the shading—there's a brown shadow over the entire lid, but then a deep, dark hue extends up toward the outer edges of the brows and underneath the lower lashes. Note the rounded shape. Finally—obviously—the gold shimmer at the inner corners makes the entire look. There's so much happening with the eye makeup that you want to go easy with lips and cheeks, and consider just pulling your hair back into a sleek pony.

Look #5: Spiky lashes at Elie Saab

Elie-Saab-Haute-Couture-SS12-makeup

HELLO lashes. Clearly, that whole trend I've been talking about (you know, chunky, spidery lashes) isn't going anywhere. Here, it looks like individual lashes were adhered to the upper and lower lids for a slightly wider-spaced and spiky look. Suck it Kardashians, because these are the kind of falsies that I could get behind. The effect is sort of doll-like yet still very natural, especially with the full brows.

The lipstick is also worth noting. I love it in this pic—it's an unapologetic bubblegum pink—but in some of the runway shots, it read pretty frosty. Proceed with caution.

Tell me:

Which of these couture looks is your fave?
Any that you might you actually try in real life?
Have you ever tried a faux bob, used kohl liner or done individual false lashes?