When it comes to makeup, Couture Week may bring the crazy—but I love me some crazy. For the past few days, the world's haute couture designers have been showing their collections in Paris, and this time around, it's a particularly... shall we say creative?... season.
Sure, there were utterly gorgeous and totally wearable looks from designers like Valentino (the usual ethereal updos), Giambattista Valli (ridiculously flawless skin) and Ulyana Sergeenko (flicked-out eyeliner). But we've pretty much seen all of that before.
What we haven't seen are the five looks I want to show you today. They're not meant for real life, of course. You need to keep in mind that it's fashion fantasy—they're meant to inspire, to make a bigger, bolder statement that then gets trickled down to the mainstream, morphing along the way into something we can actually walk out the door wearing.
So what I'm going to do today is act as translator! Here are the looks you need to know about, and what they mean for our makeup in 2013.
Christian Dior's bedazzled lips
The look: ZOMG! This is the big one that everyone's talking about. Leave it to makeup artist Pat McGrath to make a bedazzled mouth look kind of... cool. (I repeat: Never say never in this business.) Some models had red, while others had pink. This was done by painting the lips with a red or fuchsia pencil as the base, and then slicking on a top coat of Dior Addict Gloss in Diablotine #643 or Princess #553 before painstakingly applying individual Swarovski crystals.
What it means: No, it's not exactly office-friendly makeup. Nor do I want you to wear this out to the club. But I think what we're going to start seeing is more metallic finishes in makeup in general. There was a hint of this trend at Moschino Cheap & Chic for fall/winter, where the models sported more subtle glitter on vivid pink lips. For real life, all you want is a lipstick with a metallic or foil finish. Try Kat Von D's Foiled Love Lipstick or Sephora+Pantone Universe Precious Foil Lipstick Palette.
Chanel's feathery eyes
The look: Isn't this beautiful? It's not makeup, it's art. The eye appliqués were created especially for the show from leaf-shaped tulle, which creative director of makeup Peter Philips then enhanced with a traditional smoky eye. He used Chanel Stylo Eyeshadow in Black Stream and Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Noir Intense, along with Le Volume de Chanel Mascara in Noir on the lashes.
What it means: I think things are going to get way more creative in the eye area! We're already seeing a huge boom in the lash extensions business, which I don't think is going to let up anytime soon, and from the research I did on a lash story last month, the trend is moving towards lash art: feathers, crystals, different colours, etc. The surrounding area isn't going to be left out either. Maybe we're not ready to embrace Chanel-style appliqués, but Sephora has already come out with velvet cat's eye liner stickers (some versions even have little crystals at the edges). Expect to see more, and soon.
Atelier Versace's neon green liner
The look: This is SUCH cool-girl makeup. Apparently the collection featured neon green metallic shoes and clothing—so Pat McGrath echoed that in the makeup, with a graphic strip of liner at the outer corners of the eyes and also in a V at the inner corners. I love how the liner is so sharp, but she put it on top of a smudged black smoky eye. (Genius!) No word yet on what amazing product was able to achieve this bold hue, but I'm guessing it was a custom mix.
What it means: Remember we talked about how green is going to be the hottest colour for 2013? Well, this may be more lime green than emerald, but it's still totally of-the-moment. The message is to start embracing this shade (even if it's not neon), and don't be shy either: that edgy, graphic liner trend that was big for 2012 is still continuing.
Jean Paul Gaultier's crystal-studded eyes
The look: More crystals! Here, the inspiration was "Indian goddesses," so makeup artist Lloyd Simmonds used a combination of black pencil with Rubotan Line Liquid and L’Oréal Paris Super Liner Black Lacquer to create kohl-rimmed eyes with a greasy finish. Then, the crystals were attached to the eyes, face and in some cases, forehead, with false lashes and silver shadow at the inner corners of the eyes to complete the look.
What it means: The same point is being made here as at Chanel: Get ready for luxe lids and some major eye-area creativity! I think mini-versions of these crystals, on a much cleaner-looking eye and probably placed at the outer edges, would look REALLY cool for a special night out.
Armani Privé's angular floating liner
The look: Have you noticed that most of these trends put the focus on the eyes? Actually, Armani has been doing interesting things with liner and shadow for many seasons now—and this "flicked banana" shape was Armani (the man's) idea himself. The brand's international makeup artist, Linda Cantello, described it as a contemporary mash-up of the '80s, '90s and '50s; no word yet on the specific eye products used but no doubt they're from the house brand. Interestingly, they're balanced by a strong red lip: Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro mixed with Giorgio Armani Flash Lacquer Gloss (out this spring).
What it means: Like I said above regarding Versace, sharp, defined liner shapes remain strong (heh) for the year ahead. Same with liner that floats above the crease instead of being anchored at the lash line—a look that we're already familiar with from Erdem and before that, Jen Kao. Third thing to watch out for: more acceptance of the idea of wearing a strong eye AND a strong lip. It's tricky to pull off, but with the right application (and outfit), it's becoming très modern.
Which of these Couture Week looks do you like the best?
Which real-life version do you think you're most likely to wear? (For me I'm super-excited about foil-finish lips!)
Is there a 2013 makeup trend that you hope NEVER takes off?