New York Designers are Saying No to Blush For Spring 2012

That's what Marc Jacobs, Donna Karan and Calvin Klein are telling us.
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That's what Marc Jacobs, Donna Karan and Calvin Klein are telling us.

Let's just be clear before we delve into this alarming (at least to me) headline: there was no shortage of blush on the New York catwalks. But these three designers decided to pretty much skip it, which worries me. Is this a sign of things to come?

I sure hope not, because as you know blush is my addiction. (And concealer, but we already talked about that.) Yes, even Carmindy was on to me when she did my makeup, telling me that "you're going to feel like this isn't enough blush" and comparing me to one of her celebrity clients who feels compelled to frantically apply more blush—MOAR! MOAR!—in the limo enroute to the red carpet, thereby ruining Carmindy's good work.

I don't know if I'm that bad... yet... but perhaps I'll be more restrained if this trend actually takes off. Let's take a closer look, shall we?

Donna Karan's models were the first to ditch the cheek colour in favour of a very NON-spring/summer lip:


Kinda harsh, yes? Instead of blush, makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury went for sculpted cheekbones using M.A.C Cream Colour Base in Sepia, a taupey contour cream. You could get a similar look with the step-by-step contouring kit that I reviewed a few weeks ago. Oh, and remember the faux freckles Charlotte did at Chloé last season? They're here too, using the same M.A.C Lip Pencil in Hodgepodge. Always a cute touch.

At Calvin Klein, the girls were blush-free but a little more radiant and healthy-looking:


I could do this—if I had this girl's bone structure and hair and general flawlessness. No word yet on the specific products used to create this look, but the makeup artist was Pat McGrath, so you just know we should pay attention. Aside from the perfect skin (you might want to brush up on your foundation skillz, ladies), I think what also makes it polished are the combed-up lashes and the very slightly darkened eyebrows. I'm also liking whatever is on the lips to give them that slight shine. Notice how it's not goopy.

The definitive no-blush statement, however, came from the (always highly anticipated) Marc Jacobs show:


The focus was all about the eyes—with Amy Winehouse and Patsy Kline as inspirations—so makeup artist François Nars made the executive decision of eliminating the blush so as not to distract from the heavy lashes (as well as the strong brows). MAN do these lashes look heavy! I kind of see his point that blush isn't necessary here. It's very French, very Cabaret, "like a black and white film," says Nars. The only thing on the face is NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer, which won't be out until next year, so for now try Sheer Glow Foundation.

Tell me:

Could you live without blush?
Which one of these looks do you like best?
Do you think a blush-free face needs another feature to balance it out, like the lips (as at Donna Karan) or the lashes (as at Marc Jacobs)?