Weekly beauty wrap-up: The Oscars editionWhat a massive week in beauty! From the Oscar’s to the usual controversies that bombard the beauty industry, this week’s wrap covers everything from racism to androgyny to snakeskin. And nails. Lots and lots of nails.
Oscars beauty trends
While Oscars ‘Hot or Not’ usually refer to celebrity fashion choices, there is actually a far more subtle, influential force at work on the red carpet: beauty. While it may be nice (aspirational) to pull fashion parallels between Angelina’s slit dress and your latest ASOS purchase, let’s be real: it’s far easier to attain red carpet beauty trends than it is fashion ones. The average working lady doesn’t have the cash money (or, alternatively, the status) to buy/ get given an original Tom Ford cape dress, so, in attempting to get your red carpet chic on, opt for these simple and effective hair and make-up trends.
Lip-gloss this season is most definitely poppin’ with Leslie Mann, Gwyneth Paltrow and Octavia Spencer all opting for nude pouts over audacious lipstick shades. In saying that, Ange and Milla Jovovich sported a classic, matte red lip. Shades in between the two beauty trends were scarce though, so if the Oscar’s are anything to go by, as far as lips are concerned this season, it’s an all-or-nothing kind of vibe.
Speaking of nudes, if you, like me, have a borderline-unhealthy obsession with nails, you would’ve noticed that the red carpet regulars selected shades spanning across the beige spectrum, avoiding, well, pretty much every other colour. Former wrestler and actress Stacy Keibler (aka George Clooney’s ‘trophy date') and The Muppets star Amy Adams both rocked this look, apparently wearing OPI nail lacquer in Samoan Sand to accompany their gold and silver dresses respectively.
While lips and nails were, for the most part, understatedly elegant, smoky sultry eyes and flicked liquid liner brought a grunge aesthetic to the dominant eye styles of the night. Emma Stone and Wendi McLenson-Covey gave a shout out to the late Amy Winehouse with subtely flipped top-liner whilst Kate Mara, J.Lo and Anne-Sophie Bion doused their lids with eye-shadow, achieving a smoky, sultry stare.
In terms of hair, there was an obvious resistance to the hair extensions look that has dominated Hollywood for the last little while (see: Kardashian) with classic, ladylike up-dos, ponytails, retro-waves and bobs being red carpet favourites. Arguably, the most striking hairstyle at this year’s Academy Awards was Rooney Mara’s sharp fringe. We suspect a trend.
In other news...
A racist beauty pageant stirs controversy in the UK
Over the weekend, London Nightclub, “The Venue”, has been accused of promoting racist attitudes (and surprise, surprise, degrading women) after holding a beauty contest where complexion categorised contestants. The ‘Battle of the Complexions’ positioned light skinned, brown skinned and dark skinned African-American women against each other in a pageant that encouraged women to “cum out and rep either team-lite, team-caramel or team-dark”. The event’s Facebook page was also quoted saying “This is the most debatable topic of the year, whats the sexiest skin complexion?? So ladies come out & lets settle this!!” Most ironic of all though, the club was located on Martin Luther King Drive.
Andej Pejic for Jean Paul Gaultier
The famous androgynous model has just won his first major beauty deal as the face of Jean Paul Gaultier’s iconic men’s fragrance, Le Male. The perfume, which comes in the recognisable torso-shaped bottle, has been a male beauty industry favourite for years. However, many critics are worried that Pejic’s neuter looks, pout and eminent catwalk strut may compromise the ‘masculinity’ of the fragrance. Last year Pejic collaborated with Gaultier in a runway show that alluded to James Bond’s sexual ambiguity. Gaultier is yet to confirm whether Pejic will be starring in the Le Male campaign as a man or a woman.
On another gender-bending note, we introduce you to ‘male polish’, the cosmetic cousin of guyliner and guylashes. Cash Warren, Seal and Johnny Depp have been spotted sporting shades from yellow to blue, and brands such as BB have created lacquer lines targeted at men. Nail colours by the US cosmetics company have brought out shades named “Bullfighter”, “Coal Miner” and “Golf Pro”. Well... at least there’s something for everyone.
If shellac is feeling a bit to tame for you, then you may want to spice up your beauty regimen by investing in some scaly nails. That wasn’t a metaphor. Snakeskin manicures are a new trend sweeping London and New York beauty salons by storm, where technicians embed sanitised snakeskin into gel before adding colour and seal onto your nail. The procedure lasts up to two weeks and, as snakes shed their skin naturally, indulging - and I use that term loosely - actually causes no harm to the animal. However, if fake nails were incentive for you to stop biting, we’d probably advise you to steer clear of this beauty treatment.
Celebrities from Blake Lively to Jenifer Lopez have been enjoying the charming prettiness of the latest nail art trend, lace manicures. What began as a beauty trend is slowly morphing into an accessory, as beauty boffs and fashionistas alike are embracing this modern take on a classic fabric. OPI have charted this trend, releasing application instructions that read as follows: “one layer of OPI top coat over-the-top of your base colour and carefully place a piece of lace onto the top coat whilst it is still wet. Make sure that the top coat you use is not a quick drying top coat, as you want the lace to stick-onto the top coat. Use a pair of tweezers to position the lace in the desired position. You may also want to use nail glue, however depending on the lace used, this application could look clumsy.” We recommend using the magic of real lace, as it is more authentic and stylish. Also, invest in some nail art pens for the traced on lace technique.
Blumarine A/W12 collaborates with Sam McKnight for Pantene
In another Pantene/ luxury label collaboration, we bring you brand new images of Blumarine’s hair choices at Milan Fashion Week. The shiny hairstyle coupled modern glamour with metallic techno detail in order to create a sensual, young feeling. According to Sam McKnight, Global Stylist Ambassador for Pantene Pro-V, “The Blumarine woman is sexy and glamorous and knows what she wants so I wanted to create a hair look that was grown up sexy but with a youthful ‘unfinished’ feeling to it. I wanted the hair to shine with health so that it worked with the shiny, metallic effects of the collection, almost as if the hair was actually part of the clothing collection.”
Orly nail polish
Every season without doubt, Orly nail polish produces radiant shades which manage to maintain the brand’s commitment to nail health while being on trend. This season, my personal favourite is a pink tone – which admittedly, reminds me of my 90s childhood – named ‘Hawaiin Punch’. The bright shade is perfect of you’re a chronic black wearer. Nail colour has the ability to turn your funeral fashion hues into trendy, accessorised pieces.
What else is great from Orly this season are their nail care products. The Chip Preventing Primer and the Cuticle and Stain Remover are new technological developments that accompany the lacquer line’s basecoats, topcoats, strengtheners, quick-dry agents that help condition your nails to make your manicure last longer.
Kit cosmetics nail strips
Yes, I’m aware that this wrap-up has been heavily saturated with nails, but there’s one final product I insist on harping on about before I let you return to your daily duties: Nail Strips. These bad boys are brought to us by Kit Cosmetics, and so the nail world has been revolutionised beyond belief – I know there are famines and war’s going on, but still, it’s been an exciting time in the world of cuticles. The Australian retailer has launched a collection of stick-on nail strips which makes nail art easy. Watch out for pinks and purple glitter strips as well as the Shape-Up design.
Join the conversation below