Come fall, ladies of all stripes will be sharing a common beauty trend, whether they’re proper Upper East Siders or downtown dwellers: messy—in a good way. Natural, slightly mad hair, bushy brows, and makeup that errs on the sinister side keeps popping up on the FW’11 runways. So far, hair looks have varied from bed head at DKNY to a sort of Victorian-era unwashed thing at Prabal Gurung, whose show was, arguably, one of the best thus far.
Unkempt might sound like a dirty word to prim uptown girls, but the collective rawness of the looks that pervaded lady-like runways (Peter Som) and downtown darlings (Alexander Wang) alike seemed to suggest a universal urge to take the edge of that Mad Men polish fashion latched onto last season. Here are a few of our favorite new-era grunge beauty looks, all undeniably easier to reproduce than those perfect Vuitton ponies.
Second Day Hair The 60’s-era pillow princesses at DKNY used Maybelline’s Express Eye Liner to roughly outline an undone cat’s eye, and false lashes for a crazed, clumpy eyelash look. The Wella hair team used Wella’s Perfect Setting to blow out hair, and then set locks in giant Velcro rollers. He doused the bouncey look with Ocean Spritz and ran the blow dryer over it once more to create wind-blown, second-day hair. Richard Chai had the same idea, but sought out unpolished texture that most of us come to naturally. Hair looked as if it was air-dried and finger-combed. TIGI used Catwalk Your Highness Root Boost Rockaholic Dirty Secret Dry Shampoo for volume and to achieve, again, that day-after hair. (Top Photos: DKNY. Bottom: Richard Chai by Sonny)
Peter Som took last year’s housewife and roughed her up. Wella’s Eugene Souleiman told StyleList: “The hair is late-’50s, early-’60s quirky housewife, with a rawness to it. It’s a deconstructed half-up ‘do, that looks as if I’ve done the wrong thing to.”
Undone Brown Shadow Cynthia Rowley opted for a bold, brown-hued smokey eye that smudged its way around the entire eye. Faces were kept bare, and brows were a little undone, creating a sort of gilded Renaissance look. Likewise, BCBG’s shadow was applied without precision: no eyeliner or shading. It looks as if a girl on the go needed a quick wash of color before she hooked up with friends for drinks. Nicole Miller’s shadow is sharper, using blocks of brown (Photos: Cynthia Rowley AP Photo/Stephen Chernin, Nicole Miller Andrew Burton, AP) Evil Eyes Even Jason Wu’s extreme tailoring and sumptuous fabrics had an edge, partly because of the kooky, ultra-winged smokey eyes, with hair that showcased imperfect parts that fuzzed haphazardly. Derek Lam opted for a gothic version of a cat’s eye that showcased a sharpness that made the look appear more severe than the 60’s winged eye. Prabal Gurung’s eye shadow focused on the inner eye, which imparted a sort of villainous tone. “The girls have a sort of Tim Burton movie or ‘Black Swan’ feel,” MAC’s Tom Pecheux told people backstage, “The theme is romance with a twisted, dark side, so I used shadow to make their eyes look almost a little mean.” (Jason Wu Photo, Prabal Gurung and Derek Lam Photos by Jill Schuck Taylor for AOL StyleList)
Grunge Brows The most schizophrenic facial feature of beauty trends past has been, undoubtedly, the brow. Gone are the days of bleached and shaved eyebrows. Instead, the pendulum has swung in the opposite extreme: brows are beyond natural—they’re bushy, even. Alexander Wang’s ladies evoked what many are calling 90’s grunge: unfinished, unwashed, undone hair and makeup. Natural beauties with un-plucked eyebrows, natural hair with center-parts, and no makeup: the epitome of his carefree aesthetic.
Charlotte Ronson’s girls also focused on a bold brow, this time penciled in for effect and paired with smudged burgundy liner. Tadashi Shoji’s girl’s were earth angels: hippies with pearly highlights and natural brows that overtook a rather undone face. (Photos: Charlotte Ronson by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for TRESemme, Tadashi Shoji by Thomas Concordia/WireImage)