7 Beauty Lessons We Learned at Couture

Larger than life blowouts, colossal cat-eyes, and more

Leave it to Fall 2018 Couture to dare beauty pros to dream big (quite literally in some cases). Hair was blown to the max and petite feline flicks were magnified to daring new proportions. Glitter further illuminated the City of Light, while vivid dye jobs temporarily transported us somewhere over the rainbow where dreams of owning six-figure dresses really do come true. Here, our favorite hair and makeup moments from the runway:

Supersize your blowout

The higher the hair, the closer to haute couture heaven was just one of the many beauty lessons learned at Valentino. “The big hair at Valentino was inspired by extravagance,” said mane master Guido Palau. “Pierpaolo [Piccioli] and I were looking at a ’60s Diane Vreeland/Harper’s Bazaar shoots, these women who had glorious, dream hair.” The designer’s Fall 2018 Couture collection is said to have brought the house’s founder to tears and the bodacious blowouts balanced atop the heads of major models like Kaia Gerber and Vittoria Ceretti undoubtedly made beauty editors around the world a bit misty.

Create colossal cat-eyes

Whether you prefer classic black or a head-turning jewel tone, graphic cat-eyes stole the show at Fendi, Maison Margiela, and Valentino. Makeup artist Peter Philips enveloped top and bottom lash lines in inky liner and punctuated the outer corners with a slash of white for Fendi, while Pat McGrath wrapped a single eye in electric blue pigment and glitter at Maison Margiela. Behind the scenes at Valentino, McGrath crafted striking sapphire, ruby, and emerald wings that extended up past the tail end of models’ brows. Tiny, feminine flicks were also spotted on the runway at Givenchy and Jean-Paul Gaultier.

Pony up like a pro

Traditional tails were taken to new levels of luxe this season in Paris. Sam McKnight created “rockabilly quiffs” with a “swinging ponytail in the back” at Chanel. “Karl [Lagerfeld] called the collection Haute Profile, so I followed the same inspiration with hair that’s always rising upwards to elongate the elegant silhouette of the clothes,” explained the pro. It was also a party in the front and business in the back at Fendi, where McKnight crafted “harsh, high beehives” with “skinny ponies” at the nape of models’ necks. He described the finished look as “a little bit ’60s, a little bit punk, and a lot of attitude.” Palau slick lengths straight back into a simple pony at Valentino and sliced a strict center part at Dior before binding the tail with elastic.

Know your angles

Makeup artist Terry Barber created luminescent, otherworldly skin for Iris Van Herpen’s entire cast, but show-goers were treated to 360-degrees of beauty when model Kayleigh van Heerde stomped the runway wearing a sculptural piece that guaranteed she’d give good face from every angle.

Fight frizz by looking fab

Why worry about your hair when you can counteract heat and humidity with a captivating accessory? Despite steamy temps in Paris (a city where air conditioning is often optional), pros like Palau covered heads in everything from bedazzled bangs (Givenchy) to bold blooms (Valentino). Backstage at Sonia Rykiel, McKnight lined a middle part with ostrich feathers using extension glue to produce soft and sumptuous take on a punky mohawk. There was no shortage of glitzy crowns and bedazzled turbans in Lake Como for Dolce & Gabbana’s Alta Moda show, but it was a tower of violet-colored roses (not sky-high stilettos) that added a few impressive inches to an already statuesque Maye Musk. Should you need to get your hair off your neck, cap off a faux bob with simpler adornment: a big black bow as seen at Giambattista Valli.

Paint the town (and your lips) red

Paper wasn’t the only thing Ronald Van der Kemp recycled this season, as a ravishing red lip—a Couture staple—looked right on every skin tone. Models like Ashley Graham, Halima Aden, and Helena Christensen wore varying shades of crimson at Dolce & Gabbana, while the celebrity-studded cast at Miu Miu’s Resort show sported a striking cerise hue worthy of the red carpet. Jean-Paul Gaultier balked at stuffy Couture traditions by freeing the nipple but opted for classic ruby lips and winged eyes.

Add a touch of Technicolor

There were multiple bright spots on the runway in Paris, but the crisp, rainbow-colored bobs by mane master Eugene Souleiman at Maison Margiela were nothing short of mesmerizing. The mismatched brows at Acne’s Spring 2019 show by makeup maestro Thomas de Kluyver were a close second, as were the skinny stripes of lemon-colored liner at Kenzo. Leave it to Palau, however, to produce an “entire spectrum of women’s beauty” for the 110 models in Dolce & Gabbana’s Alta Moda show. From a seafoam updo to cobalt blue waves worthy of a “rich hippie” to lilac mermaid hair (all shades dreamed up by master colorist Victoria Hunter), there was no shortage of inspo for your next dramatic dye job.

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