Throughout history’s big moments, there’s always been glitter. Cleopatra used a glitter-like substance made from crushed beetles; Ziggy Stardust practically trafficked in it. Now, sparkle is showing up on the runway and the red carpet, artfully layered on models’ cheeks, brows, lips, and lids. It makes sense that glitter and high fashion would meet—revelry and refinement together at last.
Shimmer and shine first gleamed brightly at the Big Four fashion weeks; in New York and Milan, Fall 2019 runway models rocked glitter in varying degrees of spectacle. In Paris, Belgian legend Dries Van Noten offered up a subdued take with makeup artist Peter Philips behind the models’ perfectly messy, haphazard, sparkle-flecked eye makeup in silver and gold. Glitter stole the show at cool-kids stalwart Rodarte, with lips and lids encased in solid red and pink glitz. In Milan, Giorgio Armani sprinkled the stuff on models’ eyebrows, and Halpern Studio went full-out maximalist with foiled lids on the London stage. No stranger to the art of pageantry, Gucci creative designer Alessandro Michele’s Cruise 2020 show featured ruby-red, glitter-encrusted lips (think Dorothy’s ruby slippers), using the platform to highlight the brand’s newly launched collection of 58 shades of lipstick.
Luckily, you don’t need to have an haute couture entourage gluing glitter to your face to achieve the same dramatic effect. This fall, three fashion houses have distilled the season’s glow into wearable beauty collections that capture the allure and essence of the catwalk while keeping cabaret at bay.
It’s fitting that French luxury fashion and perfume house Givenchy would heed sartorial cues and launch its new glitter lipstick. After all, in 1954, Hubert de Givenchy became the first couture designer to launch a ready-to-wear collection for broader accessibility. Today, the heritage brand’s newly ensparkled version of its classic Le Rouge lipstick line offers wearable colours influenced by couture (tubes are encased in black leather, red velvet, or shimmer). Le Rouge Night Noir lipstick plays with light and shadow, its deep colours and black sheen creating an ultra-shiny effect by way of the glitter flecked throughout the formula.
With Chanel’s recent Noir et Blanc launch, the brand’s global creative makeup and colour designer, Lucia Pica, introduces a wearable, grown-up line that blends in monochromatic glitter for a restrained, soft-focus take. Embracing the aura of the silver screen while concentrating on the gradations of colour found within the genre, Pica explores sepias, greys, and the cult-classic Rouge Noir, aka black cherry. Iridescent textures contrast with structured black mattes that channel the essence of Coco Chanel: classic beauty that’s equal parts riotous and regal.
The fashion house’s beauty line debuts Le Gel Pailleté, a clear, light gel with glitter suspended in a silken formula, meant to amp up day or night makeup. Wear it over blush or eyeshadow for evening theatrics, or on its own on the décolletage for a more everyday effect; shimmer subtly dusts the skin in a way that’s meant to channel the era when movie stars radiated ethereality. The rest of the line plays to dazzling effect: the Pénombre eyeshadow is a luminous black with gold reflections, while Carte Blanche is white with a silver lustre. The Rouge Coco Gloss collection of lip glosses includes Crystal Clear, a transparent topcoat imbued with suggestive sparkle to layer over lipstick or use on its own for a muted glow.
At the intersection of classic beauty and edgy fashion sits the Clarins x The Kooples collaboration. In October, the French luxury skin care and beauty brand teams up with rocker-chic fashion house The Kooples for an unexpected alliance of two Gallic brands. French natural beauty meets cutting-edge retro fashion in the Collector’s Edition Lip Comfort Oil: the prune-like tone of Dark Stone is inflected with a gold shimmer, while Light Stone hints at pink iridescence that subtly catches the light. But youthful, exuberant fun is married to the adult requirement for skin maintenance—the limited-edition line is enriched with hazelnut and jojoba oils. These two glitter-infused bottles harness a modern savoir faire that translates the curated ethos of the runway into everyday sophistication.
Whether you opt for the full-on application of glittered lips or a gossamer-light sheen, a touch of sparkle is your fashion friend this fall.
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