The looks put forward by this month were so good you would think we were making them up. It was hard to not pick up on fashion’s turning to the dark side recently, with many brands wholeheartedly deciding to make a move towards the edgier, more destructive makeup and hair looks. These 30 wonderfully busy days offered a step towards the use of SFX on the runway, buckets of bleach and, thanks to Vivienne Westwood, plenty of anarchy.
We hope you like getting muddy because this is Balenciaga’s SS23 show. The show featured an array of makeup and hair looks, all of which fell within the boundaries of destruction and disarray. The show was seemingly focussed less on the traditional role of makeup, and instead worked in pursuit of the restructuring and morphing the models face.
Some models stomped through the swampy set sporting a bruised and swollen face, with hair slicked back to allow onlookers to catch a glimpse of their artfully curated injuries.
The show continued, with Balenciaga’s ‘monsters’ having a series of intricately bold facial piercings – placed symmetrically and specifically across their mouth, eyebrows and even cheekbones.
The effects were certainly special, as a handful of models marched the runway with skin-matched horns hovering menacingly above their eyelines. There wasn’t a notable trend or consistency with the hair styling of each model, some were slicked back, while others hung long and brightly with their bold red, rose gold or neon green locks.
Westwood has done it again. This season was host to a series perfectly on brand designs, accompanied by a collection of runway dominating hair and makeup looks. The SS23 collection featured eyeliner made out of a glistening, chainmail like design, in an array of gold and chrome silver. Some of the looks also featured a darker mauve lipstick, but only when the ensemble called for it.
If you are combing through looks for you next hair inspiration – look no further. The hair styling of Westwood’s collection headlined distinctly deliberate slick back, low hanging buns, the fantastically curated chaos of Mohicans adding the tip of the letter ‘A’ scrawled on the model’s face and sophisticated 50s-esque up-dos. In line with the atmosphere of many of this month’s shows, the brand also showcased models with miniature, pointed horns which tantalised with and contrasted the outfits.
Diesel truly got our engines revving with the makeup and hair at their record destroying SS23 show. The eyebrows were bleached, and the cheekbones? Sharp and defined. Some models walked with a fine dusting of black eyeliner, whilst the lipsticks used were primarily neutral, adding a warm and natural glow to the overall looks.
A handful of the models walked with a specific smearing of bold, red eyeshadow – toying with and complimenting the colour of the set’s floor and the brands logo. The hair styling seemed to favour the middle-parted slick back, with some featuring a bold, primary coloured highlight. While many of the male models featured tousled and brightly dyed locks.
It is pretty much black and white which colour palette was preferred by Yamamoto when designing this season’s ready-to-wear collection, and they were, well, black and white. So, it can come as no surprise that the makeup and hair looks played and worked with a more simplistic and toned-down vibe.
The makeup was beautifully natural, calling upon dewy skin and the subtle yet successful contouring of each of the model’s faces. The hair was occasionally working alongside a visor type hat which was missing its top, which allowed the hair to spring forth and be pulled through this space.
Others who walked without this accessory had their hair down, slicked into a firmly secured middle parting. The ends of the hair were gelled to create a sort of wet look. In all, the makeup and hair styling gave off a more casual look, perfectly juxtaposing the sharp lines and asymmetrical cuts of Yamamoto designs.
Versace’s SS23 collection was the eyeliner loving motorcyclist’s dream. The makeup look primarily worked with a black, thick and bold eyeliner – drawn to create the sought after ‘cat eye’ look. The rest of the makeup was mainly simple and allowed this striking eye makeup to do the talking.
Those models who walked wearing a pair of black sunglasses were coupled with a purple lipstick with a slight shimmer. This lip shade alongside a heavy use of leather screamed all things gothic, and we loved every minute of it. The hair was styled, again, in a middle parting and was primarily straightened. That is until the outfit walked in was of a plainer fabric and the hair was allowed be bigger and curlier.
Fake daggers, dirty models and bleached brows. This is Elena Velez’s SS23 show.
The models walked this show in a series of distinctly chaotic, yet succinctly applied makeup looks. Featuring either a blood red or ashy black lipstick, each look certainly gave a distorted, even disturbingly fantastic energy. The eye makeup was made up of a heavy black eyeshadow, running from under the eye to the side of the face. This was blended and called upon the classic smoky eye look yet had a much more sincere feel than we are used to.
The hair was pretty much in one of three styles: slicked completely back, pulled forward and abstractly curled to cover the model’s face, or covered by headgear. These included a mesh cover, a leather pilot-esque hat or a skin coloured, tight-fitting hat with long strands.
Accompanying these pieces were bleached eyebrows and the occasional dusting of a light pink eyeshadow on the water line of the model. But this cannot be the main takeaway from the beauty styling of this show, as the hair designs truly wore the trousers.
The hair was occasionally split into a heavy side part from the left pulled over to the right-hand side – which was then slicked into place while allowing the hair to maintain its volume. Others featured a more unconventional haircut, with a micro fringed disheveled pixie cut, or pulled into a twisted point in the middle of the forehead. We also saw dramatically messy bunches with strands pulled forward to chaotically frame the models face, and neon green buzzcuts.
Some hairdos cannot be dissected, as they were concealed within achingly tall, black pointed, triangular hats – each outlined by a different neon colour.
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See also: BEHIND BALENCIAGA: A DEEP DIVE INTO SS23