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Spring Beauty Trends: The Creative Class

Here, we asked top makeup artists and hair stylists for their takes on spring's definitive look.

For an overview of the most important beauty trends to emerge from the Spring 2012 runways, who better to ask than the creators themselves? Here, we asked top makeup artists and hair stylists for their takes on spring’s definitive look.


Lead New York Fashion Week Stylist for Kérastase Paris

The trend: Wearing long hair not too straight, not too curly. The spring 2012 styles featured a soft wave, sometimes romantic and sometimes more for the more laid-back “downtown” girl. It’s a new twist for girls who like to wear their hair down, who don’t want their style to be too fussy or serious.



Global Style Ambassador, Pantene Pro-V

From grunge to groomed and everything in between, the ponytail is this season’s updo. It’s a ponytail without rules: positioned anywhere on the head, from nape to crown or on either side, worn tight and slick or loose and casual. I did a young and grungy pony at Mary Katrantzou to play against the decorative clothes; low and loose at Blumarine to contrast with the richness of the fashion, and glossy, healthy and groomed at Jaeger to juxtapose glamorous hair with minimal clothing.


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Founder and Creative Director, NARS

The beauty look for spring fuses two interesting concepts — it’s a combination of being natural but also having a personality. We did this at Marc Jacobs by creating really translucent skin and natural lips, and then really emphasizing the eyes with heavy lashes. I wanted the models to become characters.


Global Creative Director for Makeup, Chanel

Spring’s most directional face is a controlled natural beauty. A natural look with a slight edge. Like the looks I did for Chanel, Jil Sander and Alexander McQueen.


Global Creative Director, Max Factor

One of the season’s main trends is bold minimalism, which explores the more powerful aspects of femininity through graphic details, strong colors and a focus on one element. For instance, a slight wing on the eyeliner at Dolce & Gabbana, a single black line inside the eye at Prada and customized glossed eye colors or a bold glossed black cherry lip at Balenciaga. Also, there was a beautiful violet metallic lip at Yohji Yamamoto, a statement red eye at Miu Miu and a metallic flash of light added to the eyes at Givenchy. There’s also this feeling of ultrafemininity, a womanly elegance, very romantic, with soft pretty colors and beauty details, as seen at Louis Vuitton, Nina Ricci and Valentino. Another compelling trend is a modern vintage look seen at shows such as Nina Ricci, Anna Sui and Louis Vuitton. Each one referenced the past but looked totally modern and fresh. All of this season’s trends are powerfully feminine, but each has its own unique twist.

Global Artistic Director, Revlon

The look of spring is about enhancing the natural beauty of a woman but, on another level, focusing on subtlety, what color really does and the little things, like how an arched brow can create a refined and youthful look. The palette for spring is primarily browns/grays for eyes, peaches and bright pinks for cheeks/lips.


Artistic Director, Shiseido

The monochrome look I did for Narciso Rodriguez is very cool. I used a similar tone of mauve brown for both eyes and lips and deepened the eyebrows with a combination of the Shiseido Shimmering Cream Eye Colors in Sable, Leather and Caviar depending on the model’s shade of hair and eyebrows. It’s very simple and chic.


Redken Creative Consultant

We’ve seen a lot of trends this season, ranging from wet, fresh-out-of-the- shower/-pool/-ocean textures; shapes, sculpted looks; natural texture but street tough; and down, beautiful styles. This spring season was more about natural beauty, which we saw reinvented in modern ways. The most directional hair trend would be that hair moved to more down styles. We saw this new “tougher” texture and also beautiful soft down styles. These styles give women the freedom to reinvent themselves and play with styles and texture.

Global Makeup Artist, Maybelline New York

It’s about beautifully natural, flawless skin. It has to look effortless. The brows are pronounced and well-groomed. Eyes have a slight sheen. Lips tell a story in shades of pink and red. Whether full-on bold (as they were at Jen Kao) or subtly stained with lip balm on top, the lip is “pretty” and a perfect complement to spring’s healthy-looking skin.


Global Creative Director, Wella Professionals, Care & Styling

This trend for sculpted hair is a statement against “big hair.” A smaller head shape allows for more creativity, as it’s all about making a fashion statement by playing with shape, texture and color. This trend is undoubtedly related to the season’s highly decorative and embellished fashion, which has crept into the hair look, too. For Antonio Marras, the look was inspired by a hat. The hair was polished to a vinyl sheen, then wrapped close to the head. The decorative element was a ropelike “tiara” of hair. At Issey Miyake, the theme was flowers, so the hair was sculpted and streamlined to change the shape of the head to look like a tulip bud. We then decorated this with graduated spray-on floral-inspired colors.