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Beauty Inc issue 04/13/2012

When fashion designers like Marc Jacobs and Philip Lim conjured up a cotton candy, baby blue and sea foam green palette for spring, it seemed only fitting that beauty followed suit. Milky pastels are the warm-weather launch choice for brands such as Yves Saint Laurent, Dolce & Gabbana and Dior. From a glossy light pink lip to a sheer mint eye, pale hues are soothing to the senses—and easy for consumers to adapt to. “Braver people tend to wear neon, but the pastels are not quite as dramatic,” says Dell Ashley, Yves Saint Laurent’s national makeup artist. Such colors whisper rather than shout, and exude an appealing femininity—the perfect complement to this spring’s girly vibe. “There are times where you need to express something softer and a bit more approachable,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. “The word subtle is key.”

This story first appeared in the April 13, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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