This fall’s most unlikely hair trend is, this quite literally, find taking off with flying colors. Hair colored in variegated vivid hues are becoming increasingly popular among both the fashion pack and the celebrity set. The roots of the brightly colored hair movement can be traced back as early as last winter, when Lady Gaga took to the cover of Vogue‘s March issue with a pastel pink wig. More recently, Katy Perry became the latest chanteuse to join the Pink Lady brigade, as evidenced by her appearance on the cover of the October issue of InStyle; Perry, however, took the plunge and dyed her hair cotton-candy pink as opposed to donning a wig. Ashley Olsen, Lauren Conrad, Kate Bosworth and Rachel McAdams are also among the trend’s earliest adopters, with dip-dyed, streaked and multicolored iterations in colors ranging from light blue to fuchsia and deep purple…sometimes all at once.
On the runways, the look was executed at the Fall/Winter collections of Prabal Gurung and Fendi, where models took to the catwalk with textured, tousled finger waves and voluminous updos, respectively, topped off with extensions in pale pink, green, blue, golden yellow, lavender and red. Disproving those who think that this is nothing more than a transient trend, rainbow-hued hair shows no signs of slowing down for next season, as orange and rose gold (at Peter Som), frosty white (at Narciso Rodriguez) and powdery blues and pinks (at Thakoon) were among the colors that popped up at this month’s New York Fashion Week. Meanwhile, current “it” model Charlotte Free has lit up the fashion world with her highlighter magenta mane.
If the proposition of dying your whole head a color that doesn’t exist in nature sends you into a manic panic, consider instead a temporary or clip-in extension. Unlike the feather hair extension fad that was inescapable over the summer, which lends itself to a specifically bohemian aesthetic, colored hair extensions are an easy way to add a little edge to your hair, regardless of your personal style. They also offer the best of both worlds; you’re free to wash, shampoo and style your hair as usual, and remove the pieces at your discretion, without the commitment of chemically altering your hair with harsh dyes. Put a singular streak on one side of your part for a subtle shot of color, or layer several complementary colors to make a bolder statement.
by Christian Fleres
Although we have a ways to go before the leaves change color and the days become crisp and cool, recipe
fall fashion is at the forefront, shop
and a word that repeatedly comes to mind when trying to sum up the season is – say it with me – dichotomy. When it came to the clothing, for example, strong, subversive and slightly S&M looks were pitted against mature, refined and ladylike foils. This notion of duality also happens to extend to the hairstyles seen on the runways, where two distinct follicular factions emerged: sleek and severely pulled-back looks, and effortlessly disheveled, piecey styles. The latter styles are certainly in keeping with the uncomplicated, comfortable aesthetic that works so well during the autumnal months, making them all the more covetable once you swap out your tanks and shorts for weightier knits and trousers.
The piecey look was executed by many a hairstylist backstage at the fall shows. At Alexander Wang, Balmain, and Dries Van Noten, low-slung middle-parted ponytails were accentuated with face-framing pieces deliberately pulled out (embellishing upon the simplistic style, the ponies at Dries were secured with thick gold rings). Meanwhile, at Valentino, the look was more romantic than rough around the edges. After pulling the hair into a low, middle-parted ponytail, a piece of hair was tied around the base and a black ribbon was tied over the crown, and a small wisp on either side was pulled out and gently curled.
A variation on the same theme occurred at Proenza Schouler and Emilio Pucci, where ponytails were swapped for braids of disparate tautness; whereas Pucci featured a textbook plait, the look at Proenza was much more unkempt, with three pieces of hair loosely twisted and knotted into what hairstylist Paul Hanlon called a “ratty dreadlock.” Despite the unsavory mental picture of free-spirited faux-Rastafarian bohemians that this description may elicit, the result was unusually fashionable and served as a worthy complement to the stunning Native American-influenced collection. While on the subject of braids, at rag & bone, the hair was haphazardly fashioned into imperfect plaits; hairstylist Guido Palau carved a middle part and placed two or three small braids on either side of the head, as well as a larger one down the back. The front sections of hair that weren’t braided were left straight and untouched to emphasize the unfussy aesthetic.
When it comes to piecey styles, a middle part is not the only way to go; at Prada, hair was gathered into a low ponytail at the nape of the neck, but a section at the crown of the head was combed back and sprayed into place, while wisps at the side of the face hung loose for a gamine effect. Meanwhile, at Rodarte, hair was swept into a deep side-part and worn half-up, half-down, with pieces in the front pulled out and twisted for texture. Luckily, to re-create any of the aforementioned hairstyles, you don’t need a specific cut or a beauty cabinet’s worth of product; the key to achieving the look is to work with what you’ve got. If you want to emulate the look at Balmain or Pucci, you may benefit from cutting a few face-framing layers into your hair. From there, the pieces are all in place.
by Gianna Froccaro
One Slick Pony
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few trends have undergone as many transmutations as the ponytail. Depending on the wearer’s mood, it can be pulled high and tight, slung low and loose, worn on either side of the head and secured with scrunchies and ribbons, and those are just a few of its myriad incarnations. It has also become something of a trademark for several iconic figures, ranging from “Blonde Ambition”-era Madonna to the Kaiser himself, Karl Lagerfeld. As we enter summer’s final stretch, a ponytail is an excellent heat-deflecting hairstyle; it also happened to be the style of choice at a handful of the major Fall runway shows. If its staying power and transitional potential provide any indication, the sooner you perfect your pony, the better.
While many ponytails were spotted backstage at shows from Alexander Wang to Valentino, the ones that made the most authoritative statements were those that were slick and severe. Guido Palau was the de facto ponytail provider at Marc Jacobs, Louis Vuitton and Emanuel Ungaro. At each of these shows, models took to the runways with taut, lacquered “dominatrix” ponytails. Meanwhile, at Gucci, the look was slightly less sadomasochistic but equally chic, pulled low with a sleek side part and finished off with a single feather. To add some polish, a piece of hair was wrapped around the base of the ponytail. The models at Givenchy, on the other hand, went right up the middle with center-parted low ponies. (All the better to accommodate the collection’s standout felt feline baseball hats.)
To execute the ponytail to perfection without looking like you’ve just come back from the gym, you’ll need a few tools. As a general rule, the straighter the hair, the stronger the look – you may have to break out that flat iron to prevent any unsightly frizz or kink. At Marc Jacobs, Palau prepped hair with Redken Blown Away 09 Blow-Dry Gel and Shine Flash 02 Glistening Mist before gathering hair into a high pony at the crown of the head. To emulate the styles seen at Gucci or Givenchy, use a fine-tooth comb to create a precise side or middle part and comb the hair straight, and then secure it at the nape of the neck. As the next step, take a piece of hair from the ponytail and wrap it around the base, using bobby pins to hold it all in place. Finish the look with a mist of hairspray, and you’re set for the rest of the summer and well into fall.
by Gianna Froccaro