London Fashion Week paid homage to subcultures with the beauty this season
New York Fashion Week has come and gone, leaving us with a surprisingly rich array of beauty looks on which to feast. Staying true to the ethos of the good ol’ US of A, everything was supersized – from the nails at No Sesso, to the braids at Collina Strada, to the botched lips at Barragán.
Next up came London – the “dumb, slutty and really fun sister”, as author Tom Rasmussen likes to say. In London, everything is a little punkier, a bit more DIY. The designers here have a long history of drawing from subcultures, and this season was no different. At Poster Girl, Isamaya Ffrench paid homage to grunge with face piercings and eyebrow slits, while Kiyoko Odo created horned and tie-dyed hairstyles for Chopova.
Here are the biggest beauty moments from London Fashion Week SS23.
Eyeliner and mascara in clashing colours was the beauty at Simone Rocha this season. Thomas de Kluyver created the make-up look in oranges and silvers, pinks and greens. Some models were given double red looks, while others had their faces covered entirely in glitter.
Meanwhile, Cyndia Harvey created hairpieces slicked down into stiff bobs curling inwards towards the face, either in the shade of the model’s natural hair or in a lacquered black. The overall effect gave the impression that the models had recently been involved in oil spill – in a chic way, ofc.
It was all about glitter at KNWLS on Friday, where models’ hair was slicked down with thick layers of pink, blue, gold, silver, orange and purples, courtesy of Eugene Souleiman. Mini braids and weaved extensions were also added.
Lips were pillowy and defined for the runway debut from Chopova Lowena, where make-up artist Ana Takahashi created the optical illusion of symmetry not just from one side to the other, but also top to bottom. The complexion was kept fresh, with rosy cheeks straight off the farm. Some models were also given a smokey wing with diamante details.
On hair, Kiyoko Odo created a whole selection of looks, each equally as compelling as the next. There were slicked-back high ponies with braided extensions winding down them; front pieces curled into horns; tight ringlet curls; and mini braids.
The Dilara Findikoglu models looked like they were dragged through a bush backwards (in a fun way). Lipstick was red and smeared across cheeks, hair was wet and tangled, sometimes half clipped up, sometimes full of feathers or jangling charms.
Make-up by Anne Sophie Costa was kept relatively minimal outside of the smeared lips. Brows were often bleached, while the skin was kept natural with nothing on the eyes. Anthony Turner, meanwhile, was the one responsible for the tousled wet-look hair.
If the clean girl look is what you aspire to, 16Arlington’s beauty this season is one for the moodboard. Sam McKnight kept hair looking its best while still maintaining the models’ style. “This show was all about healthy gorgeous hair,” the stylist said, “with each model making the most of their own individual identity and texture.”
Keeping the beauty from becoming too minimal and boring was Isamaya Ffrench who added a pop of colour around the eyes with a candy lash line to complement the dewy skin and neutral lips.
The beauty at Poster Girl this season paid homage to grunge and punk with a high fashion twist. Make-up artist Isamaya Ffrench (back once again!) placed piercings across the faces of the models, while eyebrows were exaggerated and razor-cut in various sculpted shapes. Skin was glowing and eyelids glossy – a look created by the shade ‘sweat’ from her newly released palette.
Sylvie Macmillan was on nails while Cyndia Harvey created a selection of different hairstyles including fiery extensions in reds and oranges which gave a splash of colour to slicked back buns and ponytails.
For Chet Lo’s first standalone collection since leaving Fashion East, the designer looked to his Chinese heritage for inspiration. When it came to the beauty, make-up artist Terry Barber created neon bright pops of colours across the face – electric pink and red blush up into the temple, green and blue shadow focused on the centre of the face.
Hair, courtesy of Anna Cofone, was airbrushed in playful tie-dye patterns. Some models were given bright hair extensions, while others wore intricate floral headpieces. Megan Thomas on nails created transparent talons in rainbow shades to match the headpieces.
Halpern teamed up with Barbie this season for a collection inspired by her dreamhouse, to mark its 60th anniversary. Both the clothing and the beauty drew from 70s era New York and glamorous disco queens. On hair, Sam McKnight was influenced by Barbie’s elegant and voluminous ponytails. “Think larger than life silhouettes with exaggerated elongated ponytails, and some pastels to compliment the collection,” he says.
Make-up came courtesy of Lynsey Alexander who applied sequins in rainbow shades to eyelids evoking the glittering of disco balls.