Leave it to London to take some of New York Fashion Week’s most arresting beauty moments and imbue them with a welcome bit of grit. The second installment of fashion month saw a whirlwind of general vibrance and inventive styling moves commingling with the collections, unabashed expressions peppering the graying days with flecks of can’t-look-away color—in shade and character alike. Whimsical, wanderlust, and decadence were just a few of the descriptors tossed around like confetti, resulting in above-neck moments straight out of a daydream. As for the spirited switch-ups? Think: pastels exchanged for super-saturated pigments; beach hair for bedhead; and art school–inspired eye makeup for lid-level masterpieces. Here, five beauty moments that prove that this season’s anything-goes mentality has serious staying power.
The All-or-Nothing Lip
For Riccardo Tisci’s Burberry debut, a pout-centric gauntlet was thrown: You can opt for either a trench-echoing nude or a swipe of crisp crimson—there is no in-between. The notion was revisited throughout the week, with blurred neoprene tangerine applied by Jenny Coombs at Fyodor Golan countered by barely there balm—courtesy of Pat McGrath—at Victoria Beckham. Are you a Chalayan girl, painted in an immaculate hot pink, a fan of Marta Jakubowski’s lilac lip, or in want of something simpler? The time has come to mouth off.
Bigger (and Better!) Hair Statements
Forget uniform, twist-and-go topknots—this season, the only requisite of an updo is idiosyncrasy. At Ashley Williams, hair made laconic, stick-up statements—witch and devil among them—a punkish alternative to the sumptuous and saccharine crowns secured at Simone Rocha. Hairstylist Anthony Turner wove a series of interminable plaits that teetered on the border of chaste and romantic for Erdem; Molly Goddard’s buns called origami to mind; and, at Emilia Wickstead, Benjamin Muller proved that quirky duets of exaggerated bows are infinitely better than one worn alone.
The New Bohemian Bedhead
Rather than simply rumpled, London’s fresh-off-the-pillowcase lengths featured an extra ounce of cultivation. Take, for example, ’90s-esque head scarves tied on at Alexa Chung and JW Anderson, the first iteration veering into bohemian territory, the latter a more glamorous marauder, both topping otherwise pared-down, air-dried manes. The unkempt shapes crafted by Turner for Margaret Howell offered a sculptural, though literal, approach to undone, while, at Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, seemingly windblown hair was cut by free-spirited polish courtesy of a simple banded strand. And should one wonder how a turn-of-the-century lady would have looked after an afternoon nap, Sam McKnight’s curled, bow-bedecked styling for Ryan Lo offered a definitive—and supremely romantic—picture.
Glittering and Graphic Eyes
From dense coats of kohl-bordered shimmer to washes of high-impact pastels, gazes designed to be stared at (or into) came in a bevy of artful guises. Halpern’s splashy, ’60s spin on sparkle gave way to makeup artist Sam Bryant’s cool-girl constellations for Simone Rocha, each take making an inarguable case for all that glitters. Next-level pastels continued their pretty, painterly reign at Erdem and again at Peter Pilotto, an encore that made for a second series of can’t-look-away moments.
The Rainbow Brite Dye Job
’Tis the season, it seems, for bold infusions of inorganic color. Beginning with Matty Bovan’s cadre of overdyed coifs, the week was a virtual tour of the spectrum, with hairstylist Jon Reyman’s rebellious collective coloring Nicopanda’s Y2K-themed runway with cobalt, pink, and edgings of orange, and Micol Ragni’s two-toned interpretation of the trend blasting right out of this world. And in addition to the loud-and-clear barrettes, Ashley Williams’s line was coupled with pale pink updos, lemon yellow bobs, and skyrocketing sterling. When in London!
This article was first published on Vogue.com.