The Couture Collections in Paris and the recent Spring 2013 Collections in New York have proven one thing: the boho beauty is here to stay.
Boho beauties have a spontaneous but intentional unstudied glamour both in their dress, use of accessories and fashion choices. Boho beauties are also part of fashion history, showing up in London in the 1970s in a Mary Quant or the Biba boutique. Their porcelain complexions were accented with faded roses on the cheeks and spider lashes surrounding their deep smoldering eyes and painted nails in deep colors. The London bohemian “Biba” and “Mary Quant” girl were the blueprint for what we know today. Diane Keaton knew many of these girls and used them as her models for Annie Hall, adding her own fashion touches, and the rest, as they say, is movie history.
Today’s boho beauty is inspired by art and culture and is the kind of beauty who is a true romantic, taking cues from the Pre-Raphaelite or art nouveau design that took its forms originally from nature. Alas, we’re far from nature now; the look of a navy-blue dragonfly wing or a deep green caterpillar, ombré butterfly wing infused with metallics is closer to our natural habitat now. The boho beauty exists within her own rarefied world where natural beauty has given way to a place where only artifice remains.
The new boho beauty is a combination of many cultures, but her look is always evocative of a woman of mystery, artistry or unique character that is unstudied and spontaneous. Her skin is swept clean of any tanning or bronzer, as boho beauties don’t go to the beach, nor do they like the sun. They like to wear a pronounced blush or lipstick that could be in either deep jewel tones with colors that evoke a smoky jazz club or a back room of a bistro. For those beauties with darker skin tones, deep, rich-colored lips and nails with deep gray shadows create that smoky look of mystery. For medium tones of skin, the color of navy or midnight blues counterbalances the bronze cheek tones and eyeliners in shades of deep bottle green. For the more porcelain or pale skin tones, a deep red or crimson lip, powdered face and almost no cheek color, with just a sweep of mascara or a smoky shadow and liner, create the look.
*Skin tones that are simple and almost untouched, using a tinted moisturizer or sheer foundation, and translucent powder to set the surface that is a simple canvas for blush.
*Blush lends a shaping to the face, rather than a pronounced “cheek” design unless you prefer a specific tone of blush that is part of your look. When in doubt, go pale.
*Blush or crème cheek color that has a definitive shade: rose, peach, pink, and cerise to be used with a more neutral eye or lip color that is statement making.
*Eyes that are either a statement in a bold color or undefined using smoky neutrals to make way for other designer colors, such as lips or nails.
*Eyes that are a bold statement and a strong lip color that is a major statement using liners and mascaras that enhance the eye emphasis.
*Deep-toned nail colors that are infused with metallic surfaces or glossy: plums, midnight blues, deep chocolate, deep ruby reds or oranges, bottle greens.
*Mascara can be black, bottle green, black/brown or plum/black to achieve a dressed-up effect that is elegant and matches the eye shadows used or a natural tone to match your own coloring.
Here are some designers who are creating a boho look palette for you to try:
Butter Nail Colors
Make Up Forever
Dolce & Gabbana
(*All cosmetics available online or in Sephora stores, Printemps or Galeries Lafayette.)
Pikke Allen aka ARTIFICE travels the time warp between Hollywood and Paris, where she is a writer/blogger/Creative Consultant for both US and French luxury lifestyle brands. Her bobo credentials were earned designing costumes for theatre, film and television. Her passion for all things fashion brings her to museums, designer ateliers, runway shows and the Paris shopping beat, where she confesses all about boho bargains or luxury shopping secrets. You can read more of Pikke’s fashion tips, trends and shopping confessions at Styliste Privée.