Painterly eye makeup
Canary yellow, aqua, the brightest purple: These colors are not typically the stuff of fall palettes. But makeup artists gravitated toward multicolored eye makeup this season. At Sies Marjan, rings of Day-Glo orange and peppermint green — or crimson and ultraviolet — enclosed models’ eyes, complementing the collection’s saturated tones. (The designer Sander Lak is known to shun the color black.) At Altuzarra, the makeup artist Tom Pecheux treated eye makeup as watercolors, skirting forest green along the lower eyelid, dabbing turquoise on the outer edges just above the cheekbone and blending a wash of lilac up to the brow bone. An imperfect wing of dark liner was the final flourish. And, at Louis Vuitton, Pat McGrath played with negative space and applied racing stripes — in cobalt blue, red, yellow and asphalt gray — across the eyelids.
Not the usual gold accents
The decisive sentiment at the shows seemed to be: Go for the gold, and in perhaps unexpected places. At Brandon Maxwell, that meant the cupid’s bow, where a thin line of metallic gloss topped with ultrafine glitter was traced along the cupid’s bow to enhance the fullness of the lips. Thom Browne’s models went down the runway with gold-painted cropped haircuts or tightly wrapped updos, appearing as modern-day queens. But the most shimmery — and still wearable — iterations came from Ulla Johnson and Akris: At the former, gold foil gilded the entire lid for a mesmerizing 3D result; at the latter, clusters of gold particles dotted the lids, for an eye-opening effect when paired with the blackest eyeliner. As for the rest of the face? Keep it low-key.
Braids of all shapes
The hairstylist Eugene Souleiman did the near-impossible at Jil Sander: He turned a simple braid into a total fashion spectacle. The sculptural, playful plaits didn’t wind down the models’ necks, instead sticking out thanks to skillful knotting — and the look lit up Instagram. In real life, the surreal style can be recreated by making a looped half-bun, braiding the tail and, with ample amounts of gel, sticking it out on an angle. Elsewhere, plaits took on new personas. Long rope braids, resembling whips, topped off the fierce ensembles at Alexander McQueen, and at Coach 1941, thin boho twists were randomly woven throughout the hair.
Heavy, winged eyeliner
Another antithesis to the soft pink and earth-tone eye makeup typical of colder months is the vibrant ’80s-esque winged eye. Look no further than Pat McGrath who, for Prada, created Swarovski crystal-studded cat-eyes that gleamed alongside the sportswear-inspired clothing. (She used pigments from her just-released Mthrshp Subversive La Vie En Rosepalette.) At Marc Jacobs, the makeup artist Diane Kendal opted for an ’80s club-kid version, brushing metallic shadows (from the brand’s forthcoming holiday palette) onto the lid, then layering black gel and liquid liner to sculpt a sharp-winged edge. There was also something entirely transformational about the heavily lined smudged cat-eyes at Max Mara, which held their own against strong fashion elements like animal prints, fringe and black leather.
The reality of everyday life moving at a fast pace wasn’t ignored on the runway. At Sacai, the models’ hair seemed to have been blown to one side by a gust of wind, which looked chic by the very fact that it wasn’t brushed perfectly into place. Similarly, Anna Sui skipped anything too precise in favor of low-volume waves tossed over a shoulder, as one does when scrambling to leave the house. At Rochas, models wore their hair clipped to the side and ignored the errant strands, but the hairstyle at Yohji Yamamoto may be the truest to life for those of us really fighting the weather: Models’ hair was wildly and quite comically airborne.
Depending on its exact position on the face, strong blush can be read as pretty or punk. The makeup artists at Ashley Williams created a look that fell into the latter category by brushing hot pink blush on the upper cheekbone and around the eye, fading into a halo of burnt orange eye shadow. And then, there were a handful of subtler applications: a post-sports flush at Issey Miyake, sun-kissed skin at Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini and a rosy glow at Oscar de la Renta done with eye shadow (called “Maybe I Will” and out this spring). The takeaway: No matter where you place it, blush has, most definitely, made its triumphant return.
Retro hairstyles, with a twist
Throwback hairstyles were hard to miss — thanks to their size — but they felt decidedly modern despite vintage references. It was the imperfections, or slightly-off elements, that made them feel right for the moment. The actress Elle Fanning opened the Miu Miu show with her hair teased to the hilt in a ’60s-like beehive, left a little undone. The models at Sonia Rykielwore their tresses in bouncy waves, but you could spot some crimping and frizz. And at Gucci, there were several mid-80s-like perms: One model’s mass of curls was pulled back at the sides and then combed out for a fluffiness that espoused the house’s geek-chic code. Add glasses and a stenciled moon between her eyebrows, and the look belonged entirely to Gucci’s kooky-time-warp world.
Hair accessories, from subtle to unmissable
This season, the question wasn’t if you should you wear a hair accessory, but rather, what kind? One option that had previously fallen out of favor with the cool kids, the notorious claw clip, resurfaced at Alexander Wang; The Prabal Gurung woman wore those stretchy comb headbands that any ’90s teen will remember well. (They came off as oddly sophisticated when paired with the richly textured clothing collection.) Barrettes received the high-fashion treatment at Chanel and Simone Rocha, and black-leather headbands became Beverly Hills glam, thanks to Tom Ford. At Dries Van Noten, the hairstylist Sam McKnight placed thin ostrich feathers along the part line — barely detectable from far away, but incredibly cool up close.