Hi! Paris Fashion Week Spring Summer 2015 has been an exhilarating experience- and I can’t believe we are done with it all. It’s been such a whirlwind of activity and trend mapping and styles and even though I am going to miss all the excitement, I think everyone in the industry will agree that we all need a little R&R! I cannot wait for the next round of fashion weeks but before we start looking forward, here is my pick of the best looks from the Paris Spring Summer 2015 Fashion Week. Balmain
I love a simple hairstyle- so many women I talk to just give up on styling simply because it involves too much time and effort and since most of us are running against the clock it just does not seem worth the hassle. This is one of the primary reasons why I like to keep an eye out for wearable, easy-to-achieve looks and styles at the Fashion Weeks: unless you have a stylist at your disposal or you are planning for a special event, chances are you probably want something you can manage on your own at home. The look from the Balmain Spring Summer 2015 show- sported here by the gorgeous Rosie Huntington Whitely- meets the criteria perfectly.
What we have here is essentially a brushed back ponytail. You can wear your hair in a ponytail, in a low bun or chignon or even in a pigtail or a half-in half-out looped twist. The major styling here is concentrated across two dimensions: texture and accessorising.
Everyone knows how to throw together a ponytail or a bun: you probably have your own favourite version for daily wear. Keep the style, but borrow the texture from Balmain: we have here a slightly piecy, slicked back texture on the crown. You want to look like you just stepped out of the shower. You can use a styling mousse or hair gel with a wet-look finish and then brush your hair back and run your fingers through it to create some of the ridges you can see in the photo. Use a wide toothed comb to comb your hair back without making it too smooth. Secure your hair the way you prefer it and add some hairspray to keep the texture in place.
The next part is accessorising. The models at the Balmain show sported scarves/ wraps in their hair. You can use ribbons as well. Just pick something you like and wrap it around the base of the ponytail/ bun and knot it into place. You can make it into a bow or let the ends hang loose after a simple knot or twist it around a couple of times for a unique pattern. As you can see from the photo the combination of two contrasting elements- the edgy, slicked back hair and the feminine, delicate scarf- makes for a really interesting interplay of style statements.
This one is for those of you who have chin-length to shoulder-length hair. You can easily wear the style in longer hair too, it’s just that it would be more convenient if your hair is shorter and more manageable and you don’t mind leaving it loose all day. There isn’t a tremendous amount of styling involved in this look- all you need is one of those ridged, wavy metallic headbands that create little parts in the hair. You can probably pick it up at any accessories store in town. However, there is a trick or two to make your hair look more runway-styled than home-styled, even if it is a look you are putting together in under five minutes.
For a more amped up version of a fairly regular style, all you need to do is texturise your hair for the look. Use a quality conditioner when you wash your hair, allow your hair to air dry so that the natural grain is enhanced and use styling product to give your hair a more finished appearance. A wet-look gel applied just before you put in the headband can give you a slicked back, rocker chick appearance. You can also dab some Argan oil on your hands and pat your hair. Whichever product you decide to use, add it to your crown and the front of the head because that is the region we want emphasised. If you don’t want to weigh your hair down with product you can leave the rest of the hair (behind the crown) natural. If your hair is limp and it’s falling flat just flip your hair upside down and dust some dry shampoo or baby powder into your roots and tousle your hair with your fingers. This will instantly create some volume at the roots so when you push the headband in you’ll also get some lift at the crown. With slicked back hair at the front and some barely noticeable volume behind the band you’ve got yourself a hairstyle that looks super modish and takes all of five minutes to get right!
You can never go wrong with a classic, voluminous blowout and the pictures from the Elie Saab Spring Summer 2015 show are testimony to that. It might be the simplest style on this list- after all, the only thing you have to do is visit your nearest salon (or just do it yourself at home). Don’t underestimate the power of a perfect wash-and-dry look though: nothing is quite as sexy and appealing as glossy, healthy hair. I love how the model’s hair has been parted ever so slightly off centre and how it has been allowed to fall over both shoulders to frame the face so delicately. If you are used to having your hair blow-dried straight, ask for a wavy, natural finish the next time. Big, loose waves are super glamorous and look great with all kinds of outfits and for all sorts of occasions. Can you see the hints of volume at the roots? Adding a little bit of lift to the roots at the crown is a great trick to keep blowouts from looking too perfect and too slick.
If you’ve browsed photos or footage from the Givenchy Spring Summer 2015 Paris Fashion Week you will know there were a couple of different hairstyles and haircuts seen on the runway. I’ve chosen this particular one to add to my list because I really like the bangs. You can wear them in any length- short and angular like the model here or long and soft. We haven’t seen a lot of bangs/ fringes of late and most people usually transition to more classic styles for the winter but I’m betting they are going to be big again come summer. I love the thick, eye skimming bangs from the Givenchy show and if you want to change up your look the next year you might consider the same. There’s something almost child-like about the shorter, thicker fringes and they can add a lot of drama and charm to your look. The best thing about shorter fringes is they don’t need as much maintenance as longer bangs: you can allow them to dry naturally for the most part and if you really want a nice, polished finished a single run-over with a straightening iron is enough to do the trick.
Jean Paul Gaultier
Like a lot of other shows at the Paris Spring Summer 2015 Fashion when it came to the Jean Paul Gaultier catwalk there were a number of different hairstyles to be seen. This one is my favourite of the lot because it’s got a bunch of my favourite styling elements: major volume, drama, big curls and glossy colour. I love how classic curls have been combined with a modern twist on the 40s, rockabilly curls at the hairline.
Most of the look is fairly straightforward. You need to work with freshly washed and conditioned hair. If your hair dries well naturally you can probably skip blow-drying. However if you are dealing with a lot of frizz or poor texture you might want to blow-dry your hair first to make it smooth and better styled. As far as adding big curls to your hair is concerned there are a number of options you can work with. You could use a large-barrelled curling wand and then run your fingers through your hair after the curls have cooled a little. You can use bendable foam rollers that you can leave in your hair overnight. You could also use heated curlers. Brush your hair through before you begin curling it and once you’re done, give it a few minutes to cool down and allow the curls to set.
What sets this look apart from your everyday curled hair is the volume and styling at the crown. At the hairline, flip the majority of your hair over to one side and draw the rest of your hair over the favoured shoulder. Don’t create a parting at the hairline but rather, layer your hair over on one side. To create the volume you can backcomb the front few inches of hair and then carefully arrange the hair into a quiff-like pouf, but one that curls and falls forward instead of being affixed on the crown. A lot of multipurpose styling tools also have an attachment for adding “lift” to the crown: these usually look like wide toothed combs and the air and the heat from the base machine along with the twines of the attachment will help you raise and hold the hair at the hairline for extra height and drama.
Once you’ve got the front styled the way you like it remember to use some hairspray. You want the volume and the height to stay in place. I recommend using a hairspray with shine-boosting properties because that way you get some hold and your hair looks glossy and you don’t have to run the risk of spoiling the curls by directly touching them.
We saw some more of the heavy full fringe at the John Galliano Spring Summer 2015 show at the Paris Fashion Week. This time, however, the fringes were cut slightly asymmetrical, with ends falling over the brows. I love the messy, 70s rocker chick vibe here and the balance between the wild, unruly curls and the straight, smooth bangs. This is a fantastic way to style shoulder length hair. If you want to get your hair cut shorter for the coming summer and you want a style that is fun and vibrant and a little messy (which means you won’t have to spend forever in front of the mirror with a blow-dryer and a straightening iron) then this is a great option. Get your stylist to cut your hair into layers, the longest of which should graze your shoulders. You want to request them to cut your hair into shaggy layers that will enhance the natural texture and body of your hair. Ask for a brow-skimming full fringe. If you don’t want a randomly-asymmetrical fringe you can ask for a more even, uniform fringe across the front with longer ends (think of a soft curve) to really play up your eyes.
This is a great hairstyle for naturally curly/ wavy hair because you won’t really have to style your hair but it will still look great. If your hair is naturally curly or wavy you can just use a curl-boosting shampoo and conditioner whenever you wash it and then allow your hair to dry naturally. Scrunch up almost-dry hair in your fingers to build up the curls. Towel drying and finger drying will also create natural lift and volume. If you’ve got pin-straight hair wait till it’s about 70% dry and then braid it. Leave the braids in overnight and open them up the next day and run your fingers through the curls to break them up. You can also use foam rollers for long-lasting curls. Depending upon the natural texture of your hair you might need to use a flat iron or a blow dryer to get the bangs right.
Designer Manish Arora’s runway was marked by funky face-art, candy colours and braids-in-braids hairstyles. The basic breakdown of the look is this: a middle parting and straight hair at the crown, finished with A LOT of braids at the back and down the length of the hair. How do you get the braids right? Read on to find out.
Begin in freshly washed and conditioned hair. Wait for your hair to dry naturally. Brush your hair until it’s completely free of any knots and tangles. Part your hair down the middle and comb it properly, gathering it towards the back. Secure into a low ponytail.
Now the key is to create a lot of different braids in the ponytail. And the braids should all be of varying girth and width. We’re looking at a bunch of skinny braids and some thicker ones. You can create a number of braids in different sizes and then even braid a couple of them together to create bigger braids out of smaller braids. Make a couple of skinny and regular sized braids. For the larger ones, braid loosely and then tug on the loops for added volume.
Take one of the braids and wrap it around the base of the ponytail to cover it up. Tuck the ends into the loop and use pins to secure it.
To make a single structure out of all the braids you can just gather up all the different braids and then secure them together. You can do this at any height: at the very end or down the middle and let a bit of the braids hang loose. You can secure them with a clear elastic band or a ribbon/ string. If you’re using an elastic band you can repeat the same step as above by wrapping a smaller braid around the elastic to cover it up.
There are two important things to note here. Firstly, don’t worry about loose ends and flyaways. We’re going for a very relaxed, boho hippie vibe here. A little bit of a mess is a good thing! And secondly, you might want to use some clip-in hair extensions for this style. There are two reasons for this. To begin with, a lot of you might find that you just don’t have the kind of volume that is needed for so many braids and hair extensions are a great way to take care of that. Another thing- if you are planning to recreate the look exactly as it was on the runway you will notice that the models’ braids had a couple of different colours/ tones merged together. From lighter versions of the base colour to unique pops of candy tones, the different hues work well to give more life and depth to braids. If you have coloured or highlighted hair then this is a great way to make the most of it. If not, hair extensions are always a quick and affordable (and temporary) solution!
That’s it folks. We’re done with the fashion weeks for this year. It’s been a thrilling ride and I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did. Hope you picked up tonnes of tricks and inspiration for the coming months. Let me know what you loved, loathed and learned from the Spring Summer 2015 Fashion Weeks!