Kate Bosworth always nails it in the beauty department, whether it’s her signature glowing skin or a trendy neon lip. At Wednesday’s launch party for her new app, Style Thief, she turned heads with a romantic, of-the-moment braided updo. We like to think of it as a more relaxed take on the milkmaid. Stylist Bridget Brager twisted Bosworth’s strands into a slightly messy tangle of plaits using just a few products. The added bonus? In addition to looking lovely, braids take your hair up and off your back, keeping you cool as the summer heats up. Get the look with the pro’s five easy steps:
1. Start by spritzing your hair with Phytovolume Actif Volumizing Spray from roots to ends.
2. Give your hair a rough blow-dry with your hands, concentrating on lifting strands away from the scalp for added volume.
3. Next, create a “disheveled, deep part” to one side.
3. Starting at the crown, begin braiding forward “so the braid falls toward the forehead, canceling the hairline, which gives a soft, romantic feel,” Brager explained. Then, start a second and third plait at the temples, braiding back on each side.
4. Add a touch of Kevin Murphy Easy Rider pomade to each braid to tame flyaways and boost shine. Loosen the braids as you go to avoid looking too “done.”
5. Weave the braids together around the back of the head, pinning them low for a “halo effect.” Finish with a light coat of L’Oréal Paris Elnett Hairspray. Don’t fret if a few pieces fall out—it adds to the bohemian vibe. We also suggest using bobby pins that match your hair color for a seamless finish.
“When Beyoncé does a quick change, it’s like the Daytona 500, when the cars come in and they have to hurry up and change the wheels in, like, twenty seconds. When she comes back, everyone is grabbing a piece of her. I’m rebuilding—powdering, reapplying a lip; the eyes are always OK. We just want to make sure that when she runs out that she’s not [shiny] in the T-zone, that she’s glowy everywhere else, and that her lip is perfect. I’m watching the monitor from the start of the show to the end to make sure everything is impeccable, and I have razor-sharp focus to make sure nothing is messed up.”
Bey might be a well-oiled machine, but she never looks greasy. And though we all can’t have the queen’s Formula One-caliber team at the ready—speedily transforming a sweaty mess into a glowy and gorgeous music magnate—you can try Sir John’s secret, shine-canceling weapon: Press a tissue lightly over the center of your face, gently peel off, and finish with a light dusting of powder. Blotting before applying additional pigment prevents your makeup from caking.
When it comes to warm-weather eye makeup, we always think less is more. (Largely because black shadow and balmy weather just don’t mix.) Here, a simple step-by-step to sexy, gilded lids (reminiscent of the look at Gucci’s Spring 2014 show) courtesy of The Huffington Post:
1. Base lids with a long-wear cream shadow. (HuffPo recommends Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadow in My Two Cents.)
2. Top off the cream formula with powders—using a taupe shade on the brow bone and inner corner, bronze on the lid, and matte brown to define the crease. (For more drama, smudge bronze shadow along your bottom lash lines.)
3. Apply black gel liner between lashes and rim your lower waterline with a nude liner.
4. Finish with black mascara to prevent lashes from looking “dusty.”
Alexandre Vauthier sent multiple slinky gowns down his recent Couture runway—some with details so elaborate (like a jewel-encrusted dress dripping with ruby-colored stones) that they required 1,850 hours of work. Naturally, these exceptional pieces come at quite the expense (typically in the six-figure price range), so the fact that you can snap up one of this designer’s accessories for $1,500 is, in comparison, a bargain.
The fashion protégé, who once worked in the studios of Thierry Mugler and Jean Paul Gaultier, was given carte blanche by beauty giant Lancôme (along with two other Paris-based designers, Yiqing Yin and Jacquemus) to create a luxury cosmetics case to house three staple products—L’Absolu Rouge Lipcolor, Hypnôse Star Mascara, and a Hypnôse Eye Palette—as part of a collaboration dubbed Nouvelle Vague. Vauthier’s sleek, black envelope bag that doubles as a clutch beats out the plastic Ziploc we’re currently using to hold our makeup (by a long shot). And with a designated spot for each item, it’s a whole lot more organized, too. Here, Vauthier explains how you can tell a lot about a woman from the inside of her purse.
I see that you incorporated your signature gold bar across the front, but what inspired the unique foldout design of this clutch?
I wanted to have something that opened up like this, very technical. I’m very crazy and obsessed by horlogerie [the practice of clock-making], as well as the precision of haute joaillerie [fine jewelry], like when you cut a diamond. I want to have something that represents this kind of work. I wanted to have something really cool and original.
Who is the woman you had in mind when you created this bag—perhaps Beyoncé, Rihanna, or another member of your celebrity fan club?
I dress a lot of celebrities, but I’m very happy to see the diversity of my clients. Of course, they can do a red carpet, with beautiful gowns. But I take a lot of pleasure in tailoring, day dresses, all of these kinds of things. My client doesn’t live only in the evening—she’s got morning, lunch, she works. I’m really attentive to a woman’s desire. I listen to them say what they want, so I don’t really have one [inspiration].
So what do your clients tell you that they want? Sex appeal? Edginess?
It depends on the person I dress, in fact. It could be a 22- or 25-year-old single American, or it could be a French actress. But they always want to be at their avantage [best].
Naturally. Beyoncé or not, I think all women want to feel that way. But if you had to pick one person, who would you say is your beauty icon?
Daria [Werbowy]. No, really, I was a huge fan of Daria because I love the girl. She’s been with Lancôme since the beginning, and she’s like an icon for me. I love her beauty, but I also love her allure. She can be sophisticated, she can be natural—she has the ability to [take on] different [personas]. I love [her as a] person, really. It’s not only a question of beauty, it’s a question of attitude.
What was your introduction to beauty?
I remember when I was young, à la maison [at the house], there were a lot of fashion magazines, and I was crazy about the advertising for makeup. There were beautiful photos for Yves Saint Laurent, Chanel, and Christian Dior [cosmetics]. And this kind of femininity was very chic, very sophisticated, and I loved the colors. You don’t always see it in my collections, but I love color. I love lipstick. You know what? I love these objects [holds up a tube of lipstick]—I think there is something feminine in putting them on. The geste and attitude [associated with applying beauty products] is so feminine. I was always completely fascinated by that. And the smell [of the lipstick], it’s a little vanilla, but not too [strong]. I’m obsessed by fragrance, and Lancôme was my first contact with cosmetics. It was the night cream my mama wore when she kissed me. And the first perfume I remember from my father was Sagamore from Lancôme.
Do you remember what your mother would pack in her evening bag?
It is very interesting that you say that because there was a smell inside her bag—there was the smell of maroquinerie [leather goods], but there was also [the scent] of lipstick, perfume, and paper money…You can read a woman by the fragrance of her handbag.
Alexandre Vauthier for Lancôme, $1,500, available July 28 on net-a-porter.com.
Prefer a sculptural accessory (like Yiqing Yin’s basket-like bag) or ergonomic pouch (like Jacquemus’ bubblegum fanny pack)? Check out the designer trio’s interpretations below.
To spritz or not to spritz, that is the question. Style.com/Arabia critic and perfume industry legend Luca Turin reviews the latest fragrance launches and answers this age-old question.
Name: Montblanc Emblem Notes: Cardamom, violet leaf, wood
When I was a student, on the “try everything once” principle I went spelunking with the university club, a truly miserable experience. I remember only two things: how good it was to see the damp grass and leaden sky of Yorkshire upon climbing out, and the wonderful smell of the old-fashioned acetylene lamps we carried that were strapped to our foreheads.
One of the great wonders of smell is that we can infer the composition of a molecule by smell alone. Acetylene has an unusual triple carbon-carbon bond and it—and all derived compounds—smells, well, acetylenic. In polite fragrance language, the smell is referred to as “violet leaf” so as not to offend sensibilities. Unfortunately, triple bonds are quite chemically reactive, and most have been banned or severely restricted by the ever-watchful authorities. Grey Flannel  and the Original Fahrenheit  made great use of the sharp, metallic tang of triple bonds.
It appears either that one of the violet leaf compounds has escaped regulation or that a perfumer has figured out a way to get the same effect without using them, because the violet leaf note in Emblem is both intense and durable. This is a masculine fragrance, of course, and it comes in a beautiful black bottle that looks like the cap of a titanic fountain pen. On a guy, it would probably be a little too Porsche Design “black is the new black” for my taste. But it will work great on a woman, as a chaser for the nauseating meringues everyone else is doing, and to advertise an unrepentantly dry-eyed disposition.
For another review from Turin’s bimonthly column, click here.