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Linking Fashion and Beauty
By: Imogen Matthews
Posted: April 6, 2010, from the April 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.
page 2 of 3Looking back at 20 years ago, fashion trends were more easily defined. Everyone remembers the big hair, “power shoulders” and dark kohl-rimmed eyes of the 1980s. These days, anything goes and there is no longer a single trend or a single season for fashion or color. “At any one time, there are a number of different trends in fashion,” says Allemand. “As a result, there are no more strong dictates as in past decades. And that is the same for beauty. It’s the result of an increasingly individualistic society since the 1990s.”
What counts now is personal style, and women make choices regarding their appearance every day. For example, the choice of wearing a nude lipstick or a stronger color is dependent on mood, occasion and what she is wearing. “There is such a diversity of fashion expression that personal style has become much more important,” says van den Berg. “You still have the product of the season but are free to use it and interpret it to create your own look.”
The environment is another key change in the last 20-year period. “The restrictions on the use of raw materials can sometimes [make global beauty marketing difficult] due to different rules and regulations across the world,” says van den Berg. She has worked with beauty product brands wanting to produce one global collection, but because certain ingredients cannot be universally used, the number of products is limited.
The natural trend is also exercising the minds of the formulators in a way many would not have dreamt possible 20 years ago. “But it does not always follow that natural is better than synthetic. For example, mica is a purer substance than other natural alternatives,” says van den Berg. “We have to be realistic and use ingredients in an intelligent way.”
Other Avenues of Inspiration
The fashion industry is just one area of inspiration for beauty brands. “We often spot a trend first in the arts, then design and architecture before moving into fashion,” says Allemand, citing the example of electric blue, which is appearing in color cosmetic ranges such as OPI’s cobalt blue, part of its spring/summer collection 2010.