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Color Correct

By: Sara Mason
Posted: January 27, 2014, from the January 2014 issue of GCI Magazine.

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Corrective makeup artist Donna Mee believes the future is in silicone foundations, such as Make Up For Ever’s Face & Body foundation, which imparts a smoother look to the skin. While some brands followed suit, many developed silicone primers to layer under foundations to get similar results. However, “Primers may fade as more brands launch multifunctional foundations,” Mee notes.

Another strong trend, since 2011, virtually every major beauty brand has introduced its own version of BB cream. The next generation of multifunctional cosmetics is the CC cream, combining the benefits of BBs with added ingredients and more effective skin coverage. CC cream formulas are buildable and offer better blending properties, making them more suitable for uneven skin tones. With a lighter texture than traditional foundation, both BB and CC creams leave the skin looking more natural, and their ability to cater to a wide range of skin tones is one reason for the explosive growth. Euromonitor predicts DD creams, which are being touted as having more of an anti-aging focus, will develop next.

To complement simplified coverage, cheekbones are contoured in a soft spectrum of bronze to peachy pinks hues. Pixi Beauty, for example, is launching Cheek Tints, which features hogweed, to add a subtle glow to naked skin. “Think fresh and glossy, using a touch of sparkle or silver shimmer on the cheek bones to highlight,” notes makeup artist Rachel Wood.

Inspired by Nature

But natural doesn’t have to be neutral. Impact Colors calls this turn on naturals Faux Nature. “These colors use nature as their inspiration, but we add that dimension of color interplay,” says Thornley. “The trend will add some extra color and shimmer, along with more green effects, to create a brilliant, healthy feeling.” On this end of the spectrum, colors commonly seen as “nature’s background” are featured in Pantone’s spring palette. Placid Blue, Violet Tulip and Hemlock are versatile pastels that can be creatively combined with any color or paired with a bolder hue for a modern look. “These Pantone colors reflect the softer side of womanhood, combining a fresh feel of pastels and blooming flower tones,” cites Wood. The blue, purple and beige tones in this palette pair with many of the designer collections she saw at New York Fashion Week.

At Jenny Packham’s runway show, for example, Wood saw chiffon dresses with colors straight from this chart. “The late 60s boho mixed with Edwardian style inspirations would pair beautifully with a Placid Blue or gentle muted grey eye shadow applied subtly and smoky on the lid,” she says. Wood also recommends satiny or velvet textured shadows.

“[2014] is going to bring a lot of muted tones that go into neutrals,” notes Alexis Capik, marketing manager, Spectra Colors. She feels the popular bold colors will pale in comparison to the popularity of neutral browns, light blues and purples—almost pastel colors, but with a little more intensity. Sand and muted gray are quintessential, while Pantone’s high-pitched red and blazing yellow adds spicy heat to neutrals, for example, and colors with warmth and energy, such as Celosia Orange, also set the stage for a look that is chic and sophisticated.


For 2014, it is all about how colors are applied—smudged, fields, blended, block or line. Trend tracker Van den Berg encourages product developers to imagine smudging color into skin and to experiment by enhancing foundations with a dark shade to create the effect of backlighting, dramatic on either very dark or very light skin. She suggests Impact Colors’ range of greenish-blue pigments, based on Eldorado Breen, as a base for this effect. “An emphatic continuation of a 2013 trend is fields of color, where one color is applied on a large area of the face,” she says. Expect to see half-transparent rouge blending into the eye shadow area, for example, with clear, soft, romantic effects.

Blending colors together, especially around interpretations of peacock colors mixed into glistening greenish-blue or bluish-green, is another theme. “This is an area where packaging and color can work together to capture the consumer’s imagination and eye,” Thornley notes.

Matching colors is also back, with a return to matching lipstick and nail varnish or even eye shadow and nail colors. Color blocks are straight and clear colors applied with strict lines. This look will be seen especially around the eye, but lipsticks and nail polish will follow, according to Van den Berg.

All Eyes

Eyes will garner attention with saturated liners and metallic pigments, including embellished accents. “Vibrant orange will be a stand out,” says Roberts. “And glossy rusts, ochres and smoky plums will be washed over lids for maximum effect.”

Impact Colors uses Diamond Colors and products from the company’s Fiesta line to create brilliance and shine ideal for sophisticated, luxurious products. “It’s a significant innovation because while synthetic mica has been around for a while, it’s predominantly available only for white interference and metallic colors,” explains Thornley. Now, the company has introduced a range of effect pigments such as Cold Gold, an unexpected combination of gold and blue—two interference colors that don’t mix. “It’s truly distinctive and difficult to do,” Thornley says.

Similarly, EMD Chemicals introduced Ronastar Copper Jewel, an orange-brown effect pigment. The bold color achieved by the pigment is intense and shows extravagant sparkle effects even in low concentrations. Large, flat platelets lend the pigment its unique glow. As a result, it has a warm quality and elegant luxurious look.

Such textures and finishes are changing cosmetics beyond color. “Advancements in technology allow formulas to be glossier or more matte or metallic than ever before, which, in turn, changes the way a color is perceived,” says Roberts. For the eyes, traditional powder eye shadow has been supplanted by gel and liquid forms that allow for blending and smoothing with ease. “Liners, a classic mainstay, will turn out young in a totally different way as pencils to draw on the face and body,” adds Van den Berg. Here, black continues as the classic, with pearlescent effects and added whiter and silvery tones. Liner is an easy way for consumers to wear more intense colors. “A cat eyeliner applied in a shade of Dazzling Blue can add a cool change,” recommends Wood. “Or a smudgy line of pencil into the water line of the eye in Radiant Orchid, a deep violet, can make green eyes pop.”

Hip Lips

Solid lipsticks are still going strong but with different feels—matte, velvet and glossy—being added. “For many seasons, statement lips have been the colorful facial focal point,” says Roberts. “They are saturated punches of color, featuring bright reds and magenta pink in recent seasons.” Revolution Lipstick by Urban Decay is formulated with a Pigment Infusion System that provides “insane color payoff, superior color dispersion and extended wear” in 22 intense shades. Roberts predicts punchy tangerine will replace red as the go-to color this year.