Category:  inspiration

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INSPIRATION: Color!

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Color is making a comeback (did it ever leave?). Ever since spotting the pink hair from New York S/S 2012 Fashion Week (click here for a recap), I’ve been dreaming of color everywhere.

I am a bronzy, browns, black liner type of girl. I had a period in my college years when I thought it would be fun to play with a green, blue and purple eye, but then I abandoned the look for a more traditional lid. Every now and again, you’ll spot me with a khaki lined eye or a pop of blue-hue mascara, but other than that, I reserved the real color for my lips.

Lately, I’ve been dabbling with a bolder eye – a pale eggplant swept across my lids, once there was a green shadow and liner. And I’m super into the bright pigments.

Hey, if the Marchesa girls can saunter down a runway with a bold mane, I can add some color into my makeup routine. Yesterday, I focused on the bold day lip (a pout that I have been sporting as of late), today I wanted to share some amazing photos that inspire my new love for color.

NOTE: I wouldn’t necessarily wear any of these looks but I do use them as color references.

*all photos from sarahrhoward.tumblr.com – follow us for daily beauty images!

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INSPIRATION: Kate Moss

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I’m not quite sure where to begin. There really isn’t any one woman who has affected me more on a beauty or fashion level than Kate Moss. When I was a tween/ teen, Kate Moss was the ultimate. Remember those CK ads with Marky Mark (aka Mark Wahlberg)? I really wasn’t sure which one I liked more – Marky and his buff abs or Kate and her lanky limbs.

Coming off of a decade of supermodel superpower where amazonian curvaceous women graced the pages of magazines and the runways, Kate Moss was, in my opinion, a much needed change.

Kate was shorter than your average model – by many inches, definitely bonier, perhaps even with a boy-like body (absolutely no boobs) and she had these crooked teeth, a head too big for her body, massively wide-set eyes that were almost alien, ultra thin brows – everything seemed all wrong yet somehow it was the wrongness that made her so right. She was far from perfect, thus making her more relatable. So unlike the Cindy’s, Naomi’s, Stephanie’s and Christy’s that we were used to. She made me feel like maybe one day, I too, could be a model with my imperfect teeth, double A boobs (that’s beyond flat, for those not in the know), 5’6″ frame and skinny, boyish figure.

I was instantly mesmerized. It was the first time that I had become intrigued by a model for more than simply her looks. I wanted to know about Kate’s wardrobe (her boho-chic style was envy inducing), her boyfriends (Johnny Depp!? – I spent too many hours thinking about how beautifully sexy their children would be), her wild partying ways (yes, Kate can be credited for coining the term “heroin-chic,” and then a flock of other 1990’s models joined the crew). She seemed to live such a fast, sexy life and I wanted in on it. If I couldn’t be Kate, I wanted to be her best friend (and raid her closet). In some weird way, Kate Moss seemed like the approachable supermodel.

And then there were her pictures. Those editorial images shot by the likes of every major fashion photographer: the way Kate was like a chameleon – she could look girlie and sweet in one picture and vampy and seductive in the very next. She looked beautiful bare faced and beautiful with a full face of makeup. Kate’s success is truly unparalleled – even with “bad boy” boyfriends, a child out of wedlock and a drug scandal, she has stood the test of time. And perhaps that has to do with the uniqueness of her look, but there are many unique looking girls in the world. Perhaps, it’s a testament to her keen business sense – she is so much more than just a model (take, for example, her design deal with Top Shop). But I like to believe that Kate Moss is still relevant because, at the end of the day, what a model needs most of all is a beautiful photograph. And there is no one that photographs quite like Kate… she sure knows how to work a camera, and that’s something you’re born with, something that comes from the soul – not something you can be taught or poked and prodded to look like. Her style, confidence, humor and unique sense of beauty make Kate Moss my beauty and style maven.

Here are a few of my favorite iconic Kate Moss images:

 

AND…. here’s a really cool video of a very young Kate Moss auditioning for L’Oreal in the beginning of her modeling days (she didn’t get the gig)… a very interesting example of Kate’s confidence and natural sexuality.

Everyone has a favorite Kate Moss photo or story —

What’s yours?

Tell us in the comment section below…

(Bonus points if you can send us a link to a photo that we’ve never seen!)

*all images from sarahrhoward.tumblr.com
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INSPIRATION: Mia Farrow

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The latter part of Mia Farrow’s life has been overshadowed by controversy – largely due to her longtime boyfriend, Woody Allen, marrying her adopted daughter, Soon Yi. Never-the-less, in her earlier years, Farrow was quite the movie star.

Married to Frank Sinatra, lead actress in the Roman Polanski’s 1968 horror hit, Rosemary’s Baby, Farrow looked and played the part of Hollywood starlet to perfection. She was that natural beauty mixed with feminine innocence that the late 1960’s was churning out in droves. But Mia Farrow stood out from the crowd- she had something rare. For one thing, that bone structure is unparalleled. Not many can pull off a boy cut and still look so damn angelic. And then there are those eyes, beautiful yet soulful. But it’s the hair – the pixie cut, that really made Mia Farrow a star.

Like 1960’s model Twiggie, when Farrow chopped her locks into a short pixie, it became an instant hit. One that is still emulated today with the likes of celebrities like Emma Watson and Michelle Williams. So few can pull it off like Mia, and so few have. She literally legitimized the boy cut on women – making it sexy and feminine and glamorous. And for that, Farrow is a timeless beauty inspiration.

Here are a few of my favorite Mia Farrow images:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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INSPIRATION: Karen Elson

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As far as redheads go, there are few I find sexier than Karen Elson.  Perhaps it’s the hyper-vibrant fire engine red mane, or the sky blue eyes. Maybe it’s her pale skin that contrasts so beautifully against the red of her hair (reminding me of a character out of Twilight) or those uncharacteristically thin and undefined eyebrows that give her an other-worldly facade. Whatever it is, I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it’s not classic beauty yet I’m totally drawn to it.

Karen Elson most definitely has a face for makeup. The high cheek bones, wide set eyes and heavy lids (ideal for covering in shadow), full pout, flawless complexion…. it’s all so theatrical, which makes her very fun to look at. And a great palette to paint. She goes from feminine to vixen with a few coats of lipstick and, like her redhead predecessors, Karen uses her hair like a fabulous accessory: it is the centerpiece of her style.

But, alas, it always comes back to the hair. Those unruly, ginger locks that really set her apart from the millions of other girls out in the world.

Here, some of my favorite beauty images of Karen Elson:

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INSPIRATION: Isabel Lucas

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In a recent post I noted that I was mildly obsessed with Isabel Lucas as of late, and here’s why: the Australian model and actress is both sexy and glamorous. She’s got the Old Hollywood charm mixed with something a bit more contemporary. Whether, she’s gallivanting around in haute couture or chilling in one of her hippy get-ups, she is equally beautiful, equally interesting, and equally herself. The clothes and makeup don’t seem to matter, Isabel radiates an effortless, ethereal beauty that comes from within. She has that timeless thing that only true classic beauties are able to emanate. She’s young, but I predict that she’s on her way to beauty icon status…

Here are a few of my favorite images that inspire my summer beauty looks:

messy, beach hair, a smoky eye and pale lip – a signature summer night look.
love this picture – again, beachy waves, flawless skin and a few coats of mascara make the perfect summer day look
head pieces are very on-trend. this is a great example of dressing it up.
a well defined arch will take you far in life. eyes can really make the face.
isabel au naturel. darker hair, still kept long and messy, beach-chic. the middle part pays homage to her hippy-inspired style.
the perfect summer look. tanned skin, hair pulled back in a loose bun, very little makeup, rosy cheeks.
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INSPIRATION: Flower Child

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I was at a party recently and they had floral centerpieces that everyone was picking off and putting in their hair. Now, this is not a new look, hippies were playing with the idea of flowers in their hair back in the 60’s and 70’s, but it’s a style that is still so beautiful come summer.

There’s something about flowers and billowing locks that evokes femininity, beauty, charm and personality. Be it one flower perched above your ear or an entire wreath of flowers placed upon your head, the flower child is this week’s beauty inspiration.

(Note To Self: Pick fresh flowers to wear in hair this weekend while frolicking in sundress)

a few flowers and petals randomly pinned into the hair.
love this! flowers braided into the french braid.
a wreath of flowers.
a single flower above the ear, very surfer-chic.
another, more ornate wreath of flowers.
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INSPIRATION: Sharon Tate

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Since as far back as I can remember, I’ve had an obsession with Sharon Tate. Perhaps, a big part of said obsession stems from the horrific circumstances surrounding her tragic murder (if you are unaware or have forgotten about this incident, click here for a recap), another part is definitely her marriage to Roman Polanski (another mini obsession of mine, as I am a major film buff), still more of my obsession comes from her role as book editor turned pill popper, Jennifer North, in the film version of Valley of the Dolls. But, if I’m being totally honest, a vast majority of my obsession of Sharon Tate is simply because I find her to be one of the most beautiful women to come out of the 1960’s.

While Twiggy was one type of American 1960’s poster child, Sharon was quite another (dare I say somewhat more timeless?): Blonde, shapely, naturally sun kissed skin with big, moody eyes and a gaze that absorbs you (as I always say, the eyes make the woman). She was feminine with a touch of hippy (she donned a head piece before today’s hipsters made it trendy). Whether natural with no makeup or done up with big hair and the “Twiggy” lashes, Sharon always seemed to fit the part of a classic, American beauty.

Here are some of my favorite images of Sharon Tate, beauty inspiration that is still relevant today:

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INSPIRATION: Natasha Poly

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I only recently discovered this model while rummaging the internet for pictures of beautiful women to add to my tumblr account. If you haven’t checked out my tumblr account, you must do so immediately! CLICK HERE! There is a spread of Natasha shot by photographer David Hamilton for Muse Magazine (I believe it was from 2009) and it is literally breath-taking. Obviously, much of the credit is attributed to Hamilton’s eye for detail, his use of light and space and his ability to capture both innocence and sexuality all within a single shot. If you are unfamiliar with David Hamilton’s work, google him asap. He’s insanely talented.

Back to Natasha. She’s waify, like a Kate Moss, which gives her that girlish charm. But unlike Kate, she’s a bit more girly, a bit less grunge. And she has that versatility – as most models must – to transform herself from demure and vulnerable to sexy and playful to straight-up hot.

Not to mention that face was made for makeup. The cheekbones are perfectly angled, the skin is flawless with a light golden glow, lips well plumped, the eyes almost naturally cat-shaped. She wears red lips with the best of them or a dark, smoky eye like no other.

How much is retouched? Probably all of it. But she’s still pretty to look at. And the hair/ makeup still gives me inspiration for looks I’d like to try this season…

This is how you rock a red – eyes are lined, but lips remain the focal point.
Hair accessories are hot this season.

 Nude lip with a beautiful cat eye – notice the white, shimmer-lined inner corners of the eyes. It’s a trick to make eyes appear wider and brighter.

Part of the David Hamilton shoot for Muse Magazine. Very natural and innocent with glowing skin.
What a sexy smoky eye! And tangerine lips are very trendy for summer. But don’t wear them together, please.

 This is a really beautiful gilded look – always in-trend. Eyes, lips and skin are all gold-hued.

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INSPIRATION: Jane Birkin

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My obsession with Jane Birkin lies far beyond the fact that she is the inspiration behind the coveted Hermes Birkin bag (quite a noble feat). In my opinion, the British born actress and singer is, quite possibly, the sexiest woman to come out of 1960’s London (GASP! Yes, I made that grand a statement).

Here’s why. She was a total hippy but still quite the femme fatale. Her real life played out more exciting than a movie (just read up on her love affair with co-star and father of daughter, Charlotte, Serge Gainsbourg, and you’ll get my drift). She loved being naked and is photographed much of the time in the nude – and has quite the body – and the breasts – for such photos. She gave the blob (long bob) air time WAY before Gwyneth was even a household name – and she never had the overdone feeling or look to her hair. It always seemed like she got out of bed and that’s how it fell naturally (which is so perfectly effortless but still chic). The long bangs that became Birkin’s definitive hair statement are still on trend FIFTY years later! She has the most mesmerizing eyes that are never overdone, but always emphasized with the right amount of mascara to give that vava lash look that we still emulate today (and as I always say, eyes make the lady classic). Her lips could rival any of the pucker’s we currently adore – and this was way before Restylane and fillers were created. She just knew how to pout for the camera!

But, most importantly, Jane Birkin, has a natural beauty that can’t be store-bought. It’s not about the makeup or the highlights or the blowouts, not like today’s super celebs. Jane’s got the stuff that comes from inner beauty and serious confidence and that radiates as timeless and classic.

Here are some of my favorite Jane Birkin images:

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INSPIRATION: Ali MacGraw

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I’m a HUGE Ali MacGraw fan. Love Story was a favorite of mine growing up, but the real love story between Ali and Robert Evans was like a Hollywood Royal Ever After… until the divorce.

I always found her style to be so effortless and chic and her beauty to be classic and simple. She gave brunettes sex appeal (YAY!) years before Megan Fox and Mila Kunis. Her long, pencil-straight hair parted down the middle and those magnetic brown eyes framed by a full brow remain timeless beauty references.  With Ali, you always knew what to expect. She didn’t change up her look very much. Maybe she’d add a hat or some eye liner, but for the most part it was all very natural and understated.

I have wanted to emulate this look for years and I find that it is a look that never goes out of style, regardless of the season. Sure, it’s a bit bohemian, but at the crux, it’s beauty at it’s purest form: natural, simple, elegant, no frills or fuss and classic. For these reasons, Ali MacGraw will continue to remain a beauty inspiration.

Here are some of my favorite looks:

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Beauty Banter was launched in July of 2006 as a comprehensive beauty blog covering trends, tips and tricks, insider secrets, and weekly must-haves. Beauty Banter has a reputation of being on the cutting edge of emerging trends and product launches so our readers are always the first to know what’s hot and what’s just not.