Backstage at Horace, image by Marsy Hild Thorsdottir



Backstage at Jasper Garvida, image by Lilijana Pajovic




On the catwalk at David Koma


On the catwalk at Iris Van Herpen, image by David Coleman






It almost felt like ghosts from decades past were emerging from the historic walls of the Freemasons’ Hall over fashion week. But the glowing creatures were just models sporting a haunting new beauty trend, pale, ethereal skin.


In the wake of the recession fashion retreated. Understated glamour using simple, sophisticated design trumped conspicuous and exaggerated style. These new ideals combined with the current Twilight and True Blood induced vampire craze produced a beauty equation for plain almost deathly complexions.

“Pale skin seems really popular this season. I think the days of orange, tanned skin are gone,” Rachel Wood, Benefit makeup artist, told The Fashion Scout backstage. “The look is innocent and ethereal, with a bit of iciness. Great for anyone living in England! Think Kate Beckinsale in Pride and Prejudice.”

Blush and bronzer were absent from the majority of shows this season and replaced with matte foundations and ghostly highlights. Death warmed over at Studio 805, David Koma and Horace where model’s skin was one-dimensional. Models at Iris Van Herpen’s show where glowing white using an icy accents. Jasper Garvida channeled alabaster skin tones of the 1920s in his Art Deco inspired show.

To achieve this look, apply a good moisturizer before smoothing a matte foundation over skin. To keep coverage from getting to thick or heavy, polish with a stippling or buffer brush. For an ethereal luster try a brightening powder like Powderflage from Benefit. Wood recommends using it under the eyes and around the contours of the face for a natural gleam. If your skin is not in the right condition to be centre of attention, Benefit’s Hello Flawless powder can help hide spots, soak oils and even out tone.

Not only is the pale, ethereal look easy to achieve, it is the perfect base to compliment current beauty trends. “Natural, pale skin paired with that bushy brow is just so ‘classic country living’,” says Wood. “Plus pale colouring is a great skin tone to match the strong red and coral lips that are all the rage this spring.”

The ghostly look of natural, matte skin is classic and chic. Grab the sunblock this summer and grease up to prevent your skin from expiring out of fashion.

Words: Maggie Dolan

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