Fall 2011 Beauty Trends: New York Fashion Week

Fall 2011 runway beauty wrapup

Photos: Imaxtree

About face: Soft and subtle on the Marc Jacobs and Proenza Schouler Fall 2011 runways.

While it’s too early for any grand proclamations, New York Fashion Week certainly had some common threads on the beauty front. Here’s what we saw and what are poised to be trends to watch over the next few weeks.

Tasteful Neutrals: When it comes to makeup, New York has a reputation for being the safest of the fashion capitals. This season, shows like Marc by Marc Jacobs, Tommy Hilfiger, Michael Kors, and Richard Chai didn’t exactly try to refute that. No matter, really—what their cream, taupe and camel palette lacked in edge it made up for in easy, American elegance.

Soft '70s: The hard-partying, Studio 54–ready makeup we saw last season has gone to bed, and in its place: '70s Lite. At Carlos Miele, the look stemmed from disco but it was done in touches of soft gold. At Proenza Schouler, a Carrie-era Sissy Spacek was the beauty muse, and at J. Mendel, the direction was described as “innocent '70s”—note the absence of glitter paillettes at both.

Fall 2011 runway beauty wrapup

Photos: Imaxtree

The eyes have it: Statement makeup on the Altuzarra, Monique Lhuillier, and Thakoon Fall 2011 runways.

Jeweled Smoke: That fall staple, the smoky eye, was reincarnated this season in colorful, jewellike tones. At Monique Lhuillier, eyes were smoked out and winged with deep, expensive-looking purples. Malandrino’s Parisiennes were done up with purple lids, albeit in shimmering lavender. At Sophie Theallet, the artist Val Garland strove to reinvent the untouchable eye makeup seen in Bonnie and Clyde by ditching neutrals in favor of smoky emerald, navy, and burgundy (depending on the model). Garland pulled it off with aplomb.

'90s Nostalgia: Riot grrrls, club kids, and fashion addicts can all relive their favorite beauty moments without fear for Fall 2011. At Vena Cava, the glittering, slightly destroyed eye makeup was inspired by Fiona Apple, while at Charlotte Ronson, the greasy eye makeup was also purposefully undone, '90s style. At Jeremy Scott’s show, everything was overdone—the look was pure Party Monster. And over at Joseph Altuzarra, the look was simply fabulous: “Kate Moss in the '90s,” according to makeup artist Tom Pecheux. With heavy shadow and Bordeaux lips, think nights out with Johnny, not photo shoots with Marky Mark.

Orange Accents: Makeup artists are still trying to make orange “happen,” and this season was no exception. The subtlest was at Donna Karan, where the tawny orange eye makeup veered on caramel. Things heated up at Costello Tagliapietra, where lips were painted in the M.A.C. classic Lady Danger (an orange-red). At Thakoon, only the brave would attempt the red-and-orange painted lids.