CND's fearless fashionista Jan Arnold kept a diary for us when she finally made it to Paris for fashion week.
I've been to New York City during fashion week for years, and what I've noticed is that the city seems fairly oblivious to the fact that fashion week is even in town. In Paris it's the complete opposite. This is a city in love with beauty, fashion, women, color, food and art. Fashion actually transcends all other matters—at least for one week each season.
My first morning in Paris, I received my International Herald Tribune in a glossy Dior-sponsored cover with a stunning picture of the most delectable platform stiletto on it. Each day the paper arrived with a different cover celebrating some gorgeous treat to be enjoyed that week. Inside, the front-page news was always about fashion—not the commercial side of fashion, but the art form itself.
I attended my first show at the Louvre, home to the Mona Lisa and arguably the most important museum in the world, and I wanted to look just right. Ultimately I chose a short, royal blue Comme des Garcons dress, tights in the same color, insanely high Pierre Hardy platforms, a cropped motorcycle jacket and my favorite oversized Karen Walker sunglasses. What I noticed first were the famous people sitting in the front row—Vogue Editor in Chief Anna Wintour, Harper's Bazaar Editor in Chief Glenda Bailey and Ken Downing of Neiman Marcus. Still, I couldn't help but stare at the long-legged, super-slim, decked-out French socialites in Fendi fur, YSL shoes, Cartier diamonds, perfect red manicures and slightly dirty, disheveled hair. What is it about the French? No other culture seems to have the same innate sense of style, which seems predicated upon an ability to look perfectly appointed, yet also as if you made absolutely no effort at all.
Jan Arnold at the Eiffel Tower in Jean Paul Gaultier
Backstage at Elie Saab with CND's ace team of nail techs, led by Amanda Fontanarrosa, I was amazed at the beautiful and spacious area dedicated to show prep. There were few, if any, TV cameras and no body crush of journalists like in New York. It was just a chosen few hairstylists, makeup artists and nail technicians. Mr. Saab strolled around, thanking his team and giving kisses to his models. It was all so elegant and regal.
My three favorite shows were Louis Vuitton, Giambattista Valli and Antonio Berardi. Louis Vuitton was all business, from the lighting and staging to the celebrities and business tycoons in attendance, all perfectly tanned, pressed, slimmed and prepped. At Giambattista Valli, the theme was Little Red Riding Hood, and the execution was like nothing I'd ever seen. The story started innocently enough; all the clothing was beige and white. In the forest the mood turned dark and gruesome; during this segment all the clothing was black. Finally, in a spin on the traditional fairy tale, Little Red Riding Hood ate the wolf. Not only were the models wearing red, but their lips became progressively blood-stained. Lastly, there were the dark and commanding warrior women ready for attack at Antonio Berardi. Still, the highlight of my trip was the John Galliano show on my last night in Paris.
As I sat on the airplane headed home to Southern California, where OP and Quicksilver still rule, I had a real understanding of the roots of style and felt grateful and humbled that CND had been invited to this revered birthplace of fashion and art to embellish the nails. I know that I've been saying that nails are the true fashion accessory for years, but for the first time, I knew it to be true. —JAN ARNOLD
THERE'S ONLY ONE SHAPER
Hairdressers have been fans of Sebastian Shaper for nearly 25 years. We take a look at how the number-one hairspray in America has evolved since it was introduced in 1984.
"Hundreds of shapes, only one shaper." Through the years, that simple yet powerful catchphrase has not only sparked stylists' imaginations, it's also helped catapult Sebastian Shaper into America's number-one hairspray. Here, we take a look back at Shaper's glamorous past, its bold reinvention and the iconic imagery behind the brand that cemented its spot in hair history. —KELLEY DONAHUE
Here's a beauty first for you. Nail care giant Sally Hansen collaborated with Warren-Tricomi Salon on a line of nailcolors and luxurious treatment products for hands and feet. The salon, which just relocated to newly renovated The Plaza Hotel in Manhattan, will offer manicures and pedicures designed with these indulgent new products. —M.D.
Sally Hansen at Warren-Tricomi Orange You Cute
Best of Show
In honor of its 35th anniversary, NUBEST SALON AND SPA in Manhasset, NY, installed a 50-foot-wide, digital billboard on the front of its building. High-resolution graphics and branding messages were then programmed to pan, scroll and transition across all the windows, creating one giant street-level video billboard. "The video concept marries contemporary art with beauty in the most innovative and technologically advanced form," says Ali Yarkhan, creative director for nuBest salon and spa. —M.D.
The Bubble chair from Gamma & Bross SPA brings pop art fun to the salon. gammabross.com
GIRL MEETS BOY
Daniel Holzberger, creative director for Van Michael Salons in Atlanta, wanted to create a strong, androgynous look to mirror what's been happening in fashion the past few seasons. "Agyness Deyn is the biggest model out there right now, and she has a short, cropped hairstyle that goes with the looks we're seeing on the runway today," he says. Here he created a round fringe to add a bit of length and femininity, while his sister Nikki used a bright shade of red to accentuate the length and set it in relief from the graduated sides and nape, which were kept dark. —M.D.
Stash Your Stuff
Clients will flip for STEPHANIE JOHNSON's new Kyoto collection of travel bags, with a pattern designed to evoke a tranquil Japanese garden, silky charcoal liners, and charcoal and pink silk knots. stephaniejohnson.com —L.A.
Tired of ho-hum sterilizer jars? Check out Element Display Group's line of designer disinfectant jars, which are meant to complement your salon's decor. The company's design team is always developing fresh, new ideas. "The jars are a perfect blend of function-meets-fashion," says founder and industrial designer Christopher Rozek. "When ordinary objects are presented as something engagingly new, our work environment becomes more welcoming." myelementstyle.com —M.D.
Draw the Line
Heavy liner was rampant on the runways this fall. Now Your Name Professional Brands introduces four trendy, limited-edition shades of its Luxe Crème Liner, which defines and sculpts eyes without smudging or fading. Choose from Brown Sugar, Lapis, Cypress and Glacier. yournamepro.com —M.D.
CRIMP YOUR STYLE
Think of it as his-and-her hair. At least that's what NAHA-nominated hairdresser Steve Elias was going for when he set out to create a collection of hairstyles for guys and dolls that was in complete harmony, from the hairstyle to the haircolor. Elias used a mix of red, copper, gold and brown shades from Aveda on her. On him: a clear glaze to add shine. Both looks were styled with a new line of products from Shu Uemura. —M.D.
Steve Elias used a crimping iron to create a punk-retro look on both models.
Bump It Up
Flat hair is getting a secret boost with new BUMPITS volumizing inserts from Big Happie Hair. The self-gripping styling tools, which come in two sizes, are inserted under a section of hair wherever height is desired—no teasing required! Bumpits come in four shades—light blonde, medium blonde, brunette and black—so that they blend in with all hair colors. bighappiehair.com —L.M.
OPI You Don't Know Jacques
WHAT'S ON YOUR IPOD?
We asked Adrianne Johnston, a stylist at Chicago's high-end Maxine Salon, what she's been listening to.
"Pro Nails" (remix) by Kid Sister featuring Kanye West. "A great song, and yep, it's about getting a manicure and pedicure. Plus, her personal throwback style is fab."
"Time to Pretend" by MGMT. "The whole album has a great electric feel. I enjoy the psychedelic vibe from this song. It's awesome for getting in the groove while styling."
Aveda is celebrating its 30th anniversary by releasing an updated, limited-edition version of its first product, Clove Pure Plant Shampoo. The new Vintage Clove Shampoo contains organic cloves and coffee to gently cleanse and enhance brown or warm honey-hued hair. The packaging, visually inspired by the original 1978 bottle, is made from a minimum of 96 percent post-consumer recycled high-density polyethylene. The cap is composed entirely of recycled caps from soda and water bottles and Aveda products, which were collected by students and Aveda employees around the United States. It's the first-ever use of recycled caps to create a dispensing closure. aveda.com —L.M.
The Cutting Edge
Hairstylists and makeup artists seeking easy education and inspiration should check out The Edge by Milady: Metroluxe Edition , a new DVD package that takes viewers behind-the-scenes as the Milady design team conceives and creates cutting-edge hairstyles and makeup techniques. The collection takes its inspiration from current trends and translates the styles into wearable hair and makeup. The 100-minute DVD comes with full-color laminated technical cards that offer step-by-step instructions on how to recreate the looks. milady.com —L.M.
Think of Bioderbe's new line of certified-organic products from Italy as la dolce vita for skin. The collection, which includes Eye Gel for Puffy Eyes, Eye and Lip Lift Cream and Emulsion 2 Night Treatment, contains good-for-you ingredients like vitamins C and B3, echinacea, jojoba, sweet almond and sesame oils and other natural active plant extracts that enrich and tone the skin, encourage luminosity and vitality, and defend against stress, pollution and free radicals. derbe.it —K.D.
NIOXIN created fresh, sophisticated hairstyles to complement Christian Cota's 2008 Fall/Winter collection at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York City. The look: unconventional texture with softly pinned loose waves. Theodore Leaf of Bravo's Shear Genius worked backstage to get this look by using Nioxin Volumizing Reflectives Root Lifter to prep the hair and provide extra hold and root-lifting support, followed by Volumizing Reflectives Bliss Thermal Protector to protect hair from thermal styling. Hair was then set in pin curls using a wide-barreled curling iron and sprayed with Volumizing Reflectives NioSpray Extra Hold hairspray. After the hair cooled, pins were removed and hair was shaken out to create a textured, tousled wave. —N.P.
NEW YORK MINUTE
Tom Julian, president of the brand consultancy firm the Tom Julian Group, tasted his way through the Fancy Food Show at Manhattan's Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in July.
Each year the scent of cheese, chocolate and herbs wafts out of the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City when the Fancy Food Show, sponsored by the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade (NASFT), arrives. This year's show attracted more than 20,000 attendees. There were also a few celebrity chefs on hand, including Food Network superstars Paula Deen and the Barefoot Contessa, aka Ina Garten, who were showcasing their signature culinary styles, products and books.
Every year there seems to be a catchy shift with product themes. This year, wellness foods that deliver holistic benefits for health-conscious Americans reigned supreme. Buzzwords like fair trade, organic, natural and eco-friendly could be seen on the packaging of a number of products designed to appeal to the eco-aware consumer; ginger, pomegranate, aloe, flaxseed and goji berries graced numerous ingredient labels; and products free of cholesterol, dairy, gluten and preservatives were widespread.
Here are some of the show's big themes:
The Secret of Bees. Leading the sweet-ingredient craze is The Savannah Bee Company, which offers a range of bath and body products containing honey from founder and creator Ted Dennard. With yummy flavors like orange blossom, black sage and raspberry, the line is a sensory treat.
The Bar Boom. The plethora of healthy snack bars to be found at the show boasted antioxidants, calcium, protein, B-complex and omega-3s, while flavors ranged from tropical mango to nutty almond. Several of note: Kind Plus, Bellybar (for before, during and after pregnancy) and Larabar.
Unsuspecting Tastes. From myrtle berries to Chilean carica (yellow fruit that is best eaten cooked or squeezed as juice), unusual flavors were everywhere on the show floor. More familiar exotic flavors tasted new when presented in unusual ways, like goat's milk ice cream or wasabi paired with chocolate (from Vosges), cheese (from Beemster) or in a salsa (from Dockside Market).
Tutti-Fruiti. Acai (ah-sigh-ee) is the new fruit rage from the Amazon Rainforest that has a berry-cocoa flavor. Packing a powerful antioxidant punch (more than blueberries or pomegranates), this gift from Mother Nature called the "purple berry" possesses omega fats, protein and dietary fiber and can be found in products ranging from sorbet to tea.
For more fodder and visuals, visit fancyfoodshows.com