Catwalk Cut: The Beauty of Peter Som Spring 2013 Friday 14 September, 2012

Spring 2013 backstage beauty alert: Finger-painted eyes and patchy metallic-pastel manes lend a “woman on the verge” vibe at Peter Som.

At Peter Som’s Spring 2013 showing, the beauty is all about “classic East Village cool girls: natural, easy hair with touches of faded color, and strong, bold yet sophisticated eye colors,” says the designer. His theme, “Women on the Verge,” evokes that tipping point where a lady just might crack into a million little pieces. Is the beauty as fragmented? Most definitely.

 Peter Som Backstage Beauty Spring 2013  Peter-Som-Spring-2013-Beauty-5

“This is about good clothes with bad hair,” Wella Professionals hair lead Eugene Souleiman jokes with me. “The style has unnatural colors that have a little bit of a dirtier feeling. The haircolor is sort of patchy and broken, and the hair has this natural texture—rawer, beachier.”


To create this organic finish, Eugene mists dry hair with Wella Professionals Ocean Spritz to lend grit, and then applies Wella SP Hydrate Finishon the ends. He twists the lengths into a loose knot, allows the hair to set, and then releases the knot before the girls hit the runway to create tumbling random waves that he hand-combs for further fragmentation.


“This is very ’90s New York, kind of like Courtney Love meets Madonna in Desperately Seeking Susan. It’s trashiness with class,” he says.


The haircolor, a rainbow of metallic pastels fused with hints of bright, reflects “a rich girl gone bad; she’s a pill-popper and partier,” says Wella colorist Aura Friedman. “The color is meant to look dusty, disheveled and faded.” She points out that women are becoming more fearless with their dye choices. “The Riot Girls are coming back,” she says proudly of this devil-may-care haircolor movement. “I was a Riot Girl back in the day,” she adds with a smile.


Aura notes that she was inspired by French impressionist paintings—the seeming disregard for color placement when viewed up-close only to reveal a gorgeous visual when viewed from afar.


For makeup, MAC makeup lead Tom Pecheux sources Valley of the Dolls, but says he’s also focusing on keeping the look innocent and almost child-like. “We’re applying the color imperfectly; it’s like a child’s mind—not too studied,” he says, noting that Peter’s own innocent approach to fashion and life sparks this direction. Makeup is kept minimal: no blush, mascara or brows. The eyes become the highlight, with models receiving different duo-tones: blues, greens, oranges, reds.


“We’re using MAC Pro Paint Sticks and applying them with our fingers to get this ombré effect,” he says. He applies yellow MAC Pro Paint Stick in Sunshine (available spring/summer 2013) from lid to crease and then a pastel color (achieved by mixing in MAC Pro Paint Stick in Pure White) from crease to brow. A final finger-dot of MAC Pro Landscape Green and Marine Ultra Paint Sticks directly above the eyes lends the lids a painted-on effect. Nude lips in MAC Mineralize Rich Lipstick Luxe Naturale (available spring/summer 2013) complete the look.


Nails are a play on the classic French manicure, with limited edition Zoya for Peter Som polish hues in crisp mint Neely (the base) and creamsicle orange Sharon (the tip) reflecting a “classic woman with an edge,” says Zoya’s color expert Rebecca Isa. “These polishes have a white base, which makes them cleaner and more lively.”


Fearless Beauty Quotient (scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the most fearless): The metallic pastel hair hues—a rainbow of them, at that—give this runway look an 8. And who can deny that it takes a good amount of bravery to rock such brilliant eyelids in an ombré effect? The pairing of two beautiful hues on the nails is the easiest part of this look, but, let it be known: It still takes a streak of boldness to rock such cool digits.

What do you think of the Peter Som Spring 2013 beauty?

Karie L. Frost Signature

(First image: courtesy of Wella Professionals; all other images property of




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