Beauty & the Brush

Maria Saadat April 16, 2010

KARACHI: The advent of spring coincides with the start of the wedding season, and mehndi invitations begin to arrive by the dozen.

Panic sets in as one frantically runs to and fro from tailors and/or designers in a desperate attempt to have them sew knockoffs of designs from collections shown at fashion weeks. There is an equal frenzy in browbeating mothers into providing matching jewellery.

But when it comes to the “defining moment” that is applying makeup, most women devote relatively miniscule time and reach for the cliched black kajal and pink lipstick.

Why not break with worn out traditions and dare to embrace the bold accents and styles presented on runways this spring?

Today’s beauty trends reflect the vibrant hues of nature - jewel-toned eyes mimicking oleander trees and azure skies, fruity lips evoking images of peach-lined fruit stands.

Remember those bright purple and yellow eyeliners you pondered at the local Agha’s or Al-Fatah but elected in favour of your go-to black? Return to the store and grab the colourful liners. And while you’re in revolutionary mode, seriously think about tossing out your flatiron.

Those addicted to the smoky eye look, pass over standard greys and blacks. Instead, play with peacock colors and the remarkable hues of dyed gladiolas lining entrances of mehndi events. Spring 2010 New York Fashion Week revealed models experimenting with striking eye shadows. So, be creative - it’s spring after all! Sweep turquoise pigment on your eyelid but line your under-eye with purple for contrast. Mehndis are an occasion when you can be adventurous with vivid colours!

A word for those that shy away from too much makeup; opt for those coloured liners we mentioned above. A sapphire blue pencil is the perfect replacement for black. But here’s the twist, don’t circle your eyes in a passe Kareena Kapoor look. Apply colour only to your lower lash line, leaving your lids bare. Your eyes will appear bigger and the simple pop of colour will keep you looking trendy.

As most fashionistas already know, pairing bright eyes with dark lips is a great beauty gaffe. You don’t want to be mistaken for a 1980s Lollywood actress!! Leave the dark lipstick and even the standard nude ones in your make-up kit. This season, cosmetics companies are embracing the colour peach. A sprightlier version of pink, peach complements almost any skin tone. Add some shimmer or wear your peach glossy, but avoid mattes. You want to look fresh, not aged.

Mehndis invariably involve dancing, and you’ll be struggling to contain your locks while you step to the latest Imran Khan single. Here’s some welcome news - the classic up do has been updated. Gone are the stick straight ponytails and distinct puff resting atop your head. It’s time to stop straightening your strands into oblivion and start working with your hair’s natural texture.

Ask your salon to style your tresses into a messy bun at the nape of your neck with a few loose side-swept tendrils to soften the look. If your hair isn’t naturally wavy, make sure to use a volumizing mousse so your ‘do doesn’t fall flat. If buns don’t appeal to you, sport a celebrity favourite - pull your hair to one side and loosely twist into a fishtail braid, or khajuri choti.

Before stepping out of the house, polish your look with a sweep of peachy-pink blush on your cheeks to enhance the glowing spring look. On a parting note - remember to take along your lipstick for touchups. Warm weather and the delectable mehndi cuisine will wear your lip colour off faster than you can say “balle”.


This season’s trends

- Be creative and play with vivid colours for eye make-up
- Stop using your flatiron and opt for a fishtail braid
- Give up the kajal and play with peacock hues
- Polish your look with a sweep of peachy-pink blush on your cheeks to enhance the glowing spring look

Maria Saadat is author of the popular desi beauty site Lipstick Masala.


AM | 13 years ago | Reply I loved reading your article. It sketches a true picture of all the mehndi/shaadi madness that we all go through. I love experimenting with colors too :P Great job on the article!! You're a magnificent writer :D
Maria Saadat | 14 years ago | Reply Thank you all for your kind comments. I look forward to hearing more from everyone!
Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ