Product watch: Pink is the coolest colour this summer

Pink is still the first colour with which girls gender-identify and can be a rallying hue, writes Rachel Marie Walsh.

Product watch: Pink is the coolest colour this summer

Pink is still the first colour with which girls gender-identify and can be a rallying hue, writes Rachel Marie Walsh.

Code Pink, the female-led US anti-war group, currently uses this dilution of angry red with peaceful white to protest Syrian air strikes.

Female artists from Dolly Parton (Backwoods Barbie) to Nicki Minaj (The Pinkprint), use it to signal fans in a playful way but also to package lyrics that empower economically-vulnerable women.

Pink makeup was used liberally at Spring/Summer 2018 shows where designers drew on female strength (including Gucci, Valentino and Dior), to give a soft wash of colour over the eyes or replace matte red as a ‘power’ look on an otherwise bare face.

Mattel’s little lady is part-responsible for its less intellectual associations. At least as much of Legally Blonde’s comedy stems from Elle Wood’s passion for pink as her hair and in real life UK Labour’s Harriet Harman was lambasted from left and right in 2015 for her pink bus-tour of marginal constituencies in pursuit of women voters. How dare she assume all women like pink, right? But pink as a medium is not about liking the colour or otherwise. Like an obnoxious yellow-gold, it can be reviled but not ignored.

This bright, uplifting colour, more vital than white but without the suggestion of sex, can also speak to the part of psyche that predates adaptations we make to survive a male-dominated world. And engaging your early, more idealistic self is part of connecting across age, class and the boundaries and instigating change. Perhaps you find pink lame now, maybe you wouldn’t if it weren’t so often dismissed as unserious, but wearing a touch somewhere is no bad thing. Little heads can’t help but look up to you.

A brand with pink as its signature colour can reach women connect women in life-changing ways. Each May, Benefit Cosmetics, partners with charities around the world for it’s Bold is Beautiful campaign, which donates the cost of the brow waxes to enhancing the lives of women and girls. Benefit Ireland is this year working with Look Good Feel Better, helping to improve the wellbeing of women undergoing treatment for any type of cancer, and the Daisyhouse Housing Association, which encourages sustainable living as well as skills and confidence. Book a wax at your nearest Benefit BrowBar (based in Debenhams nationwide) and you will also receive a mini mascara.

The Coachella music festival was dominated by Beyoncé and her bee troupe performing in black and yellow, but the vibes made pink ladies of some starry attendees. Kylie Jenner’s long fuchsia tresses were most striking. Get the look for a day, as she did, by applying L’Oréal Paris’ Colorista Temporary Hair 1-Day Colour Spray in ‘Hot Pink,’ €8.99, to clean, dry hair. You will need a lot to generate the same colour intensity (Kylie’s do was a wig), but unlike more permanent options, disasters are easily rinsed. There’s also nothing in the formula that dries or damages hair, so you can change your kooky shade as though it were clothes.

Rihanna was at the same event promoting her latest Puma collection, wearing pink eyeliner and matching mascara to match her scuba-inspired clothes. Diorshow Cooling Stick, €30, is an hydrating cream shadow that lets you get just as expressive with pink this season. The ‘Fresh Pink’ shade is radiant, extremely wearable and easy to blend. Despite its moisturising ingredients, the summer-tailored formula won’t budge until you want it to and is sweat and water-resistant. Pair it with the va-va-voluminous Diorshow Pump ’N’ Volume Waterproof Mascara, €35, which is now available in four vibrant shades, including coral-pink.

YSL Volupte Liquid Colour Balm

YSL Volupte Liquid Colour Balm

YSL Volupté Liquid Colour Balm, €34, is another cocktail of water, shine and and high-colour. Colour pigment is inherently absorbent and it is tough to keep bold lips hydrated. YSL’s cracked it with one-quarter water-based formula infused with coconut, pomegranate and lots of tinted pearl. Lips are in noticeably better condition after four days use and the 16-shade range is gorgeous. Try ‘Excite Me Pink’ to get campaign model Staz Lindes’ fuchsia pout or ‘Expose Me Rose’ for a more natural petal-pink.

Pink highlighter is gentler on fair to medium complexions than silver and more natural than gold. MAC’s new ‘Glow’ collection focuses not on metallic strobes but rosy brightening. “It’s beauty’s new ’super-health,” says director of artistry Terry Barber. “A just-been-to-the-spa gleam for face and body.”

MAC Prep and Prime Fix Pinklite

MAC Prep and Prime Fix Pinklite

Prep and Prime Fix +, €22, the brand’s excellent toner and makeup reviver, is now available in ‘Pinklite.’ This sets makeup with a rejuvenating veil of subtle shimmer, as well as providing a lightweight blend of antioxidants. This finish non-sticky and looks radiant rather than shiny.

Strobe Body Cream, €34, in ‘Opalite’ is a similar pink that provides a more intensely moisturising highlight. The formula is high in plant fats, including almond and olive oils, and can easily replace your regular body lotion.

Chanel Les Beiges Eye Palette

Chanel Les Beiges Eye Palette

Pink can also soften up your contouring this season, thanks to the latest issue of Chanel Les Beiges collection. The Les Beiges Luminous Multi-Colour Powder, €57, lets you sublimate the cheeks by blending stripes of universally flattering colour, including soft pinks in the ‘Light’ palette. Contour and colour eyes with the Healthy Glow Natural Eyeshadow Palette, €58, which includes satin, matter and shimmer shades. The beige-toned pinks and deep mauve open up even sleepy and hayfever-struck features.

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