i-D's top 10 beauty trends of 2014

Chopping, cropping, dyeing, frying, soaking, twisting, piercing, painting, and stripping: 2014 was the year we pushed beauty to the extreme. Whether testing how faux we could go with fake piercings and temporary tattoos or scaling things back-to-basics...

by Emily Manning
17 December 2014, 12:50pm

Photography Amy Troost

Photography Benjamin Alexander Huseby, Styling Rúben Moreira, Hair Anthony Turner. Ras-yu wears jacket Prada. [The Beautiful Issue, no. 334 Winter, 2014] 

1. Braids
We first spotted the trend at Orange is the New Black's fictional fashion epicenter Lytchfield State Penitentiary, where inmate-turned-beauty icon Trisha (RIP, girl) brought back some seriously bitchin' braids. This year saw the hair trend go from rec yard to runway, where braids of all shades put new twists on backstage beauty. Whether it was Simone Rocha's delicately undone styles for autumn/winter 14Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley's punchy plaits for their debut collection at MBMJ, or Jean Paul Gaultier's hard core cornrows for spring/summer 15, braids were back in a big way this year.

Photography Amy Troost, Fashion Director Alastair McKimm, Make-up Yadim. Alisa wears top Calvin Klein Jeans. [The Beautiful Issue, no. 334 Winter, 2014] 

2. Wet hair
Although Anna Dello Russo's single Fashion Shower dropped back in 2012, it seems this was the year the industry actually took the Vogue Japan editor's advice to get wet-and-wild.Whether post-shower chic or a dirtier dampness, designers from across the globe embraced the rallying cry of "wet hair, don't care!" Jacquemus, Simone Rocha, Proenza Schouler, Prada, MM6, and DKNY all gave their girls slicked back, briskly brushed, or sculpted sopping looks, making wet hair one of the reigning beauty trends throughout the year.

Photography Amy Troost, Fashion Director Alastair McKimm, Make-up Yadim. Alisa wears jacket Vintage Wrangler. T-shirt Calvin Klein Jeans. [The Beautiful Issue, no. 334 Winter, 2014] 

3. Bleached eyebrows
While your Instagram feed was probably cluttered with would-be Helga Patakis showing off their fuzzy forehead caterpillars under the moniker "brow game #strong," fashion took a drastically different approach to bold brows. One of model-of-the-moment Kendall Jenner's first high fashion gigs saw her go braless and browless for Marc Jacobs' autumn/winter 14 show. These teen-queen shockwaves were soon followed up by fashion's equivalent of a category seven earthquake: the world's reigning eyebrow authority Cara Delevingne bleached her signature brows for Givenchy's spring/summer 2015 collection.

Photography Amy Troost, Fashion Director Alastair McKimm, Make-up Yadim. Helena wears necklace stylist's own. [The Beautiful Issue, no. 334 Winter, 2014] 

4. Glitter
Whether on the runways at Chanel, Dior, and House of Holland or shot by Yadim and Amy Troost for i-D's The Beautiful Issue, one of the year's biggest trends was all about the sparkle and shine. Bright flecks of glitter graced the eyelids of some of our favourite girls, including Lindsey Wixson, Valery Kaufman, Sam Rollinson, and Brogan Loftus.

Photography Josh Olins, Fashion Director Alastair McKimm. Saskia wears coat DKNY. Lip ring stylist's own. [The What Is Love Issue, no. 333, Fall 2014] 

Photography Alasdair McLellan Fashion Director Edward Enninful Hair Paul Hanlon at Julian Watson Agency Make-up Lisa Butler at Streeters London Jourdan wears dress Azzedine Alaïa. Ash wears jeans Levi's. [The God's Gift Issue, no. 293, November 2008]

5. Faux piercings and temporary tattoos
As we explored earlier this week, 2014 was the year of faking extreme beauty. From Rodarte's fake eyebrow piercings, Givenchy's septum clip-ins, or Tommy Hilfiger's temporary tatts, this year's runways challenged just how faux we could go with imaginative takes on some of beauty's more extreme and lasting measures. But, as Jane Helpern argues, "with mass retail chains like Old Navy and Victoria's Secret hopping aboard the temp tat train, and heaps of fake septum rings for just $5 on Etsy, only time will tell what truly sticks."

Photography Josh Olins. Kristen wears dress Gareth Pugh. Crown Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci. Bracelets model's own. [The Hedonist Issue, no. 313, Summer 2011] 

6. Grey hair
After a twenty-five year career as the grunge generation's alternative beauty icon, 49-year-old mega model Kristen McMenamy made waves in 2011 when she chose to go au naturale and let her long grey locks flow freely on the cover of i-D's Hedonist Issue. Four years later, girls are phasing out ombres for ghostly greys, prematurely dying their hair the ashy hue and mixing in tones like light lavenders and pastel periwinkles. Even Charlotte Free switched up her signature shocking pink tresses in favor of the more subtle trend.

Photography Nick Dorey, Styling Jack Borkett. Carla wears jacket Diesel Exclusively at Selfridges. [The New Issue, no. 331, Summer 2014]

7. Eyelid art
Last week, Raf Simons took Christian Dior to Tokyo, presenting the house's first ever pre-fall collection in one of Japan's most famous sumo wrestling arenas. But it wasn't just the premiere of pre-fall that had the fashion set talking; Dior Beauty's image director and i-D's The Beautiful Issue cover artist Peter Phillips crafted beauty looks inspired by the Land of the Rising Sun that we're sure to see on Seventh Avenue soon enough. Phillips paired thick, black blocks covering the center eyelid with large pieces of glitter, creating an"electric" eye effect which made it look like models could see through their closed lids. This super bold lid builds on a year of dramatic eyes, from neon bands of colour at Alexander Wang for H&M to Phillip's own leather lids for Fendi spring/summer 15.

Photography Nick Dorey, Styling Jack Borkett. Janice wears top Fendi. Trousers Proenza Schouler. Cuff Balenciaga. [The Creative Issue, no. 330, Spring 2014] 

8. Bobs
If last year was all about the pixie cut, 2014 belonged to the bob. Everyone from Beyoncé and Jourdan Dunn to Taylor Swift and Kylie Jenner opted for a chic crop this year, putting new, young spins on the tried and true mom favourite.

Photography Matt Jones, Styling Havana Laffitte. Ronja wears t-shirt Scout Vintage. Earring stylist's own. [The Beautiful Issue, no. 334 Winter, 2014] 

9. No make-up
Perhaps the most prevailing beauty trend of 2014 was the no makeup movement, spurred on by selfies of celebrities sporting their best #iwokeuplikethis face. In her i-D Beauty Week think piece, Courtney Iseman explored how barefaced beauty went from "kids in Seattle to models on the runways and celebrities on billboards." And this back-to-basics push doesn't show signs of slowing down, especially considering that Riccardo Tisci's latest Givenchy campaign features Julia Roberts looking sleek and chic in her own skin. 


Text Emily Manning
Photography Amy Troost
Make-up Yadim

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