Cosmetics, fashion going green for spring

It’s that time of year again: midterms are steadily creeping up, and winter is making a slow retreat. Bold, vibrant colour is sneaking back into the Victoria landscape, but not exactly in the ways you’d expect. This spring, Pantone, Inc., a corporation known as the world’s premier colour authority and creator of global trend-determining colour systems, wants you to go green.

Just before the holiday season, Pantone announced that the colour of the year for 2013 would be Pantone 17-5641 Emerald. And like the illustrious colours that came before it, emerald will influence everyone from fashion designers in New York and Paris to furniture creators in Tokyo and Stockholm. Pantone describes the shade as “a colour of elegance and beauty that enhances our well-being, balance and harmony.”

With New York Fashion Week now upon us, you can bet the runways will be overflowing with gemstone goodness in the clothing, accessory and beauty departments. So how can you get in on the trend without looking like a forest fairy on speed? When it comes to cosmetics, baby steps and small infusions are key. No matter your skin tone, eye colour or hair colour, emerald green is the kind of shade that pops on everyone — even if it isn’t the easiest colour to incorporate into your beauty routine.

To find out how to tackle this tricky shamrock hue, I tracked down a makeup artist at Victoria’s MAC Cosmetics location inside Mayfair Mall. Wearing a hint of green herself, the makeup artist recommended using emerald as an accent shade on the eyes. The MAC eye shadows Humid and Swimming — both rich, pigmented shades in the emerald zone that are available year-round — were her top picks.

“[Eye]liner is a nice way to wear the trend because it’s not something you’re putting all over the eye,” she says. “You’re just using a thin line of it, so it’s a way for people who are maybe not as into going full-on with the trend to take a baby step and try it out.” Her top recommendations for liner: MAC Minted Eye Kohl and Undercurrent Pearlglide Intense Eye Liner. If you’re not much of an eye makeup fiend, consider rocking the hue on your fingertips or toes. It’s a little subtler, but still makes an on-trend impact. The MAC makeup artist suggested trying “a manicure with something creamy and light on the nail, but then painting the tips green” for a modern take on the French mani.

Feeling enthused about emerald yet? If you decide to take this trend for a spin, keep in mind that it’s a bold, somewhat flashy shade that will get you noticed. If you go with a hint of green around your pretty peepers, try to keep the rest of the shades in your look a little bit tamer. Really let green be the star and compliment it with a soft, petal pink cheek and lip combo, or a coral-peach version if the undertones of your skin are warmer.

Wondering where else you can get your hands on some green? Because of its newfound popularity, emerald collections of eyeshadow, eyeliner, loose pigment and nail polish have been growing like weeds all over town. Drugstores have affordable, easily accessible options to keep you in green’s good graces, while department and specialty stores have mid-range and high-end products from a wide array of brands that will ensure you find the items that are perfect for your skin type and tone — and budget.

Throughout 2013, we’ll be seeing lots of variations on this colour trend, so don’t worry if you’re not on board right now or don’t find items that take your fancy right away. It’s a beautiful shade that can be quite daunting, but will most definitely freshen up your look. As Kermit the Frog once sang, “It’s not easy being green” — but someone’s got to do it, so take a chance and try out your beauty green thumb this spring.

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