How to Wear Pantone’s Color of the Year
As my colleague Erica Moody wrote a few months back, the color of the year for 2014, as decreed by Pantone, is Radiant Orchid. This shade, not quite pink and not quite purple, is the perfect spring shade that flatters just about everyone. And not just sartorially — the hue is surprisingly wearable in makeup as well.
Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, describes this year’s color as “an enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones. Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health.” I love this color — it’s at once feminine and flowery yet bold and edgy.
Eyes and lips
On the eyes, Radiant Orchid adds a vibrant accent that complements irises of all hues. This vivid color is eminently wearable and, according to Washington, D.C.-based makeup artist Brandon Russell, lends itself beautifully to one of spring’s hottest trends: pastel washes of color.
Russell recommends sweeping a soft shade, such as MAC Beautiful Iris over the entire lid. Next, apply a darker orchid, such as MAC Parfait Amour across the outer third of the eye. Define the crease with a darker purple — MAC Fig. 1 or Plumage, a rich teal, for greater contrast. Finish by lining the upper lash line with black pencil liner and the lower line with the darkest eyeshadow shade.
MAC’s December 2013 re-release of its iconic purple lipstick Heroine was impeccably timed. Russell suggests pairing this rich color with MAC Magenta lip liner, which intensifies the pink and red tones to create a gorgeous, vibrant orchid. The two colors should be barely blended to create a two-toned effect, similar to the tonal variation of an actual orchid bloom.
There’s such an embarrassment of riches in orchid-tinted nail colors that I had a bit of difficulty narrowing it down. My three top picks are Essie Play Date, for a light, easy-to-wear version of this color. If you want a dramatic, fuchsia-based orchid, try Illamasqua Grab. If you can’t resist a beautiful duo-chrome polish, Zoya Adina is a shimmering orchid-green that changes color depending on the light.
I would be remiss if I did not mention that once again, Sephora has collaborated with Pantone Universe on several limited edition collections of eyeshadow, brushes and makeup that will allow you to create an endless variety of chic, trendy looks based on the color of the year.