Do you find that you are drawn to certain colours more than others? We all have our colour favourites which are very deeply rooted in our minds. They are emotional responses that subconsciously influencing our daily decision making about food, clothes, the people we prefer to be or the products we buy.
I have been drawn to the colour blue since I remember and being a make-up artist, all its shades served as great inspiration to me so I thought it deserves a post of its own.
Blue is one of the three primary colours, it’s hues (pure colours or mixture of two pure colours on the colour wheel, no shade or tint), shades (mixed with black), tints (mixed with white) and tones (mixed with grey) have been widely used and loved all through the history art, fashion and makeup. Ultramarine, Cyan, Turquoise, Teal, Aquamarine (hues), Cobalt, Navy, Prussian (shades), Sky Blue, Azure, Egyptian blue (tints) are only a few to mention…or do you remember Cerulean from the Devil Wears Prada?
Blue is the colour of the sky and water, it has a great number of meanings, but it’s mostly associated with depth and stability. It symbolizes trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, power, intelligence, faith, truth, tranquillity, calmness, consciousness and intellect.
Without us realising, colours are affecting our mind and body. Blue can slow down human metabolism, suppress appetite and while strong blues can stimulate clear thought, soft blues will calm the mind and help focus.
The blue pigment has a rich history in art and since it isn’t quite as easily made, its journey is scattered with scientific invention, global trade, and artistic resourcefulness still to this date. Blue pigments were originally made from minerals and blue dyes were made from plants. Today most blue pigments and dyes are made by a chemical process.
Egyptian blue was the first ever colour to be synthetically produced 2,200 B.C. and the latest discovery, YInMn Blue (a chemical mix of yttrium, indium, and manganese) happened in 2009 in a chemist lab at Oregon State Universiy which was released for commercial use in 2016. Isn’t that fascinating that a new colour was commercialised only two years ago?
The colour blue in all shades, tints and tones has been captivating artists for centuries. Remember Pablo Picasso’s famous ‘Blue Period’ of art? Matisse’s Blue Nude or Klein’s own patented blue paintings? Have you noticed that comic book creators like to paint superheroes wearing blue? That is no coincidence since blue is considered a colour of trust, loyalty and power.
But where does blue stand now among artists of another kind? Despite the deep-rooted fear of blue makeup among the general public, make-up artists around the world adore and use the colour every day. It has popped up on runways here and there this year too, though blue is not a particularly on-trend colour at the moment (more so in 2016-17). Having said that, when Kim Kardashian celebrated her latest KKW Beauty collaboration with longtime friend and makeup artist Mario Dedivanovic, she requested that her dinner party guest are to wear blue eyeshadow. Sure enough, that has brought blue a boost in popularity this year.
So why do people, even makeup geeks sometimes shy away from wearing blue eyeshadow or mascara? I’m afraid the 1980s left a painful mark on all of us so I am not surprised. Just check our exhibit A and B below.
BUT not all is lost, there are ways to make the colour work in 2018. Pick a super-pigmented matte shade for the eyes instead of shimmer, use sky blue or azure for a cool summer look for the day or a deep navy, midnight blue smoky eye for the night, pair it with a fresh face. Same goes for a blue mascara or eyeliner: pick the brightest blue shade, layer it onto your lashes, pair it with a fresh face to create a fun look for this summer.
Here are the looks I created around the colour blue at the end of last year but I would still wear them this year too:
Finally, to whet your appetite for a blue look, here is a collage how make-up artists brought the colour to the runways this year:
My fascination with the colour blue is going strong and I think we all should we give some more love for colour in 2018. Whether it’s makeup, clothes, a piece of art or even a piece of furniture there is one shade for each of our moods and it makes our lives a little less boring. What’s your favourite shade?