Parisian Bombshell Chic: Catherine Deneuve
Besides being one of the best actresses to come out of France, Catherine Deneuve is a French icon that hardcore fashionistahs often look to in the same way that most people refer to Jackie O. for classic style inspiration. You know those impossibly stylish French women in tailored outfits, leather opera gloves, expensive blonde, red lips, hair in chignon that stroll out of Chanel on Les Champs Elysees without a care in the world – This is the “Deneuve”. She has been the muse for Yves Saint Laurent for decades – they are on tight ‘mwah-mwah’ (kiss on cheeks sound) basis.
Although I am wild for all that Deneuve has to offer, I am particularly taken with her mod style in the 1960’s. Here are a few examples of great style that still translates today:
- The Look of Love – In Les Parapluies de Cherbourg, a french love story/musical, we have a very girlish Catherine in black hair bows, pastel rain slickers and simple A-line dresses. My favourite is Catherine’s transparent umbrella. Every time I see a girl in the streets with one, I think of Deneuve.
- The Eyes Have It – The trademark Deneuve mod eyeshadow is a dramatic Mod cat eye with a pale coral gloss. This is achieved by using a chocolate brown or black in the crease of the eyelid with pale shadow on the lower lid and a precise application of liquid eyeliner. There is something very French about black liquid eyeliner. To further your French-ification (immersion), use the European version of Maybelline, Bourjois Paris (at Sephora).
- Coiff Like Deneuve – Her hair was probably the multiple-process blonde that takes all day to perfect by the top hairstylist of the day, in the most posh of Parisian salons. This is what I imagine. How do we recreate this style synonymous with Deneuve? First, use a large 2″+ barrel curling iron to curl the ends of your hair loosely. Then part hair at the crown, tease and spritz with a generous amount of hairspray. Retease and respritz to create maximum volume. Take a fine tooth comb and comb strands on top to refine the messiness. Pin hair half up with bobbypins that match your haircolour. Tres belle!
- Avant-garde – Catherine with her mysterious beauty was a muse to many designers and appeared as the face of Chanel No. 5 in the 1970’s. YSL dressed the actress for many of her films throughout the 1960’s and beyond. Although her look has evolved over the years, her style is classic, elegant and distinctively French.