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Balmain’s New Campaign (Starring Rihanna) Looks a Lot Like Balenciaga’s Fall 2011 Ads

Balmain has just released a preview of the label's Spring 2014 campaign, photographed by Inez & Vinoodh and starring Balmain superfan Rihanna. The ads are an effective showcase for both the pop star's smoldering gaze ("In front of the camera, she makes you feel like she is the only girl in the world,” is how designer Olivier Rousteing put it to WWD) and the collection's cool, shiny hardware.

Image: WWD

Image: WWD

The campaign takes a lot of risks which mostly pay off, but the final product still has an odd, disconnected feel. Why pay all that money to hire one of the world's biggest superstars for your ad campaign, and then choose photos where her hair's in front of her face? Same goes for the neoprenesque pink bathrobe thing Rihanna's wearing in one of the photos: Like, what? Is that a single outfit or are those two separate pieces? Either way, the look (mostly) works for the campaign, but it still doesn't seem necessary

Image: WWD

Image: WWD

But the creative team's weirdest choice probably comes down to the set and concept: Shooting a high-glam fashion ad in a stark white, tiled steamroom is a fantastic idea, but it's been done. As shanhuq pointed out in the forums, Balmain's Spring 2014 campaign set looks a lot like the backdrop in Balenciaga's Fall 2011 ads, photographed by Steven Meisel

Balenciaga Image via FashionGoneRogue

Balenciaga Image via FashionGoneRogue

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Link Buzz: Diane Kruger for Harper’s Bazaar Brazil; Beyonce’s Facelift Makeup Comes to Brooklyn

  • Image: Forums

    Image: Forums

    Diane Kruger for Harper's Bazaar Brazil's December issue. December. Just to remind you that even in winter, Rio is warm and filled with beautiful people. [Forums]
     
  • And then I realized, my definition of "easy-to-wear everyday shoes" might not be welcome here. [FabSugar]
     
  • "The Treatments You Need to Get Before You Go Home Next Week" … Or what? Will your family revoke their love? [BellaSugar]
     
  • "If pregnant Kristin Cavallari can pull off skintight leather pants, so can you." [SheFinds]
     
  • WWD has a fun year-end roundup of notable fashion quotes today. [WWD]
     
  • H&M's sales are up, thanks to the retailer's Isabel Marant collaboration. [Fashionista]
     
  • One girl takes the facelift outline makeup from Beyonce's video drop out on the town, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The results are amusing. [xoJane]

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Lady Gaga and Marilyn Manson for the Cover of Candy (Yes, NSFW)

Image: Kleinstudio.us via Forums

Image: Kleinstudio.us via Forums

For Candy #7, Steven Klein photographed Marilyn Manson and Lady Gaga (the latter image features a crotch shot and is not safe for work) for the publication's dual covers. Self-described as "the first transversal style magazine,"  the art and fashion publication has attracted plenty of high-profile cover stars in the past (such as Jared LetoJames Franco, Chloe Sevigny and Andrej Pejic) but Manson and Gaga are particularly well-suited celebrities for the magazine. Candy is primarily concerned with understanding how identity and performance interact, both from a trans perspective and more broadly; Manson and Gaga have built their careers by teasing out and elaborating on pop culture's relationship to performance and the avant-garde. Anyway, based on editorial shots from inside the magazine assembled in the corresponding forum thread, the issue is dense with stunning and original fashion photography. Skip Vogue, buy Candy

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Jay Pharoah and John Goodman Spoof H&M on ‘Saturday Night Live’

This weekend, Saturday Night Live's cast member Jay Pharoah and guest host John Goodman starred in a video spoofing H&M for its hyper-trendy product, dirt-cheap prices and super fitted cuts. Set up like an ad campaign with the tagline, "You can look like a member of One Direction for less than the cost of a tank of gas," the video shows Goodman fumbling through the store; he struggles to fit into a pair of skinny jeans in a dressing room and panics when his arm gets stuck in a slim fit blazer. Pharoah raps over the shopping montage, calling out some of the retailer's more absurd fashions, like a hot pink suit that'll make you look like a garden flamingo (hello, Versace for H&M!) or a polka dot shirt seemingly inspired by the Connect Four board game. 

Around the web:

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Jessica Hart’s New Vogue Australia Cover is ‘Gorgeous’ and ‘Refreshing’

hartJessica Hart has been making the news a bit recently, what with her Taylor Swift diss, her rumoured sacking from Victoria’s Secret, the brand’s consequent affirmation she’d be staying on board, and a run of pretty great outfits.

So a Vogue cover seems like the natural progression for Hart—and here she is on the January 2014 issue of the magazine’s Australian edition, shot by Sydney-born photographer Will Davidson. She last covered the glossy over five years ago, in March 2008, where she was branded ‘one to watch.’ She also showed off eveningwear for an editorial in the magazine’s December 2013 issue.

Vogue’s decision to this time strip Jess of her signature spray tan is making an impact in the forums. “Such a gorgeous cover! Really refreshing to see Jessica presented in this way,” says user AL92. Birdyandme adds, “Really beautiful. I love the cool blue tones, and it’s quite nice to see Jess Hart styled this way. She always does the beachy bronzed beauty and this is such a fun twist on that with the pearls and sleek hair.” 

The styling is impeccable, the joint work of newly-minted Glamour fashion director Jillian Davison and Vogue Australia senior fashion editor Christine Centenera. Commenter Jelavender agrees Davison will be greatly missed, though thinks the sublime Chanel styling is ruined by there being something “a bit off” about Hart’s face. She isn’t alone with that sentiment – GarageGlamorous thinks her face looks “very weird” and franki loves everything from the neck down:

"Under-eye concealer way too light, contour is muddy, lips look like ‘concealer lips’. Face looks tired (though I’ve always thought she looks older than her age)."

We don’t mind the ‘concealer lips’ so much as the unfortunate shadowing making her gappy-but-straight teeth look weird and crooked. In this case, a little corrective Photoshop might not have gone amiss.

Opinions are also divided over the ‘model mogul’ headline. It’s interesting that so many attempts are currently being made to compare Hart with Miranda Kerr, who’s becoming more a celebrity than a supermodel. Both got their start through winning Dolly magazine’s modeling competition, both achieved international fame after being signed to Victoria’s Secret, and both have their own organic skincare lines. Though as far as we’re aware, Jess is yet to administer any B12 injections to Terry Richardson’s butt. And where potentially misleading headlines are concerned, Miranda's new Harper's Bazaar cover definitely takes the cake.

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Jennifer Lawrence Has Bones Shifted in Flare Photoshopping Shocker

In the biggest Photoshopping scandal since Miranda Kerr gave herself a tummy tuck (as discovered by you eagle-eyed FashionSpotters just last month), Canada’s very own Flare fashion mag is being heckled for its airbrushing of Jennifer Lawrence, everybody’s fictional BFF.

A GIF of JLaw’s June 2011 Flare cover first surfaced on Tumblr, where it was subsequently picked up by numerous blogs. It shows Lawrence pre- and post-Photoshopping, with the finalized to-print cover version showing her neck more elongated, her eyes pulled further apart, her collarbone lowered, her cheekbones sunken in, her hair thickened, her chin chiseled down, and even her freakin’ fingers made slimmer! I mean, she’s perfect already and it’s so unnecessarily needless. What were they thinking?

JLaw Photoshopped

Yes, it’s an old cover, and yes, we’ve seen this happen to a lot of actresses, but what’s ironic in this case is that Jennifer Lawrence is one of the most outspoken stars when it comes to peeling back the celebrity image. She previously criticized her Dior ad campaign, commenting to Access Hollywood about the photos, "That doesn't look like me at all. I love Photoshop more than anything in the world. Of course it's Photoshop, people don't look like that."

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Lawrence also told Yahoo! CEO Marissa Meyer in November, "The world has this idea that if you don't look like an airbrushed perfect model. You have to see past it. You look how you look, you have to be comfortable. What are you going to do? Be hungry every single day to make other people happy? That's just dumb." Do you think she knew about Flare’s computer whizz trickery and, if not, what would her reaction be?

The Rogers-owned publication has yet to comment on the issue, but I would love to hear them explain their reason for removing JLaw’s trademark moles. Is nothing sacred?! Now excuse me while I try to dislodge my collarbone to Flare’s acceptable standard.

Image via Tumblr/Flare

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