April 20, 2024


Get Into Fashion

The fashion, beauty and symbolism of inauguration looks | Lifestyles

Purple is the color you wear when you shatter glass ceilings.

At least, Vice President Kamala Harris thinks so.

There were plenty of looks to commemorate the inauguration of President Joe Biden and the first female vice president on Jan. 20. There also were dozens of symbolic messages sent through inauguration fashion and beauty choices.

For her history-making moment, Harris wore a matching purple shift dress and overcoat by beloved Black fashion designer Christopher John Rogers, according to Harper’s Bazaar.

Purple seemed to be the color of the day, as former first lady Michelle Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton both wore different shades of the hue, with Obama in plum and Clinton in maroon. Even former First Lady Laura Bush wore a color between periwinkle and lilac.

And this might have been intentional. Purple is the color of royalty, and it’s also the award given to our country’s most heroic soldiers.

Many also assumed purple was a call for unity. A literal mix of the two political party’s colors, red and blue, purple is meant to evoke a sense of solidarity and bipartisanship, wrote The Hill.

Sticking with striking jewel tones, first lady Dr. Jill Biden wore pieces from emerging American label Markarian designed by Colorado-born designer Alexandra O’Neill including a turquoise tweed coat, dress and matching face mask.

The talent at the event didn’t disappoint either.

National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman — who delivered the most beloved performance of the event, a recitation of her poem, “The Hill We Climb” — wore a red Prada headband and canary yellow coat. The latter was a nod to the first lady, who sought out Gorman for the event, commenting on a bright yellow coat she wore, the poet told Vogue. Gorman, 22, also donned a ring with a caged bird on it to symbolize “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” and a pair of earrings gifted to her by queen/icon/legend Oprah Winfrey.

My favorite, Lady Gaga, performed a stirring version of the National Anthem at the event. In true Gaga fashion, she sent a message with each part of her look.

She was styled by Haus of Gaga, her collection of artists, designers and other creatives that collaborate with her on her signature looks: fashion stylist duo Tom Eerebout and Sandra Amador, hairstylist and wig designer Frederic Aspiras, and longtime makeup artist Sarah Tanno.

Gaga wore a custom Schiaparelli Couture with red silk faille ballgown topped with a navy wool jacket accented by a large pin: a gold dove holding an olive branch.

She wore her hair in milkmaid braids woven with a black ribbon, with a bouquet of poppies at the nape of her neck. Poppies traditionally are a symbol of those who died for their country.

As for her makeup, she stunned with a dramatic red lip. Tanno used Haus Labs Le Monster Matte Lip Crayon in 1950 (a warm pure red) and RIP Lip Liner in Slayer (a deep burgundy wine) on Gaga’s lips, she wrote on Instagram

(@sarahtannomakeup). Bold red lips are a timeless symbol of women empowerment.

Tanno used Glam Room No. 1: Fame palette and Micro-tip Eye Lie Ner and Eye-dentify Gel Kohl liner, both in Punk, to define Gaga’s eyes. She contoured her cheeks with Heat Spell bronzer in Desert and Head Rush blush in Flirt, all from Gaga’s beauty brand, Haus Labs. Tanno used Marc Jacobs Beauty Velvet Noir Mascara to define her lashes.

Jennifer Lopez, who performed “This Land Is Your Land” and “America the Beautiful,” injected with a line from her hit, “Let’s Get Loud,” stepped out in Chanel, stunning in an all white, suffragette-inspired look.

Lopez’s makeup was her signature dewy glam complete with a shimmery, smoky eye shadow; soft, flushed blush; and a nude lip. She had her hair pulled back into a silky high ponytail and long, clean nails designed in a transparent take on the French manicure. J.Lo also was glammed up by her typical team: styled by Rob Zangardi with nails by Eri Ishizu, hair by Chris Appleton and makeup by David Velasquez. According to Velasquez’s Instagram post

(@mugopus), he used Pat McGrath, Tom Ford Beauty, Chanel Beauty, Scott Barnes Cosmetics and Lopez’s brand, JLO Beauty.

This means a little more history was made at the inauguration. It marked the first time performers there both wore products from their respective beauty brands.

The day’s looks truly prove the point I will make until my dying breath: fashion and beauty are woven into every facet of our lives, including politics.

Gia Mazur is a staff writer for the Lifestyles Department of The Times-Tribune. Contact her at [email protected], 570-348-9127 or @gmazurTT on Twitter.