As far as today's top models go, Freja Beha Erichsen is up there with the best of them so naturally, she's finally managed to bag an all-important beauty deal.
Yesterday Maybelline New York confirmed that they've just signed the model to be their latest spokesperson to star in their print and TV ads this fall. 'Freja is an incredibly beautiful and confident woman,' Maybelline's global brand president Damien Bertrand told WWD. 'Not only is she a top model for a new generation, but she is also a modern style icon off the runway. She truly captures the catwalk-to-sidewalk spirit of Maybelline,' and she's in good company. Everyone from Christy Turlington to Charlotte Free are spokesmodels too.
Over the years fashion week has become increasingly democratic. Okay, so maybe the front rows are still a no go zone to us mere mortals but on the whole, they are a lot more accessible than they ever have been. First up was the rise in bloggers attending the shows followed swiftly by live streaming and now things are going one stage further.
Thanks to a partnership between Maybelline and Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, you'll be able to watch runway shows live in Times Square this week. Nicholas K, Tadashi Shoji, Richard Chai and BCBG Max Azria will be shown on a giant screen throughout the day on Thursday, The Cut reports. At the moment that is the only day that the initiative will run but if a success, I'm sure it's only the start of more to come.
Bagging covers and walking the shows is good but for a model, you know you have really made it when you secure a beauty deal. It's not an easy task though. It was only last month that Natasha Poly secured a deal with L'Oreal after being at the top of her game for years. It's this fact that makes Maybelline's recent announcement pretty big.
Earlier on this week they used P'Trique - the star of the 'Shit Fashion Girls Say' videos - to announce that Charlotte Free is their latest spokesperson. Her new role will see her appearing in the television campaign for the brand's new Colour Sensational Popsticks lipsticks this summer. 'It's an honour to represent this truly iconic brand and a dream come true,' she told WWD.
Despite bagging a deal with Forever 21 recently and appearing in magazines like Wonderland, Free is still relatively new in the fashion game. Damien Bertrand, global brand president of Maybelline New York, seemed confident in his decision. 'Charlotte is the new generation of beauty,' he told WWD. 'Her great energy and her unconventional style make her unique. Spontaneous, confident and daring, Charlotte is the perfect representative of the Maybelline New York woman.'
The whole retouching debate is never far from the headlines. Back in June the American Medical Association made it clear that they plan to take a tough stance on retouching, particularly with brands appealing to teenagers, and Coco Rocha announced that her Jacobs campaign will not be retouched. And now the issue is in the press again but this time Maybelline and Lancôme are in the hot seat.
Christy Turlington and Julia Robert's respective campaigns have been banned by the UK's Advertising Standards Agency for being 'misleading' due to an alleged over-retouching. When asked about Robert's Lancome campaign, the ASA said:
On the basis of the evidence we had received we could not conclude that the ad image accurately illustrated what effect the product could achieve, and that the image had not been exaggerated by digital post production techniques.
While I applaud the ASA's strong stance, I'm not convinced that their position will help improve the situation. Over-retouching and depicting an unattainable ideal is something that has become entrenched in advertising practice making it naive to think that this could be bypassed so easily. That said, we have to start somewhere.
Earlier this year we revealed that Liu Wen was the first Chinese model to be signed by Estee Lauder and it looks like the move towards a more diverse representation of beauty has continued. This week it was announced that Chinese model Shu Pei will join the Maybelline family which currently includes models such as Christy Turlington, Julia Stegner and Erin Wasson.
Sometimes, being the face of Maybelline can come in handy. Since the makeup giant has signed on to be the official cosmetics sponsor of Bryant Park for two years, Erin Wasson gets to go along to New York Fashion Week.
The model has been doing informal collections for her clothing line lately, but this could be a huge step for Alexander Wang's partner in crime. Will her latest collection, inspired by her pit bull, Cream, be a hit?