Gwen Stefani is all over the news this week, having signed a new management deal with industry powerhouse Irving Azoff after 15 years with her previous representative. Stefani ain't no "Hollaback Girl." She is a bombshell, a Season 7 coach on The Voice, and her signature style is pretty much an OC punk rocker's take on Old Hollywood glam. Not everyone can pair platinum or bright blonde locks with deep ruby red lips, since these strong elements often compete with each other and can end up appearing harsh. But Stefani is so genetically (unfairly, maybe?) blessed that she can do both without looking too "hard" or overly made up. She often throws thick, black liner into the mix, adding another bold element.
Her stained, matte, and red lips are her hallmark, but believe it or not, this mom of three sons can and does wear other shades on her pucker besides the familiar crimson. She has gone pink, nude and orange. True story.
First, let's look at her signature — blonde and red — so we can truly appreciate her strong, Marilyn Monroe-inspired style. Now, with that image in your head, you can fully grasp the contrast and how different she looks when she lightens her lips. It's one little change that completely transforms her. Reds and other-than-reds work wonders for Stefani, who is also a L'Oreal spokesmodel. Come on, you know you've seen her staring you down in those CVS or Duane Reade displays.
You can see that her red lips are high maintenance, since she needs a liner to prevent bleeding or feathering, and to blot and re-apply numerous times to keep the color true and to avoid fading. Yes, she looks totally gorge, but here's how she looks when she changes it up.
1. Super Soft Pink:
This whisper light, glossy pink shade made her look like she was 25, at most. Maybe it's the loose waves but she is much more non-descript here. Totally stunning, but not as standout as she would be with a wowza red.
2. Jelly Bean Pink:
The softer shade was delicate and pretty and shifted the focus to her eyes. And that top hat.
3. Hot, Hot Pink:
Stefani likes extreme pairings but it was an extreme triple here, with the hot pink smacker, in a matte texture, no less, the platinum disco curls, and the slate smoky eye.
4. Pinkish Nude:
With punk rock, cat-eye shades, Stefani wore a slick of pinky-nude lipstick. Once again, the effect was a good one. It made her look younger.
5. Intense Coral:
This shade is closer to an intense coral than her usual scarlet red. The orange tones of this velvety matte texture marked a slight shift but a noticeable one at that.
6. Totally Nude:
No, not that way. Stefani didn't adopt Jennifer Lopez's take on the nude lip, AKA blindingly glossy and paired with sun-kissed skin. Instead, she chose a satin sheen lipstick dosed with some pearl and the shade nearly erased her lip dimensions. It was the right contrast for the smoky eye and volume-dominated pushback.
7. Life Is Peachy:
Stefani's retro victory roll demanded and commanded the attention. Rightfully so, I might add — that hair was a work of art and flawlessly constructed. She dialed down her lips with a peachy shade, looking all sweet.
8. Sorta Magenta
At first glance, this appeared to be a variation of one of her famous reds, but it was actually more of a sparkly and youthful magenta that looked, as always, amaze.
Images: Getty Images