Purple reigns in 2014.
Not just any purple. That would be too easy and not nearly stylish enough.
Pantone Color Institute has named Radiant Orchid as the color to embrace this year. It took bloom on the runways during the spring fashion shows in New York, and already it's starting to pop up in apparel, accessories and cosmetics.
While all shades of purple — from lilac and amethyst to grape and violet — make an appearance this season, it's Radiant Orchid that's getting most of the attention.
The color has been described as a captivating, magical, enigmatic purple. It intrigues the eye and sparks the imagination, said Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute.
That seems a lot for any color to deliver, but Eiseman has faith in the pick.
“An enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health. It is a captivating purple, one that draws you in with its beguiling charm,” she said.
Radiant Orchid options
Because it's a blend of three hues instead of a primary color, this year's color of the year seems open for interpretation and preference. If you gravitate toward the richness of deep purple or pinky-purple, you'll find ample options. Purple with an extra shot of fuchsia is another variation of the hue that's springing up.
Eiseman said this year's choice seems logical since the world is moving toward pinks and purples.
On its own, Radiant Orchid is an attention-getter, but plenty of pieces, from dresses to shoes to ponchos, mix up pink, purple and fuchsia with stripes, florals and color blocking, making it more pleasing for those who shy away from a jacket or dress in a bold color.
According to Pantone, Radiant Orchid looks good on both women and men, because the color's rosy undertones radiate on the skin and produce a healthy glow.
Leaving its mark
The color already is leaving its mark on cosmetics. Nail polish, eye shadow and lipsticks in varying hues of Radiant Orchid are available now, with more expected as spring approaches.
A few to check out: MAC eye shadows in Amethyst and Vibrant Grape; Christian Dior Mysterious Mauve lipstick; Zoya nail polishes in Perrie and Mira; Christian Dior Mysterious Mauve lipstick; Lancome Vernis in Love nail polish in Violette Coquette.
If you're wondering if you can wear this captivating color, Pantone says probably so. Blending cool and warm undertones, purple is an appealing hue for distinctive combinations and flattering to many hair, eye and skin tones.
Alex Mendez-Kelley, owner of The MakeUp Bar, said if your outfit is orchid or lilac, curtail the “lilac-ness” on your lips and opt for nude or pink. “If you do pink, it has to be in the same family. Some pinks are too red and some are too dark. But many pinks have the right shade of purple in them.”
When it comes to eye shadow, purple, orchid or lilac on the lids can look great, but not so much with an outfit of the same color.
“Lilac is such a great color, why overpower it with lots of eye shadow,” she said.
A deep lilac eyeliner is always a great way to add color without adding too much punch, she said, and orchid looks great with grays and browns, too.