At Versace’s pre-autumn/winter 2019 show in New York on Sunday, hair was mostly sleek and straight with neat, gelled side partings or swept back from models’ faces in braids or up-dos. Business as usual. That was until model Grace Elizabeth stepped out onto the catwalk. Atop her head was a high ponytail that could only be described as gravity-defying – packed with so many extensions that it towered a good many inches above her own natural hairline and cascaded almost to her waist.
It isn’t the first time this year we’ve seen hair so big it dwarfs the model wearing it: look too to Valentino’s autumn/winter 2019 couture show, at which Kaia Gerber, Fran Summers and co wore hair so bouncy and voluminous it appeared almost like plush pillows surrounding their heads. The man behind both maximalist looks? Vogue contributing beauty editor and Redken creative consultant Guido Palau, of course.
“When we did the hair at Valentino there was so much interest – there must be something in that that people are ready to see for it to cause such an uptick,” Palau told us. “There’s an escapism to it… I’m not saying that everyone’s going to go back to blowing out their hair every minute and that becoming the trend, but women can have those choices. We’re really happy there’s this idea of naturalness in beauty and you can celebrate your own hair texture and you really don’t need to feel ‘groomed’ all the time any more. But then when suddenly you see this overly-groomed hair which is huge… it does have an impact.”
Versace Autumn/Winter 2019 Pre Fall
At Versace, the ponytail version of this super-sized hair also nodded to the scraped-back ponytails sported by the likes of Kim Kardashian-West, Ariana Grande et al, in a more exaggerated form. It’s still Versace, but scaled up.
But the clever secret behind its size? As Grace Elizabeth revealed on her Instagram Stories, sporting enormous rollers and more hair extensions than we’ve ever seen in one place: “I’ve got a little neck pillow to hold up all my hair.” Now that’s luxury.