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6 Sep

Bozo chic: Julia Fox has entered her clowncore era

When Julia Fox stepped out at Paris Fashion Week last January, in what quickly became her signature heavy black graphic eyeliner, she set the tone for the remainder of the yr. Post-lockdown, beauty trends shifted to a freer, more expressive attitude towards make-up; one which was just a little messier and more imperfect – and Fox’s look perfectly captured this more playful, dynamic energy. The brand new style was about not looking picture-perfect at all times, but using make-up in a more emotional way; selecting self-expression over prescriptive ideals and palatability.

Now we’re in a latest yr, and Fox is once more pushing the boundaries of celebrity make-up. And if last time is anything to go by, we’re all in for a carnival of a yr because it seems that Julia Fox has entered her clowncore era.

It began last week when Fox attended an event called the “Women of Impact Celebration” hosted by Elle magazine. She donned a white silk corseted jacket with a high neck and skirt by Wiederhoeft for the occasion; a press release outfit, little doubt, even though it was the make-up that basically stood out. Done by her own hand, Fox had chalk-white skin, pink blush which she placed high on her cheeks, pencil-thin brows drawn on and green eyeshadow which she placed directly below the brows but not on her eyelids. The general effect was a glance harking back to all the good clown archetypes from Pierrot to La Strada’s Gelsomina.

But that wasn’t the top of it. The next day, Fox made an appearance on the White House Correspondents Dinner. Hilariously, she has decided to start out her clown journey while in Washington DC – “She’s in her politician era!” Fox captioned an Instagram post of the ELLE look – in a brave and scathing indictment of the present state of politics and the farcical circus that’s the Capitol.

For the event, she once more painted her whole face and neck matte white which she paired with overdrawn lips in a glossy purple-grey shade. The eyeliner, meanwhile, prolonged from her inner corners up into her temple in a Black Swan-esque shape but unfilled in order that it once more was serving clown. Fox’s latest look has been embraced by those within the clowncore community. “As someone who loves each Julia Fox and clowns that is the very best thing thats ever happened to me” says Dazed’s head of social and unofficial clown correspondent Hatti Rex, who sees this as a welcome relief from clean girl make-up. 

So how likely is it that the sweetness cycle once more follows Fox down the rabbit hole and all of us start walking around looking just like the lovechild of Pierrot and the Queen of Hearts? Probably not quite, but we now have been seeing the beginnings of a return to matte skin, after years of the dewy, glazed complexion reigning supreme due to the “cloud skin” and “balletcore” trends and the final obsession with Pamela Anderson’s classic 90s make-up created by Alexis Vogel.

If you happen to want to bring among the circus spirit into your personal make-up, creatives like Alice Dodds and Vlad Von Kitsch are putting their very own modern tackle the classic look. Or go fashion old skool and get inspiration from Leigh Bowery via Alexander McQueen. Time will tell if the clown look will catch on, but within the meantime, we are going to proceed to bring you updates from Julia Fox make-up watch.

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