Choosing a color to wear is often said to be emotional. It can also be contagious.
On Thursday, day four of Paris Fashion Week, one color was seemingly everywhere — not just on the runways, but out on the streets. Curiously, it was the same story in Milan last week, and back in New York there were hints of it. Fashion month isn’t over yet, but hot pink is already shaping up to be the color of the spring ’20 season.
Perhaps it was the recent collaboration between Dries Van Noten and legendary couturier Christian Lacroix. It was one of Lacroix’s signature colors, back when he still owned his namesake house and held his couture shows.
Or maybe it was Rihanna in a look from her Fenty line this summer, a ruched silk minidress with matching hot pink metallic sandals (you know, the ones with those pointy toes). The fashion entrepreneur wore it to her pop-up event at The Webster in New York City in June.
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Hollywood has also been obsessed with the hue in 2019, first at the Oscars in February, where Angela Bassett, Helen Mirren, Sarah Paulson, Gemma Chan, Maya Rudolph and Linda Cardellini all wore gowns in hot pink. Then on Sunday at the Emmy Awards, there was a run of pink and red gowns on Mandy Moore, Taraji P. Henson and Marisa Tomei revisiting the trend; not exactly hot pink but these are the hues that make it.
It wasn’t so long ago that the color was associated with Barbie or “Legally Blonde” character Elle Woods, conveying a bubblegum mood not to be taken too seriously. Before that, Marilyn Monroe made it glamorous in 1953’s “Gentleman Prefer Blondes,” but the color then still connoted a superficial quality (the song was “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend,” after all).
Today’s hot pink is edgier. It’s also decidedly feminist: It’s the color of Planned Parenthood and the pussyhats worn at the 2017 Women’s March. To many, its continued presence on the red carpet indicates a commitment to the “Me Too” movement. At the least, it’s a movement toward reclaiming a color that once symbolized the distinction of women as a lesser sex and a cheap marketing technique to sell female-driven products (think the “pink tax” on those products).
However it’s interpreted come next spring, it’s sure to make a statement.