beauty news roundup.

We think of Iman, supreme supermodel of the world, as one of those women who has the power to snap her fingers, toss her hair, and get things done right. This December, she'll be introducing a collection of six BB creams — the skin-care/makeup hybrids that now crowd all beauty counters — to her Iman Cosmetics line. They are specifically formulated to seamlessly match her own complexion as well as 35 other skin tones. “I said if I can’t find one to match me then there’s a problem because I’m really in the middle. But I couldn’t [find one],” she told WWD. Next, she hopes to launch BB eye products, concealer, and bronzer. Obviously.

L'Oréal to Buy Urban Decay Cosmetics

French beauty and skin-care giant L'Oréal SA said Monday it has agreed to buy closely held Urban Decay Cosmetics LLC, adding another footprint in the fast-growing market for higher-end makeup.

L'Oréal didn't disclose financial details, but a person familiar with the matter said the French company is paying between $300 million and $400 million for Urban Decay, owned by private-equity firm Castanea Partners.

The Wall Street Journal reported in August that Urban Decay was on the block and seeking as much as $350 million.

Urban Decay Cosmetics caught the beauty industry's attention in the 1990s with its edgy packaging and products with names like "Perversion" and "Stray Dog." French conglomerate LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA MC.FR +1.28% bought Urban Decay in 2000, selling it to private-equity investors three years later.

The acquisition "will beautifully complement" L'Oréal's existing brands, said Nicolas Hieronimus, president of L'Oréal Luxe, the company's luxury division that includes brands such as YSL Beauté and Ralph Lauren.

Tim Warner, general manager of Urban Decay, said the deal "will enable Urban Decay to reach its full potential in the marketplace."

Lazard advised L'Oréal and Deutsche Bank AG advised the sellers.

L'Oréal's luxury division has propelled the company's growth in recent months, offsetting slower business in the mass-cosmetics market, amid strong demand for prestigious labels particularly in emerging markets. To boost the division, the company is investing in its high-end and specialist products, buying last year .

L'Oréal said the market for specialist brands represents 44% of the luxury makeup market in the U.S.

Urban Decay is mainly available through specialist beauty retailers such as Ulta and Sephora, rather than mass-market retailers. Being folded into a large global company such as L'Oréal would allow Urban Decay products to be sold globally, and through multiple channels.

L'Oréal is one of the world's largest beauty, hair and skin-care companies, with annual sales exceeding €20 billion ($25.95 billion). It owns brands such as Maybelline New York, Clarisonic and Lancôme.

—Nadya Masidlover and Emily Glazer contributed to this article.

Are (lipstick) shades of grey really here to stay?
By Jeesoo Park, TODAY contributor
Does it look deathly or just deathly cool?
Grey lipstick made an appearance back in 2009 at a Doo. Ri fashion show, and we’ve seen the dull hue swiped on the lips of celebrities like singer Ke$ha and model Chanel Iman since. But the look isn’t just for the runway anymore — and that has us wondering whether it's here to stay.

Makeup powerhouse MAC Cosmetics launched their “Grey Friday” lipstick on this year's Black Friday, and though it was only available online for one day, the shade sold out within hours. Estée Lauder also explored the trend, coming out with “GunMetal” in August as part of their limited edition “Vivid Shine” collection. The color is no longer available as of recently, but the lipstick is currently rated four out of five stars on the Estée Lauder website — proving that there is indeed a following among the masses.

Neil Young, a senior makeup artist for MAC, ventured a guess as to why the color might be so popular these days: "MAC consumers love the idea of a shade being exclusive. We had ‘Pink Friday’ in 2010, then ‘Black Friday’ in 2011, and this year it was 'Grey Friday,'" he told
“The grey shade is a fashion statement in itself,” Young added.

We got our tip on the trend from our friends over at, but we still have to ask: Is such a color just way too bold for the everyday woman?

Grey lipstick used to be a color reserved for the the runway, but now it's flying off makeup counters thanks to a couple of limited-edition releases this season.

According to New York-based makeup and beauty expert Raychel Wayde (the founder/creator of, grey lipstick is a bit too daring for right now — though at this point it’s impossible to know for sure which direction it will go.

“It’s difficult to tell right now whether this is a flash-in-the-pan kind of thing, because unlike clothing trends, beauty trends generally take a very long time to progress,” she told
Her personal take on grey lips? “I can’t say I’m a fan yet. I think it depends on the entire look. Anything can be chic, but you have to commit to the whole look — the hair, the makeup, the outfit, the occasion; I always find that it comes down to how daring you are.”

MAC’s Neil Young agreed: “Grey is definitely a statement lip color and should only ever be worn alone with minimal makeup everywhere else. Wearing such a militant color is more about confidence, so if you have plenty of it, wear it with pride!”

So for the bold few who missed their chance to snag one of these limited-edition grey lipsticks, there are plenty of other options out there, like Manic Panic’s metallic version.

The color certainly is an interesting switch from the pinks, reds and nudes we typically see, but is it too adventurous for you? Or are you willing to try these daring new shades of grey?

BTW, according to Specktra, MAC Candy Yum Yum is going to be a permanent shade as soon as January next year \O/