Katy Perry’s Flaming Pink Look at the VMAs was a Homage to 1940s Glamour

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Pictured: Katy Perry at the VMAs looking very Dorothy Lamour/Veronica Lake. (photo: Getty Images.)

Those who had power  took a complete fashion fantasy escape last night from the nasty Hurricane weather to check out the Video Music Awards. Styles ran the gamut as Beyonce looked like she walked off the cover of Vogue in her Lanvin one shoulder dress.  And then there was Katy Perry.  I still think her best fashion accessory was her wickedly funny husband, Russell Brand.  Katy rocked the awards with flaming pink wavy hair, complimented by a mini dress from Atelier Versace with embroidery, sequins and cherry blossom shaped crystals.  The pink in the cherry blossom crystals almost matched her pink hair. Is this a teenage dream look? 🙂

While I don’t recommend the pink hair look at home, I do like the simple look of falling waves that Katy achieved.  You don’t need the cotton candy pink hair look unless you are competing with hundreds of other stars on the red carpet, and must ensure that attention is paid to you by photographers, right? Katy’s wavy tresses reminded me of many a 1940s screen actress, for example, Veronica Lake. Dorothy Lamour also rocked wavy tresses in the 1940s, complimented with a flower behind her ear as Katy did last night.

Pictured: The original 1940s wavy look, actress Veronica Lake. (image courtesy of

To channel Katy’s look at home, here are a few tips. A Katy Perry style chinois inspired mini dress is easily found  at the online Chinese Clothing store for about $50.00. If you live in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, or London, you can find a dress like this even cheaper in your local China town.

For her 1940s hair, follow this simple recipe supplied by stylist Renato Campora at Federic Fekkai.
1) Begin by creating a side part to the wet hair. 
2) Then apply Fekkai Full Blown Mousse throughout the hair to build a strong and reliable base. 
3) Blow-dry the hair using a round brush.
4) Once the hair is completely dry, use a ½ inch curling iron to add shape. Let the curls cool  then allow the curls to set for 15 minutes.
5) Then brush! Voila.  1940s waves should appear.
6) Finally, spray it all in place with some hairspray.   Renato used Fekkai Sheer Hold Hairpsrayto secure the look, adding a lasting finish and shine. To create the final touch, Renato took a one-inch strand of the hair and pinned it back with a vintage hairpiece, securing it with a bobby pin.

The recommended products in this recipe, are all products by Fekkai: Fekkai Full Volume Mousse ($21), and Fekkai Sheer Hold Hairspray ($24). You can find the products at and Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, and Saks Fifth Avenue stores. To get the products for less, shop for them at Target.  And, if you want to save a little more, order them online from using a ShopAtHome coupon.


Since 2008, Mary Hall has been the author of The Recessionista Blog, which is read by thousands of regular readers in over 160 countries. An internationally recognized expert on the art of the living the good life for less, she has been a commentator on local, national, and international radio and TV shows. Her advice has been featured in over 2,000 media outlets, including The New York Times, Reuters, Life & Style magazine, ABC News, NBC News and now The Huffington Post, among many others.