Fug or Fab the Cover: Taylor Swift on Harper’s Bazaar

Well, I like the soft makeup, and her eyes look pretty.

But here’s the thing: I’ve spent my fair share of time in windy climates. And so this picture conjures two very specific things, which are hugely visceral for me: 1) The moment when your hair blows at your lips and sticks to your gloss, and you have to peel it off but the strands remain sticky, and 2) The moment when your hair blows at your lips and it takes you by surprise, and you take in a deep breath and suck some into your mouth and it actually manages to stay there and end up lodged in your throat, something that usually only a piece of bread can cure for me, which makes for a really unpleasant experience when this happens on the way to class in college and you have an hour and fifteen minutes of gagging hacking before you can seek relief.

Ergo, the concept of this photo doesn’t exactly give me the warm and fuzzies; rather, the sticky-and-ickies. But I admit that’s highly personal, and thus, it’s time for you to provide sanity.

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Comments (53):

  1. Andrew S.

    can’t see it captain!

  2. Kit

    Odd. I can’t see the photo here, but could in my reader.

    I don’t like the cover – not for the “hair stuck in lipstick” reasons but because she has such dead eyes in this photo – which I think is likely due to some post-processing thing as usually her eyes are very hard and sparkly looking.

    Also, her hair looks dry and dull which is a really strange look for a fashion magazine…

  3. Snarkaphile

    Something about that stick straight hair and those bangs, paired with the white turtleneck, makes her look like a Fembot.

    • pidget

      My first thought, too – Xanaxed Stepford Wife. Or perhaps Stepford daughter? She looks about 14, and I don’t like the creepy “Don’t hurt me/nobody’s home” look in her eyes.

  4. linda

    Houston, we don’t have a visual at this time.

    • Astraea

      The mouth open like that, with the light pink lipstick doesn’t help. I agree, fembot, by way of Barbie.

  5. Anon

    She looks incredibly dopey to me.

  6. starling

    Can’t see the picture either, but I looked it up so I could comment.

    The blowing hair looks too unnatural because it’s so zoomed in and stiff. It looks like they coated those strands in hairspray to make them stay there.

  7. Annie E

    They came close to achieving the mod look they were going for, but she looks more like a doll with hair stuck in her lip gloss than a human.

  8. Stephanie

    I had precisely the same violent reaction. It made me want to put my hair up for the rest of day. I hate hair+lipgloss!

  9. LR

    I’m a fellow Domer so I read this and knew immediately it had to be Heather writing. That wind WAS awful. I can totally conjure up the hair-in-mouth feeling on the way to DeBartolo. Gak.

  10. Sarah

    Can’t see the photo.

  11. Jessica

    Pic should be working now.

  12. Nancy

    Ugh! She looks so vacuous, with that half-opened mouth. Do men really find that sexy?? I think it just makes women look stupid, especially a young woman who is not known for her intelligence. Sad, that they think they have to look like that.

  13. Cyd

    Hair curving across chin? OK. Hair in lipgloss? NO NO NO NO NOOOOOO. Yuck. Other than that she does look nice, if a little ’2×4 to the back of the head’-ed.

  14. Vandalfan

    I’m not a Taylor Swift fan, but I think this is beautiful. She’s not exactly as deep as the Dali Lama, you know, but pretty as a fragile china doll, and this is perfect in reflecting her simplicity. She’s a real 60′s Twiggy.

  15. Dazie

    Very throwback. Very Mary Quant.

    But the hair in the lipgloss- NOOOOO! I hate that.

  16. Edith

    Fellow Domet here as well; COMPLETELY agree about the icky, sticky, gagging memories. But the overall BLANKNESS overrides even that – empty eyes, slack mouth, no reaction to the hair blowing over her face – might as well hang a blinking neon sign on her forehead advertising that it’s “VACANT!”

  17. Stefanie

    Hair in the lipgloss is terrible.

    I do think Taylor looks good here. Ethereal even?

  18. Gail

    I’m sorry to say this, but she really looks like the kind of overly pretty snobby girl I tried to stay very clear of in high school. Surely her team could do more to make her seem a little less of that stereotype? Surely, she could seem a little more human and still beautiful?

  19. lavonspants

    Blow-up doll.

  20. robabeau

    It’s VERY London crica 1966 – I thought of David Bailey’s photographs of Jean Shrimpton instantly – which is totally what they were going for with the frosty pink lips and Bambi eye-makeup. Unfortunately, it doesn’t do anything for me.. I don’t have a problem with the actual styling, but maybe the white font + the white turtleneck is too bleh?

    • Krusticle

      Yes! This reminds me of the Absolutely Fabulous episode where Patsy Stone is sent to Paris for a modeling gig. She falls back on her only look of open-mouthed, wide-eyed caught-in-the-headlights surprise, much to the photographer’s chagrin. Taylor, you nailed it!

    • KB

      I was feeling the ’60s or early ’70s vibe too. In other news, girl’s hair looks like a bad wig.

    • Montréalaise

      That was my reaction exactly when I saw this – Jean Shrimpton!

  21. Laura

    FOR THE LOVE OF GOD TAYLOR, CLOSE YOUR DAMN MOUTH FOR ONCE. Yes, she looks dopey. Yes, she looks like a blow up doll. She is the human incarnation of the color beige, and I am beyond tired of her.

    • Julie

      I’ve only ever heard one song of hers and pretty much the only time I ever see anything of her is on this site, but I have to agree with this! If I’m tired of her I can’t imagine how anyone else is feeling.

      At least she’ s not wearing that hideous bright red lipstick.

  22. Helen

    The mouth hanging open does look stupid, but it’s so standard it doesn’t bother me much.

    The hair in the lip gloss does. I am a fellow Windy Climate Survivor, and the hair sticking to the lips (and possibly going into the mouth) is just awful. Also, I wear contacts, and the next thing it does under these conditions is to get stuck on one of those. Thanks, Harper’s, for reminding me of that agony.

    It isn’t windy at all where I live now, today. But I may put my hair back just the same.

  23. Bee

    Mannequin hair. Glassy doll eyes. Mindless, vacuous expression. Dull-witted mouth-gape.

    Fug, fug, unequivocal fembot fug.

  24. Cat

    I didn’t even think this was Taylor Swift when I saw the small preview in my reader, but now I can’t remember who I thought it was! Anyway, I don’t hate this cover, but I am shuddering over the thought of hair in my freshly applied lip gloss– yuck!

  25. CJG

    Not one but two heinous Bazaar covers in one day!

    Taylor swift looks vacuous and slightly worried here, and Anne Hathaway looked like Natalie Imbruglia circa 1994 acting smug and about to sneeze. Neither cover looks stylish or interesting or makes me want to buy the magazine. Neither cover flatters the woman on it. If I were slated to be the next cover model for Harper’s Bazaar, I would be hightailing it to Siberia!

  26. TonyG

    This cover is kind of creepy as she looks like a 13 year old who is trying to look sexy. Is that what they were going for? She’s a very pretty woman, but this cover made me shudder.

  27. gloria

    I thought she looked like Jessica Biel, when I saw the picture in my RSS feed.

  28. McLisa

    I think she looks pretty. It’s winter and the white works. Reminds me of the mod fashion mag covers from the seventies.

  29. Emily

    I think the part that bothers me the most is the headline: “New Look & Love”
    When does she NOT have a new love? Seriously? Is she even still with the one they talked about in the article?

    • Fifi

      I am soo glad I’m not the only one annoyed by every article discussing her “new man”. Also, what new look are they talking about? I haven’t seen the spread yet, but does she do something other than what she’s pretty much always done?

      I also couldn’t agree more with the person who called her the human incarnation of the colour beige. She couldn’t have been any more spot on with her description. It was perfection.

    • Louise

      I kind of love that headline. It’s so nothingy and UNINSPIRED. New look, love, yadda, this is the kind of thing we write on magazine covers, right?

  30. Alicia

    She looks so young in this picture and too much like a doll. Plus it is a weird effect how just those few strands are “blowing” over her lips when the rest of her hair appears to be stationary.

  31. ErinE

    She looks like an American Girl doll! http://store.americangirl.com/agshop/html/set/id/1729/uid/86

  32. Annie S.

    “Hair in the face is for ugly girls.” – Tyra Banks, ANTM (Or maybe it was Janice? Those years were cray either way.)

  33. Joemama

    I am swallowing and swallowing with the phantom feeling of hair sucked down the windpipe! Ick! Also, ick to hair-in-lipgloss-lipgloss-stuck-on-hair. Also, ick to the cover.

  34. openroses

    She looks like she should be starring in that Woody Allen comedy where they have a sex ball that they pass around in a totally white room. That is not a good look. Plus, it made me think of the horrible event of Woody Allen and Taylor Swift in the same room together, which was bad enough 30 years ago when he did it with Mariel Hemingway.

    All of this is to say, I’m never buying that magazine again!

  35. Jo

    Lobotomy chic- the new look for the season!

  36. harfang

    I am so with you on the lip thing. I’m in Minneapolis, which – despite giving the world Prince and Hüsker Dü and “Peanuts” – is secretly built on prairie. As a teen/young adult, I had to learn the hard way that Lipstick in Winter When Visiting a “Suburb” with No Trees or Tall Buildings is a marvel of physics involving frozen lip crunchies IN your hair. That, like London for you I am guessing, teaches someone to keep her hair out of her face when it’s windy and she has makeup on.

    My belief is that the stylists found it alluring with a young look/young face. Personally, I find the aesthetic borderline-pedophilic. I also think it is way too derivative of mid ’60s with the bangs and all. I agree that by itself, the makeup is great on her. Overall though I say the cover is fug. P.S. That book I won from you guys one time “You take it from here,” despite my not being a chick-book chick at ALL, was really great. Thanks.

  37. Donna

    Allergies. She looks like she has severe allergies and can’t breathe through her nose. But, my main problem is the excessive photoshopping of her skin. It’s so without nuance that it doesn’t look like skin at all, but completely atonal plastic.

  38. Rina

    Vacuous. Like 90% of her photos, now that I actively look for one where her mouth isn’t hanging open. While Christmas shopping, I saw her personal fragrance and in her photos for the packaging/adverts, she looks like she was just hit with a 2×4.

    When you couple that with her apparent inability to be without a boyfriend for even five minutes, she seems very young, very silly, and not very interesting to know.

    Disclaimer: I found her annoying with her first song that seemed designed to trade heavily on Tim McGraw’s popularity, so may not be her target audience.

  39. ccm800

    an homage to beige. This one goes from dull as dishwater to AMAZINGLY irritating faster than something terribly fast.

  40. Willa W

    Somehow, the first thing that ran through my mind was “Oh that’s Harry Styles’s little sister!”
    Try again Taylor, this ones a fail.

  41. Celeste

    I think the cover is much too flattering–she’s not that pretty.

  42. maryse

    i hate the hair on the lipgloss thing. but i like this shot. i love the 60′s look to it.

  43. heather

    Do not like.

  44. Gal

    Agreed – blow up doll. But at least she’s misplaced her red lipstick.

  45. Elise

    That is the exact reason I hate wind. I have family in the SF Bay Area and I always get stressed out when we visit because of the amount of time my hair spends in or near or attached to my mouth.