Jessica Biel Plays with Fire... and Ice

New blog Part Nouveau, or ‘partly new’, delves into fashion history to showcase the inspiration–be it art, photography or design–behind some of today’s biggest fashion moments. It’s fascinating and impossible not to get lost in, so we asked the site’s founder, Lilah Ramzi, to give us a little history lesson each week. In this week's lesson, Revlon revives a classic campaign.
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New blog Part Nouveau, or ‘partly new’, delves into fashion history to showcase the inspiration–be it art, photography or design–behind some of today’s biggest fashion moments. It’s fascinating and impossible not to get lost in, so we asked the site’s founder, Lilah Ramzi, to give us a little history lesson each week. In this week's lesson, Revlon revives a classic campaign.

New blog Part Nouveau, or ‘partly new’, delves into fashion history to showcase the inspiration–be it art, photography or design–behind some of today’s biggest fashion moments. It’s fascinating and impossible not to get lost in, so we asked the site’s founder, Lilah Ramzi, to give us a little history lesson each week.

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In 1952, Revlon introduced their striking Fire and Ice campaign photographed by Richard Avedon. Starring Dorian Leigh, the ad debuted the cosmetic brand’s latest pairings of matching "lips and tips" shades for those women "who love to flirt with fire...who dare to skate on ice." Set against writer Kay Daly’s cheeky copy, the ad was the most talked-about campaign of its time, winning Advertising Age’s Ad of the Year accolade and subsequently dubbing Leigh the Fire and Ice girl.

In the Avedon-shot campaign, Leigh was reportedly swathed in an unfinished Norman Norell-style mermaid gown, with sequins stopping just short at the back of the dress due to the meticulous hand-sewn sequin process which took longer than expected. The glittering gown, meant to evoke ice, was topped with an expansive fiery-red cloak copied from a Balenciaga original--a practice not uncommon in American fashion of the period.

In 2010, Revlon rereleased three lip and tip pairings, celebrating with a campaign by Mario Testino that restaged the sensational 1952 ad with Jessica Biel standing in as Dorian Leigh.

Dorian Leigh in Revlon’s Fire and Ice Campaign by Richard Avedon, 1952

Dorian Leigh in Revlon’s Fire and Ice Campaign by Richard Avedon, 1952

Jessica Biel as Dorian Leigh for Revlon by Mario Testino, 2010

Jessica Biel as Dorian Leigh for Revlon by Mario Testino, 2010