Irina Rimes at the Media Music Awards 2017

Irina Rimes is a Moldovan performer based in Romania, and on Tuesday she attended the Media Music Awards 2017, winning the Best New Artist award.

There was no such Best Costume award, but if there had been then she would have had that in the bag too.

 

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Prior to the event, Irina was interviewed on the ‘Green Carpet’ and asked about her costume. We don’t have a word for word translation, but we understand Irina had a desire to dress in a quirky maid outfit for sometime, before the award ceremony finally granted her the opportunity with its “Cool Vibe” themed dress code.

 

 

Okay, latex looks cool, but how do you stay cool wearing it in the warm Romanian climate? Apparently not a problem for Irina: she didn’t find perspiration an issue, instead noting the unique sensory qualities of latex and its ability to heighten sensations of warm and cool at turns.

At least, that was what she said BEFORE her stage performance!

 

 

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This Virginie Maid Outfit was designed by Libidex, originally commissioned for a promo for Henry Cotton’s Fall Winter 2013/14 catalog. The promo itself is a sight to behold, taking the signature Henry Cotton blend of authentic British style and timeless Italian elegance and combining it with… latex-clad robot house servants. As you do.

Take a look:

 

 

Here is further information from Libidex about the original commission.

 

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CoCoSoRi’s Crowdfunded Comeback

CocoSori are a Korean pop duo who first came to our attention in 2016 with the release of their first single Dark Circle. The video featured the duo wearing Atsuko Kudo maids’ uniforms in pink and turquoise:

 

 

CoCoSoRi would go on to perform live numerous times in the same costumes, sometimes in red or black variants:

 

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For some months all was quiet on their channel, until last week when they announced they had taken to Kickstarter in an effort to fund a new music video. At the time of writing, they have already exceeded their ¥2,000,000 ($17,388) goal with 12 days to go. The Kickstarter page itself is in Japanese, but check out the pitch below also in English:

 

 

We congratulate the girls on their successful campaign, though with a slight pang of loss we note that as part of their funding drive the group offered up their latex outfits as rewards for the higher brackets, and these have all been snapped up. And with that, it looks like this is the last we’ll see of the iconic dresses. But who knows, with 12 days to go if the campaign meets some stretch goals maybe there’ll be enough extra cash to fund another trip to London and another Atsuko Kudo shopping spree?!

Watch below to see CoCoSoRi’s original visit to AK for fittings for the famous maid uniforms:

 

St Vincent Annie Clark Latex

St. Vincent and Latex

St. Vincent is musician Annie Clark and she’s recently released several short clips which appear to be a satire of the interview circuit. Not being aware of her output, I don’t know whether to take them as promotions in themselves, a purely creative endeavour, just a way of having a laugh, or all of the above. But the point is there is latex!

While answering parody questions, St. Vincent is sat wearing a latex skirt and the lovely Syren Garbo blouse, which is so deservedly popular that we wrote an entire article just on this one garment.

There are 13 clips in total, each no more than 30 seconds long which you can see on her instagram. I’m posting just one here, but it’s the one which I think shows off the most of her outfit:

 

 

Now, the videos are so tongue-in-cheek you might be forgiven for thinking St. Vincent picked her clothes purely to poke fun at prevailing pop fashion trends. But in fact she has worn latex in the past in different contexts, and it’s totally her style. She’s one of us!

 

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Here St. Vincent is performing at the Singapore Laneway Festival, 2015

 

My favourite, though, is a different black rubber dress, one which she wears in this video to present a guitar of her own design:

 

 

I’m enamoured with this look. Different from the high-gloss, reflective latex we usually know and love to see, this dress has a fine powdery finish. Anyone who has ordered latex clothing by post will be reminded of the light, even application of talc covering their new garments, inside and out, in order to prevent the latex from sticking to itself during shipping. The talc makes the rubber silky smooth and easy to get into, which is much appreciated when opening a new purchase, since you want to almost jump into the clothes out of excitement. And if the clothes are designed to be loose, then the material just brushes lightly on the skin as it drapes and hangs, cool to the touch when it comes into contact.

It’s this kind of unpretentious, raw & unpolished, silky new finish which I’m reminded of by this dress. It’s a rubber dress, but it’s carefree, casual and relaxed. That exciting immediacy of just jumping into some soft, loose latex without planning nor preparation. Impulsive. Latex for lounging on a (sensuous) Sunday?

The look is edgy, the feeling soft & delicate, and I’m 100% absolutely certain Annie was very, very comfortable wearing it.

 

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They always come back for more

I’m going to posit that there exists a law of nature when it comes to latex and pop stars: there are those who haven’t tried latex, and there are those who just can’t stay away from it. No middle ground. Nuh-uh.

Of course, I may be over-generalising a little, but it really seems to be getting harder to find incidents of performers wearing latex just once and deciding it’s not for them. Rather, they come back for more. We at WearLatex find this perfectly understandable and expected behaviour!

Now of course you could draw up a long list of artists to have appeared in latex on more than one occaision, but here we’re going to round up some of the examples presented in just the last couple of weeks.

Taylor Swift first appeared in latex (along with a raft of co-stars likewise wearing latex) in her music video Bad Blood. Latex was provided by the likes of Syren and Atsuko Kudo. Well, Taylor has returned to AK for her latest high budget video, Look What You Made Me Do. She wears this orange Miss T Bra in an early scene, though it’s a mere tantalising hint of latex before appearing in full dominatrix-queen regalia around the 1 minute 50 mark. Granted, the screen time is all too short, but nobody can deny she looks devastating.

 

 

Nicki Minaj has been on a veritable latex binge for the whole of 2017. I first became aware of it with the video for Jason Derulo’s Swaller, and since that time she has been rather active in sharing her latex addiction on instagram. It kind of came full circle late August, wearing a few latex outfits (together with Blac Chyna) for yet another MV: Rake it Up by Yo Gotti. However, the real chatter came soon afterwards, with her appearance at the MTV Video Music Awards. She arrived in this eye-wateringly tight pink outfit by Vex Clothing; a look befitting of her ‘Barbie’ moniker. Later on the same evening, she swapped the pink for black and white latex in order to perform.

 

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Charli XCX performed at G-A-Y London on August 26th and was wearing her favourite latex label, Meat Clothing. We’ve previously written about Charli and her love of the brand here. Suffice to say, Meat are unconventional in the latex fashion space, and that suits Charli XCX fine.

 

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It’s fantastic that latex is available in such a diversity of looks, and this variety will only widen as more and more deisngers enter the field. Wearing latex doesn’t have to be a style in itself, but merely an additional medium in which a plethora of existing styles can be rendered in a highly interesting, sexy, sensual way. No matter the genre, the musician, or the persona, there should be latex available to suit (or indeed transform) anybody.

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Reyko and Beatriz Luengo

Latex continues to capture the imagination of artists of all walks, and between updates of the biggest stars in the music industry using latex in their latest videos we’re able to discuss independent projects similarly finding inspiration in the material for their debut releases.

The debut video by Reyko, “Spinning Over You”, is from March and features lots of latex bodysuits, which are seemingly ubiquitous in music videos lately. However, the true star is the luscious yellow dress worn by the main singer, figure hugging on top and long and loose on the bottom. Seeing how loose latex falls and flows while catching the light is one of the great visual qualities of latex, here exploited to maximum effect against the black background of the set.

 

 

I knew I’d seen this dress before, and sure enough a little investigation dug out these pictures of Beatriz Luengo performing at the Spanish music festival Cadena 100 last year:

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It’s notable how the different levels of shiner used by each performer results in a different visual effect for the same dress. Both artists are Spanish, so at a guess I would say this is a design by premier Spanish latex label MadRubb, but don’t quote me.

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Katy Perry – Bon Appétit

Katy Perry is always good value for the latex spotter, and her new video does not disappoint.

Following February’s Chained to the Rhythm, the new single Bon Appetite serves up another course of social commentary. It’s eye-catching even aside from the latex, and the set pieces provocative and visually arresting.

 

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The song isn’t as catchy in my opinion, but there is certainly more latex this time around, including bra, knickers and kimono by Dawnamatrix, and bodysuit and tights by Vex Clothing, all in tempting transparent nudes, pinks and violets. You can see much more of the latex in the behind the scenes video at the bottom.

 

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Goldfrapp and Shakira both featuring Kim West Latex

Two recent music video offerings here, connected by both having Kim West Latex in common.

The more recent release is Comme Moi by Black M featuring Shakira, in which Shakira is wearing a nude latex body. To my knowledge, this is the first instance of Shakira wearing latex, and it’s nice to welcome her to a club which by now surely counts every major female pop star as a member:

 

The second video is the Mad Max-esque video for Anymore by Goldfrapp. Alison Goldfrapp herself is not wearing latex, but several of the women in the video are wearing latex knickers. The latex may not be as prominent as in the former video, but overall this video is by far more interesting and the music leagues better, so it’s an easy favourite.

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Jenni Vartiainen – Turvasana

Finnish musician Jenni Vartiainen arrived at the Emma Gaala music awards in February wearing this ultra-fine semi-transparent latex coat.

 

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From what I gleaned from a Google translation of this article the latex is by Finnish brand Hálo and was a custom design made especially for her video Turvasana. The article includes a video interview which allows seeing the coat close up.

Check out the video for Turvasana below, which does a great job showing off just how light and delicate this beautiful garment is:

 

 

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Bel – Melancholia

Although Bel’s debut EP ‘Melancholia’ was only released last month, the video for its title track has actually been around since August last year.

It features several motifs for depression, with one of the prominent ones being a black latex catsuit as Bel lies in a bath of black water. Already submerged in melancholia, it clinging to her tightly, black latex gloved hands grasp at her, manipulate her, pulling her this way and that.

 

 

But the song is actually about embracing melancholia and allowing it to embrace us. As Bel says:

The word Melancholia by definition encompasses sadness in a peaceful and accepting way. In essence, this song is about accepting the way you feel and not fighting it, but bathing in it for what it is.

At least, that does seem to be the latter-day, romanticised definition of ‘melancholia’, as opposed to the contemporary clinical term ‘depression’.

I found it interesting how certain parallels can be drawn between Bel’s Melancholia and Jhené Aiko’s Maniac. Both videos use latex as a visual motif for different neuroses. Neuroses which, coincidentally, have both also been represented in separate films by Lars Von Trier.

It’s good to see latex just as popular with up-and-coming artists as well as established ones, and to see the applications for latex become broader and broader, in art as in fashion.

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Visions of a latex future

With the release of Katy Perry’s video for new single Chained to the Rhythm, Katy proved she was just as reliable as ever for providing some latex sightings from pop culture. I personally like it when the latex outfits in music videos are congruous with the art direction as a whole, as opposed to pure titillation, and that’s very much what we’ve got here.

 

 

The video presents a Brave New World style dystopia, and readily apparent is the sheer amount shiny, reflective clothing prevalent, not all of it latex. For her part, Katy is wearing white capri leggings by Vex Clothing in the first segment of the video. They are barely seen under her dress, but I guess being such a latex fanatic that didn’t matter to Katy and she wanted them to be latex anyway. The white body she wears in the same section may or may not be latex, but the black body in the latter half of the video definitely is, made by Kim West.

One of the persistent conceptions of latex clothing is that it’s in some sense futuristic, perhaps due to its otherworldliness. You can see that it’s obviously clothing, but not at all like the clothing we’re used to in our day to day lives. And I suppose that’s what sci-fi does: to take what we know and recognise and twist it slightly so it has the feeling of belonging to another time and place. Latex also fits into that vague notion of the ‘chrome’ future: a world shiny, reflective and metallic. Perhaps a bit cold, a bit distant, but sleek, streamlined, extremely cool, extremely stylish and in some sense an evolution. Advanced clothing for an advanced generation.

 

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Monica Belucci and Carrie-Anne Moss from the Matrix film trilogy. Much more latex was featured in the films, such is in the Club Hel scene from Matrix Revolutions.

 

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More recently, Westworld featured these latex lab coats. Read more about them here.


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 evangelion latex cosplay 

Above: cosplayer Omi-K-Gibson wearing Andromeda Latex. Left to right: cosplayers Maria Khanna, Stella Chuus and Jessienoochies. Video game and anime characters inspire plenty of sci-fi themed latex cosplayers. See more in our cosplay posts here and here.

 

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Jupiter Ascending featured costumes by House of Harlot. Latex is often chosen for cybernetic characters, being able to convey a kind of flawless sheen which is at the same time quite human and organic.

 

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Another latex cyborg, from the 2013 film The Machine. Catsuit by Libidex.

 

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Westworld was not the first to do latex lab coats. Terry Gilliam is known for his imaginative and well-realised dystopias, and 2013’s The Zero Theorem featured lots of latex, also by House of Harlot.

 

beyonce-solange_met-party-latex2016And finally, future-inspired fashion, in perhaps last year’s most high-profile latex outing. The theme for Met Gala 2016 was “Manus X Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology” which inspired Beyonce and her sister Solange to wear latex. More pictures of Beyonce’s gown here.