Pink has always had an image problem. While red has the monopoly on sexy (wine, lipstick, blood) and close cousin orange takes all the warmth (fire, ginger, spice), pink has been left to describe the cute, the coy and the infantile.
In recent months, however, there has been a concerted effort by designers and celebrities to recast pink — hot pink in particular — as the colour of strength and empowerment.
Last autumn, U.S. actresses including Marisa Tomei and Zoe Saldana posted pictures on Twitter of themselves wearing a hot-pink suit by Argent (a women’s workwear label) with the hashtag #ambitionsuitsyou — to encourage women to feel noticed and to vote.
Meanwhile Saint Laurent, Versace and a host of other labels sent hot pink designs down their autumn catwalks, and now it’s everywhere. Flamingo, fuchsia, fandango — call it what you like, it’s very much the shade of the moment.
Hot pink works with the neutrals you already have in your wardrobe, but also with bolder colours including orange and cobalt blue.
Blazer, £52, asos.com; trousers, £34, next.co.uk; trainers, £115, Veja at shopatanna.com; scarf, £17.95, joules.com
Dress, £29, Lola May at asos.com; boots, £28, asos.com; earrings (worn throughout), £43, pdpaola.com
Top, £16, asos.com; jumper, £95, and skirt, £175, meand em.com; shoes, £69, hobbs.com
You will, of course, have gathered that hot pink is no longer just a summer colour. Coats, berets, boots, fake fur and knitwear have all been reimagined.
If you’re nervous about neon pink, that’s understandable. After all, the one thing this shade will almost certainly do is get you noticed.
But the good news is the High Street has embraced the trend with great enthusiasm, so you can experiment without spending a fortune.
Anyone in the market for a hot pink coat should have a look at River Island’s oversized collar coat (second from right) which is bold but chic and grown-up, too.
For warmth, I also love the oversized jumper by Me+Em (third from left).
When it comes to trousers, try a tailored pair by H&M teamed with a matching blazer (middle) or Next’s narrower, ankle-skimming design (far left).
The only no-no is fuss. Avoid excessive pattern (particularly florals) and brocaded fabrics. Look for clean lines and strong silhouettes.
Blazer, £34.99, and trousers, £24.99, hm.com; shoes, £225, russelland bromley.co.uk
Jumper, £145, reiss.com; skirt, £28.80, laredoute. co.uk; trainers, £17.55, asos.com
Coat, £50, riverisland.com; roll neck, £16, asos.com; shirt, £59.95, oxfordshirt.co.uk; cardigan, £20, next.co.uk; skirt, £14.99, hm.com
Blouse, £185, essentielantwerp. com; trousers, £32, asos. com; trainers, £115, Veja at shopatanna.com