Halsey never lets us breathe for too long. On the heels of her poetry book at the beginning of the month, she's already on to the next secret gem. For a long time, fans have followed an Instagram account called a_b_o_ut__________. The account was followed by Halsey, her designer, Garett Hilliker, and her assistant/best friend Paytn Selzer. These were the first major tips. The account is full of aesthetic images with lots of lips, stoking the long rumored idea that she's working on make-up line. The account posts regularly with vague captions in similar formats. The latest one says _________a_b_o_ut_____regality.
Much like the Back to the Badlands post from earlier in the fall, I'll be providing updates to this post as they come, so stay tuned to my twitter, @mslaurenbrice to get the updates!
8:10pmPST: I got my text message in! Interestingly, it seems to be a different number than Halsey has texted me on before for Manic presale or for Badlands anniversary stuff. Also, the texts are signed Halsey not AF.
Also, I saw a fan post from @itsavaruby on Twitter saying, "was reading through the coding on the about website and it's definitely been set up to turn into some sort of store 👀👀also a lot of the code talks about something that's two months from now? not sure what that means yet". Of course this is just a random tweet, but it does match well with my theory from earlier that it will become some kind of "buying" based experience. There's also Halsey's Twitter bio to consider L¿P¿, it could be hinting at an album as in limited play or people have connected that back to some kind of lipstick, like I mentioned above, or lip piercing?
Around 1:30pm PST: Halsey stokes the about flames with a stunning instagram post to keep up all on our toes. She's not telling us anything new, but it's another connection. The caption of the beautiful, mermaid haired selfie reads @a_b_o_ut_____ ?????. I'm not sure if she's asking them a question or claiming to not know what's up even though her name is plastered all over it. The green inspired make-up matches the vibe of about's page nicely.
Around 1:48pm PST: About posts a new post of their own captioned about "signs" which a painting that appears to say Orpheus or something close. As usual, the artist is listed as unknown. View the post here.
EDIT: Someone on Twitter pointed out that in the HFK world there's a tunnel in it that's named Orpheus after the Greek character.
Around 2:00 pm PST: Halsey recently posted on Instagram in the same hair/make-up look as yesterday, this time with a lollipop. This time, she didn't tag about, but the caption seems pretty ominous. "nothing will ever be the same.," Halsey wrote. Not entirely sure if it's connected, but it definitely seems interesting. (link to post)
Around 10:30am PST: About posted a new photo which is pretty standard for them. It's another set a lips with teeth showing. The caption is about "pigment" which is interesting. Again, it feels like a make-up line because of the pigment nod, but again, who knows. I've never felt so lost on a Halsey scavenger hunt. View the post here.
12/9- About posted a new instagram post focused on "about composition". The face has lots of contouring and marking. All of the recent posts seem to be photos of faces or facial features which further drives home the make-up theory. I'd say that's what I'm sticking with right now. View the post here.here. But even with Badlands, that's only 3/5. How many more surprises can Halsey have up her sleeve?
12/15 2:03pm PST: I've been the worst at updating this post. About has been posting more random photos as usual, and it's finals week, so I haven't added all of them, but today, I've gotten an exciting email from About. I'll include a screen shot here, but it seems like Halsey is getting ready to tell us what's going on. Also, Halsey had an insta story today talking about how she misses small shows which could be a hint at HFK Webster Hall finally coming out. They could be tied, but the pervasive theory is still make-up. Everything they've posted about has been visual or tactile based, so that makes sense. There's a theory that some of the letters in the background of the email that vertically spell out JAN 4, which coincides a bit with one of About's latest posts. There's a screenshot of a video that said "04.05.18" which, there's a 4 in it, but it feels like there's something in that. January 4 feels hardly "moments away".
12/25/20- I have been the worst about updating this, but life got super hectic so... I'm back now. Halsey has been posting photos of herself on the "about" account now. One photo is from a shoot years ago, so this project has been in the works for a while. The latest with that photo is called "Reinvention", which has led people to believe that Halsey is teasing the much anticipated punk album. It also ties into the theory that she's dropping a song with Avril Lavigne, who has teased something exciting is coming January 4th. January 4th also seems to be a significant date for About. The timeline has been semi-confirmed by Halsey when the news she would be in Sing 2 came out. That was one of the five of her secrets. The final secret is the biggest, but the next one, she said, was coming in 2 weeks. At the time, that matched up to around January 4. Other about captions include: multidimensionality, luminous (on a photos of Halsey's hand with rainbows refracted over it), curiosity (on a graphic that says "about"), and duality (on the first photos of Halsey from a shoot we've also seen). All of these recent posts no longer have the repeated about after the handle. Old captions used to be formatted with the about handle and then a_b_o_ut______ word. Now it's just the handle and the word. The last of the original formatting was from 5 days ago. It seems like photos of or taken by Halsey don't have the extra tagging while the ones by unknown artists do. The most popular theories at this point, beyond make up or hair dye is that it's a movie/documentary either for the Manic tour or of Halsey's life in general since the entire theme is "about". Some think that the final announcement will be "about me". I would LOVE a Halsey doc, so I'd be excited for this twist. I think it's probably a make-up line, though, since it's only secret number 2/5. Unless, of course, the about universe connects to all of the other secrets and the mystery will continue past January.
Narnia lion, Halsey... Still, if the clue is that it has to do with a lion, bravery, courage, and strength are all attributes that tend to go into Halsey's work. More possible clues from the story dump include the fact that she shared a lot of photos from the HFK tour, leading some fans to believe that whatever's coming is still HFK related. Also, one eagle eyed fan (sorry, everything was going by so fast I'm not sure who. I'll add the handle here if I can find it), pointed out similarities between Halsey's all gold and glitter favorite make-up look and an old, gold tongued post from about captioned "about metal". It could possibly connect as well. On a final note, About posted again today with a new logo photo with About in a graffiti style and a smiley face with AF as the eyes. There's also something scratched out beneath it. All the About designs that have been posted lately have some element of something getting scribbled out. Fans are starting to wonder if the AF stands for more than Ashely Frangipane. @cynthiaruth95, who always has the best theories, is one of the Halsey fans discussing that AF could stand for "about face". It would go with the latest caption which is "Unexpectedness". An about face is to suddenly make a quick turn in a new direction. In one tweet from today, Cynthia writes, "I'm not over the idea that about face is LITERALLY a command to stop running from yourself, turn around, and face yourself. Look in the mirror because that's the only way to find yourself". She has a way of posting theories that sound like poetry and are fun whether they're right or not. You should definitely go give her a follow. She also brings up the point that this could all still be an art collective and it could be a literal interpretation like "about faces". The entire account has a lot of body focused art. I'm a huge fan of all of these ideas, and I just want to see how it all ends up. If January 4th isn't an inaccurate prediction, then we'll know what's behind the account in one more week. It should be even more exciting every day now.
12/30/2020- Major news in the about journey. Their bio has changed on the account, and it confirms the theory on doing an "about face" from earlier. The new bio reads, "about-face, v: to suddenly and completely change one's direction." When I first saw it, I thought Halsey had made it something about One Direction the band, which is sadly not true. It does go back to one of her recent tweets where someone asked if we were on the right track with guesses and Halsey said, "I love seeing what you guys come up with! But usually I'm just hoping you'll suddenly turn in a different direction!". A different direction... an about face. It seems like the final clues are falling into place. Could it be the punk album maybe? A change in sonic direction?
UPDATE: The mystery is close to over, and we were pretty right all along? The main theory has been cosmetics, and that seems to be true. With the unveiling of the bio, looking up aboutface.com leads to a Halsey owned website. It says "every one, every where, every way", preorder now, and Halsey aka Ashley Frangipane @iamhalsey. The site is password protected like the Badlands site, so I bet we'll get an email soon with the password from the original about website.
UPDATE: If you visit the about face website and give them your email again for exclusive access they will immediately give you a code to access the main website.
On the website under the "about" section Halsey writes, "We are about-face. Multi-dimensional makeup for everyone, everywhere created by Ashley Frangipane a.k.a. Halsey. Inspired by and for our diverse and artistic community, we create makeup made with integrity and intention, for all stages of life.We are built on the truth that no one is just one thing -- humans are weird, complex, and entirely beautiful because of it. Everyone has their own messy, mad, and personal method to becoming our greater selves.So, we make products that are hard working over hype, designed to celebrate every version of us. The ones we end up being, and all of the experimental versions along the way. We hand over the reins, giving everyone the power to represent themselves and celebrate one another -- because who knows what will happen when you lean into every dimension of you?Make u(p) without rules. Made for the many of you."
Now that I've had my shopping experience on about, I'm so thrilled with everything. The website is beautifully designed and easy to navigate. Halsey has three make-up tutorials on various pages. All products are vegan, cruelty free, and made without gluten, phthalates, parabens, or synthetic fragrances, so it should be good for all skin. It seems like she put a ton of thought into each of the products. There's a highlighter liquid, powder, and shimmer stick for face as well as a primer spray that apparently even declogs your pores somehow? In lips, there are matte liquid lipsticks in 6 colors with matching lip liners. Everything is impeccably named, though would you expect less from Halsey? She also has lip gloss in 4 colors. In eyeshadow, she has a paint and a shadow stick. If you place an order over $20, you get a free shadow stick which is super cool. She also has a blender, make-up bag, and gift cards to start. Everything is around $20-$25. And there's free shipping over $35. It seems like this is just the beginning of a brand and that more colors and products will fill it out over time.
So that's all for this mystery. Of course, we're only on 2/5, so I'm sure a new page will be started soon for whenever the next wave of clues comes in. As always, it's been so much fun going on this journey with everyone. To read my full write up of the make-up brand, you can find that here.