Category Archives: From the front lines

Lan Yu Show - Sydney Fashion Week

From the Front Lines: Makeup Directing the Lan Yu show

Sorry about the lack of posts the last couple of weeks – it’s been super hectic at my end as I was preparing to direct the makeup for my first fashion show at Sydney Fashion Week and then I went straight into a Press junket for a UK actor at the weekend. It’s been a tad busy and put it this way – I never thought I’d be so excited to spend a day cleaning the house and doing washing!

The show was the first fashion show in Australia for China’s most esteemed couture designer, Lan Yu (her incredible gowns show up regularly on red carpets and A-list celebs around the world).

Sponsoring the show was EVOHE, the Australian 100% natural skincare company who have recently appointed me as their Creative Director. I love EVOHE products as they are one of the few brands that I find I can consistently use on my skin, and get results from with no irritation (more posts to follow when I get some more time to write about them!)

The collection was called ‘Starry Night’ and Lan Yu had designed 12 incredible gowns, each representing a different archetype of the Zodiac. The detail and finish of each gown was truly breathtaking, and the brief for the makeup was Universal goddesses. Each model was like a star in the sky, and just like the Universe is completely natural and unforced, so each girl needed to look like the most radiant natural version of herself. It was all about beautiful skin and a very modern, effortless look to contrast with the incredible complexity of the gowns.

In order to do that I gave the girls a facial before the show using EVOHE’s Silica Mask (which is amazing as it plumps the skin and doesn’t leave it irritated or red, so it’s a fantastic start to the makeup). Then I applied the EVOHE Mineral Powder foundation anywhere the girls needed it to give really beautiful, radiant looking skin.

Long-time readers know that I don’t normally like mineral powders but this one is designed to mix up with the EVOHE moisturisers into a liquid foundation. So that I can handle! I added some of the EVOHE Omega 3 6 9 oil just to the high points of the face and the rest of the makeup was beautiful groomed brows, a soft wash of brown around the eye, and the EVOHE Liquid Lips in Eve, Rosella and Celebration as a stain on the lips and cheeks.

Backstage was pretty frantic with lots of media to talk to about the look and a very hectic final few minutes before the show as the previous show had run late. One of the lovely models, Katie, had three hairdressers, a manicurist and me all over her getting her show ready on time. I suppose it wouldn’t be a show without a bit of frantic maquillage at the end! I used very little powder to keep the gorgeous natural shine on the skin and just let each girl’s beauty shine through.

I was also thrilled to be re-united on the show day with one of my all-time favourite hairdressers, Raymond Robinson who I used to shoot with in Sydney many years ago. He was directing the hair on behalf of Shu Uemura’s Art of Hair and he and the team did a gorgeous job of creating organic, unstructured ballerina buns. It was a beautiful show and I’m very much looking forward to seeing more of Lan Yu’s incredible designs in future.

en.lanyu.co
evohe.com.au

Lan Yu Show - Sydney Fashion Week

Kate-Upton-V-Magazine

From the Front Lines: Kate Upton Signed as the new Celebrity Face of Bobbi Brown

I was delighted to hear that lovely American model Kate Upton has been signed by Bobbi Brown as the new face of the brand (and I also have to confess that I’m more excited to see her new campaigns than more of Katie Holmes. I find her underwhelming I’m afraid). One of my favourite models for one of my favourite brands, yes please!

Kate has that real original 90’s supermodel vibe to her, reminiscent of Cindy and Claudia back in the day. She’s helped bring big boobs back into high-fashion, and being of the larger busted persuasion myself, I’m very grateful that she’s helping make big boobs look chic and glamorous, and not porn star.

Great call, Bobbi Brown. Kate Upton looks like the kind of girl who’d be a laugh to hang out with – and I’d definitely buy makeup from her.

Here’s how versatile Kate Upton is – her real self, with Bobbi Brown:

 And a BTS video from her first big Italian Vogue shoot by Steven Meisel, the classic femme fatale:

 Now THAT’S what I call a model.

www.bobbibrown.co.uk

Jessica Lange Marc Jacobs

From the Front Lines: Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number

This isn’t the post I was going to run today, but I was so pleased when I saw not one but TWO amazing actresses who are older than 25 get major cosmetics contracts last week, I thought a post was in order.

I am all about inclusive beauty. Beauty should be age-less, gender-less, race-less and open to everyone, regardless of your body shape, height, or sexual preference. For a long time there has been a major focus on beauty being the province of the young and finally it feels like the pendulum is swinging the other way, to recognize the beauty in wisdom and older women. It’s wonderful to see major brands recognizing that we as consumers can relate to older models, and how powerful for women in general (and particularly young women and girls) to see that as you age you don’t need to be consigned to the beauty scrapheap.

Charlotte Rampling (I’ll say that again CHARLOTTE RAMPLING!!! Who has to be one of the coolest actresses ever. Hello Night Porter, Georgy Girl, Stardust Memories, plus those incredible photos she took with Helmut Newton, where do I start?) has been signed to NARS as their new face and will be photographed by Francois Nars later this year for the 20th anniversary campaign. She was voted by Vogue as the World’s Sexiest Woman in 1974, and in 2014 she’s still going strong.

(At this point I have to interject and tell you that one of my main claims to fame is that I sold Charlotte Rampling a pair of clapsticks. My first job as a teenager was working in Sydney at an Aboriginal Art Gallery and she bought some clapsticks, an Aboriginal musical instrument, from me one day. There. It’s not every day you sell Charlotte Rampling a pair of clapsticks – I’m pretty sure I’m the only person on the planet who can lay claim to that).

 And now Jessica Lange, also one of my favourite actresses, has been signed by Marc Jacobs Beauty as their new face for their upcoming campaign. You can’t really argue with her icon status either – discovered by famed illustrator Antonio Lopez, roommates with Jerry Hall and Grace Jones in the 70’s before going on as an actress to garner not one but TWO Oscars, two Emmy’s and five Golden Globes. All That Jazz, the Postman Always Rings Twice, Tootsie and Raging Bull are just some of the films she’s starred in.

In other inclusive beauty news, just last month Sheryl Sandberg (yes, the Facebook Sheryl Sandberg), has struck a deal with Getty Images to provide alternative and more realistic images of women. No more of those stupid women smiling whilst eating salad pictures! Or at least a whole lot less. I don’t know about you but I’d rather see women doing interesting things like actually exercising, or creating things or, you know, WORKING, rather than looking thrilled to be on a diet. Surely the suffragettes fought for us so we could do more than diet and aspire to look like Kim Kardashian.

If you like the idea of inclusive beauty in fashion, also check out the wonderful English initiative, All Walks Beyond the Catwalk. Started by Caryn Franklin, Debra Bourne and English model Erin O’ Connor, it is an initiative working with the global fashion industry to expand upon the imagery it is creating to mirror a more realistic range of women in age, size, race and appearance than currently on offer. http://www.allwalks.org

It’s time the beauty and photography industries started to realize that beauty (and women) comes in all sorts of shapes, colours, sizes and ages. At last it feels like they’re listening!

ThandieKay

From the Front Lines – thandiekay.com launching soon!

Super, SUPER excited at the up coming launch of ThandieKay, the new blog that is due to start soon.

Thandiekay.com is a collaboration between famous British actress, Thandie Newton, and her international makeup artist and longtime friend, Kay Montano. After meeting on a Vogue shoot in 2006 they have been fast friends ever since, and have come up with some truly beautiful red carpet moments together. When I was assisting Kay I met Thandie on a number of occasions and not only is she a divinely lovely person, she is whip smart, funny and very talented. And she still looks gorgeous without a scrap of makeup on!

Kay has over 25 years of makeup experience behind her, working with pretty much any star you can think of – Keira Knightley, Amy Adams, Nicole Kidman, Kylie Minogue, Jennifer Lawrence, Rachel Weisz, Salma Hayek, to name a few, as well as serious editorial (I’ve lost count of her Vogue covers). As well as regular beauty fare I have a feeling that we can expect some pretty amazing posts on art, photography, fashion and life in general from these two, and I for one, can’t wait.

Find them soon at thandiekay.com and on Twitter @thandie_kay

Florrie White for Nude Skincare

From the Front Lines – Celebrity Makeup Artist Florrie White for NUDE Skincare

I was very excited to hear that one of my favourite makeup artists (and mentors), Florrie White, is now NUDE Skincare’s brand ambassador. Florrie is an amazing makeup artist and has quite the celebrity clientele, working regularly with Alexa Chung, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Emily Blunt, Rose Byrne and Kate Bosworth – how’s that for a cool crowd of clients?

She has magical hands and would always choose exactly the right blend of skincare to address what her client’s skin required, unfailingly achieving a beautiful, hydrated skin as a base for her lovely makeup. I’m not surprised she is now working with NUDE as they are a wonderful luxury organic skincare brand, and perfect for Florrie’s effortless, cool aesthetic.

Nowadays it feels like every week there is a new “organic” or “natural” skincare range being released as people increasingly are becoming aware of the toxic nature of many products which we put everyday onto our biggest organ, our skin. But as NUDE started back in 2007, they were one of the first to market in this area. Synthesising all natural ingredients to create truly luxurious and effective skincare (and the packaging to match) wasn’t easy, but founder Brian Meehan insisted that they get it exactly right. Cult products from the range include the Perfect Cleansing Oil and the Radiant Day Moisturiser.

I can’t wait to see more of Florrie and NUDE Skincare!

www.nudeskincare.com

Georgia May Jaeger Alex Box

From the Front Lines: Georgia May Jagger as a Dragon Princess

Georgia Jagger 21st birthdayMakeup by Alex Box

When I saw this in the papers at the weekend, I couldn’t resist – Georgia May Jagger looking like an otherworldly creature (literally), as a dragon princess at her 21st birthday. Makeup by the uber-talented Alex Box using Illamasqua, and hair by James Rowe. Dragon princesses never looked so good.

Pictures from Alex Box’s instagram

Daria Werbowy Vogue Paris

Making History! Hairstylist James Pecis Does Paris Vogue

And when I say “Does Paris Vogue” I mean, literally! Fabulous NY-based hairdresser, James Pecis who I had the pleasure of working with a lot in London over the years, has just done the hair for EVERY SINGLE STORY, both main and short fashion in February’s Paris Vogue. Including a body-slamming editorial of Daria Werbowy shot by Inez and Vinoodh it’s definitely one for the archives and I’m as in awe as ever of James’ amazing hair skills. He’s currently in NY kicking off the show circuit with his team, but I for one can’t wait to see where his career is going to go next. What a coup!

See more of James’ work

 

From the Front Lines – Alexa Chung’s Lipstick on ELLE

International celebrity makeup artist Kay Montano recently shot this gorgeous British ELLE cover of Alexa Chung – who couldn’t be more if an It girl if she tried, honestly. When I saw it I had to know what that gorgeous lipstick colour she’s sporting is. Kay told me it’s Chanel’s Rouge Allure in Insolente, which I’m sure you all know has rapidly been added to my ever-growing list of Must-Have Pinks. It’s turning into quite a long list now, as yes, you guessed it – I’m still obsessed.

Here’s a video from behind-the-scenes on the ELLE shoot: