By  on September 18, 2009

A View from Backstage

The WWD beauty editors scurried around the fashion shows this week, uncovering beauty trends that will impact future seasons’ looks. While for many it is all about the clothes, the makeup styles also are telling what retailers will offer next year. In beauty, there seems to be two very different directions — clean and simple versus dramatic. Both looks provide ample opportunities for brands, especially mass market lines, to interpret these concepts for next year.

Those taking a simple direction included Tory Burch, Vera Wang and, not surprisingly, Ralph Lauren. The flip side — bold use of colors — was a signature at Milly, Baby Phat and Betsey Johnson.

At Tory Burch, Diane Kendal for MAC Cosmetics created glowingly natural faces using MAC Select Moisture Cover Up and Prep and Prime Powder. Cheeks were contoured with a peachy-colored blush and eyes were highlighted with golden and taupe colors like Saddle, Mystery, Swiss Chocolate and Nano Gold. She conjured up images of Mia Farrow for a classic, minimalistic style. Burch’s show buzzed with enthusiasm and photographers were lined up 10 deep for the designer who is enjoying great success.

Models at Vera Wang also had low-key makeup styles, although eyes and brows had a new twist. Makeup artist Lucia Pieroni, who was working on behalf of Clé de Peau Beauté, drew her inspiration from fashion designer Paul Poiret. She combined taupe and silver-gray Satin Eye Color on the lids and applied a gold shade on the brow, a hue that was also used to highlight the cheeks.

At Ralph Lauren, the look was also just touches — a lightweight foundation, a pinkish blush and just a touch of mascara on lashes. The description was the “kinda makeup you don’t see.”

Narciso Rodriguez also kept things modern and simple. “I’m using a very light hand,” said NARS Cosmetics artistic director and lead makeup artist Dick Page. “We are doing eyes and lips only.” Then there were those taking a splashier approach to cosmetics. Makeup artist Lisa Butler, working on behalf of NARS, took an unconventional approach to color at Phillip Lim’s where she merged rusty-brown hues with shades of lilac, peach and pale olive on the eyes. “There’s a lot of color going on but everything is cream based and we’re using a big brush to merge it all in so it looks very romantic,” said Butler, who blended NARS’ Camargue Eye Shadow Duo, applying brown on the crease and green on the eyelid, then lining the eyes in lilac.

It was retro at Milly by Michelle Smith with Romy Soleimani, working with MAC did an “Eighties-meets-Sixties” theme at the show. “It’s a subtle nod to both decades,” she said. Soleimani added bronzer all over the face, adding a new pale gold MAC Crushed Metal.

Big hair met big eyes at Baby Phat where James Kaliardos used cobalt to conjure an exaggerated cat eye. The eyes were prepped with cobalt cream shadow, then topped with a sparkly blue MAC shadow, Deep Throat. Next, he added a MAC crushed metal pigment in lavender on the inner corner of the eyes. Gold pigment was placed on the brow bone and swept out past the eye. “Skin is meant to be flawless,” said Kaliardos, who used a coating of MAC Mineral Cream Foundation. A hit of coral crushed pigment was placed along the top of the cheekbones, and MAC’s Life is Lush Lip Jelly, a peach gloss with sparkle, finished the makeup.

Not surprisingly, beauty at Betsey Johnson had a touch of naughtiness. “It’s a good girl who’s gone bad,” said Sarah Lucero, who created the face for Stila. “She [the girl behind the look] had a one-night stand and was touching up her makeup in the taxi, using a martini glass as a mirror.”

Backstage at Anna Sui’s show, the look was pink and pretty and a little bit funky. “It’s a mod circus,” said lead makeup artist Pat McGrath for Cover Girl, about the face she created. Cheeks were rosy and lashes were big, skin was clean and eyes were “softly smoky.” McGrath used Cover Girl Clean Foundation along with Simply Ageless Sculpting Blush, a fusion of creamy rosy color and Olay antiaging skin care. “It’s all about the girls looking young and beautiful,” said McGrath. Lashes were first coated in Cover Girl’s new Lash Blast Length Mascara then layered with the brand’s original Lash Blast for a “clumpy, doll-like look,” said McGrath. Lips were nude and Smoky Shadow Blast was used on eyes.

The lip took center stage at Chris Benz’s spring showcase where the designer unveiled — and officially named — the limited edition lipstick he created with Lancôme as part of the brand’s Pout-à-Porter Series. Called Chris ‘n’ Tell, the new pinky coral shade was named by Benz enthusiasts earlier this summer when Lancôme held a lipstick-naming contest on the designer’s Facebook fan page.

This is just a smattering of some of the beauty looks, but the trends do suggest women will continue to be in the market for new products to create looks for eyes. There also appears to be interest in using more blush for cheek bones. The shows do hold promise for women to freshen their looks for Spring.

To view all the backstage beauty looks from New York Fashion Week, click here >>

People, Place and Things

A few words with Didier Maine de Biran, president of Puig North America as the firm rolls out another Antonio Banderas scent — its sixth.

WWDBeautyNews: What role does Puig play in mass beauty?

Maine de Biran: The industry is in need of a boost; it is time to get even more innovative. We have proven that the masstige positioning works in the mass market. We are delivering prestige quality at mass prices.

WWDBeautyNews: How long can this Banderas machine keep turning out hits?

Maine de Biran: We see it as a house of Banderas. We don’t see interest going away and we are planning a major project based around the brand for next year. That’s all I can say.

WWDBeautyNews: How is it working out with Coty?

Maine de Biran: This is a great partnership with them and distribution. They have the leverage with the market and it frees us up to concentrate on marketing.

What’s In Store

Clean Shaven: A Gillette survey finds human resource professionals want a clean-shaven look. According to a survey, conducted by Harris Interactive of more than 500 human resource professionals, 84 percent agree that well-groomed employees climb the corporate ladder faster than those who are not well-groomed. When it comes to first impressions, 90 percent of human resource professionals place more importance on being well groomed that even a firm handshake. No wonder more retailers are creating men’s grooming areas.

Estée Lauder and Prescriptives: The announcement that the Estée Lauder Cos. Inc. will cease production of Prescriptives shows just how far the need for productivity stretches. While mass brands are editing lines because of stock keeping optimization, now even prestige manufacturers are cutting the cord on lines that diminish the bottom line. Prescriptives will indeed by missed, but could provide an opportunity for some midtier and even mass brands to convert consumers.

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