Attending the first event at the newly renovated Plaza Hotel is reason enough to brave the swarms of fashionistas lining up in the rain an hour prior to J.Mendel’s start time. Crowds gathered backstage as well, as hairstylist Edward Tricomi put finishing touches on the oval-shaped chignons he designed to complement Mendel’s voluminous looks “with lots going on by the collar,” Tricomi said. To create a small silhouette for the head, Tricomi made a modern chignon by pulling back a center top section of hair and putting it into a small ponytail at the back of the head. He grabbed all the hair on the head, placed it into one big ponytail, and braided it. Finally, he wrapped the tail into an oval, and placed several hairpins to keep the bun in place. Tricomi regularly reached for his own Flexible Hold Hairspray, which is formulated so hair won’t get too stiff, even after several spritzes.

Makeup artist Gucci Westman used MAC Cosmetics to create a metallic eye to represent the richness of Mendel’s clothes, as well as the legendary site of the show. “I am very inspired by the Plaza. It is fitting for Gilles [Mendel]’s clothes, with the rich textures in the environment and its gold gilding. Gilles has a lot of brown and gold in the collection and I wanted to extend that into the makeup.” Westman covered lids with a smoky, metallic brown shade and lined eyes with a gold liquid liner. Natural skin and lips kept the focus on eyes, which were without mascara.

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