"It's as if Lana Turner or Marlene Dietrich was on the Oriental Express," said MAC makeup artist Kabuki. "It's a Japanese-inspired fantasy, like a geisha when she's getting ready to go out. Not the full, final product." The lids were prepped with a light cream shadow and highlighted with MAC's white eyeliner, Fascinating. After, a black kohl pencil went from the inner-corner to out for a sleek, yet smudgy, cat-eyeKabuki was insistent that it look smoky, rather than end in a severe, spiky point. A hint of cherry blossom pink spoke to Japan once more, with a light pink shadow on the inner corners and a slightly brighter shade, MAC's Expensive Pink, on the outer corners. Mascara was used on both top and lower lashes, but there wasn't a curler in sight. Kabuki wanted to make sure the appearance of the liner wasn't diminished.
2. Lacquered Lady
The finishing touch of the whole thing was a strong red lip, a custom mix of MAC's red and orange shades. "The juiciness of the lip contrasts with the matte, powdered look of the face," said Kabuki, who used the strong statement maker to highlight the elegant simplicity of the eye makeup. "It's very lady-like, like the late '30s or early '50s mixed with a geisha."
3. Up Tight
A tight and high ponytail with a woven bun was "more modern than a Japanese geisha, but with the same quality," said John Frieda stylist Luigi Murenu. He pulled the hair up into a severe pony and used gel for a slick, helmet-look. Another tool for taming rogue whispies? A curling iron, slid over hair in an unorthodox, but ingenius, move.
4. Origami 'Do
Murenu wrapped the base of the pony with black bondage tape, purchased at, where else, "the sex shop." The shiny adhesive resembles electrical tape and added to the lacquered look. But the real pièce de résistance for the folded bun was slivers of combed, cut, and heavily hair-sprayed fans of hair. They were inserted into the models's buns as decorative combs, evoking images of the proper jade and ivory combs of classical Japanese beauties.
5. Custom Color
MAC crafted a custom red for the show that'll be available for purchase next fall. "Flaming Rose" is a neutral red, meaning it's neither hot nor cool (remember the age-old debate about blue-based red versus orange?). "Lips and tips is a trend we've been seeing," explained MAC Senior Artist Keri Blair. "It's that '70s-inspired trend of your manicure and lipstick matching. Color's really been brought back to life."
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