MAC Attack.

Reason number four million eight hundred and seventy three of why I love MAC: they came up with the fabulous idea to host a backstage beauty lounge during the Spring/Summer 09 Fashion Week here in NY.
Genius, I tell you…pure genius.
For beauty editors, it’s all about getting the scoop on the backstage look: the hair, the makeup, the application tips and the tools used. And you’ll do whatever means necessary in order to get this job done...which means that you’re usually entering the backstage area amidst the crowds of media and models.
Then, after identifying who the head makeup artist and hairstylist are, you must wedge yourself into that small space in-between said artists’ elbow and the person with the huge video camera next to them in order to get the scoop.
And, of course, you have 2.5 seconds to do this (especially if it’s a really big show, like Marc Jacobs, who may just come over and declare the look “horrible, I need more nude!” which then puts said artist, along with the rest of the team, into a frenzy and the guy next to you with the huge camera quickly swings it around to get more of Marc, almost wacking you in the head in the process…I mean, hello? Am I standing here? Do I exist?!) so you’re usually shouting out questions over the loud hum of a blow dryer while trying not to gag on the hairspray that he/she is using to seal in a style.
There are usually just 2 main questions that you need answered: what is the inspiration behind the look and what key products are you using to create it.
Everything else that you can get after that is just bonus material. Like sometimes they’ll tell you special techniques they used to get the perfect smudgey, smokey eye.
This season, I can honestly say that MAC made the whole process much easier by not only hosting the lounge, but by also being accessible to escort you straight to the person you need to talk to and making sure that ALL of your questions were answered. (The scary video cameras were nowhere near my skull this time!)
And because of the lounge, you no longer had to check in backstage with the pretentious backstage access list checkers. (I mean, no offense to people just trying to do their jobs, but one thing I LOATHED about covering backstage hair/makeup were these young girls in their all-black H&M dresses and too big borrowed designer heels, giving me that snooty ‘Who are you?’ look when I specifically just said that I was media…I mean seriously, please don’t hate on me just because you’re stuck back here while I get to actually SEE the show! Ugh.)
You would just flash your MAC pass, go straight to the lounge and check in with the amazing, super friendly Amelia who would then look on the list to find out who your escort was to be for that particular show. And if you had to wait, no problem! A MAC makeup artist would be there to provide all of your makeup touchup needs...which was great when you were too exhausted to put on much makeup that morning or if you were heading out to an afterparty after covering one of the evening shows! And there were always other beauty editors there to talk with…so you were never bored.
In the words of my boss, it was “Just fabulous!”

Makeup used on my face in the MAC lounge.

One of the awesome MAC makeup artists who did my makeup there in the lounge.

Amelia from MAC just couldn't stop taking pictures of me! lol

The amazing Heather Park, one of the fab public relationists from MAC. Check out her awesome makeup!

Head makeup artist for the Herve Leger show, Val Garland. "I can't live without eyeliner," she raved backstage.

A model gets her skin prepped backstage at the Herve Leger show by one of the makeup artists.
"We used no foundation, powder or blush and a bit of lip conditioner on the lips" Garland said. "The look is very clean, with a little bit of sheen."

A makeup artist uses a Q-Tip after applying eyeliner backstage at the Herve Leger show.
"We wanted the focus to be on the eyes," Garland said. Garland and her team were applying black eye liner and then used a Q-Tip saturated with makeup remover to take off some of it. After noticing the perfect black lines, Garland said she knew that was the look they were going for. "It's very clean liner with no smoke to it," she said. "We wanted the look to be ultimately minimalist, just like the clothes in the collection."

A model showcases the finished makeup look backstage at the Herve Leger show.
Try MAC's Fluidline eyeline in BlackTrack, Pro Lash mascara in Black and Lip Conditioner SPF 15 to get the look (all products available at maccosmetics.com).

One of the hair stations from the Herve Leger show. Head hair stylist Dennis Lanni's weapon of choice? Bumble and Bumble Thickening Spray.

A model getting her hair straightened with a flat iron backstage at Herve Leger.
"This is rock and roll hair," Lanni said. "It's not too groomed or serious and even a bit punk."

1 comment:

Danielle said...

Hey Jessica! It's Danielle from Columbia. It's great to see you doing well. I'm so jealous you get to see all those fabulous clothes at all those fabulous shows. I wanted to go to the Nanette Lepore store when I was in NY, but alas, I remembered I can't afford anything she makes. Girl, I would have swiped one of those swag bags ;)

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