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August 23 2014

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Chloë Sevigny Talks Trannies And Hair Transformations, Backstage At Kenzo

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When we got backstage at Kenzo yesterday, there were two pleasant surprises waiting for us. The first was Peter Philips; if Humberto Leon and Carol Lim’s  collection was half as good as their decision to enlist the Chanel creative director of makeup for their first outing for the storied brand, then they’d have a big success on their hands, we thought to ourselves. “They were open to suggestions,” Philips said of the design duo’s beauty concept for the show. ”That’s the way they work—it’s a team effort, more like a creative studio.” The group decision was to make sure the makeup didn’t look like it was for a fashion show. “I didn’t want all the girls to have a red lip or a black nail like a funny, quirky Teen Vogue shoot—and I mean that with the utmost respect. We just wanted to bring a maturity and credibility to it,” Philips explained, choosing instead to keep the face “strong but natural” so as not to complicate the colors and prints in the clothes. After creating a flawless base with Chanel Perfection Lumiere Professional Finish Makeup, Philips focused on building a big brow—”it’s not graphic or fifties,” he insisted, dipping into Chanel Ombre Essentielle Soft Touch Eyeshadow in Mahogany 51 and filling in arches with soft powder rather than a pencil. “They’re more like a young girl in the eighties would have,” he clarified, using the same pigment at the root of lashes for definition. Lips were kept muted, courtesy of Chanel Le Crayon Levres in Desert 28 and its beige-brown Rouge Allure lipstick in Curious—which we watched one of Philips’ assistants carefully apply on a center-parted brunette to our left. After a quick double take, we realized it was Chloë Sevigny.

“I’m working on a show in Manchester, England,” the Opening Ceremony designer and muse explained of her transformation from sunny blond to deep chestnut strands, which hairstylist Andrew Turner prepped with Tigi Catwalk Curlesque Curl Collection Strong Mousse, wove into a low braid, and slightly picked apart to add texture and movement. ”I used to do pink, purple, blue, peroxide—but I’ve never been dark,” Sevigny, who plays a “pre-op tranny” in Sky Atlantic’s forthcoming miniseries Hit and Miss, said of her trials and tribulations with hair dye. ”They really wanted me to disappear into the role,” she explained, which by all accounts seems to have worked, as Sevigny is barely recognizable without her flaxen locks—and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. “I don’t get cat-called as much,” the Big Love star joked of being a brunette versus a blonde.

Photo: Courtesy of Kenzo

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