July 30 2014

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“Sexy, Assertive, Bad-Attitude” Blondes, Backstage At Haider Ackermann


The hair at Haider Ackermann sort of stopped you in your tracks backstage. Pieces of platinum strands were floating in the air as Eugene Souleiman trimmed hand-dyed, white-gold wigs that were left black at the root to resemble natural grow-out. “It’s an unnatural blond, a fifties blond,” he said of the specific bleached-to-oblivion color he had been working on for the past three days, in preparation for this show. The idea came from the Marilyn Monroe soundtrack playing as models took to the catwalk, but clearly the bombshell’s familiar set would not have worked here. “That’s what Haider is about: challenging your perception of what you think is beautiful,” Souleiman explained of why he tweaked the retro color with “techniques of now.” Using a boatload of Wella Professionals Ocean Spritz Beach Texture Spray, Souleiman applied a dusty, matte texture through the lengths, which he fashioned into a thick bun in the back while adding spiky extensions to top and leaving natural hair visible underneath. “We actually colored the roots with felt tip pens,” he explained of the dark base that was meant to stand out in stark contrast to the army of “sexy, assertive, bad attitude” flaxen-haired beauties. “It’s sort of like an alternative Daphne Guinness,” Souleiman suggested, referencing the heiress’ signature skunk streak style.

Lucia Pieroni was on support staff essentially, working on a makeup look that played to the hair. Using black eyeshadow to blend the hairline into the skin, which had been prepped with MAC Face and Body Foundation, Pieroni went heavy on MAC’s illuminating Strobe Cream and its neutral Cream Color Base in Groundwork that she layered across lids, underneath the lash line, and on the tops of cheeks for a “hallowed” look. “[Haider] actually showed me a picture of James Dean,” Pieroni said, name-dropping another 1950s icon and dotting the face with MAC’s Mixing Medium in Shine to create a glossy finish. “Feral” arches that were brushed, built up with its Brow Quad, and topped and with mascara “to make them more werewolf-y,” brought a certain strength to the face.

Photo: Luca Cannonieri /



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