Life Aquatic, Backstage At Kenzo
Messages against overfishing were abundant at Kenzo—with No Fish No Nothing scrawled across the doors of the La Cité du Cinéma and a sweatshirt in the collection. The idea was also reflected in the iridescent fabrics (with a sheen similar to that of scales), sunglasses with fish-eye-like baubles that wrapped around ears, an “aquatic sound system” in middle of the catwalk that jolted with every beat, and a floor-to-ceiling waterfall that served as the backdrop for the runway.
To reflect the marine movement, makeup artist Aaron de Mey mimicked the “crest of a wave” by drawing a graphic band of MAC Acrylic Paint in White across the tops of lashes with an angled brush, abruptly ending the line at the outer corners. “It looks like zinc on the lids—[providing] the reverse effect of classic sixties eyeliner,” he said. In addition to oceanic inspiration, de Mey cited Black Flag (a punk band hailing from Hermosa Beach, California): “I experimented with black, but it was too heavy and literal—punk is a feeling of being opposite to everyone else, and the blunt shape makes it feel more aggressive.” The rest of the face was kept bare, applying concealer only where necessary and dabbing a heavy cream on the tops of cheekbones, chin, and down the bridge of the nose to lend a dewy finish.
To give strands an underwater—yet androgynous—feel, hairstylist Anthony Turner blew them dry using mousse and his fingers for texture, then made a boyish side part and slicked the top section back behind one ear with a wet-look gel. “It’s almost how a boy would grease the side of his hair,” he explained. And in lieu of schools of fish, a gang of tough L.A. girls (similar to the idea at Prada, but with a far more West Coast vibe) served as the pro’s muse. Turner left the length dry, but used a curling iron to create ridges and marks—his interpretation of how women in the street “badly tong” their hair. He topped everything off with a liberal amount of L’Oréal Professionnel Infinium hair spray for added shine and control.
Press-on tips designed by Naomi Yasuda were based with MAC Nail Lacquer in Nocturnelle (an ebony hue) and streaked with Vestral White using a skinny liner brush. The abstract art not only picked up on the patterns at the beginning of the show, but popped against the cobalt, fuchsia, acid yellow, and sea foam green colors splashed across dresses, blazers, midriff-baring tops, minis, and floppy beach hats. If taking a stand looks like this, I’m ready to join the cause.