Bangs are back for Fall, and Paul Hanlon’s onboard with their latest resurrection. “It’s very, very Sassoon,” he said, describing the custom-cut, heavy faux fringe that he beveled around the front edges this morning at Marni, to impart a 1960s look. “The clothes are all really graphic and bold, so it’s really a nice change of pace to do something like this,” the stylist divulged of the “retro-ness” of the hairpieces, pointing out that the specific shape he had snipped into the series of clip-on accessories is particularly flattering to womens’ faces. Using Frederic Fekkai Glossing Cream to give strands a certain softly textured languidness, Hanlon slicked back a front section to have something to slip the bangs into. “It’s a little geeky, in a way, which I kind of like,” he said of the end result.
Tom Pecheux was going for less geek and more ghoul. “She’s a very spooky girl,” he said of the Marni woman for Fall, whom he described as equal parts Tim Burton and The Addams Family. Ghostly as she may be, Consuelo Castiglioni’s girl is nothing if not quirky and posh. “It’s 15 years that I’ve been doing this show, and this is my favorite collection,” Pecheux admitted of the “super-modern, wearable clothes,” that “stink rich,” as he put it. Using a single pot of MAC’s forthcoming Pro Longwear Eyeshadow in Mauveness, the makeup artist sculpted cheeks and eyes with the purplish-brown pigment so that they had a hollowed-out effect. The one break in the monochrome color scheme came via a white pencil that lined the inner rim of the lower lash line and was diffused through the inner corners of the eyes “like a tear,” according to Pecheux. Why were the models crying? We can only imagine it had something to do with all of those oversize fur collars being so heartbreakingly divine.
Referencing old Helmut Newton photos, Luigi Murenu honed in on a “slightly Germanic but more modern” feeling backstage at Pucci, where he devised what will likely be one of the most readily copied hair looks of the season. “It’s less coiffed and more tousled,” the super-stylist emphasized of the long, slightly wavy locks that he coated with Phyto Professional Intense Volume Mousse and middle-parted before pinning a series of color-matched braided extensions a few inches back from models’ hairlines to resemble a coronet. “It can’t be perfect; then it will look too retro,” Murenu continued, jostling flyaways loose around the face and ensuring that the hair that hung down in the back was languid and slightly texturized.
Lisa Butler was also trying to avoid the dreaded R-word. Taking her cues from Peter Dundas’ collection, which she described as “quite structured,” the makeup artist decided to do “something different” in the form of a smoky lip and a nude eye. “Finally!” she exclaimed, reversing the makeup look at a show that frequently relies on sultry lids and bare mouths. Drawing on a “fat” brow, Butler applied very little base, which she topped with “pink-y, outside-y, baby cheeks,” alternating between MAC Cream Color Base in Coral and its Blushcreme in Brit Wit, depending on each model’s skin tone. “We’re trying to approach each girl differently,” Butler said, using mascara here and black liner pushed into lashes there. The one unifying factor was a custom-blended black lip balm that she created by mixing a hint of MAC Lipmix in Black with its Lip Conditioner. “It’s like these eighties Shiseido lipsticks that were very weak in pigment but gave a little bit of darkness,” she explained of the effect, which read as a barely perceptible soft, black-currant wash on on the runway. “Don’t start wearing black lipstick, though; it’s very unflattering,” Butler warned of taking the idea and running with it—in the wrong direction. Her washed-out incarnation, however, is certainly worth a whirl.
“We approached it like any other collection,” Raf Simons’ longtime makeup collaborator Peter Philips said of the beauty look backstage at Jil Sander—the designer’s last as the house’s creative director. And while Philips’ handiwork abided by a set of codes that has long reigned here, nodding to mid-century themes updated with modern touches, it was more than just any other collection, as anyone who was in attendance at today’s show can attest.
Creating a matte pale base using either Chanel Vitalumière Aqua Ultra-Light Skin Perfecting Makeup or its Perfection Lumière Long-Wear Flawless Fluid Makeup, depending on each model’s complexion, Philips curled lashes and redrew bleached brows when needed before focusing his attention on a “soft, rose-petal” pink lip. Tracing a finite line around pouts with Chanel Lip Pencil in #32 Pivoine so that the resulting color was “very graphic, not retro,” Philips proceeded to fill in lips with its Rouge Allure Velvet Lipstick in L’Élégante. “There is no sheen, so you just see pure color,” he said of the intensity that a matte-finish mouth adds to the equation.
Redken creative consultant Guido Palau stayed apace with Philips’ general direction, crafting “the most couture ponytail” he’s done all season. “You get the feeling of a Hitchcock woman,” Palau elaborated, prepping short, side parts and long blunt-cut extensions with Redken Satinwear 02 Ultimate Blow-Dry Lotion before brushing hair backward and pulling it over ears for a hint of fifties-era modesty. “It makes it look very done,” he explained of the technique, spritzing the style with Forceful 23 Strong-Hold Finishing Spray to impart a “lacquered” effect.
While Palau tweeted that things got “emotional” before the show started, he was slightly more stoic in person. “There are all these flowers in glass cases, which I’m sure will be read into slightly,” he said of the almost tragically beautiful set design. But his initial feeling was shared by every single person who had the pleasure of witnessing Simons’ last dance here; maybe it was the two pre-presentation espressos I had backstage, but my knees were shaking just a little bit when Simons took his final bow.
After a few seasons of dewy skin with warm, highlighted contours, Donatella Versace and her longtime makeup collaborator, Pat McGrath, revisited a part of the house of Versace’s original DNA to create “a really kind of cool rock ‘n’ roll girl,” according to McGrath—requisite smoky eyes included. “It’s all levels of black,” the face painter emphasized, from the unattached strokes of obsidian CoverGirl LiquiLine Blast topped with its SmokyShadow Blast in Onyx Smoke that rimmed the upper and lower lash lines to its Eye Enhancers 1-Kit Shadow in Shimmering Onyx with a hint of gold sparkle that McGrath dusted across lids in a soft winged shape through the socket. “We just want the girls to look more cool,” she reiterated, re-bleaching brows and then adding cream, complexion-enhancing colors through individual hairs so they looked “toned,” rather than blocked out. The idea, McGrath continued, was to do a smoky eye of today—something modern and graphic that bore no resemblance to “reality TV black liner.”
Working off a similar “super-cool, super-modern” directive, Guido Palau dipped into his kit and produced a series of fake bangs. “The whole thing is a lot less blown-out than we’re used to seeing here,” he said, coating strands with Redken Wool Shake 08 Gel-Slush Texturizer and its new Powder Refresh 01 Aerosol Hair Powder/Dry Shampoo to add a lived-in, slick bend to the hair. Even the short, Rooney Mara-esque fringe was left texturized rather than perfectly straight, smoothed down by another of Palau’s Fall kit essentials: a series of gray and black No-Crease Bow Clips from Ricky’s NYC. “They don’t mark the hair,” he explained of the stylist tools that have traveled with him from New York to Milan.
Last season’s collective cat-eye homage has seen its fair share of updates and adaptations for Fall, showing up in a range of different colors and graphic shapes over the past few weeks. But there’s still something nice about seeing a plain black flick in its unadulterated state. “Bring it fuller to make it more cool,” Tom Pecheux instructed his team backstage at Moschino this morning, where the makeup artist was etching medium-width wings along models’ upper lash lines with MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack. “She’s basically the little sister of Amy Winehouse,” Pecheux said, describing Rossella Jardini’s beauty directive, which meant fresh skin, rosy cheeks, and a stain of MAC Lipstick in Morange pressed onto mouths. Brows were made full and bushy, thanks to a precise layering effort of creams and shadows, which Pecheux used to gradually re-create arches after they’d been bleached at Prada last night. “She wants to be cool and young and a little rock ‘n’ roll,” he continued, recommending a sight dusting of translucent powder across lids to set the black liner.
“It’s an updo, very sixties,” hairstylist Odile Gilbert said of the French twists she alternately accessorized with oversized, side-slung bows and black hats. (She carefully avoided any mention of the late British soul singer’s name after Jean Paul Gaultier was ridiculed for invoking her image at his Spring Couture show.) “We’re just using hair spray. It’s easy—that’s it!” Gilbert explained, simplifying the back-combing, folding, and pinning process that resulted in a perfected, towering coiff.