September 2 2014

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9 posts tagged "Alber Elbaz"

“Illustrated” Eyes And Easy Hair, Backstage At Lanvin


“It feels amazing,” Pat McGrath said when she was asked how she felt to be part of team Lanvin on the eve of Alber Elbaz’ tenth anniversary with the brand, thus summing up the general emotion of everyone who was backstage for the momentous occasion. To properly complement the designer’s collection of rich colors and feminine silhouettes without overpowering it, McGrath added a single graphic detail to the face in the form of a thick, black winged eye. “It’s all about illustration,” she explained, “like a pen-and-ink sketch,” which inspired her to draw on a meticulously pointed flick that extended up through the crease of models’ eyes and out toward the temple. Using a small angled brush dipped in a black cream eye shadow, McGrath drew another “smudged” stroke very close to the lower lash line to further define the eye against a clean, natural base that boasted highlights down the bridge of the nose and on the cupid’s bow of the lips. “It’s almost like an insignia,” she said of the stark liner, a stamped-on badge of honor for every girl that can say she walked this runway.

Guido Palau took a similarly subdued approach when conceiving the show’s hair look, opting for simplicity over elaborate structure. Shampooing all 43 girls with either Redken’s All-Soft Gentle Cleansing Shampoo or its Extreme Shampoo and taking the weight out of the back of the head by braiding an under section and pinning it to the scalp, Palau coated lengths with Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Protective Treatment to help ensure smooth strands as he employed a light blow-dry—”just to clean the hairline up.” As a finishing touch, he tucked the front pieces behind models’ ears for a slight bend. “The ease of it is the beauty,” he surmised.

Photo: Luca Cannonieri /

Emma Watson For Lancôme: Now It’s Official


Word broke three months ago that Lancôme had nabbed Emma Watson as the new face of its Trésor line, but the party to fête the Harry Potter star’s arrival took place last night at Paris’ Pavillon Gabriel.

“I’ve watched Emma grow up,” Mario Testino said of Watson, whom he shot for the new Trésor Midnight Rose print campaign. “She was a little girl when I first worked with her, then I shot her for Burberry, then British Vogue, then Lancôme.” (Testino and Watson’s next collaboration will be the July cover of American Vogue.) “The great thing about Emma is that she’s a chameleon; she can communicate anything you ask.”

At last night’s soirée, Watson was communicating “let’s party” in a black and white Azzaro dress. “I feel lucky to embody a fragrance I am so crazy in love with,” Watson said of the eau, which adds hints of Turkish rose and cool raspberry to the fruity-floral classic. “I didn’t really like perfumes before because I thought they were heavy, but this one is really light and playful.”

Also on hand to celebrate was Lanvin designer, Alber Elbaz who was happy to get back into the fashion fold following a respite in Laos. “It was totally unglamorous but it felt right,” the designer said of his vacation. “When you go there, as the Buddhist monks say, you spend time looking at nothing, just yourself. Now it’s back to my collection, and then another one after that.”

As the euro band Puggy took the stage, Watson slipped through the crowd to get a better view, trailed closely by her parents. For fans who are fretting over a rumored hiatus, know this: The actress told that she’s off to Pittsburgh this month to start filming her next movie, The Perks of Being a Wallflower. No word on whisperings that she might transfer to NYU come September, though.

Photo: Emanuele Scorcelletti for Lancome

Rachel McAdams Goes Retro


The press junket for Rachel McAdams’ new film Morning Glory is officially under way, and the actress chose a strapless, gray Lanvin number for its opening night in New York. She also opted for an interesting coif, which her stylist, Sebastian Professional Stylist design team member Thomas Dunkin, described as “a punch of rock star glam.” We will admit that McAdam’s voluminous, teased-out, rough-dried strands did draw our attention, but only because the style seemed oddly retro. (For the record, Dunkin did indeed employ large Velcro rollers to get the height at McAdams’ roots, which he topped off with Sebastian Professional Matte Putty to give her tresses a dull finish reminiscent of the sixties’ popular rat style). A soft gray cat-eye and a slightly asymmetrical parting added modernity—or “rock star glam,” as it were—but we would’ve preferred something a bit more sexy and sleek with look 39 off Alber Elbaz’ Spring runway. You too?

Photo: Brian Zak / SIPA Press

Beautiful Conformity Backstage at Lanvin


This weekend proved to be an exciting one at the Paris shows, chock-full of beauty heroics that started at Lanvin on Friday, where black wigs à la Uma Thurman’s mop top in Pulp Fiction took center stage. “The thing about a wig is that it completely transforms the girl. It’s a total fantasy,” hairstylist Guido Palau posited backstage. “They look like tough, dominatrix-y bourgeois Frenchwomen, with a nice little cartoonishness to it.” Palau talked with Alber Elbaz about a host of inspirations for the show’s coifs, including manga, but ultimately waited on the word from the designer to proceed. “Alber is brave, because he said, Let’s just go for it.” The rationale behind his decision? “We live in a time when everyone really wants to look alike, so in that sense I am just holding up a mirror,” Elbaz told before the show. To give each girl a uniform, glossy look, Palau simply steamed the $39 vinyl wigs he hand-carried to Paris from Ricky’s in New York City. (If you want to get a similar sleekness at home, he recommends a few spritzes of Redken’s Vinyl Glam for extra sheen). Makeup artist Pat McGrath echoed Elbaz’s desire for homogeny with a strong eye and a beige lip. “It’s all about them looking the same, very malachite,” McGrath said, creating a base with CoverGirl Simply Ageless foundation and then applying a custom-made nude lip and a theatrical “aged gold” eye, which she achieved using Cover Girl LiquidLine Blast black eyeliner and a mix of metallic pigments for “flashes of eyes” as the girls walked the runway. Conformity never looked so good.

Photo: Greg Kessler /