April 20 2014

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44 posts tagged "Estee Lauder"

When Tom Met Derek



Derek Lam’s aesthetic is much like his approach to the culinary arts: “He doesn’t like to mix too many things,” said backstage fixture and creative makeup director of Estée Lauder, Tom Pecheux—the face painter with whom the designer has worked with since his very first show in 2004. “The flavors are very simple—he always starts with the quality of the ingredient,” he added. So when it came to creating a collection of cosmetics (out in January) with the storied beauty brand, it was only natural that Lam wouldn’t be launching an extensive line of products. “He’s not the kind of person that travels with three suitcases—Derek travels with a carry-on bag. My makeup bag is one bag. I believe that I can make anything you want with what I have,” quipped Pecheux. Taking that same approach, they packaged the five essentials the modern woman needs to complete her makeup “wardrobe” from day to night—a navy kajal crayon, gold cream shadow, black mascara, tawny liquid lipstick, and shimmery champagne gloss—into a blue satin minaudière. This same set of cosmetic tools was used to create the trio of buildable looks seen on the designer’s Spring 2014 runway. “We could have developed [an entire range], but that’s not Derek and that’s not me. I’d prefer to have the right product, than a lot,” he said. This dynamic duo seems to share the same brain, with one exception: “He likes to follow a recipe, and then afterwards, twist it. I never look at a recipe. I go to the market and see what there is. That’s why I never ask him what he’s working on, so I don’t have too many things floating around [in my head]. The makeup is always the cherry on the cake,” Pecheux explained. Here, I interviewed both designer and maquillage master separately—only to find that they were almost always on the exact same page:


What was your first reaction to Tom’s interpretation of “minimal” for your Spring show?

DL: My first reaction was “Terrific!” because I know that when I work with Tom, even when I say something simple, or if I say, “I just want it to be a no-makeup face,” he knows what I’m talking about. So when he came to me with the idea for the three looks, it was amazing because that’s exactly how I considered the evolution of the collection and how it was going to be shown on the runway. He picked up on one of the [prints], which in this case, was the check, and he reinterpreted it for the eye. Seeing one element, and kind of evolving it is also really what I do.

Do you also ascribe to his theory on blue? He’s said so many times that navy is so much less severe than black.

Oh yeah, absolutely. That’s again one of those things that we both share. I love navy for evening clothes. I just think it’s so flattering and welcoming. It’s also very understated, and in that way, [navy is] a little bit subversive. It’s got an unexpected quality.

If you had to choose, what is your favorite product in the collection?

DL: I love the eyeliner in Near Night…It’s the closest to my heart in terms of if you only had to have one product a beautifully outlined eye is always the thing to do.

TP: I do love the creamy eyeshadow in gold. It’s almost like a chic, luxurious nude color. It’s not too brown and works on every skin tone. The navy blue pencil is going to be your best friend, or your worst enemy, because it’s so stable it can be tough to take off!

What was your inspiration behind the clutch?

TP: I like a coffret. I used to be a smoker, but I quit. I thought the cigarette holder was really chic. Derek was very excited about it—but cigarettes are not necessarily good things to promote—so he thought about doing a clutch [instead].

DL: I always think [about] adding an element of glamour. She could have [this] little clutch in her tote or in her bag during the day…then [take it out] for the evening. I think that shows the romantic quality and how we view the collection [being incorporated] into a woman’s life. Doing it in a striped quilting is a play on something that’s [traditionally tied to] sportswear, but also translatable to evening.

Is there a beauty trend the Derek Lam woman would never try?

DL: I think that it’s anything that’s obvious. For the runway, we do add hair extensions, but we don’t do false eyelashes—it all stems from the idea of natural beauty.

TP: We’ve never used anything fake…fakeness is not part of our vocabulary.

Can you give me a sneak peek of what you have in mind for the beauty look for Fall?

TP: We never talk about his fashion. As much as we are friends and really adore working together, we rarely talk about business. Whatever he’s doing in February, I have no clue.

DL: Oh, it’s so soon, and now we’re in the midst of it! But I think that colors are so important. Last Fall, I did a very muted collection, and even Spring was relatively muted—with only the hit of bright yellow. I hope that when Tom sees the board we’ll get inspired and we can do something really exciting or unusual for the face.

I can’t wait to see what you both cook up come February.


Estée Lauder Derek Lam Collection, available January 2014 at

Photos: Courtesy of Estée Lauder

Take a Page From Aerin’s Book


Aerin Lauder

Aerin Lauder, granddaughter of the legendary Estée and founder of her own eponymous lifestyle brand (Aerin), has added author to her long list of titles. Her newly launched book, Beauty at Home, allows you to explore her Manhattan apartment, Madison Avenue office with a view, and Hamptons retreat. Aside from sneaking a peak at her closet and reading about her tea parties at the Plaza Hotel (she’s somewhat like a real, live Eloise), you get a better sense of her aesthetic and how she brings that to her line of cosmetics, candles, fragrances, furnishings, and accessories. Whether it’s the mix of modern with the contemporary, a love of bold prints and textures, or her willingness to experiment with color—you see all of these themes reflected in her workspace and homes. And since a lady never reveals all of her secrets, I had a few more questions about what was hiding in her drawers and how she keeps her bevy of beauty products stylishly contained:

Is your dressing table organized like your grandmother’s? [One drawer for lipsticks, another for eyeliners, etc.]

No, I wish I was that organized! I like to edit my products. I keep one of my shagreen trays full of beauty products and objects.

Are there specific products that you keep in all places—your apartment, office, and country home?

Yes, I bring my Rose Lip Conditioner with me wherever I go, and I usually take a seasonal palette in my bag as well.

Do you keep any beauty products in your nightstand?

Aerin Rose Hand & Body Cream and Estée Lauder Re-Nutriv cream.

Is there a certain piece of decor that your grandmother referenced for a particular cosmetic or collection?

Estée’s favorite color combination was blue and white—she used it everywhere, from her home to her product packaging. This constantly influences me. The Ikat Jasmine Aerin fragrance box (shown above) is the perfect example.

You love keepsakes, but don’t feel the same way about clutter. How do you keep your bathroom/vanity neat when you’re consistently testing products?

I love using pretty decorative accessories, such as nesting bowls, to store products.

Does your theory on paint extend to cosmetics? ["If you don’t like a paint color, you can always change it. The important thing is to give it a try. If you don't, you'll never know."] Is there a shade you’d never wear?

I don’t see myself in a dark brown lipstick. Some people can pull it off really well, but it’s just not my color.

What was the best tip you learned from your grandmother regarding home decor?

Estée taught me to see gold as the perfect neutral; as a result, I use a lot of gold throughout my collections—it makes everything feel more luxurious.

What about her theories on beauty?

Estée always said, “Everything and everyone can be beautiful if you just take the time.”

Naturally, grandmother knows best.

Photo: Reprinted from BEAUTY AT HOME Copyright (c) 2013 by AERIN LAUDER. Published by Potter Style, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House, LLC, a Penguin Random House Company

Reach For The Stars


Estee Lauder Zodiac CompactsLast week, we called out nail lacquers that are in line with the cosmos and the high fashion times (like the gold Zodiacs wrapped around models’ necks and wrists, embossed on leather totes, and dangling from fringed clutches—all seen at Valentino). But if you can’t wait for these Spring 2014 treasures to arrive in store, you can pick up one of Estée Lauder’s twelve holiday compacts. Done in matte gold and featuring the brand’s Lucidity Translucent Pressed Powder inside, these refillable, astrology-inspired collectibles make powdering your nose in public a far more glamorous gesture. Plus, they’re engravable, so you can write a message among the stars for yourself or a friend.


Photo: Courtesy of Estée Lauder

Baring It All at Balmain


balmain“It took longer to take my makeup off than it did to put it on,” Karlie Kloss said backstage at Balmain. Minimal was an understatement, as makeup artist Tom Pecheux applied concealer only where needed, curled the lashes, and dusted powder across the tops of foreheads to take down shine. He focused mainly on skin care—massaging a combination of Estée Lauder DayWear Advanced Multi-Protection Anti-Oxidant Moisturizer and Revitalizing Supreme Crème into complexions, topping them off with Idealist Pore Minimizing Skin Refinisher for a dewy finish. “We transformed the makeup room into a spa,” he said. Pecheux picked up his soft touch from several pros around the globe, including Tracie Martyn, Terri Lawton, and Loudna at Joël Ciocco in Paris. “There are three pressure points [we are hitting]: under the eyes, inner corners, and beginning of the brow bone,” the face painter explained. He added that without the pampering the makeup-less models would “give him shit.” However, I didn’t hear any complaints—as most girls seemed to be in a blissful state as they sat back and enjoyed a little TLC.

The hair was equally as easy and organic. Sam McKnight misted strands with water to coax out natural texture and applied Magic Move Light (a non-greasy pomade shipped in from Japan via a former assistant) to create a piece-y effect.” The clothes are so high-octane that the Balmain woman is confident enough not to need any artifice,” he said. For girls with frizzier textures, he held sections taut with his hands and blew them straight, using a blow-dryer. Models lucky enough to have a thick head of hair had the under layers braided and tucked away to eliminate the bulk. As for the total package, Pecheux summed it up quite succinctly: “The rawness of a supermodel is different than the rawness of a regular woman.” Well, that’s certainly the understatement of the season.

Photo: Sonny Vandevelde /

Backstage at Anthony Vaccarello: W.W.A.D. (What Would Anja Do?)


Anthony-Vaccarello-beauty-ss-2014The makeup at Anthony Vaccarello, created by Tom Pecheux, was strangely familiar, harking back to Derek Lam’s show a few weeks ago. The French designer asked for something graphic that played up the outer corners of the eyes, which immediately set off alarm bells in the face painter’s head. “I can’t repeat myself, but I still have to respect what he’s looking for,” Pecheux explained. While the shape was small and rectangular on the runway in New York, the first day of Paris fashion week called for something a bit more dramatic—hence, the larger triangle that floated away from the eye. Pecheux cut a stencil into a plastic sheet protector with an X-Acto knife for each member of his team to insure uniformity. “If you freehand, it’s much more romantic. But this is a fashion cosmetic factory; we have to move fast,” he added.

Pecheux prepped models’ complexions with Estée Lauder Idealist Pore Minimizing Skin Refinisher, then mixed a drop of Advanced Night Repair (which helps “Velcro” foundation to the skin) with Double Wear Light Stay-in-Place Makeup. Pure Color Blush in Sensuous Rose was used to contour the cheeks and worked slightly onto the apple to finish. A pinky-nude hue—Pure Color Envy Lipstick in Insatiable Ivory (launching March 2014)—was slicked onto lips with a brush. The handcrafted stencil was then placed against the face so the tip of the triangle hit the highest point of the crease, lifting the eye upward. Using a stiff eyebrow brush, he filled it in with a black shadow from the Pure Color Eye Shadow Duo in Moons, then layered over top with a brighter shade of cobalt (Pure Color Gelée Powder Eye Shadow in Fire Sapphire)—the end result being a midnight blue that picked up on the touches of navy in the collection. Next, he arched the pigment over the crease and ended it just past the inner corner of the eye. Pecheux filled in brows with a pencil that was a touch darker than each model’s hair color, focusing on the inner corners to bring balance to the face.

Inspired by Vaccarello’s introduction of denim into the line, hairstylist Anthony Turner wanted to create a style that was a bit more “street.” And what better reference point than a street-style snapshot of the designer’s close friend Anja Rubik? “We looked at a picture where she was pushing her hands through her hair” he recalled. “So I thought, Why don’t we try to interpret that?” For hold, Turner worked mousse through strands and blew them dry with a few drops of L’Oréal Professionel Mythic Oil and a Mason Pearson brush for smoothness. To get a “poker-straight” finish, he ran a flat iron over top. For a bit of lift in front, True Grip Texturizing Powder was sprinkled in at the roots and back-combed about two inches from the forehead using a rattail comb. He misted all over with Infinium hair spray to polish off the look. “I wanted to maintain the confidence and sexiness that is the Anthony Vaccarello woman but introduce a sportier element,” Turner elaborated. Mission accomplished.

Photo: Sonny Vandevelde /