Reminiscing With…Kara Yoshimoto Bua
Beauty Nostalgia is a column on Beauty Counter in which we ask influencers, tastemakers, and some of our favorite industry experts to wax poetic on the sticks, salves, and sprays that helped shape who they are today.
The pro: Kara Yoshimoto Bua, Chanel makeup artist
The product: “Every day when I was a child, I watched my mom sit with a beautiful hand mirror in front of an antique Japanese vanity and paint her face. I gave her a hard time for taking so long, and I told her she didn’t need makeup. My mom is exquisitely beautiful—like a Japanese doll and a true artist. I studied her technique as she prepared her “canvas” by shaping her eyes with shadow and then carefully applying her perfect cake eyeliner using a small pointed paintbrush. It was a ritual, the way she got ready for the day. It was the way a woman took care of herself and a meditation. She wasn’t looking at herself in a vain way, but in an artist’s way.
As a teenager in San Francisco, I went to shows with artists, musicians, and DJs…all the punk rockers, new wavers, death rockers, glam rockers, mods, and skaters. Everyone had major style…it was the underground eighties. That’s when I was introduced to black eyebrow pencil. I channeled my mom’s style but had my own technique. I would take a lighter to warm up the hard eyebrow pencil and draw the perfect black line across the top lash line, carefully pointing the end. The liner would harden and stay on for days! You would never catch me without my liner. That was my makeup style: black eyeliner, nothing else. I no longer have that pencil, but my new version is Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner in Noir Intense.”—As told to Kari Molvar