Last time I spoke with Wu, the designer told me to expect a look—and true to his word, he delivered. Seeing as the collection was a bit of a departure from his more structured silhouettes (boasting more fluid, feminine shapes with corset detailing to provide an element of control), the makeup also took a slightly different turn. Instead of the vampy shadow seen at past seasons, face painter Diane Kendal, who helped create Wu's namesake line for Lancôme, opted for a softer, half-moon-shaped cat eye, accented with warm rose gold glitter. "It [looks] like glamorous sand," Wu explained at the hair and makeup test. And while Kendal tried a version with black and silver hues during the fitting, the of-the-moment metallic was ultimately decided upon because it felt more like summer and provided that feeling of "sunshine," she says.
Kendal based the skin and eyelids (giving the glitter something to grip onto) with Lancôme Teint Visionnaire Skin Correcting Duo, then warmed up the cheeks with a light dusting of Blush Subtil in Cedar Rose. To create the spotlight-stealing eyes, the makeup artist sketched Le Crayon Kôhl in Black Coffee along the "banana" and slightly down toward the outer corner before diffusing the line with a fluffy brush. Over top, Kendal added a shimmery camel shadow from the Color Design Eye Brightening All-in-One 5 Pan Shadow & Liner Palette in Bronze Amour—leaving the middle of the lid bare. Jason Wu for Lancôme Artliner in Noir was applied thinly along the upper lash line for definition, and Hypnôse Star Mascara was added for extra drama. Using a damp brush, fine glitter was applied to the center and up to the crease as the finishing touch.
The long and lush tails were no surprise, as the designer was not shy about his affinity for the utilitarian classic. "There are many iterations of T-shirt, tank, and slipdresses within the collection that feel like normal things that you glamourize through lace or beading," Wu said. "The ponytail feels like the hair [equivalent] of that." After working Kérastase Fibre Architect (a reconstructing serum that helps soften split ends) and a liberal misting of Gloss Appeal (a shine spray launching in October) through strands, hairstylist Odile Gilbert flat-ironed sections for a sleek finish before using the end of a rattail comb to create a crisp center part. The length was pulled into a low pony, which was then wrapped with blunt-cut extensions that hit just above the bra line, framing the lace-up detailing on the backs of multiple pieces. Any flyaways were smoothed back from the forehead with Short Mania (a pomade also out in October) and shellacked with La Laque Couture hair spray. To carry through the metal theme and cap off the look, Gilbert snapped in a gold or rose gold clip from Colette, an accessory stylist Kate Young discovered while in Paris. Models with cropped cuts, like Karen Elson—who last sported this length in the Chanel campaigns of the nineties—and Karlie Kloss, were given slick, pushed-behind-the-ears styles. "Everyone feels a little bit more secure with their hair down," Gilbert said. "But when you make your hair look like this, you have nothing to hide—you feel very strong about yourself."