Backstage Beauty: Alexandre Herchovitch Fall 2014

It’s been said that life imitates art, but what about art imitating art? At Alexandre Herchovitch Bumble and Bumble lead hairstylist Rolando Beauchamp taps the provocative paintings of Egon Schiele and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec to create his frizzed coiffures. “The collection this season is inspired by the Victorian era, so I started thinking about [the] paintings, where women have very tousled hair around the face and [the rest is] put up in buns,” says Beauchamp.

To create the untamed fuzz, he first sections the models’ locks around the perimeter of the head and saturates them with Bumble and Bumble Does It All or Spray de Mode. Next, he backcombs and teases the sections, flat irons and brushes them out, and then uses his hands to create a halo effect with veil pieces around the right eye. To finish, Beauchamp pulls the remaining hair back into a tight bun and spritzes with Thickening Dryspun Finish to give the look a matte touch.

While the hair design draws from a definitive time period for inspiration, the makeup look is all about colors in the collection. “It’s not about… Russian winters,” laughs MAC lead makeup artist Philippe Chansel. “When I work with Alexandre it’s really more about the collection. We wanted to get the feeling of fall because there is a whole section [in the collection] that’s tonal peaches, nudes and very light colors.” To mirror the neutral shades found in the duds, he applies MAC Mineralize SPF Foundation, Pro Full-Coverage Foundation NW35 and Pro Full Coverage Foundation NC15 to the face. “We’re creating very contoured, highlighted and beautiful dewy skin—the usual fashion-speak backstage. I’m waiting for the day when someone says we want very heavy, cake-y, dry-looking skin!” Chansel jokes. For the eyes, he brushes and blends a dark, burgundy cream (a color in the MAC Organic Cream Eyeshadow Fall 14 Trend Forecast Eye Palette, available in the fall) into the crease and outer corners of the eye and applies just one coat of mascara to emphasize the natural lashes. By mixing Coquettish and Dusty Mauve (both colors in the MAC Fall 14 Trend Forecast Lip Palette, available in the fall) a mauve-y, frosty lip is born. And for a glimmering touch, Chansel creates an accented gold eyebrow by brushing Mixing Medium Eyeliner and MAC Pigment in Gold through the brow. “It’s like an embellishment—a piece of jewelry for the face!” he exclaims.

For nails, a deep-red (Zoya Nail Polish in Sasha) half moon at the cuticle mimics the cherry-red found in the clothes as well as the burgundy in the crease of the eye. But the continuity doesn’t stop there. The shiny, dewy-looking nude base color is also a reflection of the makeup design. “The skin is luminous and soft so we created a nude look on the nails which is also luminous,” shares Zoya Creative Director Rebecca Isa. And not just any nude is used. Isa customizes the polish shades to match each model’s skin tone so that color flows seamlessly from their skin to the nail. Manicurists start by pulling up the models’ inner sleeves and checking to see whether Zoya Nail Polish in Chantal or Cho matches closest to their skin tone (most of the models are fair) and then paint one coat of whichever color marries best. They then top it with one coat of a sheer French manicure shade. “If someone has a little more gold in their skin, we would use Zoya Tasha; if someone has a little more white in their skin, we would use Sabrina; if they have a little more pink in their skin we’d use Loretta,” Isa says. The customized colors also represent the individuality of the woman in the collection. “The collection has a very feminine feel to it and [Alexandre’s] viewpoint was about the uniqueness of the woman, femininity and strength. We felt that if we just did a one-size-fits-all [color] it wouldn’t suit his vision,” she explains.

– Molly Church

[Photos courtesy of Zoya; Molly Church]

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