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Messy Top Knots and Iridescent Eyes at Alexandre Herchcovitch Spring 2012





Brazilian designer Alexandre Herchcovitch steered away from his oft experimental, avant-garde aesthetic for Spring 2012, instead masterminding a collection rife with prim and ladylike silhouettes in muted pink and beige tones, with many of the retro-tinged frocks constructed using shimmering satin fabrics. It was an unexpected turn for the designer, whose quirky, theatrical collections draw inspiration from such varied sources as volcanic formations, director Sergei Parajanov’s cinematography, the workers’ garments of Brazilian miners, and the Italian Renaissance. Still, the collection was as beautiful as all its predecessors, incorporating vintage fabrics dating back to the 1950s and embellishing them with such accents as opal stones.

Lead makeup artist Philippe Chansel of MAC Cosmetics drew inspiration from Herchcovitch’s nostalgic silhouettes and pretty fabrics when designing the makeup look for the Spring 2012 show. To modernize the 1950s motif, he kept skin luminous and fresh, with a slight peaches and cream quality to it. He started out by applying the new MAC Matchperfect Foundation which offers great coverage but looks so natural that it’s practically imperceptible on the skin. Using just a touch of cream cheek color, he contoured cheekbones for a healthy peachy pink flush. Lips were also kept understated and natural-looking with a mix of orange and red MAC Tendertones Lip Balms that heightened pouts’ natural rosiness as opposed to coating puckers with full-bodied color.

The eye look Chansel delivered the shining touch — both literally and figuratively. To mimic the iridescence of the opal stones on Herchcovitch’s clothing, Chansel mixed several colors of MAC Pro Reflects Glitter — Pearl, Vibrant Red, Transparent Teal, and Jewelmarine — and smoothed them atop models’ lids, which were previously covered with MAC’s Pro Longwear Gloss Coat so as to create a sticky surface that would allow all the glittery speckles to remain on lids instead of drizzling onto cheeks. Sparkle aside, the glitter speckles added a holographic effect, so that models’ lids seemed to change colors depending on how the light hit them, with the teal undertones overpowering the other hues in certain scenarios or the pink tints dominating in different lighting.

In terms of the hair created for the show, Rolando Beauchamp of Bumble and Bumble created two very clean, simple looks: the first was a messy bun while the second consisted of loose, face-framing hair with soft waves near the ends.

The girls who wore their hair down also donned hats, so Beauchamp wanted to give their manes controlled volume. To create the sleek blowout, he spritzed the Bumble and Bumble Thickening Spray onto tresses, blowdried hair, brushed the top of the head back, then secured these strands at the top of the head with a tight net to keep hair in place. Next, he took a 1 1/2 inch curling iron and curled the bottom sections of hair strands, starting about four or five inches from the ends. He then released the curled sections and ran his fingers through them to create softer waves. When the models were ready to line up for the show, he then placed the hats atop their heads.

The remaining models in the show wore their hear up in slightly messy knots. Beauchamp wanted the look to appear effortless, as if a woman in the ’50s had spontaneously swept her hair up, raking it back with her fingers and tying it into a knot. To create the look, he spritzed the Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray all along the area framing the face to give the hair a rough, mussy, lived-in feel. The hair was then brushed back and worked into a bun-like knot positioned near the nape of the neck.

Together, the hair and makeup tapped into the ladylike sophistication of the 1950s, while also referencing the easiness of modern day interpretations of chicness.

The nails created for the Alexandre Herchcovitch Spring 2012 show echoed the shimmery effect of the opalescent eye makeup. CND nail artist Wanda Ruiz designed a “Sugar Babe” manicure for the occasion, staring with clear artificial nails, then brushing the fast-drying CND Air Dry Top Coat on each nail’s surface, subsequently sprinkling snowy white glitter atop each nail. Last, she added an additional stroke of Air Dry down the middle of each nail and sprinkled on more glitter so as to give the center of each nail even more sparkle.

Check out the interviews with Rolando Beauchamp, Wanda Ruiz, and Philippe Chansel above and don’t miss the additional backstage photos after the jump!


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