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Frontier-Inspired Makeup And Nails At Portey Grey Fall 2012

Images of Renée Zellweger‘s Cold Mountain character flashed before our eyes as we watched the China Glaze and Sephora PRO teams at work backstage, readying the models for the Porter Grey Fall 2012 show, which took place in Lincoln Center at 10 a.m. on February 11th. Earthy colors abounded in the makeup and nail looks, as did references to the American frontier (in a decidedly Old West context, that is) and to a close relationship with nature. “Think of women really conquering the modern day, strong yet feminine,” said José Rivera, the makeup artist leading the Sephora PRO Beauty team, from backstage. “Overall, with the makeup, you get a feeling that it’s definitely feminine but still stands on two feet.”

To create this effect, Rivera emphasized clean skin; wind-blown cheeks to indicate an outdoorsy, ready-to-face-the-elements strength; a rich and saturated black lash line (“a structured look to mirror the silhouettes in the collection,” he reasons); and an understated and deconstructed lip look with scattered golden shimmer.

For the complexion, sheer coverage was attained by applying Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20 and dabbing Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Concealer underneath eyes to brighten skin and deliver the necessary camouflage effect while still being imperceptible to the naked eye.  Next, they brushed the Smashbox Halo Hydrating Perfecting Powder, an amino acid- and mineral-rich powder that boasts hydrating and anti-aging benefits. When used in lieu of translucent setting powder, says Rivera, “what you get is a celebration of beautiful skin.”

To achieve the frontier-ready cheek look vital to the overall makeup scheme, Rivera and his team used a combination of pink and rose LORAC Baked Matte Blush in but, rather than using angular strokes, they applied the color using horizontal movements, going straight across from the hairline to the bridge of the nose. By doing so, the blush brush grazed the top of the cheekbone, thereby creating the more severe windswept flush desired. To add a sun-soaked effect, a tad of the Hourglass Illume Creme-to-Powder Bronzer in Sunset was dabbed along the cheekbone region.

The eye look, meanwhile, centered on emphasizing the lash line, with no intricate eye shadow blends created. Following the natural shape of the eye, the makeup artists added a touch of taupe color to lids by layering two Make Up For Ever Eyeshadows: #76 Beige, a matte caramel hue, and #4 Black , a sooty matte black shade. The most time-consuming portion of the eye makeup, however, involved creating the “tightrope,” the appearance of a dense lash line with no gaps or bald spots. This process involved carefully tracing the area in between lashes, right at the lashes’ very root, with the Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes liner in Mat Black 0L, taking great care to ensure that the lashes’  base appeared to be one thick, dense, sturdy line. “You’re almost coloring in the lashes, which gives them a level of strength and structure,” explained Rivera. Brows were brushed upward and darkened slightly with the Anastasia Brow Powder Duo and set in place with the Anastasia Tinted Brow Gel. Last, a touch of Lancôme Definicils Mascara was applied to the fringe of the lashes.

Lips were a muted nude color with just a touch of scattered shimmer, a look attained via the Sephora Collection Lip Attitude Star Lipstick in Impertinent Nude #24, which Rivera further muted and deconstructed by mixing it with a clear, glossy but non-sticky lip balm.

In keeping with the out-in-the-wilderness theme of the makeup, nails were painted a rich chocolate brown shade from China Glaze dubbed Call of the Wild — part of the On Safari collection, which is scheduled to hit shelves in late Summer 2012. First, a base coat was applied so as not to stain nails with the dark shade. Then, two coats of Call of the Wild were brushed on. Last, a top coat was added to give the color longevity along with shine.

According to China Glaze key nail artist Josephine Moore, we should expect to see a lot of these wonderfully rich chocolate browns and deep crimsons for Fall 2012, all with a very velvety, creamy, succulent texture.

Check out more backstage photos after the jump and make sure to watch our video interviews with José Rivera and Josephine Moore (embedded above).

Stay tuned for more news from New York Fashion Week!

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