GLOSSARY OF ART
The things that inspire me the most exist outside the world of beauty: art history, architecture, fashion, literature, and interior design. In fact, one of the pieces I am working on outside of this blog is on femmes savants and salon culture in eighteenth-century Paris. In early 1700s, Paris was the social capital of Europe, and the Rococo salon was the center of Parisian society. These salons and society life existed in close proximity to the worlds of politics, literature, art, fashion, and business. Strikingly, the French salons suggest the taste and social initiative of women, as female taste was a defining factor in private spheres and a new Parisian landscape. Exploring the dual influence and reciprocity of aesthetics between interior design and fashion enhances one’s ability to see and create beauty.
I wanted to play with the architecture of this modern day salon—the sitting room of a penthouse suite, which is very much in line with salon culture, because the Parisian salons were housed in private residences—and create a beauty look from its design and ornamentation. I was inspired by the textures and accents of this interior: the room divider, gold accoutrements, and pop of red velvet. I wanted to incorporate the colors and textures to create a whimsical look that reflects its source. Read on for a bold look that will take you through the flights of champagne and cake this festive season.
MATTE AND GLOW
It’s no secret that dewy skin is the season’s most coveted accessory (read my definitive guide to strobing here). I love this video from Into The Gloss, where French makeup artist, Violette, showcases this multidisciplinary approach to makeup. I love the artistry behind her technique in her museum-inspired makeup, in particular, how she draws from the light in Renaissance and Neoclassical paintings to create a complexion with a similar luminosity and dimension.
To create the perfect balance between matte and glow, light and shadow, I’m employing a slightly different technique today with the velvet textures of the bespoke furniture as the focal point of the look. For a luxurious matte finish that still maintains an effortless radiance, start with a color-correcting base such as Laneige Water Base CC Cream in Peach Pink for a flawless canvas. This also helps to prep the complexion to carry a bold lip by counteracting any redness in this skin. This CC cream performs triple duty to brighten the skintone, provide a lightweight layer of coverage and enhance radiance. Next, create a satin-matte complexion with Chanel Vitalumiere Compact Douceur, a gorgeous pressed powder foundation that provides a soft finish without looking cakey. (RAEview has raved about this in her Asia-Exclusive beauty haul).
The secret to pulling off a red lip is to keep the rest of your makeup muted: a barely-there blush and subtle contouring is all you need. Using a small bronzer blush, work Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder in Medium under your cheekbones and along the jawline, followed by a light layer of Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Ethereal Glow. (PS. if you’re in the market for a new contour powder, Kevyn Aucoin has a Holiday contour and highlight palette featuring the sculpting powder and more.)
The pièce de résistance is Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited Supreme Matte in Sensual Red, which is also perfect for the holiday season. On my neutral skin tone, this blue-based red is striking enough without being too harsh because of the hint of burgundy. Warmer skin tones should look for an orange-based red, while cooler skin tones can opt for a true red, (MAC Russian Red is the go-to option). Help your lipstick last by pressing a tissue over your lips and dusting a light layer of loose powder through the paper barrier.
The final steps are optional, but nice if you want an extra polish: the best way to create a radiant-matte complexion is layering different powders and highlighters. The texture of NARS Illuminating Loose Powder is a miracle in a jar, it pairs perfectly with all my BB creams and cushion foundations without diminishing the glow factor. Lastly, dust Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Powder in No.1 Marinière LE on the high points of the cheek and the center of the forehead for an all-over glow. To accent the red velvet, YSL La Laque Couture in 7 Prune Minimale and Dior Gel Coat are the perfect finishing touches in this salon-inspired look.
Laneige Water Base CC Cream in Peach Pink