Backstage Beauty Brief: Alexander Wang, Prabal Gurung and More

Yesterday was pretty exciting, fashion-wise: Alexander Wang, Prabal Gurung, and Altuzarra all showed collections, and we were lucky enough to be backstage with the beauty teams, too. Click through to check out the cognac ponytails at Wang, a super dramatic eye at Monique Lhuillier, the coolest teenagers ever at Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony and tons more.
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Yesterday was pretty exciting, fashion-wise: Alexander Wang, Prabal Gurung, and Altuzarra all showed collections, and we were lucky enough to be backstage with the beauty teams, too. Click through to check out the cognac ponytails at Wang, a super dramatic eye at Monique Lhuillier, the coolest teenagers ever at Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony and tons more.
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We’re spending the week skulking around backstage at some of the hottest (and coolest) shows at New York fashion week to bring you the best beauty looks, new products, and gossipy tidbits that we pick up in our travels.

Yesterday was pretty exciting, fashion-wise: Alexander Wang, Prabal Gurung, and Altuzarra all showed collections, and we were lucky enough to be backstage with the beauty teams, too.

Click through to check out the cognac ponytails at Wang, a super dramatic eye at Monique Lhuillier, the coolest teenagers ever at Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony and tons more.

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Alexander Wang:

Hair (Guido Palau for Redken): This has to be the craziest hair we've ever seen Wang do. Palau had a bunch of extensions dyed the color of model Irina Kravchenko's hair; Wang loved her hair color when she walked for him last season--it was dubbed "cognac." Palau wanted the models' hair to look "cloned" and have a futuristic effect. He essentially "took away the girls' personalities" by slicking everyone's hair back and then making the red extensions into a wrapped ponytail, which fit perfectly through holes cut through hoods in the garments.

Makeup (Diane Kendal for MAC): Kendal warned that this isn't really a look that will translate to real life--the super contoured matte eye (grey shadow in the contour and grey "grease" up to the brow) made the models' eyes look a bit hollowed out.

Nails (Jan Arnold for CND): The color on the nails creeped us out a bit, but the technique was pretty interesting. Arnold used a fan brush to make an almost streaky, gradient, matte look in a sandstone color (Impossibly Plush). She had used the same technique on her own nails, but done in a metallic grey it looked much more real world and less runway.

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Prabal Gurung:

Hair (Paul Hanlon for Schwarzkopf): This could be the most weather-appropriate hair we've seen so far. The look was "windblown," which pretty much describes how we've looked all week. So it's the messiest chignon ever, with pieces (including flyaways) purposely sticking out and sprayed to stay that way, so it looked like the models were in motion. Prabal wanted an outdoorsy woman who doesn't carry a comb and just throws her hair up when it annoys her.

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Makeup (Charlotte Tilbury for MAC): It's fresh faced and wind-kissed. It's all about the blush--Tilbury used three different colors to get this healthy glow.

Nails (Jin Soon Choi for Sally Hansen): Some of the most tasteful nail art we've seen! Choi used a loden green base with a gold "skinny moon" (inspired by skinny jeans) in the center. We're definitely copying it.

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Altuzarra:

Makeup (Tom Pecheux for MAC): Pecheux used creamy metallic eye shadow on lids, punctuated with a shocking swipe of smudged raspberry under the eye. He put grey eye shadow on the lips but said it doesn't look 'sad' because the pink of the lips neutralizes it. The whole effect was one of punky elegance that he wanted to look "spooky." Mission accomplished.

Hair (Paul Hanlon for Schwarzkopf): Girls were coming from the Alexander Wang show with super slicked back hair, so the hair team had their work cut out for them. The look was ultimately "nonchalant," which means looked very model-off-duty. In fact, Hanlon was inspired by the likes of Kate Moss and Patti Smith.

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Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony:

Hair (Shin for AG): Every girl had a different look in the show. "It totally depends on their personality and character, but it comes a bit from the 60s," Shin said. There were a lot of crops in the lot, and we think Chloe was channeling Lena Dunham just a bit.

Makeup (Mark Carrasquillo for MAC): "The inspiration is a teenager who's doing her makeup for the first time--she just takes a black pencil and wraps it around her eye," Carrasquillo said. "It's not precious at all. It was put on in an anarchy way." There was no skin enhancement at all--no foundation, powder, highlighter. He added lip balm, but before the girls went out they wiped the balm off. "That girl who you sat next to at a club and you had a crush on, but she was so cool you didn't dare talk to her." Yep, sounds like Chloe Sevigny to us!

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Alexandre Herchcovitch:

Hair (Rolanda Beauchamp for Bumble & Bumble): This look is ultra cool, if a little schizophrenic to pull off yourself. It's a split personality look. Beauchamp explains the allure like this: "If you're on one side of the audience, you see one thing. And when she turns, you see the flip." Beginning with a slight side part, one half of the hair is straight and sleek, and the other is a super-tight, folded over braided cornrow. To achieve the look, Beauchamp used Bumble & Bumble's new Full Form Mousse and used his hands to dry the hair super straight. He tightly braided the cornrow on one side, tucks it underneath, and gently flatirons the ends to keep it straight.

Makeup (Gordon Espinet for MAC): Espinet's girl was a sci-fi/manga girl, without a hint of cartoon or clown. "It's about a woman who is so cool she doesn't wear mascara, foundation, lipstick, and likes to play around with makeup as an accessory." Espinet went with a unique and customized eye look for every single girl. Each girl started with a very thin black line above the lashline, followed by a thin line of red, orange, pink, white, or blue, matched to the girl's complexion, eye color, and runway outfit. Espinet followed up with a medium tone outline in the crease.

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Monique Lhuillier:

Hair (Odile Gilbert for Kerastase): A sophisticated graphic look featuring a suede, black ribbon wrapped like "the way they do a bandage around the legs of a horse" around the length of hair. She then twisted it in an undone chignon, pinning it underneath. Monique personally gave Gilbert the ribbon to use for this look.

Makeup (Val Garland for MAC): "It's all about the graphic eye. We're taking the idea of a rectangle and putting it across the eye. To make it more edgy, we're putting a little gap right under the pupil in the center, to make it look a little cooler." Garland used lots and lots of MAC Blacktrack to draw the exaggerated rectangle, extending it from the inner corner to slightly past the eyebrow.

Nails (Essie): An icy grey (Over the Top) for the hands to match the embellishment in the collection. For the toes, a malachite green to add drama and depth, without goth (Stylenomics).