At Christian Cowan last night, the vibe was unmistakably over the top — and that's not even including the new collection itself. Front row attendees, including long-time Cowan fans and friends, who know to expect nothing short of extravagance from the shows came dressed decked out for the occasion.
On the runway, green and bronze were the key colors of note. Models emerged in glamorous suits, and cocktail dresses topped with obscene amounts of sequins, bows and ruffles. As with everything Cowan, the beauty looks of the evening were also at their flashiest.
Celebrity makeup artist Isamaya Ffrench was behind what morphed into some truly theatrical makeup: heavy glitter, embellishments, ultra thick brows and dark shadows all over rounded out the golden looks.
"The bronze look was very supermodel-y," John Stapleton, the Senior National Artist at MAC, explained backstage. "Christian loves glitter and loves a big look. So it was all about black liner, and contour. I would say it was very 90s supermodel with that sort of crazy, wild, wolf-y eyebrow and then the glitter down the centre of the lips. We just added glitter to the cheekbones, because we should, because why the hell not?"
For those sporting green, however, Stapleton said, the makeup was formulated last minute. "Green is a big color in the collection, so we wanted something with green. To create it, we used the Dazzleshadow Extreme, which we packed on to the lid, and then we did a really big graphic, chunky liner, that's more symmetrical. I would say it's more like liner of the season, we saw it at Chromat and Rag & Bone this season. It's very straight, it's almost like an x-acto blade. It's mainly just to add some toughness, and a little bit of punk, while packing some green glitter on there with a green lip, pressed in with a little bit more eyeshadow."
For the hair, Cowan enlisted hairstylist Laurent Philippon to create messy buns, and ponytails topped with 1950s style birdcage veils that complemented the punk-y vibe. But the party didn't end there.
Japanese nail artist Yukie Natori had her own set of Swarovski crystals soaked nails on display in four primary designs: black nails with crystals, gold nails with Swarovski gold jewelry and nails with ocelot and "pink car print." Some of these were then topped with custom-made nail stickers attached to the tips that Natori created on Photoshop, she told PAPER.
Ultimately though, it was Ffrench who made the biggest beauty statement for the night."The thing about Ismaya that's great is that she's really a wild card," says Stapleton. "She thinks outside of the box, she takes chances and she's not afraid for something to go rogue and be like, 'oh wait a minute, that's good, you know?' So I think doing the makeup with her was always a dream. And when you hire her that's what you get."
Photos courtesy of MAC Cosmetics/ Frank Rocco