Afterpay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW) has come and gone for another year, and has certainly left its mark on the beauty front. Established and emerging Australian fashion designers used the platform to showcase their work, against which professional makeup artists based their own unique looks. Across the event’s five days of shows and presentations, four makeup trends in particular shone through. Hannah Gay breaks down the looks worth studying ahead of your next client consultation.
Next To Natural
For a number of designers’ AAFW Resort ‘23 presentations, the brief for makeup artists was to ‘keep it real’. Fresh, clean skin was essential to keep the fashions at the forefront, where mastering a barely-there makeup look was the task at hand. Backstage for Rumer, Lara Srokowski, Makeup Director for Lancome wanted to enhance the models’ natural beauty, telling Hannah Gay that the aim was to “give them a healthy, sun-kissed glow.” The idea was to keep makeup “minimal, polished, and effortlessly chic; the no makeup makeup look”. Therefore, using skincare like the brand’s Genifique serum to prep was essential, topping off with minimal foundation where needed. Bronzer was paramount, used to sculpt the cheekbones, rest under the chin and define the eyes; application techniques Lara said were important to ensure models weren’t to appear washed out.
The trend continued across various shows, from Indigenous Fashion Projects to Matteau. Skincare also dominated at Karla Spetic where Synergie Skin’s Terri Vinson joined makeup artists in tailoring products to the models backstage. Glistening skin teamed with silky silhouettes, layered under arched brows and a soft rosey pout.
At Gyre, makeup artist Emily Fausset took inspiration from the land, particularly the Western Australian red desert, in theming with O&M’s fresh-from-the-ocean wet hair look. Balmy, glossy skin was paired with a soft, blurred orange lip to match back to the garments presented (see Gyre’s line featuring elements of the sea). Bobbi Brown’s Luxe Shine Intense Lipstick in rusty-red Supernova was taken from the lips to the cheeks “to create a blush that marries the look together nicely,” Emily told Hannah Gay backstage. “Don’t be afraid of blush! It can make your skin look really youthful. Realistically, we don’t have time to do our makeup for an hour, which is why I’ve used lipstick on the cheeks – it’s time-efficient.”
Better Off Bright
Bright block colours were everywhere at AAFW this year, especially for the eyes. Blues – whether in the form of a placid sky blue through to a deep cobalt – were seen at Aaizel, Sass & Bide, Daniel Avakian, and Bec & Bridge, to name a few. Brands like Adaptive Clothing Collective utilised a range of poppy shades to match their eclectic wears. Artists played with paintwork at Erik Yvon, and aquatic-inspired pigments at Romance Was Born.
Flickers of rock chick slash sixties doe-eyed shadow were seen on the AAFW runway, adding a rebellious flare to an otherwise modern week of beauty. Shimmery charcoal pencil liner was smudged into the eyes at Michael Lo Sordo, while a clean, heavy line was drawn across the lids at Next Gen. Sass & Bide crafted a messy ‘morning-after’ wing, where Bec & Bridge extended black up to the brow, finishing the lids with a glossy coat.
At Torannce, individual lashes shaped models’ lower lids and were intentionally absent from the top a la Twiggy. For some, brows were left ungroomed, and bronzer appeared exaggerated, making for a decidedly lazy, vintage feel.
Point Of Difference
Many makeup artists opted to gear away from the expected, diving into the world of face paints, body gems and OTT nail art to compliment designers’ work. At Nicol & Ford, uber-pigmented blush reigned supreme for all. Brows were bleached and replaced with stencils, some showcasing a skinny 90s style. Others paraded feminine feline flicks using black liquid liner. The cat-eye trend continued at Lordanes Spyridon, this time partnered with dramatic false lashes in various styles. It was a case of the more face bling, the better with face jewels being a notable addition; the same approach taken at Mariam Seddiq and First Nations Fashion + Design. Striking nail art was prepared by OPI. Glitter and silverware for the eyes featured at Auteur, wirey brows crafted using falsies were found at Jordan Dalah, and raised hollow cat-eyes sat pretty at The Curve Edit.
For more information on AAFW, visit the event website.
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