Who is this girl I see, staring straight back at me? When will my reflection show…that the exciting hope of a live-action Mulan is actually coming true?! Well, friends, they may not be making a man out of her, but it has been officially confirmed that a non-cartoon version of everyone’s favourite talking-dragons-and-Attila-the-Hun-centric Disney movie is in the works.
Backstage at fashion week, editors gather around hairstylists, makeup and nail artists to learn about the look they’ve created for the show at hand. After sharing the inspiration for their work (Arctic tundras, ladies who lunch, etc.) they tend to drop some serious beauty wisdom. But as Essie Canada’s Lead Nail Artist Rita Remark told us after we expressed awe at her watercolouring technique, “I do this stuff all the time, I kind of forget what is a tip and what isn’t!” Fortunately, we still know a good tip when we hear one. Below, see 5 beauty tricks shared by the pros backstage at World MasterCard Fashion Week.
1. DIY ombré nails with a makeup wedge. To get the ombré nail at Soia & Kyo, Remark applied polish directly to a makeup wedge before “stamping” it on nails to easily create the smoky gradient.
2. Get a sleeker ponytail by blow-drying hair in a downward direction. The key to a sleek pony, like the one Jorge Joao, International Redken Performing Artist, created for Mikhael Kale is all in the prep. “Even though it’s a simple ponytail,” says Joao, “if we don’t line up that root where we need it to go, you’re not gonna get the result that you want. You want to blow the hair in diagonal downwards direction. You get that root going diagonal down, then you’ll find it’s a lot easier to get a cleaner look.”
3. Wait until nails are dry before you fix misplaced polish. Use a brush with a sturdy edge or an angled Q-tip dipped into acetone to clean up the polish around your cuticles (because you will inevitably miss your nail bed when applying polish at home), but wait until the polish is completely dry. Otherwise, says Remark, the acetone will re-saturate the polish and just drag it down your nail.
4. Use lip balm or primer as a highlighter. Cheat the no-makeup makeup look (and edit your overflowing makeup case) by ditching your highlighter in lieu of lip balm or primer. Backstage, Grace Lee, Maybelline’s Lead Makeup Artists for Canada, used Maybelline Face Studio Master Prime primer and Maybelline BabyLips lip balm on the chin, cupid’s bow and bridge of the nose to get that lit-from-within glow.
5. Use polish and acetone to create a watercolour effect on nails. Use any two polishes and some acetone to get this watercolour look from Mikhael Kale, says Remark. “We achieved this look by dipping an acrylic oval art brush into acetone and then dipping it into the white polish. When you press it lightly over the nail it just blooms slightly, giving this a really beautiful chiffon or stone finish. Don’t overwork it though—that might give you a bald patch on the nail. But if that happens, just cover it with a top coat, which will blend it in.”
Reporting by Katherine Flemming and Victoria DiPlacido.