Fashion Week SS16; The 30 Hottest Makeup Looks

For the past month or so, those of you who follow Mascara Wars over on Instagram will have been getting our updates featuring the stand out makeup creations from Fashion Week on a daily basis –  and for those of you who don’t, what are you waiting for!? Here we present our edit of the absolute best of the best of those hundreds of daily picks, be that the most original, the most heart-wrenchingly dreamy, the boldest and most unusual, the most beautiful, or simply the ones that make us makeup artists go ooooh. Enjoy!

1. Nicholas K

Key Artist; Sarah Lucero

NYFW started with a bang with this gorgeously wearable look at Nicholas K. Sarah Lucero, Stila’s Director of Creative Artistry and her team created a look all about perfect creamy matte skin, against which the warm metallic golds of the eyes could really pop. The smokey, underswept cat’s eye shape was deepened with Stila’s brown Smudge Stick in Lionfish, rimmed in sultry black kohl and finished with a soft, muted warm lip. Heavenly.

fashion-week-makeup-ss15-pat-mcgrath-givenchy (Copy)2. Givenchy

Key Artist; Pat McGrath

Pardon my French but HOLY SH*TBALLS. I didn’t think it was possible for Pat McGrath to top last season’s “Victorian Chola” look at Givenchy, but she only went and did it! I actually gasped when I first saw these shots.

The show opened with the majority of models walking the runway wearing a look McGrath described has having “a softness, but also a strangeness” – bleached brows, minimal skin work and a ghostly greyish brown smolder of shadow around brown mascara’d eyes. Joan Smalls and Imaan Hammam alone had contrasting strong brows a high gloss, deep wine lip added to their looks.

However, the pièce de résistance were the five models bedecked in unique and hand-applied masks of gems, pearls and lace, in a process that took upwards of five hours, to create mind-blowing makeup looks that were “romantic, organic, all about pattern” and absolutely jaw-dropping. I think Ricardo Tisci and Pat McGrath might be my new favourite dream team.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-pat-mcgrath-diesel (Copy)3. Diesel Black Gold

Key Artist; Pat McGrath

Pat McGrath killing it yet again with stamped on rock n roll eyeliner at Diesel Black Gold. Each season there are a handful of looks that are so simple but so stunning in that simplicity, and this season’s Diesel look was one of those for me.

So modern, clean, wearable, cool , bold, yet understated etc etc, I could go on. Clean skin, heavily lined eyes, top to bottom, inside out, corner to corner. Done.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-anna-sui-pat-mcgrath (Copy)4. Anna Sui

Key Artist; Pat McGrath

A bit of an embarrassing Pat McGrath theme here – what can I say she does a lot of shows! It’s not my fault she’s throwing out flawless makeups left right and centre, the woman slows for no one!

At Anna Sui she hit us with this gorgeous rich deep claret lip  (a mix of Cover Girl’s shades in Seduce Scarlet, Fine Wine and Amazing Auburn) and warm golden skin, kicking off a massive trend seen this season for dark lips for Summer. Seasonal makeup really is a thing of the past these days, McGrath herself said of the shade, “Makeup is different now, you do what you want and you’re not dictated by seasons. Deep reds are always hot. And, if you decide to wear it as a stain, and not a full lipstick, that’s equally as hot.”

fashion-week-makeup-2216-the-blonds (Copy)5. The Blonds

Key Artist; Kabuki

Zero messing about with this metallic gold Egyptian liner from Kabuki at The Blonds! An unusal trend spotted a few times throughout the shows, metallic “sticker” eye appliques were taken to the next level here with designs inspired by Cleopatra, the Sphinx and various elements of Egyptology. Kabuki described the collection that inspired his creations as “a fantasy of ancient Egypt set to a disco beat.” Love!

fashion-week-ss16-makeup-zandra-rhodes (Copy)6. Zandra Rhodes

Key Artist; Andrew Gallimore

The awesome makeup looks at London Fashion Week kicked off at Zandra Rhodes with this exercise in rainbow squiggles, stick on gems and good times from Andrew Gallimore and the team at MAC Cosmetics, with some help from the local art shop. Gallimore described the creations as being “very Zandra”, and took the designers signature candy coloured patterns as his inspiration. Fashion can take itself far too seriously sometimes, but not with these guys, this was one gloriously childlike look that was pure FUN.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-daks (Copy)7. Daks

Key Artist; Maria Comparetto

Silent film star Mary Pickford was the original muse for Maria Comparetto at Daks, who took that 20s look and gave it a modern twist with what she called “mashed up lashes”!

Her team used MAC’s Penultimate Eye Liner to rough-draw on bottom lashes, before “mashing” long layered falsies with layer upon layer of thick mascara. Set against fresh clean skin and little else, the blacker than black falsies had seriously high impact.

fashion-week-ss16-gareth-pugh-val-garland (Copy)8. Gareth Pugh

Key Artist; Val Garland

And then THIS HAPPENED. Val Garland made me lose my mind at Gareth Pugh with these stocking faced beauties painted up like freaky clown divas!

The looks, painted in MAC Acrylic Paint were described gloriously by Garland as being “Schizo disco, plastic pulp, Soho sex club. With inspirations taking in Donna Summer juxtaposed with Lindsay Kemp and a bit of drag queen Divine.” We are not worthy!

fashion-week-ss16-makeup-lucia-pieroni-mary-katrantzou-lashes (Copy)9. Mary Katrantzou

Key Artist; Lucia Pieroni

Mascara Wars fave Lucia Pieroni created girls she described as “odd dolls – pretty, but in a weird way” for Mary Katrantzou.

Natural skin with peachy flushed cheeks and lips were the backdrop for lashes heavily dosed with mascara, but in a unique twist, applied only to the centre of the eye. Some models rocked the look in black, some in plum, but it was those rocking lashes painted with MAC’s Acrylic Paint in Hi Def Cyan that really packed punch.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-paul-smith (Copy)10. Paul Smith

Key Artist; Petros Petrohilos

One of my favourite creations from all of this season’s shows, was the beautifully simple look with elegant graphic brows from Petros Petrohilos at Paul Smith. Bold and delicate, modern and classic, all at the same time, the look inspired by Wallace Simpson reminded me of the gorgeous purity of last season’s brow look at Missoni.

The brows were set against skin glowing with MAC’s rather exciting upcoming Strobe Cream shade extension in Red, which gave a pinkish glow to the cheeks, described by Petrohilos as  “a very modern version of blush”.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-barbara-casaola-alex-box (Copy)11. Barbara Casasola

Key Artist; Alex Box

Stunning looks from Alex Box, described poetically as “architectural high points over sensual earth washes,” featuring bold white liner at Barbara Casasola. The gorgeous descriptions didn’t end there, with the beautiful white details set against earthy skin being described as “clean and hopeful, like a white cloud floating over the sky.” Sigh.

However it wasn’t all poetry, in order to get those lashes squeaky clean before adding the bright white liner, Alex dropped a seriously useful mascara removal tip! “I’ve discovered a new technique for getting the lashes completely clean kind of by accident,” she said. “You take two clean lash wands and dip them in eye makeup remover.  Then hold one over the top of the eyelash and the other underneath and roll them down the lash together.” Trying that one, thanks Alex!

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-marques-almeida-terry-barber-neon-goth (Copy)12. Marques Almeida

Key Artist; Terry Barber

“Shakespeare’s Sister after a night out” was the absolute gem of inspiration behind the bold gothic looks with a splash of neon from MAC’s Terry Barber at Marques Almeida. “She’s the girl who likes things with a slightly raw edge. She doesn’t like makeup that’s particularly luxurious,” said Barber of the girls rocking various shades of brown, jade green and fuchsia, dropped down beneath the eyes, applied with what he called “a very street feel.”

“This girl had beautiful makeup on, then she went out, danced and sweated, and what she’s left with is actually better than the original,” said Barber. “Rawness has to exist to make the prettiness look modern – no matter what the YouTube tutorials say, a woman is a woman, not a perfect diagram.” A-frickin-MEN.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-alberta-ferretti-charlotte-tilbury-bronzed (Copy)13. Alberta Ferretti

Key Artist; Charlotte Tilbury

Every fashion week has an abundance of nude makeups, and it can be hard to get excited about each and every one, but when they’re this beautiful you can’t help but stop and take notice! Charlotte Tilbury created stunning, glowing “dreamy desert goddesses” in hues of iridescent bronzes, golds and pinks at Alberta Ferretti that were to die for.

Favourite shades used in the look were MAC’s classic shade Woodwinked on the eyes, applied alongside Cream Colour Bases in Pearl and Impropper Copper to the high points of the face and the lips, finished with a genius use of Da Bling eyeshadow to cheekbones and pouts for even more of that ethereal golden glow.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-moschino-90s-supermodel-linda-evangelista-tom-pecheux (Copy)14. Moschino

Key Artist; Tom Pecheux

Linda is back! 90s supermodel realness was in full effect from Tom Pecheux at Moschino, with beauty looks channeling The Big Four; aka Claudia Schiffer, Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell and namely, Linda Evangelista!

“People know Jeremy (Scott, Moschino’s Creative Director) for being over-the-top, and we always do something very animated and cartoonish, but this has a more chic, couture, refined element,” said Pecheux, before giving us everything. Flawless glowing skin, contours, highlighters, liquid liner, lashes, lipstick, the lot, to supermodel-worthy effect.

fashion-week-ss16-prada-pat-mcgrath-gold-lipstick (Copy)

15. Prada

Key Artist; Pat McGrath

Pat McGrath was back and gave us this seriously money makeup at Prada, with models rocking looks representing”conservative eccentricity” – perfectly conservative neatly applied lips, but subverted, in high impact GOLD.

And what was the gold product in question? McGrath wasn’t telling. But has since revealed it to be shade #Gold001, the first shade released from her long-awaited makeup line Pat McGrath Labs. A PAT MCGRATH MAKEUP LINE?! Oh my gosh, hold me.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-etro-charlotte-tilbury (Copy)16. Etro

Key Artist; Charlotte Tilbury

Classic Charlotte Tilbury was on the menu at Etro with an army of ethereal “Lady of the Lake” inspired dreamy ballerina girls, rocking creamy skin, fluffy brows, freckles and glossy eyes.

In a heavenly look that was all highlights and soft shimmering shades of mink, oyster and bronze, Tilbury’s team used MAC’s classic Eye Kohl in Teddy to give added definition to the lash line and really open up the eyes, before adding that magical finishing touch of gloss.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-lotstar-cividini (Copy)17. Cividini

Key Artist; Lottie Stannard

We often see the same names and faces keying the majority of fashion week shows, so it was a delight to see the awesome Lottie Stannard (aka Lotstar) heading up the team at Cividini. If you don’t know the work of Lotstar yet, do yourself a favour and check it out!

She gave us a painted on graphic eye look that was both super refined and super fun, all symmetry and clean edges and PINK! Lots of pink. More please Lotstar!

fashion-week-ss16-makeup-tom-pecheux-marni-twiggy-false-lashes (Copy)18. Marni

Key Artist; Tom Pecheux

“Not too ladylike, not too doll-face” was the approach behind the elegantly messy Twiggy style lashes that were the playful focal point from Tom Pecheux at Marni. Not a scrap of mascara or eye makeup in sight made these cartoonishly long lashes look almost… real?!

He went on to describe the look as ” a crazy magic forest for the eyes”. Even better! His team painstakingly cut up a variety of MAC’s 48, 7 and 33 strip lashes to give each girl a bespoke fluttering lash look of her own.

fashion-week-ss16-armani-red-mascara (Copy)19. Giorgio Armani

Key Artist; Linda Cantello

What better way to end Milan Fashion Week than with a dose of RED mascara from Linda Cantello at Armani?! We’ve seen plum and maroon mascara before, both of which give warm yet somehow understated colour to a smoky eye, but these ruby lashes really take things up a notch.

Cantello set the custom mixed mascara against a soft, pearly, grey smoky eye, with the red lashes giving a real contemporary look to such a classic eye makeup. And yes, you will be able to get your hands on that geranium red mascara! Since 2015 the Armani Runway Lab has been backstage at the Armani collections, namely a selection of loose bases and pigments that allow artists to mix and create custom products live for the shows. These products are then made available to the rest of the world in a limited edition collection, just in time for the season in question. Eyes To Kill Excess Mascara in Shade 4 Rouge Iron will be available May 2016!

fashion-week-ss16-makeup-pat-mcgrath-margiela-2 (Copy)20. Maison Margiela

Key Artist; Pat McGrath

Pat McGrath! With Galliano! At Margiela! So many amazing looks I don’t know where to start! Since their days designing show-stopping and now iconic makeups together during Galliano’s reign at Dior, these two are a creative force to be reckoned with, and I eagerly await the creations they unleash together each season. As always, they didn’t let us down!

The myriad looks that graced the runway stretched from glam-rock inspired silver starbursts to Japanese leaf-like designs in shades of cobalt blue, each perfectly unique, and as we’ve come to expect from this pairing, outlandishly, eccentrically beautiful.

fashion-week-ss16-makeup-alex-box-guy-laroche (Copy)21. Guy LaRoche

Key Artist; Alex Box

Alex Box gave us visions in unkempt winged liner at Guy LaRoche, with her team creating organic, individual designs in shades of navy and ochre, set against skin inspired by “tropical humidity”.

You’ve gotta love a look that’s both bold and totally wearable, and that hot skin created with MAC’s new Studio Waterweight Foundation and highly anticipated Strobe Cream shade extension in Gold is Summer heat personified!

fashion-week-ss16-makeup-dries-van-nouten (Copy)22. Dries Van Noten

Key Artist; Peter Philips

At Dries Van Noten, Peter Philips gave us banging blue glitter liner for models to represent “a natural girl, who dares things… she is not afraid of color, she’s not afraid of expressing herself, even of being eccentric.”

And that dash of eccentricity came from creating a no-makeup look, with fresh skin and barely a touch of lip balm, where that dash of sparkling liner was the perfect dazzling makeup accessory.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-isamaya-ffrench-aganovich-letters (Copy)23. Aganovich

Key Artist; Isamaya Ffrench

Our love affair with the wonderful mind of Isamaya Ffrench continues each time she pops up at Fashion Week, unfailingly giving us something we’ve never seen before.

This time at Aganovich she went typographical with soft, smoke-like wisps of letter stencilling placed haphazardly around silver-grey smokey eyes. So beautiful, and so Isamaya!

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-alex-box-paint-issey-miyake-motion-painting (Copy)24. Issey Miyake

Key Artist; Alex Box

Another poetic makeup moment from the inimitable Alex Box came via her stunning hand blown, organic “motion painting” at Issey Miyake.

Each model was laid peacefully at ground level, to have an individual design created by Ms Box using MAC Pigments, Mixing Medium and a good old drinking straw to create energetic shapes inspired by the fluttering, flickering wings of tropical birds.

fashion-week-ss16-vivienne-westwood-val-garland-rave-makeup (Copy)25. Vivienne Westwood

Key Artist; Val Garland

“Venetian Ravers” and “Colour Chaos” were the order of the day from Val Garland at Vivienne Westwood, with an incredibly varied array of awesome looks to choose from, with no two models sporting the same wonderfully deranged designs.

We have UV face paint, we have orange eyebrows, we have stitch designs as lip lines and even nostril painting! Well put me on the guest list for this rave-up pretty please.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-mustard-brown-lipstick (Copy)26. Kenzo

Key Artist; Lynsey Alexander

The spice toned brown lip from Lynsey Alexander at Kenzo was perfection, and I’m not ashamed to say it, a colour I’ll be stealing for my own face thankyou very much. So unusual but absolutely gorgeous!

The shade, nick-named “desert sand” was hand mixed by Alexander from MAC’s Lipmix in yellow, mid-tone brown, orange and red, but I’m hoping MAC will be kind enough to release a pre-mixed version of the shade in time for Spring (oh go on MAC). Her team used Cork Lip Pencil as a base for extra depth, creating what was described as “a bronzer shade for the mouth”. With a slick of Clear Lip Glass added before models hit the runway, this one was a definite stand out favourite, and a great contemporary take on the classic red lip.

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-hanna-murray-graphic-liner-david-julien (Copy)27. David Julien

Key Artist; Hannah Murray

“Rounded off” eyeliner was the star of the show in place of feline flicks from Hannah Murray at David Julien, and I totally fell in love with this original take on graphic liner!

Topshop’s makeup consultant Murray does Brit cool makeup better than any other artist I know, and while we may have been in Paris, these modern-day bad girls with flushed cheeks and little else had that contemporary London cool in bucketloads.

fashion-week-ss16-makeup-val-garland-giambattista-valli-glitter (Copy)28. Giambattista Valli

Key Artist; Val Garland

Giambattista girls rocked their own graphic eye designs this season, but with a serious glitter injection from Val Garland!

Glitter socket designs were sent out on the runway in multiple shades of blue, pink, green, orange, violet and more, applied with Val’s glitter weapon of choice, a brush using MAC’s Mixing Medium Eyeliner. Just don’t use your favourite brush for this one she says, “It really stays put, but you have to toss the brush afterwards. It’s worth it, though!”

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-lucia-pieroni-smokey-blue-eyes-mascara-sonia-rykiel (Copy)29. Sonia Rykiel

Key Artist; Lucia Pieroni

Seductive navy blue smokey eyes and lashings of mascara had models looking seriously HOT thanks to Lucia Pieroni at Sonia Rykiel. “It’s a little industrial-metallic, but also glittery,” said Pieroni of the look that was half glamour, half grunge.

The perfect finishing touch was those super loaded, super black, mascara-laden worn in lashes. “It’s like the girls were already in the club,” she explained, “they’re just checking in on the runway before going back to the party.”

fashion-week-makeup-ss16-pat-mcgrath-miu-miu-lashes (Copy)30. Louis Vuitton

Key Artist; Pat McGrath

“Deconstructed Lashes” (and a glittery silver ear for good measure) were the perfect SS16 finale from Pat McGrath at Louis Vuitton.

Models wore a variety of bespoke, cut-up spiky lash designs, but it’s that ear makeup that really gave me hearts for eyes. Makeup artists are always forgetting about ears, just look at those contours for crying out loud, they’re screaming out for a good highlighter at least!

Metallic ear makeup as a Spring/Summer trend? I’ll keep you posted on that one.


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