How To Look Hot When It's Hot As Eff

Photo: Courtesy of Robin Black.
Wet-looking hair and dewy makeup look incredible under the bright lights of a fashion runway. In real life, they tend to read more “I waited 40 minutes underground for the subway” than “I just emerged from the Mediterranean sea and onto my yacht.” But the hair and makeup at the Thierry Mugler resort show managed to find a way to make the look downright wearable — and we plan on working it into our summer beauty routines.

The inspiration came from — where else? — the ocean. When makeup artist Robin Black met with Mugler’s artistic director David Koma the day before the show, her eyes immediately landed on the pearl embellishments in his collection. “I’m obsessed with pearls, and I loved the idea of subtly referencing the clothes with luminous makeup,” she says. Hairstylist Yann Varin, of the Varin salon in New York City, complemented the look with a sleek, clean ponytail. And that’s when the beauty magic happened.

If you can’t blowdry your hair in your overheated apartment without passing out — or if your office’s central air-conditioning tends to give out midday — you need this look in your life this summer. Click through for exclusive backstage photos and insider tips on how to get it.
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Photo: Courtesy of Robin Black.
Do The Dew
Luminous skin starts with…wait for it…luminous skin. But it’s not always that easy. When several of the models walked in with ruddy, tired faces backstage, Black pulled out her chamomile toning lotion and gently swept it across their skin. After that, she used moisturizing serum on the models with dry skin, while those with oily skin got a mattifying lotion. “If you have oily skin, don’t try to get luminosity through heavy moisturizers or creams, which will make your makeup melt in the heat,” she says.

Then, Black mixed a drop of highlighting primer with two drops of foundation and blended it from the center of the face outward. And this is important: After the foundation was in place, Black warmed her (clean!) hands and pressed them firmly over the face. “The heat from my hands really helps meld the foundation into the skin and look natural,” she says. She used a makeup-setting spray to keep the base in place without toning down the luminosity.

Pro tip:
Black keeps her setting spray in the fridge, so it de-puffs and soothes the skin while it sets.

Black finished with a subtle, vacation-like glow. “It is resort, after all.” She swept bright-pink blush on the apples and matte bronzer under the cheekbones, and then buffed them together.
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Photo: Courtesy of Robin Black.
Bright Eyes, Full Lips
Even if you skip eyeshadow during the summer, you might want to think about keeping eye primer in your routine. Not only does it keep your eyeliner and mascara from smudging, but “correcting red or uneven eyelids is the quickest way to make your face look more awake and bright,” says Black. She pressed a yellow-based nude eye primer over the models’ lids. If you have dark skin, go for a primer in your skin tone, with undertones of red or orange to help cancel blue or purple discoloration.

Then, to lightly define the eyes, she pressed a liquid liner up and under the lashline so it just barely filled in the spaces between lashes. “I wanted it to look like nothing was there,” she says. She swept two coats of black mascara on the top lashes and one on the bottom.

Black chose glossy nude lips to finish the look. She toned down naturally red lips with a nude lip pencil, and then glided on a rosy, nude balm. To keep the edges from looking too severe, she softened them with her finger.
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Photo: Courtesy of Robin Black.
Brow Power
Bold brows referenced the strength of the Mugler woman. But Black didn’t want them to be so strong that it was all you focused on. Instead, she used a tone that was one to two shades darker, and cooler, than the models’ natural brow color. “Usually if you go darker, you fall into warm shades of caramel and mocha,” she says. “I went for espressos and taupes to keep it from looking too intense.”

After filling in the brows, she used a spoolie brush to dust off any powder from the actual hairs. “The powder should only touch the skin for the most natural-looking brows.” She brushed them up and finished with a clear wax to keep them in place.
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Photo: Courtesy of Robin Black.
Swing Low
Varin wanted the ponytails to look clean and fresh — not greasy or severe. After creating a deep diagonal part, he misted the hair with several passes of light-hold hairspray and flat-ironed it straight. Then, he backcombed the hair at the crown for volume and softness, before brushing the sides tightly into a low ponytail at the nape. He secured the hair with two small, clear elastics and a bungee for models with thicker hair.
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Photo: Courtesy of Robin Black.
Shine Factor
For mirror-reflective shine, Varin rubbed a nickel-sized blob of shine-enhancing pomade between his hands and glided it everywhere — from the part to the nape, and all the way down the tail. “In the summer, pomade gives a very nice, wet-like sheen, as opposed to gels which can get crisp or break during the day,” he says. If you don’t feel like flat-ironing your whole head in the summer — don’t blame you! — keep the pomade from the part to the nape, and then enhance the natural texture of the tail with texturizing spray (for waves) or curl-enhancing cream (for curls).
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