When I showed my boyfriend a picture of the makeup look I was going to recreate this week, his response was blunt but warranted: "WTF."
You see, this week, nothing (or, more accurately, no one) has set tongues wagging quite like new couple Ye (formerly Kanye West) and Uncut Gems star Julia Fox. Their presence at Paris Fashion Week has been a whirlwind of matching outfits including head-to-toe denim, leather and a rather freaky face mask. But it wouldn't be fair not to mention Julia's traffic-stopping makeup. In fact, I'd argue that it stole the limelight at every single show.
Forget the subtle wing or even TikTok's famous reverse cat eye; Julia made multiple front row appearances wearing an enormous, graphic eye makeup look. Sure, it took over most of her face but it also earned her a spot on the Instagram grids of fashion magazines all over the globe, including British Vogue, Dazed and i-D. Is it serving Batman vibes or Zorro? It's hard to pinpoint exactly but Julia has set a precedent for the more-is-more makeup trend in 2022 — and I simply had to try it for myself.
Admittedly, my usual makeup style is more Kim Kardashian than Julia Fox (awkward). While I mostly opt for understated nudes and a little contouring here and there, there's another side to me — and it involves layers and layers of eyeliner. Yes, Julia's look was the perfect opportunity for me to unleash my inner emo kid. Julia enlisted makeup artist Daniel Kolaric on behalf of Pat McGrath Labs to dream up her bold makeup look. Her eyes were scribbled heavily with Pat McGrath Labs PermaPrecision Liquid Eyeliner, £25, and PermaGel Ultra Glide Eye Pencil in XTREME Black, £25, to create a boxy shape that spanned the inner corners to the end of her eyebrows, not to mention lashings of FetishEYES Mascara, £27. The eyes were obviously the focal point as Julia's lips were dressed in just a touch of MatteTrance Lipstick in Beautiful Stranger, £36, and her base makeup was minimal, save for a light layer of Skin Fetish: Sublime Perfection Foundation, £61, and a little Skin Fetish: Sublime Perfection Concealer, £25.
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"Square eyeliner is exactly the trend we need," wrote one of Pat McGrath's followers underneath a video of Julia rocking the look. Another commented: "Amazing this is my next tutorial." It seems Ye was just as obsessed with Julia's makeup as he was spotted either topping it up or perhaps even fashioning the liner look entirely by himself (it's unclear) in a fuzzy picture which Julia posted to Instagram. It was accompanied by the caption: "Wanna know who my fave makeup artist is?" That's Ye, in case you were in any doubt.
So where do you even start with a look like this? Excuse the pun but you just have to wing it. Using Pat's liquid eyeliner, I began at the outer corner of my eye, scrawling a line up towards my eyebrow and fashioning a box shape. Though I'm a beauty obsessive, I'm not a makeup artist, so of course it didn't go to plan. Whose idea was this? I wiped it all off using CeraVe's Micellar Cleansing Water, £10, and started again. (There was no way in hell that I'd be messing this up.) Once I'd traced the graphic shape (and there aren't any rules, so go wild) I had to fill in the negative space — probably the hardest part. My trusty eyeliner pen died on me halfway through so I moved on to Makeup By Mario Master Mattes Liquid Liner, £19. I'm not quite sure eyeliner pens are designed to colour in large areas and that failed me, too. I finished off the look with kohl and Kylie Cosmetics Kyliner Liquid Pen, £18. Yep, that's four eyeliner products in total.
Only a master makeup artist like Daniel could achieve such a symmetrical eyeliner look and while mine wasn't perfect, I didn't hate it! Honestly, I felt like a badass, which explains why Julia has appeared so poised and confident in front of the camera (despite a handful of people on social media not feeling the trend). My friends and family reacted similarly. I was told I required a superhero name (we haven't quite decided on one yet) and my brother couldn't take me seriously at all: "When are you going to wipe that off?"
I didn't expect my makeup to last all day but it started to run after 10 minutes. I've no doubt that Daniel layered the liner with powder and went over it a couple more times to enhance staying power. Would I attempt it again? Probably not, unless I'm going to a Halloween party. Will I experiment with eyeliner more? For sure — but maybe I'll stick to the classic winged shape...
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