8 Effortless Makeup Trends By London’s Coolest Artist, Isamaya Ffrench

Photo Courtesy of Isamaya Ffrench
Nothing is out of bounds for Isamaya Ffrench. The London-based makeup artist is known for her inventive approach to beauty, whether that's dreaming up mind-bending prosthetics or taking the undesirable (clumpy lashes, smudged lipstick, skinny brows) and making it a London Fashion Week trend.
In the past few years Isamaya has become something of an Instagram celebrity, with her creations for the likes of Byredo and MAC Cosmetics gracing billboards everywhere. It makes sense, then, that her next step would be to innovate her very own, eponymous makeup brand: ISAMAYA.
Two years in the making, the five-piece collection (which launches at the end of June) takes inspiration from luxury fashion drops. "I'm so immersed in fashion and art, it didn't make sense to do one collection that would live on the shelf for 10 years," Isamaya told R29. "The range is approached in the same way that fashion would be." It'll consist of four yearly drops as well as collaborations, which means there's a lot to explore, "like beauty territories and subcultures," said Isamaya.
Like all of her art, the collection is seriously Instagram-worthy. Think pierced packaging, lots of latex, pearlescent serums which double up as skincare and makeup, and putty eyeshadows that are so satisfying to apply.
So you've got the kit but what about the looks? Ahead, Isamaya predicts the effortless makeup trends that are going to take over summer 2022 — and you don't need to be a pro artist to nail them.

The End Of Contouring

"People are contouring way less and thinking about real skin," said Isamaya. "Not to sound cliché but it's all about celebrating your face." Rather than contour sticks, Isamaya predicts a return to dewy blush for a look that's "less severe". Another thing about contouring, she says, is that it can age you significantly. "That's because you're slimming your face. I've ditched the contour because I look younger in real life not wearing it."

Jelly Blush

Bronzer definitely has its place in makeup, particularly if you want to fake a sun-kissed glow or to balance out any pink tones in your skin. But jelly blush — like the TikTok-viral Tarte Limited Edition Cheek Stain Water-Infused Blush, £28 — is going to be everywhere for a youthful glow. "There are lots of Korean makeup products which look wet but set beautifully on the skin," said Isamaya. "I like these over powder blush because you can achieve such a nice dewiness."

Skincare-Makeup Hybrids

Celestial makeup, which is pared back but boasts a subtle gleam in all the right places, is Isamaya's go-to for summer. "People are so into the glaze that they lost their minds and now they just look sweaty. Now, it's about keeping a healthy glow but not looking wet." It's why she had to launch Industrial Skinlacq Triple Hyaluronic Glow Serum, £60. "This is a transparent pearl skin glass, which works on all skin tones. It's seriously hydrating but you can also mix it with foundation to maintain hydration in your skin. If you do foundation over it, it looks so amazing."
R29 also rates Versed Mood Lighting Luminizing Glow Drops, £16.50, mixed into foundation, or Collection Gorgeous Glow Filter Finish Primer & Illuminator, £6.99, as a base under foundation and concealer.
Skin prep is important, too. "I'm very low maintenance," said Isamaya. "I have a Face Halo Makeup Remover Pad, £7, so I use that and a really simple cleanser by Avène. Then I use Doublebase Diomed Dry Skin Emollient, £9.99. You wake up looking amazing. Sometimes at night I'll use a retinol or glycolic acid, but very little."

Shadow Lips

Crisp, flawless lips are beautiful but in warmer weather the look doesn't have any longevity. Embrace the smudged feel instead. Isamaya uses her eyebrow pencil as a lip liner, tracing above the lip line to create a shadow which makes lips look fuller. Then she adds a slick of her Industrial Liplacq Maximising Lip Serum, £32, launching later this month.
"This is a lip care-makeup hybrid," said Isamaya. "I love lip gloss but I wanted to make something that wasn't pink and girly. When you apply it, the gloss spreads out and creates a natural shadow that makes your lips look fuller." Thanks to the black and grey pigments, it tints lips a couple of shades darker than they are naturally. "It's a bit more edgy, sexy and glossy — but also very hydrating."

Clumpy Lashes

We've typically avoided spidery lashes and favoured the fluffy, Bambi look. But if TikTok and Instagram are anything to go by, the trend is back — and this time it's intentional. "Sometimes I apply a layer of lash glue underneath my mascara, pinch my lashes together and coat them with my mascara," said Isamaya. "Or you can just load it on. That's what the brush on my Industrial Rubberlash Latex Lift Mascara, £35, achieves. It's the blackest mascara, which coats and curls all lashes without the need for a lash curler. Even super straight ones."

Doll Eyes

If your lashes are sparse, fake them. Isamaya makes a case for doll lashes (think Twiggy in the '60s). The look doesn't have to be as exaggerated, though. "I'd go for liquid if I had to choose between eyeliners," said Isamaya. Simply draw two or three faint lines at the outer corner of your lower lash line and load your lashes with mascara.
Isamaya also uses a very pale nude or white liner on the waterline, which helps to open up the eyes for a doll-like look. "I'd really encourage people to try this because it works, and if you have hooded lids it's amazing. Having the contrast between that and the black mascara really accentuates the eyes."

Camo Colours

"I love khaki," said Isamaya. "It's so flattering. I love it in fashion, too. For example, Charlotte Knowles and Ottolinger are always doing these beautiful, gold-meets-green palettes and I was super inspired by them." Her 14-strong Industrial Colour Pigments Eyeshadow Palette, £95, encapsulates this trending colour scheme. "It's like dressing your eyes. All of these colours are chic and suit all skin tones as they're so heavily pigmented. They'll look especially amazing on dark skin." You don't have to get creative. A single wash of khaki or gold is enough to make an impact.

Monochromatic Makeup

The best makeup looks are often the simplest. "I think it's nice to take shades which you're using as your base, for example on your cheeks, and use them elsewhere, such as eyelids," said Isamaya. "It helps to harmonise things. So if I use blush, I'll apply a little to my eyelids, too."
Try Youthforia BYO Blush, £26, which adapts to your skin's pH, or Byredo Colour Stick, £28, for eyes, lips or cheeks.
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