One of the fun parts about covering backstage beauty during Fashion Month is the ability to peek behind the curtain of a show, and gaze at everything it takes to bring the spectacle to life. Beauty editors, influencers, and the hair and makeup teams for the show tend to be the only people granted access to this part of the process. But at Gucci's Fall/Winter 2020 show on Feb. 19 in Milan, designer Alessandro Michele sought to bring the backstage into the spotlight.
“I decided to unveil what lies behind the curtains,” he wrote in the show notes. “May the miracle of skillful hands and holding breath come out of the shadows.” That meant walking the show audience through the backstage as models were getting ready.
While back there, they got a glimpse at the beauty look: A polished twist on grunge makeup, which falls right in line with Michele's vision for Gucci. Believe it or not, this show managed to turn Lauren Conrad's infamous crying GIF into a beauty look to emulate.
Thomas de Kluyver, Global Makeup Artist for Gucci, only used a handful of products from the Gucci Beauty line to create the look. He started with the brand's Éclat De Beauté Effet Lumière Gel Face Gloss across the lid "to catch the light," he said on Gucci Beauty's Instagram stories. He then loaded up the lashes with Gucci's new Mascara L'Obscur, which is launching soon per the brand's Instagram.
But instead of just brushing the lashes as you typically would, de Kluyver applied the pigment with the tip of the wand to define individual lashes. And instead of smudging eyeliner to get the grungy effect along the lower lash line, Kluyver actually used the mascara pigment to create the look. "We're painting it under the eyes for a grungy, punky eye," he said.
Then, to create the tears, he applied a bit of water to the pigment along the lower lash line, allowing it to drip where it may. A swipe of Gucci Beauty Rouge à Lèvres Voile Lipstick in The Painted Veil capped off this theatrical look.
Not everyone got the crying-your-mascara-off treatment, however. A handful off models had lavender pigment swept across their eyes, while another bunch donned bleach eyebrows and fresh, glowing skin.
It was all the better to keep your eyes on the hair accessories. Lead hairstylist Paul Hanlon created a variety of hairstyles, ranging from geometric wigs to braided updos, natural hair textures to sleek blowouts. But these served just as the place settings for crystal mesh headbands and patterned headscarves — accessories that are perfect for everything from evenings out to bad hair days.
It's been said that seeing the process of how something gets made can sometimes sully your experience. But in Michele's world, it just makes us want to take another peek back behind the curtain.