Urban Decay X Beauty Is Boring, Jean-Michel Basquiat Collection Look #1

It’s time for another Urban Decay collaboration, this time featuring their new Jean-Michel Basquiat Collection! I am a fan of Basquiat’s art so this was a particularly inspiring collection to work with. If you are not familiar with Jean-Michel Basquiat, his estate has created a website with tons of great resources. Click here to view it!

There are a bunch of new colors in this collection so I created four looks, each showcasing different shades as well as inspired by different aspects of his art and life.  The first look (shown above) was inspired by Basquiat’s use of color. I didn’t want Demi’s other features to distract from the eyes so I kept her brows, skin and lips subtle. The lip color is actually a mix of the lovely nude shade in the Basquiat Collection called Abstract and a bit of lip balm to sheer it out.

MODEL // Demi
MAKEUP // Robin Black
HAIR // Ryan Tanaguchi

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Prom Night… Ella & Gabe

I don’t do much event makeup these days but I just couldn’t resist Ella Flood’s Prom. Ella is a model and high school senior who I shot last year for Beauty Is Boring along with her mother Jenny Brunt (also a model). A few weeks ago, Ella reached out for some beauty advice for her upcoming prom but rather than give advice, I offered/insisted on doing her makeup.

Ella’s boyfriend Gabe Le Neveu joined us in the studio and also played DJ with a brilliant selection of 80’s/90’s music. They showed up with matching nail polish, a vampy, almost black shade and both did their own hair. I loved that Ella just flipped her head upside down, spritzed on some hairspray and then threw it all up in a pony tail… they are basically the coolest kids ever.

Ella wore a gorgeous vintage Vivienne Westwood gown in a neutral metallic shade that she found at a thrift shop so we were inspired to do something with a touch of punk. I started with a nude shimmering eyeshadow swept from her lashline to just under her brow, a touch of pale golden bronze under her cheekbones and a peachy base shade (using lip liner) with a sparkling golden gloss on top for a “more exciting than nude” lip. Our tribute to Vivienne’s punk spirit came in the form of an exaggerated black cat eye and loads of black clumpy mascara.

Gabe was one of the best dressed prom dates I’ve ever seen in a slim, black Top Man suit and a vintage Versace shirt. The saturated leopard print Versace (genius!) actually belonged to Ella’s dad, well known photographer Don Flood. The silver and lapis earrings were a sweet gift from Ella. Young love… sigh. As far as grooming, Gabe is already incredibly handsome so all that was needed was a touch of concealer, lip balm and some tinted brow gel.

Note: Congratulations to Ella for being accepted into a prestigious art college! You can see some of her amazing paintings and illustrations on her Instagram.

Note: You can view Ella’s previous Beauty Is Boring posts by clicking here and here.

MODELS // Ella Flood, Gabe Le Neveu
MAKEUP // Robin Black

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Nude… Brooke Candy

It’s always tempting to go mad with makeup when Brooke Candy visits the studio.  She has the kind of face that I can paint a thousand different ways and she will still look stunning.  However, on this particular day, we decided to go for simple washes of earthy nude shades and a groomed brow.

Note: I will be posting a MUCH wilder look in a few days so stay tuned for the exact opposite of this one. Ha!

MODEL // Brooke Candy
MAKEUP // Robin Black
HAIR // Ryan Tanaguchi

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Glowing in Chanel… Gana Bayarsaikhan

When Sheridan Ward (a frequent collaborator and brilliant hairstylist) sent over a snapshot of his friend Gana Bayarsaikhan (taken casually on an LA hike but looking like a magazine cover) and suggested I shoot her, I couldn’t stop staring at her amazing bone structure. Of course I immediately replied “YES!”. When she showed up at the studio a few days later, I felt like I had seen her before. Turns out, she is incredibly humble and aside from being a model, Gana has recently begun to act. She was in ExMachina (as one of the ridiculously gorgeous AI’s) and has recently finished a foreign action film – I got to see some fun clips of her looking deadly with a bow and arrow!

She is truly beautiful in an other worldly sort of way so I wanted to keep the makeup minimal to emphasize that. Glowing skin, flushed cheeks and lips, a bit of brow gel and just the tiniest smudge of soft brown liner under the eyes.

Note:Gana naturally has lots of baby hairs around her temples and I absolutely love what Sheridan did with them!  Plus the sleek texture and low ponytail adds a modern edge to the slightly romantic minimalism of the makeup.

MODEL // Gana Bayarsaikhan
MAKEUP // Robin Black
HAIR // Sheridan Ward

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NARS Spring 2017… Giannina Oteto

So when I was downloading these photos of the stunning Giannina Oteto, I realized that I went totally mad with the highlighter and applied at least five coats around her eye/cheekbone. However Giannina’s skin color and texture make pretty much everything look amazing. Which is one of the many reasons she is so fantastic to shoot – the others include things like: She is charming, shy and ferocious all at the same time. The camera loves her. She is always willing to try something new. And even after a few drinks, she can sit perfectly still in the makeup chair.

In the past I’ve shot Giannina in minimal, editorial styles (you can see our previous looks by clicking here and here) so for variety, I decided to do a very pretty and somewhat more classic spring look using several of the latest NARS colors. Well it started more classic and then some disco inspiration snuck in and the eyes got a bit more dramatic. Recently my life has been filled with disco imagery because Nick is editing “Antonio Lopez 1970, Sex Fashion & Disco” – an incredible documentary directed by James Crump. Click here for a taste of the amazing 1970’s  film footage and photos that have been floating around our creative space for the past six months. It’s impossible not to be inspired!

Note: I deliberately applied the NARS Numéro 3 Eyelashes slightly above Giannina’s natural lash line, leaving a tiny bit of space in between. I filled in that space with black liner to create the look of a fluffy, “lifted” lash.

Note: This is a little off topic but I recently discovered one of the most influential makeup artists of the 70’s is on Instagram! You can check out Corey Tippin’s account by clicking here.

MODEL // Giannina Oteto
MAKEUP // Robin Black

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Pink… Brooke Candy

I love collaborating with musicians so when Brooke Candy first reached out about doing a shoot for Beauty Is Boring, I was absolutely thrilled! Her visuals are always stunning and she has a chameleon-like look that works with almost any makeup style. I was also just really curious to meet her.

Brooke did not disappoint. It was such a pleasure having her in the studio, our whole team fell in love. She is not only incredibly creative and inspiring to work with but also a genuine, kind, thoughtful woman who is going through a sort of personal renaissance. Her music is evolving, her image is evolving, she is evolving and it’s an exciting thing to see.

And that is why I wanted to create a look that was totally different to anything Brooke has done in the past.   Subtle washes of the prettiest pink and groomed brows, very minimal and rather romantic.  Midway through our shoot, Ryan (who is a brilliant hair stylist) wandered off with a pair of scissors and came back with a bunch of camellias from my garden which he used to decorate Brooke’s hair.  It’s always the most fun when everyone in the studio is inspired, click here to see Regina Yazdi’s videos of her illustrating the looks during our shoot!

Click here to watch Living Out Loud, Brooke’s new video featuring Sia!

Note: Early in my makeup career, most of my paying clients were musicians. The best part about working with them (aside from free concerts!) was their willingness to experiment with outrageous looks.

MODEL // Brooke Candy
MAKEUP // Robin Black
HAIR // Ryan Taniguchi

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Tom Ford S/S 2017… Tyrie Rudolph

I am always excited when new makeup collections arrive at the Beauty Is Boring studio but there is no box quite as thrilling as the seasonal Tom Ford delivery.  For starters, the packaging is always swoon worthy (white and gold, très chic!) and the colors… well Mr. Ford hasn’t disappointed me yet.

Everything in the Spring and Summer collections is gorgeous but it is the new blush and bronzer shades that I am the most interested in.  It’s been a while since blush was in the spotlight (thanks to the endless taupe contour trend) but nothing brightens up your face and says “hello warmer weather” like cheek color.  There are both cream blushes (Spring) and powders (Summer) in shades that suit a wide range of complexions.

Also noteworthy, there are two new shades of one of my all time favorite Tom Ford products, Cream and Powder Eye Color.  It has a whipped texture that applies easily with fingers or a brush, it blends like a dream, stays put without creasing for hours and looks like satin on eyelids.  For the above image, I used just the cream part of Naked Bronze. It’s actually a shade from Tom Ford’s main collection because the new shades were just a bit off for Tyrie’s coloring. If you have fair skin and want a similar look, try the new Sun Worship.

Note: Yes, Tyrie’s eyes are really this color!  She won the genetic lottery and has one of the most striking eye colors I have ever seen.

MODEL // Tyrie Rudolph
MAKEUP // Robin Black

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In Bloom… Maia Shibutani

I was so excited that Maia Shibutani stopped by the studio again and this time, she brought her ridiculously good-looking (forgive the Zoolander reference) brother Alex!  You may remember Maia from our shoot back in January or more likely, you have seen her on the ice.  Maia and Alex are Olympians, 2016 & 2017 US Champions and 2x World Medalist Figure Skaters.  Aside from being incredibly talented athletes, the Shib Sibs (as their fans call them) are two of the nicest, funniest people to spend a studio day with.

One of the things that I love about collaborating with Maia is that she is always willing to experiment and try new looks. Our first shoot together was very dramatic and dark so this time, I wanted to do something completely different. I was inspired by all the blooming flowers in my neighborhood and the gorgeous spring makeup collections.

Note: The bottom lashes are from a Japanese company that I can’t find online. I source them at a local beauty shop in Little Tokyo.

Note: I actually used the Sisley Paris Photo-Blush Twist in Papaya on both the cheeks and eyelids. Although it applies as a cream, it dries into a powder and you can build up the color by using a translucent eyelid primer under it.

MODEL // Maia Shibutani
MAKEUP // Robin Black

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Not-So-Classic Glamour… Jesi Le Rae

I rarely do vintage makeup looks (although I love how Adele Mildred, the brilliant milliner and artist, has made it her signature) however I enjoy working with classic makeup color combinations such as gold and red.  In the image above, I wanted to create a glamorous look that was modern enough to wear with jeans but could double on the red carpet with a gown.

Note: I am crazy about Jesi’s natural curls and perfect tooth gap!

MODEL // Jesi Le Rae
MAKEUP // Robin Black

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Atomic #47… Nicole Zimmermann

I’ve always liked mixing warm and cool shades. Done correctly, it creates a contrast that can be both subtle and eye-catching. It’s also a great way to transition your makeup between seasons. In the above image Nicole is wearing warm nude lips, bronzed skin and icy silver eyelids with a thick fringe of black lashes. I added faux lashes to both the upper and lower lashlines to play up her doe-eyed look.

Note: The scientific symbol for silver is Ag, it’s atomic number is 47, it has 61 neutrons and a cubic crystal structure. Hence the somewhat obscure title of this post.

Note: I didn’t list the bottom lashes in the product section because I haven’t been able to source them online. They are by a Japanese brand that doesn’t seem to sell in the US.

MODEL // Nicole Zimmerman
MAKEUP // Robin Black

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