From the Front Lines – Claudia Schiffer for French Vogue

Claudia Schiffer In Red Lips in her Supermodel HeydayYesterday we were shooting French Vogue on a common in South London with the unbelievably gorgeous and iconic (in all senses of the word) Claudia Schiffer. The look of the day was red lips, and makeup artist Kay Montano gave Claudia carte blanche to choose her own red, as one of the few genuine supermodels she definitely knows which red suits her best. Her pick? NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella (a MakeupMole fave!) Also key to the look was beautiful skin and a curled lash, to keep the look modern and minimal.

Keep an eye out for the Alasdair Mclellan story in September French Vogue.

Beauty Breakdown – Lady Gaga Hello Kitty shoot By Kay Montano

Lady Gaga

“Gaga art directs everything! She is a stream of ideas and suggested I paint Japanese cartoon style eyes on her eyelids which added a surreal edge to what would otherwise have been a cutesie look.”

Base – Chanel Vitalumiere in No. 20 Clair

Powder – Chanel Traslucent powder to create the perfect base

Eyes – Make Up For Ever Flash Colors 12 color box of crème makeup to paint exaggerated green Japanese eyes on her eyelids, with MAC Prep+Prime to set

Eyeliner – Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Eyeliner in Black Ink

Mascara – Chanel Exceptionnel mascara in black

Lashes – 2 sets of MAC eyelashes, 1 on the browbone to create false top lash

Lips – Chanel Coco Pink lipstick (US exclusive), then silver (Fardel silver powder mixed with water), then painted the Cupid’s bow in Chanel New York red for the final shot of her on a Masonic throne wearing an overflowing regal gown made of Hello Kitty dolls!

True Gaga style.

NB The Make Up For Ever Flash case was also used by Kay on her iconic Mario Testino portrait of Kate Moss, featured on the cover of Mario Testino’s book, Portraits.

Beauty Breakdown – Selma Blair at the 2009 Met Ball

We are lucky enough to have a makeup breakdown for the original belle of the Met ball, Selma Blair, actress and muse for designer Marc Jacobs.

Selma Blair at the 2009 Met Ball in New York
Selma Blair at the 2009 Met Ball in New York

Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base to create a youthful glow

Chanel Vitalumiere in 30, Cendre

Chanel Estompe Eclat Concealer in 30

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder on T-zone only

Chanel Powder Blush in Be-Bop


  • Smudge Chanel Eye Pencil in Black into upper eyelashes to create added depth
  • Chanel Smoky Eyes over entire eye area, creating ‘half-moon’ contour in sockets with the darker shade, and a soft, undefined smokiness underneath with a lighter grey
  • Finish eyes with a line of Ecriture De Chanel on root of upper lashes and ending with slight outward ‘tick’ at each outer corner
  • Finally lashings of Black Exceptionnel Mascara


Wanted to keep Selma’s ‘underground’ chic so plumped them up slightly with Bobbi Browm Blush lipliner and MAC Clear Lipglass

Makeup by Kay Montano

Beauty Breakdown: Rosamund Pike & Toni Collette

Total excitement, we have our first celebrity beauty breakdowns! This is what Kay Montano used on the lovely actresses Toni Collette and Rosamund Pike on a shoot recently for a new Chanel sponsored coffee table book.

Rosamund PikeRosamund Pike

Foundation – Chanel Vitalumiere in Clair 20
Concealer – Chanel Eclat Lumiere concealer in Beige Clair 20
Powder – Chanel Natural Finish Loose Powder (just in T-zone)
Blush – Chanel Joues Contrast Blush in Rose Dust

  • Chanel L’Ombre d’Eau in 60 (glistening taupe, on lid)
  • Chanel le Crayon Kohl in Ambre (a deep brown on lashline, smudged into the lashlines with a finger)
  • Chanel Magic Night eyeshadow (a deep plum, over the crayon khol, at the lashline)
  • Chanel Smoky Eyes quad grey (blended on socket line)
  • Chanel Ecriture de Chanel in black, nestled right along the lash lines and subtly winging upwards


Mascara – Chanel Exceptionnel mascara in Smoky Black, and lots of it!
Lips – Nude Skincare lipbalm on lips

Toni ColletteToni Collette

Foundation – Chanel Vitalumiere in 30 Cendre (as Toni is quite tan at the moment)
Concealer – a mix of Bobbi Brown Eye Brightener in 3 and Clinique Airbrush in Medium.
Powder – Laura Mercier Loose Translucent powder brushed on T-zone. Blush – Chanel Orchid Rose Blush.

  • Chanel Le Crayon Khol in Ambre (brown) applied and smudged into and around top lashes followed by a subtle, wide smudge of Bronze Chanel eye pencil underneath.
  • Ecriture De Chanel liquid eyeliner subtly applied on the root of the upper lashes.

Mascara – Chanel Exceptionnel Mascara in Black.
Lips – Bobbi Brown Blush lip pencil smudged in with Suvana Paw Paw & Honey lip balm.

NB The pictures of Toni and Rosamund are simply press pictures and NOT examples of the makeup that Kay created for each of them. To see that, you’ll have to wait until the new Chanel book comes out!

Beauty Runway Round-Up

With the Paris shows having recently finished, it’s time for the Fall ’09 runway Beauty rundown. 

If there was one strong theme that strode off the catwalks this season just finished, it was that Cool Rules. It’s just as much about what you don’t do, as what you emphasise. Case in point – again it was a season with very little blush, it was all about cheek contour at almost every show. Mascara was rarely used, and lashes were not really the focal point. 

What was happening was a strong, single element, but boy did that change! Orange lips, black lips, grey lips, berry lips (even green in one very directional London show, but that’s what London is for, right?) At Alexander McQueen red lips went ridiculously oversized so they looked like fake plastic lips (suspiciously similar to the oversized red lip Inge Grognard created for A.F Vandevorst last season). 

Smoky eyes came out to play in London, New York, Paris and Milan, but it was often paired with a glossy texture and almost always with an undone mouth (and you all know how to do that, right?  It’s concealer patted on with a finger. If you find conventional concealers too dry, try MAC Lip Erase). 

Dramatic 50’s flick eyeliner arrived in style at Dolce and Gabbana, Chanel and Valentino. At Lanvin and Dolce and Gabbana a wine red or cherry lip was patted on with a finger to work with the insouciance that has categorized this season of major economic uncertainty. It’s all about gleaming skin, and not trying too hard. 

A round up of the major looks: 

Tough Beauty – Lanvin, Michael Kors


Michael Kors
Michael Kors

Warrior women at their best. At Lanvin it was a cherry lip that gave the look its structure, and at Michael Kors Dick Page constructed a beautiful smoky eye. As Michael Kors said “When times get tough, New York women get tougher!”

 Gray lips – Doo.Ri, Tuleh

This is a tough one for regular women to wear and it’s the logical progression from the gray nail trend we’ve been having this season. It’s in the air and if it’s on your mind, MAC do an amazing lip pencil called Stone, or you can pat on their Black LipMix but be warned! Go easy on it. It’s a short step from directional to dead. 


This is major, major, major. I can’t remember the last time I used pretty blush on a show. It’s either contouring with bronzer (a matte one please), or a brown gray powder, like MAC’s Taupe. They also do a great range of powders called Sculpt and Shade for this purpose, and these were heavily used at the shows. (MAC are the biggest sponsors of the shows around the world, which is why you see their products everywhere at this time).

Scary 80’s


Sessilee Lopez, oh Lord, what happened??
Sessilee Lopez, oh Lord, what happened??

I have to talk about it, even though it pains me. Gucci, Alessandro del Acqua, Issa and (shudder, this show gave me the heebie jeebies), Marc Jacobs. I’m talking the full magilla – colored contour, winged eyeshadow to the temples, bright glossy lipsticks, strong brows, lots of base, the full 9 yards. 

When done properly this is a fierce, ruling look, but in the wrong hands (sorry Sessilee Lopez, I’m talking to you!)picture), it really is frighten-the-children, flat-out scary. And when the most beautiful women in the world look like aging drag queens, this is a look regular women want to avoid like the plague. A hint – if you are going to go there, keep the base minimal and fresh so the focus is on your major lips and eyes, and not on your Dynasty-like base. Krystal Carrington, beauty icon? Not so much. 


Gorgeous makeup at the Chloe show
Gorgeous makeup at the Chloe show



I do have to give an honorable mention to the Chloe show, where Charlotte Tilbury created glowing, bronzey early 80’s winged eyes. What’s particularly interesting about this show is it’s such a departure from their signature natural no-makeup look. So if they’re doing proper makeup at Chloe, chances are good you will be too in the coming months.  But ladies, let’s do it right!

Return of the 1990’s

I hear you all gasp! Not possible? Oh yes, it’s come around again. But this time it’s taking the good elements and leaving the unattractive bits behind. No chocolate lip liner in a big old  nasty ring around the mouth. None of those bad overdrawn lips, or dead person brown muddy lipstick. It’s about taking

Matthew Williamson
Matthew Williamson

1990’s elements – like lipliner and tawny tones – and adding modern textures and finishes.

Cases in point – Diane Kendal’s lovely makeup for Proenza Schouler. Brown cream eyeshadow all around the eye, a soft pink cream on cheeks (one of the few shows that did blush, and it was a welcome relief from all those razor sharp cheekbones), no mascara and lips patted down with concealer. The Matthew Williamson show had  a similar last decade ethos.

 And at the Graham Black show in London where Kay Montano did a shiny brown eye using Satin Taupe, and heralded the return of MAC Underworld lipstick which I believe was last gracing our lips right about when we were rocking out to Smells Like Teen Spirit. It’s Grunge, but not as we know it.