Backstage Beauty at Vena Cava


To create the look at Vena Cava, designers Sophie Buhai and Lisa Mayock collaborated with hairstylist Ted Gibson for, Lloyd Simmonds for MAC Cosmetics, and Nonie Creme at Butter London for to channel a mature, modern woman who according to Gibson “has a very specific idea of who she is.” To balance out the strong black visors and sunglasses accessorizing the collection, make-up artist Lloyd Simmonds used a violet lip to provide a little pop to the lower half of the face, and Gibson styled the models’ hair in an updated ballerina bun to let the headgear do the talking. Read on to get the look, straight from the runway.

Since many of the models’ eyes were hidden behind dark sunglasses, Simmonds used a subtle soft smokey hue to cover the lids, and focused on popping the lips with a warm plum that created a graphically designed face that he calls “very wearable.” Before getting to work on the eyes and lips, MAC make-up artists backstage gave the face a neutral matte glow with MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer, $16.50, to hide blemishes, and Select Cover-Up Concealer, $16.50, to give an even skin-tone to the face. To recreate the smokey eye, cover the lids with MAC Pro Taupe Powder Blush, then brush Coquette or Charcoal Brown Eye Shadow, $14.50, in the outer corners and underneath the lower lids to add a bit of countour. While the lip color is a mixture that Simmonds concocted himself, we recommend using Faultlessly F/W or Odyssey, $14, then blotting with a tissue to create a similar matte effect.



To get the beautiful textured buns showcased on the Vena Cava catwalk, start with Ted Gibson’s Tame It Shine Lotion, $19.99, and work through hair to give it more texture. Then slick the hair back into a tight ponytail and fasten with an elastic band. Give your pony an aggressive twist (or have a friend do it), and tease the pony with your fingers from end to elastic by holding onto end strands and pushing hair up towards the base of the ponytail with your thumb and pointer finger. Once the pony is full of texture, wrap it around the elastic into a tightly coiled bun (without diminishing texture) and bobby pin in place. For added volume, tease the bun with fingers to get that undone sex appeal.


Nonie Creme, of Butter London predicts that the matte nail we’ve been seeing on every cool girl’s fingertips this fall will be a lingering trend for the coming spring season. For the model’s nails at Vena Cava, Creme mixed equal parts of Butter London’s Artful Dodger and Royal Navy hues to arrive at a cobalt blue that isn’t found anywhere else in the collection, which is what makes it pop. Creme enjoys experimenting with different nail shades to create a unique color, but recommends only mixing bottles of the same brand, since not all nailpolishes are non-toxic, like Butter London. Since chips are more noticeable on matte nails, Creme shares a quick tip that will turn your perfectly polished nails smooth again: simply dip a fingertip in nailpolish remover and lightly rub your finger over the chip to melt it down and smooth out the polish. You can repaint the nail if you have time, but in most cases, your nail will look good as new.