Get to know the big make-up trends from the AW16 catwalk with MAC Director Terry Barber

We caught up with MAC’s director of make-up artistry Terry Barber and senior make-up artists Cher Webb and Rachel O’Donnell at the brand’s new Carnaby PRO store during London Fashion Week to talk about make-up trends and their favourite looks from the A/W16 catwalks.

WGSN: Hello everyone and hope you are having a good fashion week so far. What are the key make-up looks this season?

Barber: There is a return of glamour but in reference to different eras. It’s more glam than glamour – there is almost a kind of glam rock feeling. I think losing Bowie gave a feeling back of reusing glam, but it’s done in a very British way. It’s a modern take on dressing up in a glam fashion.

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WGSN: What is make-up focusing on this season?

Barber: There is a lot of lip this season. Classically sexy, sexy in that Catherine Deneuve way (when she was in The Hunger)  or Charlotte Rampling in The Night Porter. Quite strong and lots of sexual identity to it. I don’t think we will see a season again where we will say it’s a glossy lip or a matte lip. It’s basically a lip that you either fully dress up or under dressed. I think the way that women are dressing their faces and with all this individual make-up for different girls on the catwalks is leading to a bespoke beauty.

Webb: Lips with shapes rather than being a bold lip, it can be a love heart-shaped lip or a really striking pointy lip.

O’Donnell: The treatment of the lip is important too, whether is it glossy, matte or smudged. Also, there is a sexual empowerment to it but it is not trashy or tough. There is just a real sense of ownership in the make-up.

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WGSN: What finishes are you seeing on skin?

Barber: Real skin but perfected without putting on a heavy coverage. It’s a different kind of perfection to flawless. It’s a perfection that’s created by having the perfect shine or the perfect eggshell finish. It’s not too corruptive, not too masked or covered and not too contoured or 3D strobed. It’s a very enhanced real skin.

WGSN: What has been your favourite shows from LFW?

Charlotte Olympia. Every beauty look was executed differently. It was beautiful because we used glitter, glosses and colour. Some were really stripped back and quite boyish with just a stain on the lip or it went the complete opposite with full on glitter around the eyes and lip. There was lot’s of make-up looks from different eras but that show really stood out for me.

O’Donnell: Gareth Pugh. Val Garland did the make-up for the show and her reference was Joan Crawford if she was Hannibal Lecter’s mistress. The make-up was powerful, perfect and glossed and then at the last minute we put a slither of stocking on the face to create a super severe contour. It was weird but so beautiful and powerful – there was a real strength to it.

Barber: I was looking at the Barbara Casasola show that Alex Box did and I really adored it because I like the fact that it was almost based on make-up that is classically quite sensible – brushed up brows but it was just super meticulous. I like this idea that we take make-up that is classically quite sensible and toughen it up. I like that beauty which fears on the side of being slightly androgynous and strong.

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WGSN: Are there any exciting products you’ve used backstage that we should know about?

Webb: The Retro Matte Lipsticks. They do not budge and are super opaque and easy to apply. We used them on a lot of shows with lip pencil applied on first and then retro matte lipstick on top followed by more lip pencil which gave a 3D, punchy shape. At Mary Katrantzou we used one called Dance With Me which was a really strong, deep burgundy red. It looked incredible on the models.

O’Donnell: Studio Quik Trik Stick, a highlighter with an lovely texture. It’s like a transparent cream.

Webb: The rose one (lighter colour) is beautiful on the eyes when blown out all around the eyes.

Barber: One is like adding post gym to the skin and the other is like adding post beach to the skin. It’s like bringing back reality to the skin with tints and highlights after you have done foundation. It’s about bringing skin back to looking real and adding shine as if you have came out of the gym or spa.

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