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Wednesday September 3, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Wednesday September 3, 2014 MYT 9:40:34 AM
by patsy kam
Romero Jennings, senior make-up artist for M.A.C, breaks away from convention this season with the four looks seen below.
For once, being off is in trend, and unconventional beauty grabs the news.
IT’S the season to experiment and M.A.C Cosmetics pushes the envelope with its new Off Colour trend this Autumn/Winter 2014.
“Off Colour is one trend that uses classic tones, but with a muddied or dirty edge, so think deep plum hues mixed with rust or mushroom toned grey, sometimes mixed with undertones of ochre. These conventionally unflattering colours are popular and attract attention. They add vulnerability and a dark power at the same time,” said Romero Jennings.
As senior make-up artist for the brand, he creates lavish, exotic and handsome looks. He has worked with people of all ages, from a six-month-old baby to an octogenarian, chanteuse Eartha Kitt. He’s been with M.A.C for 22 years and has created make-up for Broadway plays, music videos, fashion shows from New York to Milan, and magazine covers, having worked with well-known designers like Prabal Gurung and Proenza Schouler.
He has also worked on a lively list of celebrity clientele, including Mary J. Blige, Toni Colette, David Schwimmer, Naomi Campbell and “a Dream Girl or two”. He picked Daphne Guinness as one of his most intriguing clients as “she had an innocent but powerful spirit that flowed through the make-up”.
The animated Jennings was in Kuala Lumpur recently for the launch of the new collection. He professes a love for colours, which is an interesting paradox since the signature shade for the brand is black!
This collection, he said, is all about colours, although they are not quite put together the conventional way how one would expect make-up to go on.
“This is the season to break away from conventional beauty. The unexpected nuance of highlighting and maximising minimalism is the key,” he added in an e-mail interview.
The Off Colour trend is about texture nuances; transparency is more important than heavy opacity, combined with unpredictable shades. The attitude is all your own and how you style yourself. Colour palettes come in shades such as Polluted Pink and Unwholesome Brown, proving that colour doesn’t have to correct or complement.
The other key trends are Streamlined, On Reflection and Unprocessed. Streamlined is framed with an architectural liner: eyes add strength to the face that’s between glamour and grunge, while brow treatment lend an edge to the face. This is complemented by bold shades such as HD cyan, landscape green and genuine orange.
On Reflection looks at the function of white against matte, and provides a play on light. The hues range from neutral metallics (gold with forays into copper, pewter and silver) through to literal gloss. While this season is not about conceptual minimalism, it is a “designed minimalism”, thoughtfully applied with consideration to specific placement. The look is luxurious yet not glamorous. Unprocessed is about an almost bare-faced look.
“It’s a universal trend of finding the inner most beautiful features by subtly enhancing them with neutral skin-toned natural shades, making make-up undetectable and approachable,” explained Jennings, who majored in women’s fashion design at Fashion Institute of Technology before ending up in Asia, where he honed his skills in Japan.
“Streamlined is about framing the eye for a definite impactful focus. Sometimes, it’s done with a liner, sometimes with a bold brow. Make sure to pair this bold eye look with everything that is neutral. Impactful eyes should be worn with neutral lips and cheeks,” he said.
“On Reflection has a transparent shimmery layered sensibility. Highlighting and brightening features metallic crystalised shine and highlights. Metallic deep gold and bronze has become a standard neutral that can be worn in the day or at night!”
Jennings moved to New York when he was six, with his roots in Kingston, Jamaica. There, he said, colours are more saturated than anywhere else in the world he’s travelled.
His favourite colour is blue and this features prominently in this season’s looks. But for those who feel they can’t carry off the shade, he advised: “Everyone can wear blue as an accent colour! It means wear it proudly, but make sure to keep it in one place. By this I mean don’t wear matching blue eyeliner with a blue top! Neutralise everywhere else for a modern impactful way to wear this season’s hottest accent colour.”
For classic looks, start with great skin, and well-groomed brows are a must.
“The new eyebrow shape is called Boy! It means brows should not be thin but should look natural, defined like a boy’s brows. Have a classic red or plum lip colour on hand as your go-to going out colour,” he explained.
Jennings’ must-have products from this collection are the Prep and prime skin refined zone primer for a long-lasting smooth finish, and the Pro longwear lip pencil, that’s important for lasting impactful colour saturation.
There’s also the M.A.C Volcanic Ash exfoliator and paint pots which help add blendable cream shadows that last and almost never crease.
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MAC, Romero Jennings, Daphne Guiness, paints
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