Two words that do not sit comfortabl­y together in a sentence, unless you are a personal trainer (or the author of an erotic novel). So how has this sticky image crept into my subconscio­us? Sweaty skin? I want it…


But first, some context: the life of a backstage beauty journalist is peppered with ridiculous phrases. Hair and make-up artists tie themselves into all sorts of knots when describing their looks: ‘ethereal earthlines­s’, ‘retro-future neoclassic­ism’, ‘punk, romantic non-romance’, and so on. And then we untangle the references and form the trends that make sense to you, the wearer.

Sweaty skin was one such term for SS17. We said, ‘Yeah, yeah,’ and wondered how to make it relevant to the women who would be wearing it. No one actually wants to have sweaty skin. That’s why blotting papers exist. But we’re not talking workout-face here, and it’s not the moist glow you get after running for the train in the morning. It’s the biggest trend of the year: glossy skin (which is how we journalist­s have translated sweaty). It’s not dewy – don’t be basic – it’s more wet-look, but with a twist because it’s dry! Dry gloss! Still with me?

Make-up artist Val Garland told me: ‘It’s the make-up you’ve been seeing all fashion month,’ – that’s correct, Val – ‘but I think it’s the version that happens in the real world. It’s the beauty look you will all be doing.’ The reason this glossed skin trend has taken off already (all the editors at New York Fashion Week adopted it) is because it’s easy, it’s comfortabl­e and Victoria Beckham does it.

If you managed to get hold of her Estée Lauder Modern Mercury collaborat­ion, you’re probably already doing it. It’s a metallic highlighte­r but in powder form. The descriptio­n on the website says this about it: ‘A strobing accent on the cheekbones with or without bronzer, to create that sweaty-skin look.’

My hero, though, and the thing I stole – I mean, I wanted to steal – from Val’s make-up station backstage was the MAC Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Soft Frost. It’s a liquid powder (try to work that one out), it’s white, but it ‘breaks violet’ (and that one). It has what you might call a holographi­c finish, which makes ‘sculpting’ so effective. It’s almost three dimensiona­l and it comes in four shades for varying degrees of tonal excellence. The secret is the bit that ‘breaks’, the holographi­c element that makes it look sweaty – sorry – glossy. There is a warm golden peach version, which ‘breaks pink’. Put that over your lids and the apples of your cheeks. And the beige, which ‘breaks silver’ (dust all over), and the pink, which breaks gold and should go lower down. But my hero – the Soft Frost, which goes on the Cupid’s bow, under the brow, buffed over tops of cheekbones and dabbed in the inner corners of your eyes – is the stuff of magic. If this were an easy glossy-skin masterclas­s, you’d be an over-achieving teacher’s pet. Good make-up work, you look A+ amazing.

 ??  ?? Sophie Beresiner ELLE Beauty Director @ElleSophie
Sophie Beresiner ELLE Beauty Director @ElleSophie

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