Modeling the finished look. Photo: Grace Gold for StyleList

Backstage at the Vena Cava Spring 2011 collection at New York's Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, full-on Halston-inspired glamour took center stage, with strong colors for face and hair and nails that made a statement.

MAKEUP: Christian McCulloch for MAC Cosmetics
HAIR: Ted Gibson for Beauty.com
NAILS: Nonie Creme with Butter London, for Beauty.com
SNAPSHOT: Modern Take On The 80's Glamour Girl

THE SCOOP: The Brooklyn-based design duo of Sophie Buhai and Lisa Mayock gave their team leads Halston ads as inspiration for the glamorous beauty look that tied into the strong colors of their Spring 2011 clothing collection.

Since hair was to be pushed back off the face, McCulloch used vibrant colors that reminded him of Michelle Pfiefer's look in the 1983 movie ScarFace, which focused on a strong smoky eye, sculpted and contoured cheekbones, and a burst of color on the lips. "Instead of a red lip, I went with a bright peach -- it looks younger and fresher, even with all the makeup. Anytime you use a red or brown-based lip with a full face of color, you'll look older," McCulloch told StyleList.

The only natural feature was the eyebrows, which McCulloch said kept the look youthful as well. "You have to leave something alone, and nothing looks as young as an untouched, fuller eyebrow."

Given the task of creating a bun updo, Gibson said that the texture he added made the look modern. "I didn't want to do a boring ballerina bun, I wanted to make it more interesting than that. Back-combing the hair for texture and adding a twisted scarf makes it so much more fun," said Gibson.

Makeup artist Christian McCulloch applies the finishing touch. Photo: Grace Gold for StyleList



Great attention to detail went into the nails, where Creme pre-painted press-on nails with café au lait color and a bottom half-moon of black. "The half-moon was a status symbol in the '20's, since spending so much time on your nails meant you were of a higher class. We've made it more current by elongating the half-moon and making the colors more graphic in contrast," Creme told StyleList.

GET THE LOOK - MAKEUP:
All makeup by M.A.C. Cosmetics. Layer up your colors so the brightness stays true all day by first using a blue eyeliner on the lid and then smudging Midnight Blue over it, with Contrast in the corner and Graphology all over to add a metallic navy finish. Heavily curl lashes and stroke on multiple coats of new Haute & Naughty mascara. Sweep on a neutral taupe powder to contour the cheekbones, and then warm up the apples with a peachy blush and highlighter above. Finish with a bright peach lipstick with a matte finish. "Don't put any shiny gloss on the lip -- it'll make the whole look come off as tacky. You want a pushed-on natural matte," instructs McCulloch.

Photo: Grace Gold for StyleList



GET THE LOOK - HAIR:
All hair products by Ted Gibson. Prep hair with Build It Blow Drying Agent, and then blow-out. Add Tame It Lotion for shine. Then finger-comb hair into a medium ponytail and back-comb strands to add mega texture and volume. Add a second elastic halfway down the hair shaft, and twist up and pin into a bun. Then wrap a red or black skinny silk scarf as a headband, and twist the scarf and pin down to held hold the corkscrew effect.

GET THE LOOK - NAILS: All products by Butter London. Apply three coats of the creamy espresso Yummy Mummy to short press-on nails, and then paint a half-moon of Jack Black above the bottom cuticle. "Painting on press-on nails allows you to take your time drawing on your art, which will come out so much better than trying to do it on your own nails," says Creme.

StyleList is your source for New York Fashion Week. Read our runway reviews and backstage beauty reports. Gawk at fashionable celebrities. Watch our video interviews with style personalities. Ruminate on it all with our roundups of Spring 2011 trends.