Outfit: Chanel couture; Pumps: Jimmy Choo; Face: Pure perfection © Chanel
Work it, wallflowers of the world. Sometimes subtle does it, as in the case with Keira Knightley’s dusty rose, vaguely vintage face at the gala premiere of her new rom-com Begin Again at the recent Tribeca Film Festival.
Now, if we’re being honest, we’ve always been a little puzzled by Keira’s popularity; she’s always struck us as being prissy, purse-lipped and completely pedestrian, at least in her public persona.
And yet the fashion houses continue to clamour over her. Witness the piece of perfection that is her Chanel ensemble from the Spring 2014 couture collection – a sartorial perk of being the British man’s Natalie Portman, we suppose.
Personal ambivalence towards the actress aside, we must say her face painter did an ace job of alluding to the floral buds scattered all over her lamé bodice and layered organza skirt: Keira’s makeup was ravishingly romantic but earthy and artfully undone – like a garden goddess after a sun-dappled afternoon nap.
Here’s how to get the look, starting from Keira’s satiny skin. (And yes, even her face is courtesy of Chanel.) Celeb makeup master Kate Lee very wisely let Keira’s enviably clear complexion do the beauty talking by veiling it in the sheerest and silkiest of bases; in this instance, Perfection Lumiere Velvet Foundation in 12 Beige Rose ($80).
Notice how polished and powdery the finish is? We think that’s the absolute clincher in rocking this look – in a trendy throng of dewy K-Beauties, a defiantly matte mien stands out like a high-end, high-fashion throwback to Vivien Leigh and Ingrid Bergman.
Quick tip: For fluid foundations like these, ditch the brushes. we like dotting it on and blending it in with warm fingertips. This gives you the precision coverage you want without veering into theatrical pancake territory.
We’re also frothing at the mouth over the fantastic fawn-coloured blusher Keira’s wearing; for the record, it’s Chanel Le Blush Creme de Chanel in 79 Cheeky. Alas, this particular hue’s not available on our sunny shores – please, lovely folks at Chanel Singapore, do reconsider! – but you can approximate the effect with your go-to cream formula in a burnished rose that’s just shy of bronze.
Finish with a sugary sprinkling of loose powder to cement the look, so to speak. Try Chanel’s sumptuously soft Poudre Universelle Libre in 20 ($77), which with its nigh indetectable spangly bits is matte without being flat.
On the eyes, go all in with the liner and shadow. Treat your lids to a generous gilding of Ombre Essentielle in Rose de Mai ($48), a neutral salmon that very nearly made us squeal out loud when we swatched it for ourselves at the Chanel cabin.
Both peachy and rosy, warm and cool, this is the perfect play on pink eyeshadow – always a dicey hue to play makeup roulette with, as we’ve so duly pointed out.
The next trick is to tap a creamy kohl-type stick for maximum smudging effect. Keira’s all rimmed up with one of our all-time superheroes, Chanel’s Stylo Yeux Waterproof ($35). We’d usually reach for our trusty Noir Intense, but Kate Lee’s opted for an ingenious spin on the standard smoke.
Here we have all the hallmarks of a makeup maestro at work. The choice of Stylo Yeux Waterproof in Marron Glacé not only serves as a glistening reprieve from the matte planes of the rest of her face, the rusty red hue also paints a cohesive colour story with the terracotta blush on her cheeks and the nude petal on her lids – a sort of unified theory of pink everything.
Ink up with a bodybuilding mascara in the blackest of black; Le Volume de Chanel Waterproof in 10 Noir ($52) ought to do the trick, and does double duty as a brow booster to boot. Don’t be overly precious about getting every lash evenly coated: Spidery tendrils here and there will go very nicely towards the woodland nymph vibe we’re gunning for here.
A slick of a taupey Rouge Coco Shine in Boy ($46) on the lips and you’ll be, as our (incidentally also Chanel-obsessed) editor is wont to say, okay to go.
Key takeaway from this Kiera look? Neutral pinks on a matte canvas can be very sophisticated indeed – a timely reminder, really, after all the cough, sassy showiness we’ve been smitten with on this season’s red carpet. Lupita, time to shake up your makeup game by deliberately downplaying your flawless features, perhaps?
For more information, visit www.chanel.com/en_SG and follow Chanel on Twitter and Facebook. The Chanel boutiques in Singapore are located at L1-59 and B1-135, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands and #01-25-27 and #02-12M/N/T, Ngee Ann City.
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