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Runway to Real Way: MAC London Fashion Week Makeover

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I’m a makeup minimalist. The few times I’ve had my makeup done by a professional, I’ve worried the entire time that I’ll need to run home to my Clarisonic and tinted moisturizer.

Fashion Week, however, is almost as much about beauty as clothing. MAC, London Fashion Week's official makeup sponsor, was offering complimentary makeovers in the Somerset House press lounge. So, I decided to try some fall beauty trends for my last night in London!

While Spring 2013's beauty trends are still in the making, MAC makeup artist Deanne gave me a tutorial on two key trends from the Fall 2012 runways: a strong, purple ombré lip and a splash of metallic on the eyes.


(Runway inspiration: YSL and Gucci Fall 2012 from

When paired with a natural, dewy face, Deanne assured me that these trends would translate from the runway to a girl’s real-life evening out on the town.


The end result was surprisingly wearable yet totally glamorous—and easy to do, too. To get the whole look, follow these easy instructions:

1. To create fall’s trendy ombré effect, line your lips with a soft burgundy Lip Pencil in Half-Red, drawing the line just outside your lips to plump them up. You have to be willing to commit to this look and take the time to draw a perfect line and touch up when necessary.

2. Apply Lipstick in Rebel, a deep, purple-red hue, using a lipstick brush. (I could have used an extra swipe of lipstick halfway through the evening, but it generally lasted through the Smythson 125th anniversary party and cocktails at Claridge’s until I removed it 10+ hours later.)

3. With a fluffy eye shadow brush, apply Groundwork Paint Pot, a highly pigmented, creamy eye shadow, on your lid. This warm brown shadow will serve as your base.

4. Follow with All That Glitters, a soft peach powder eye shadow with gold glimmer, on your crease. Deanne told me she was using this color constantly throughout the week, as it works on almost any skin tone.

5. Finish with Naked Lunch, a minimally iridescent pink shadow, on your brow bone, and you’ve got a soft shimmery eye that references the runway.

I never would have tried purple lipstick on my own—and while I wouldn’t wear it to work or brunch, I’ll definitely wear it again in the evening. The trick to wearing runway beauty in real life, I learned, is to pick one strong feature, such as an eye or lip, and most importantly, mix it with your normal routine for a look that makes a statement but still feels comfortable.

MAC Makeup LFW copy

Disclosure: MAC provided complimentary makeovers to press attending London Fashion Week on a first-come, first-serve basis. 

chill out music

Samantha Sault

chill out music

Samantha Sault is a writer in Washington, D.C. Her work has recently appeared in The Weekly Standard, The Washington Times, and Washington Life, and can be found at