Backstage at London Fashion Week: This is what the makeup artists are using

Backstage at London Fashion Week: This is what the makeup artists are using

September 22, 2021

Ever wanted to take a look behind-the-scenes at a London Fashion Week show? Well, you’re in luck, because we got the chance to.

Backstage at a Fashion Week show is manic, stressful and intense, and busy with models, runners, designers, producers, makeup and hair artists all running around.

Then through all that chaos, a beautiful show emerges.

We took a peek at what goes on before the models hit the runway at Osman Yousefzada’s show, and got to see makeup artist David Gillers work his magic.

He tells Metro.co.uk his inspiration for the show’s look was the 2000s, which is having a comeback, and shimmer that’s ‘a little trashy, with sexy vibes’.

When designing the looks, he went back to noughties culture and studied movies, red carpets events, the silver eyeshadow of Christina Aguilera and Paris Hilton, then from there started to mood board his ideas in the lead up the show.

He adds it’s about ‘a modern woman who doesn’t have time to blend her eyeshadows – it’s a slap and go’.

And his top tip for modern women off the catwalk is to ‘slap on the foundation as good as you can, and everything else will look amazing if your base is done.’

‘When I do makeup, I usually make sure the skin looks great, then I know it guarantees whatever I put on top will look good,’ he adds.

When it came to applying mascara, David moved the wand back and forth horizontally across the lashes, rather than vertically.

He says this was to ‘clump the lashes more – when they stick, they give a bit more volume and they also look spikier.’

Famous drag queen Tayce was his model here, loading up on layers of mascara without the need for falsies.

If you’re inspired by a look you see at LFW, David says you shouldn’t shy away from it – even if it seems too bold.

‘Take the details of the looks. If you see a look that you love, actually look at it and see what is the thing you love about it most,’ he says, then extract that part of it and tone the rest of your look down.

He then quoted Coco Chanel, advising that ‘before you exit the house, remove one thing’, and that way you know it’s a statement look rather than an unwearable one.

These are his top picks for flawless makeup – and the products he used on models for the catwalk:

Pat McGrath Mothership VII: Divine Rose eyeshadow palette

Get it for £115 from Selfridges.

A luxury buy, but one that David says he has no regrets over.

‘There’s nothing better than the Mothership palettes if you want a standout eye look, it’s just because her products have this beautiful texture to them,’ he says.

Plus, Pat is known for her ‘special shades’ in these palettes, which are largely unrivalled in the beauty scene.

Get it for £16.50 from Boots.

The shade David used was limited edition and no longer available, but he loves this formula for a high shine gloss.

It’s a little thick in texture, but it gives the glass-like finish the name promises while offering some hydration.

Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish

Get it for £35 from Cult Beauty.

We weren’t surprised to see this in David’s kit, given how well-loved this powder is.

But the trouble with powder is it can mattify and take away the glow other products have given, though powder is a key way to ‘set’ makeup, extending its wear time.

David says to work with this, start by doing your highlighter first and ‘feather it out’.

Then take your powder and ‘feather it in to the highlight’, overlapping slightly so the shine is softened only a touch on the edges.

This gives the best transition he says, advising that ‘you should never be afraid of mixing textures’.

Fenty Diamond Bomb All-Over Diamond Veil

Get it for £31 from Boots.

Who said glitter was too much?

This fine reflective putty-like highlighter can be used on cheekbones and eyes for an eye-catching look that connects these parts of the face.

David patted it in with fingers for the best finish.

Nars Blush

Get it for £26 from Cult Beauty.

Sweep this higher on cheeks than usual for a blush draping effect, which visually lifts the bone structure.

David says while this technique is gaining more popularity in recent years, it actually goes back to the 1980s.

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