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Wintry red ombré lips, clumpy eyelashes, bare-looking matte skin: Alina models a beauty look evocative of Russian princesses and devouring blonde bombshells à la Kill Bill. Since the time of the ancients, red lips symbolised status and sensuality, linked in imagination with the Greek goddess Aphrodite, the ruling goddess of love and desire. Red lips mean business, but they also mean pleasure. Recall the rare mystique of American Beauty’s Mena Suvari luxuriating in a foaming bath, hung up inside an ageing executive’s imagination in an endless field of pristine red roses. The archetypal imperfect Perfect American Girl in the style of Lynchian film stars—Mulholland Drive-esque sweetness and danger, distortions of every ideal—sprinkled with Quentin Tarantino style female rage, beauty, and lust for power. A timeless makeup look can often act as a harbinger of glamour and magic, seducing outwards from within us some alternate version of ourselves, the part of ourselves that is comfortable with anything, the Marilyn to our Norma Jean, our alter ego. 

While the mascara wand is typically wielded with a steady hand, the clumpy eyelash trend asks for your wild side. It is versatile: even though it is pictured here paired with a bold lip, you can often dress your lips down with a more nude shade and keep your eyes as the main focus. This look is that particular essence distilled and delivered, offering a subtle melodrama that cannot help but feel organic. Dark, red ombré lips are the focus–the key for the ombré effect is a near-black pencil paired with a brighter, classic red lipstick. Don’t forget the gloss. We keep the skin bare with only a slight rumour of foundation and the fundamental touch is wet-looking clumpy black mascara. Eyes are the prize, darling. 


We aimed to maintain the skin’s smooth, untouched-looking appearance as the base of the look—a big contrast to the intense, viper-black red lips. Start by moisturising the face with MAC Cosmetics’ Hyper Real Serumizer Skin Balancing Serum, paired with isClinical Youth Cream, to harmonise and soothe the skin barrier, offering maximum hydration crucial for the makeup’s wearability and appearance. Pro tip: use the 001 Serum + Moisturizer Brush for a flawless application. 

Once the skin is prepped, we opted for MAC’s Face and Body Foundation which is radiant, sheer and water-based, giving super light but buildable coverage. For the under-eye area, pat Glossier’s dewy and versatile Stretch Balm Concealer over any dark circles, blemishes, or red spots. After the concealer is applied, lightly contour essential areas–along the cheekbones and jawline, around the bridge and tip of the nose, sweep over the temples of the forehead—with Fenty Beauty’s Match Stix in the shade Amber to infuse the face with a cool, neutral undertone. To set the makeup, use a large, fluffy brush to apply Chanel’s Natural Finish Loose Powder, securing the foundation in place. 


Upon arriving at the eyes, our focus began at the eyebrows. Using MAC’s Eyeshadow Pigment in the shade Omega–a soft, muted beige tone perfect for Alina–we filled in any uneven sections of the brows, giving them a more polished look. Then, we shaped and cleaned the brow hairs with the Eyebrows Big Boost Fibre Gel in Fling. As lashes play such a pivotal role in this look, we went big and bold on the next step by adding layers and layers of MAC’s Stack Mascara

A noteworthy detail: don’t be afraid to generously apply the mascara.

The formula of the product is specifically designed to add infinite layers of volume to the lashes and is quite clump-resistant, so to achieve our desired look we also used tweezers to delicately pull together Alina’s individual lashes, creating an intentionally imperfect and whimsical clumped lash effect. 

Moving to the upper lash line, a sleek line was drawn with MAC’s dark black Eye Kohl pencil in Feline, bringing a subtle second layer of drama to the eyes. The inner corners of the eyes were then dusted with MAC’s Pigment in Vanilla—a pearly white shade that brought some luminosity into the eye area.


For the mouth, always begin with some light prep–we applied MAC’s staple Lip Conditioner to hydrate and nourish Alina’s lips before adding any heavier products. This ensures a clean appearance and longer lasting finish. 

Lips, along with the eyes, are really the stars of this look. We wanted a really bold, winter berry lip with a clean, defined outline, and we brought that vision to life by initially defining the lips with MAC’s almost-black Lip Pencil in Nightmoth. Blend the liner towards the lip’s centre, retracing the outer edges of the mouth for a sharp, precise contour. Using MAC’s Matte Lipstick in the shade D for Danger—a deep, black cherry red—we worked with a pencil brush to apply the lipstick pigment, preserving the lip liner’s structure as a distinct element within the overall look. The final touch? A clear Slick Salve Glossy Balm from Topicals.

If you recreate, remix, or reimagine this look, we’d love to know: tag us on Instagram with #NBGANewEra. 

Aalina by Sarah Feingold
Hair: Rachel Polycarpe
Mollie Gloss
Light by Matthew Yoscary

Produced for NBGA in New York

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