From New York Fashion Weeks to editorials for top publications (including Grazia), Bobby Wang is a wanted man when it comes to makeup artistry. And while he began working with supermodel Liu Wen long before the two signed up with Estée Lauder, his role as Global Makeup Artist and Senior Regional Education Education Manager for the brand has seen the two working together on the regular.
With Wang in town this week, we quizzed the makeup guru on everything from global trends to working with Wen.
Working for a global brand, do you see much difference in the trends across alternative countries? Very different, for example the contouring in North America is very different to the contouring in Asia. Asian girls have a totally different perspective on the definition of beauty. They prefer a smaller, slender face and they don’t like a strong jawline, so they contour differently. When North American girls contour, they prefer to use a deep shade to create a high cheekbone, but for Asian girls – they don’t want their skin to look darker but they do want their face to look smaller. It’s very tricky when doing contouring for them. Asian girls focus more on highlighting to bring the features forward and use minimal contouring shades to shape the face so it won’t make their skin look darker. They prefer fairer skin.
How do the top trends in Australia differ from that in Japan and Korea? Bronzing I would say is the major difference, because people here really like tanned skin. Women in Japan and Korea don’t like their skin looking tanned, they prefer fair skin. It’s a different definition of beauty.
What trends from Asia are we going to see become popular in Australia in the next 12 months? I would say two major trends: One is skin finish. Skin finish is moving towards a more natural glow. It’s not super glowing like last season, it’s become a little bit powdery but in between matte and glowing. It’s like natural glowing skin. And then lips – you can wear them a little darker, a bit more burgundy, especially coming into winter, and with a matte metallic finish. The finish is very interesting, it’s not a glossy metallic anymore, it’s more matte, so the texture looks richer.
You are responsible for some of Wen’s incredible makeup looks for Estée Lauder. Are there any particular techniques you use to create her looks? Her skin finish is really important, so we use minimal foundation and we use skincare to enhance the look. We always apply a little bit of extra Advanced Night Repair Serum, a few drops after the makeup, so it takes away the extra powder on the skin and looks more radiant. And for her eyes, we don’t do a very harsh sharp eyeliner. Because she has a more single eye lid, when she opens her eyes you can’t see the eyeliner, so we will then do a little bit of lower liner or eyeshadow across the lower lashline to make the eyes open up and look wider.
Where do you draw inspiration from for the looks? Because I travel a lot, I don’t really carry print magazines, but I will flick through them at the airport. Instagram is good and I follow lots of other makeup artists and fashion brands. I see the runway and it’s always interesting to look at the latest shows.