BEHIND THE SCENES BEAUTY THIS AW2021 FASHION MONTH WITH DARKUS MAGAZINE

Updated: Apr 9, 2021


Photographer Panos Sambrakos

That’s a wrap; another fashion week season comes to an end with the final day of PFW. Although things have been very different this season, with no audiences and a very digital landscape, the creative juices were still flowing. With some great talent, both new and old, showing their wears and exceptional beauty looks through a wealth of innovative presentations, fashion films, straight-up look books, VR and 3D experiences.

Here we explore some of the beauty looks emerging across the globe for Autumn/Winter 2021.


ALVAR MAR- SUMBOD welcomed the audience aboard the MAVRA SOLAR, which transported us through space to the first runway on Mars. Strong Hair and Makeup looks were the order of the day for this Martian Adventure!



The hair team was led by leading session stylist and educator Ready To Wear Hairdressing’s, Maria Kovacs. Maria and the team created an array of unique styles using products from the cruelty-free, R+Co haircare range, designed to reflect the show's outer-world feel and the impact of this bold collection. Here Maria takes us through one of the show-stopping, Anti-Gravity styles.


“We began by taking a radial section of hair, 2inches around the hairline and sectioned out of the way. Brushing the remaining hair inside the area and fasten into a secure bun on top of the crown.

Next, we pinned the hair in preparation for the weft, setting everything into place with R+Co’s Vicious hairspray around the head to act as a foundation for the shape.

This unique Anti-Gravity look was finished by blow-drying the hair back away from the face and was sprayed and set with R+Co Outer space Hairspray and lashings of R+Co’s Vicious hairspray.

Truly out of this world hair, for genuinely fantastic collection”.


Key Makeup Artist AOFMPro's Michelle Strain wanted to compliment the collection with a strong, empowering makeup look. “I fell in love with this dramatic and futuristic concept.

To achieve this radiant skin, we used a vitamin-rich cleansing routine followed by a dewy makeup base. To take it to the next level, we added liquid rose gold highlight drops to the foundation to illuminate the skin.


The eyes and lips were super strong for this look; For the eyes, we used neon reds, oranges and pink cream shadows blended onto the lid and out to the cheekbone, finished with black eyeliner and mascara to really bring the drama.

On the lips, we used dark black lipstick layered with a glass gloss. Some lips were perfect, and some had a kissed look just to add a twist to each piece of the collection. The final touch was another dose of highlighter, really bringing the cheekbones to life”.



MARK FAST: WINTER OCEAN DRIVE AW2021


Mark Fast's AW2021 collection theme was the ability to find hidden beauty within the darkest of spaces. Taking a journey into the sea’s enchanting mystery, especially meaningful during the challenges of our times. Mark Fast invited the audience on a winters ocean drive, exploring shades of dark blue and aquamarine. With show-stopping dresses, reflecting beams of light and sparkle with intricate sequin and feather details.

In keeping with the underwater themes, hair was styled to mimic water’s reflective flow and shine.


“The team and I started by placing the hair in tuxedo parting, following the line on the inside corner of the eyes, working our way towards the crown. This technique ensured a perfect, deep side parting.

Next, we sectioned the hair at the nape of the neck and sprayed it with R+Co Dallas thickening spray; this is an amazing product if you're looking to add volume to your hair. We blow-dried straight and close to the head up to the crown.

We applied R+Co’s Chiffon Mousse to the front hairline and the parting and then dried the hair pulled tight and close to the head. Maria generously applied r+Co Outerspace Hairspray to lock in the shape, and for extra hold at hairline and root areas, this was followed with R+Co Vicious Hairspray.

Afro hair was left beautifully natural, and we used R+Co Dry oil spray on the roots to mid-lengths, on all styles, to finish this stunning water-inspired, shiny, dual texture look," comments Key Artist Maria Kovacs Ready To Wear Hairdressing.


Sonia Carrasco: AUTUMN WINTER 2021 COLLECTION

Sonia Carrasco collection explores the contrast between mixed feelings and accelerated changes. Sonia was nspired by the beauty of nature and nostalgia, balance and imbalance, uncertainty, hope, challenge, doubt, stress, insecurity and self-responsibility.


In keeping with the collection’s themes, the beauty look was natural, playing up the fashion film star, Spanish dancer Carla Cervantes and models features with defined brows and contour.

Credit Sonia Carrasco

Key AOFMPro MUA and Hairstylist Regina Khanipova talks us through the look. “ Skin was cleansed and hydrated with serum, followed by Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Cream, creating the perfect base for a hypernatural look. We applied a lightweight foundation and pinpoint concealer where necessary. Cheekbones were lightly contoured and highlighted, and a flush of pink blush added to the apple of the cheeks for a super fresh finish.

We defined the eyes with a soft peachy tone, gently curled lashes and applied mascara. Strong brows were a vital part of this look; we used both a brow pencil and Anastasia Beverley Hills brow gel to get the defined yet fluffy look we wanted. We pulled everything together with a hydrating Bobbi Brown balm and, for some shots, an earth tone lipstick on the lips.

The shoot was captured on an analogical photo camera, which is a challenge, as it tends to make makeup look softer. We wanted to keep the model’s facial features strong on camera, so we "exaggerate" the looks a little, which give a very natural look in the final images.


LONE DESIGN CLUB A/W 2021

Lone Design Club, the omnichannel supporting independent and sustainable brands, presented a sleek fashion film set within their trademark polished and industrial style pop-up stores and steamed within a digital 360 shopping experience in partnership with Thrill digital. They were showcasing a selection of some of the platforms independent and sustainable brand talent. The beauty look was modern, elegant and playful.

“To keep things clean and modern, we went for a high shine, wet look with texture. We started by applying Unites Expanda Volume mouse through the roots and added their root boost sprayed all over. We drew the hair back from the face and used pin curl clips to create texture. Diffuse drying everything into place, creating a beautiful dry shine finish.

Once the hair was dry, we use tissue paper to protect some of the hair and sprayed individual pieces with Goldwell’s coloured metallic pink spray through the front of the hair, adding a playful, subtle statement.” Key Hair Artist, Brendan O’Sullivan

“ The makeup looks for this shoot evolved as we worked. We wanted to have subtle changes throughout to add a new dimension to each look. We started by prepping the skin with FIVE DOT BOTANICS skincare; they have some amazing products for all age groups; we wanted the base for all the looks to be very natural and dewy, so we used Deep Feed nourishing facial serum, Full Bright renewal eye serum, Daily prep Facial oil. A subtle blush and contouring were added to keep the overall look quite androgynous.

We went for a graphic look for the eyes, mimicking the appearance of brush strokes with more emphasis on inner and outer corners to draw attention to the brow bones. We applied face and body paint using a mini fun brush and finished with eye shadow strokes with similar tones to create texture.


Eyebrows were kept light and feathery with soap brow and clear mascara applied for natural-looking lashes.


For the second look, we took the colour up a level. We primed the eyelids with a creamy pink base and contoured the eyes, patting in a great eco-friendly loose glitter in shade Purple Shell by St Essentials. Using fingertips, we highlighted further glitter to the middle and inner in shade golden sands. We built up the glitters in areas that would naturally reflect the light; this gave the look a wet/metallic finish just in the right points.


Using the same design as the previous makeup, we intensified the look, adding more glitter to really ramp up the drama. We blended the shade into the brows and beginning of the eyes, gradually fading outwards and lined the bottom lashes with a brighter colour - Bahamian pink. We applied pearl loose glitters all over the lid to complement the overall look, focusing on the inner corner to create a gradual metallic and holographic look.

To finish, we applied St Essentials glitters in purple and pink to the outer edges of the hands, rounding off this edgy look.” AOFMPro Key Artist, Ester Perrucci


NEW YORK FASHION WEEK AW2021

VICTOR LI FW21


For the Victor LI FW21 collection, the team designed the beauty looks to echo the warm and earthy tones from the collection. Inspired by the landscapes of Wyoming’s vast mountain ranges, naturally leaning in on the 90’s supermodel neutral tones feel.

“The most crucial step in achieving this look was the skin prep. We started by thoroughly cleansing and toning the skin, applying an under-eye gel, and massaging it in a hydrating serum, all from the Dermalogica skincare range. To seal in all the goodness, we finished with a super nourishing moisturiser.

We used a hydrating primer and pinpointed concealer to cover any blemishes and perfected the skin with a thin layer of Charlotte Tilbury’s light wonder, applied with a duo fibre brush and sponge to build the desired coverage. An excellent trick MUA’s often use to make the eyes look super fresh is to add extra concealer to the under-eyes inner corner. We lightly contoured the face with a matte bronzer, really bringing in that 90’s feel, and set everything in place with Ben Nye loose powder.



Eyes lids had a wash of neutral-toned taupe shadow and were tight lined to add definition. Lashes were curled and finished with a slick of mascara. Brows were lightly groomed, brush up and set with a touch of tinted brow gel.

The look was finished with nude matte lipstick and a light lip balm,” comments Key AOFMPro Key Makeup Artist Monique Rinard.


KA WA KEY: THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS AUTUMN WINTER 2021


KA WA KEY AW 21 collection observes the duality of the imagination and reality inspired by larger than life characters and their dual personalities. Characters like Willy Wonka, Moira Rose, Peter Pan, Mad Hatter just a few to mention.


The Hair and Makeup brief were playful with a magical feel.

AOFMPro’s Key Makeup, Michelle Strain comments, “The inspiration for this makeup look was a romantic character from a magical world, with beautiful glowing skin, iridescent highlights and pastel eyes.

To achieved this, we started by thoroughly cleansing the skin, applying serum and creamy moisturiser. A good skin base is everything!

We applied an illuminating primer all over the face and extra highlighter to the cheekbones, forehead and nose. To complete our base, we used a sheer dewy foundation and pinpoint concealer to cover any imperfections.

The eyes were a magical blend of iridescent pastel eye pigments in lilac shades blended to create a washed-out look. A strong emphasis was placed on thick, brushed-up brows. We used soap brows to keep them tidy and in place and enhanced further with individual lashes; these were also applied to the bottom lash line, leaning into the Alice in Wonderland feel. A natural peachy nude glossy lip completed the look.”