They don’t make ’em like this anymore. Grainy, fractured with light, frayed at the edges; it’s the return of film, but not as we know it. This is film for the instant-gratication era; images for the digital age. Our obsession with reels of the past has seen cinematic apps launch in their droves, as smartphones make images snap, crackle and Polaroid once more. Here, beauty queens turn screen queens: this month’s beauty stars are tempered with light and a love of the good ol’ days. Lipstick cherry all over the lens as she’s falling…meet the new Girls on Film.

Japanese women are always artfully rouged. It is blusher, and their articulation of which – precise, meticulous, ritualistic – that marks their brand of beauty differently. Ask any Japanese woman what their number one product is, and most will answer blush. It’s a sentiment echoed by Shiseido Global Colour Artist Patrick Ta: “It’s the number one makeup product in Japan.” For Ta – who also “can’t live without blush” – rouge stems back to the broader cultural phenomena of ‘Kawaii’. “For American women, it’s about looking sexy; for Japanese women, it’s about looking cute and ‘kawaii’. They even put it under the eyes which makes it look kawaii.” This cultural aesthetic of cuteness is refined, however, in Shiseido’s all-new makeup range. Inspired by a modern Tokyo, the collection is a sophisticated rejig of enduring classics; the four pillars of texture – dew, gel, ink, powder – have been redefined, gloriously so. Delicate yet masterful pigment makes for incredible colour payoff, rich in both saturation and staying power, as beauty is reimagined through a world of tactile pleasure.

A range as sublime as it looks, its formulations are dreamlike. VisionAiry Gel Lipstick, for example, glides on lips with glee; weightless yet full of life (and colour), Ginza Red is the ultimate cherry (blossom) bomb. The MorningAura Dew may very well be sent from the heavens – otherworldly and worthy of more than just one dab. Skincare, meanwhile, demands a modern militance and ritual is imperative. Take heed of Ta’s advice and employ “patting motions not sweeping or brushing” to melt in Minimalist WhippedPowder Blush Glow “above the cheekbone” — a trick exercised on celebrity clientele to look slim and sculpted in the face. Then tie it all together with a strong, monochromatic finish; “When I do a bold lip, I want to find a blush colour that can play off it. It finishes off an entire makeup look.” Paint your face with Geisha-like diligence, or, get creative like a J-Pop girl gang. Turning Japanese? We really hope so.

shop the look

shiseido Colorgel Lipbalm, $48. shop now

shiseido Laquerink Lip Shine in Lilac Strobe, Red Flicker and Techno red, each $46. shop now

shiseido Visionairy Gel Lipstick in Ginza Red, Cherry Festival, High Rise and Neon Buzz, each $42. shop now


THIS ARTICLE APPEARED ORIGINALLY IN THE SEPTEMBER EDITION OF GRAZIA MAGAZINE AUSTRALIA.

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