While everyone else is sitting front of house during Fashion Week, we're backstage watching the pros invent some pretty crazy makeup looks on the spot. But our favorite fall makeup wasn't so wild at all. Marc by Marc Jacobs went for the exact opposite of crazy—the epitome of classic—and the result was a look we'd wear every day, forever, if we could. As seen on page 102 in our November issue, the Marc x MJ fall '12 "Red Alert" look is simple: It's about startlingly red lips against the perfect backdrop—flawless skin. We called in celebrity makeup artist Nina Park to test it out on our Marc model-esque intern, Kaitlyn Wylde.
Learn how it's done with Park's meticulously expert tips:
STEP 1: SKINCARE PREP
Nuxe Micellar Cleansing Water, $23.50
"There's nothing really going on around the eyes, so you really want your skin to look flawless and well conditioned – especially with this weather. I always start with cleansing water to wipe the dirt away—it's great for dealing with different types of skin. It's gentle enough for everybody and it smells like roses."
"It's a great, gentle lotion. Every makeup artist uses it."
Clarins Instant Smooth Primer, $32.50
"Then I use a primer base. It's really great for blending with foundation. It kind of fills in the pores and gives off a really flawless look."
STEP 2: FOUNDATION & CONCEALER
"I'm using a foundation brush to apply lighter foundation towards the center of the face (cheekbones, nose, chin, and the center of the forehead) because this look is all about sculpting. Then I'll warm it up by using a foundation color that matches her actual skintone. It's a lot subtler to do this with foundation than to do it with powders, which look so artificial. When you use foundation you want to remember that most women have the most discoloration in the center of the face, so the lighter color helps give coverage and bring out her cheekbones."
"This is my favorite concealer right now. I like it because it doesn't get dry and it has a really dewy finish. I don't feel like it sits in the lines like other concealers. It melts into the skin, which is really nice. It's really cheap too."
STEP 3: EYES
By Terry Eye Powder, $40
"I'm using a pink loose power under her eyes. She doesn't have a lot of discoloration under her eye because she's young, so this is used to brighten more than anything else. It's not really pink; it's a light, pastel pink. What I love about this powder is that the texture is so fine that it blends well without looking powdery. That's a huge problem for most women—their under eye area always looks dry."
"The brows have to be really well groomed. I'm definitely going to define them, but I won't go crazy. You always want to start middle and then work your way out. If you start in the front it tends to look really bad. You always want to use the pencil to create strokes the way little hairs would grow instead of drawing long lines. The Kevyn Aucoin pencils are great because they're not waxy. It only comes in two colors and it's kind of amazing how you can achieve any eyebrow color with only two colors."
"It's really thin and has more of a gel texture, so doesn't cake up like other primers. It doesn't grab the product on the eyelids. It evens out any discoloration you may have—even veins. I haven't set the powder yet because I want to let it run into the skin and then once I'm done with the eyes any kind of fall out from the eyeshadow will be blended in. It's easier than trying to clean it once everything's set in place. The primer makes it look like she has shadow on already."
Sable Eyeshadow by Smashbox, $27.70
"I'm going to use a tapered brush and start on the outer corner. I'm applying it softly and then diffusing it. The goal is not to be able to see where the color starts and where it ends—it should all blend together. There's no defined crease. I'm dragging the color down to the bottom of the lash line. It's a subtle way to create shadows while bringing out her other features. You don't need to put more powder on your brush, but you can use whatever's left on the crease of the eye. The sable color is more wearable than something you'd see on the runway. You can wear it everyday because it's warmer."
"I'm going to use the matte side of the white just to brighten the eye. I'm also adding it under the brow line—just below the bottom of the arch. This adds bit of a highlight, but it's not bright white."
STEP 4: POWDER & SCULPTING
"I'm putting powder underneath her eyes and on her cheeks."
"I dusted it a little bit on top of her skin, so it's not too dewy, but not flat looking either."
MAC Sculpting Powder, $20
"Always start near the hairline and then work your way towards the center of the face, applying a thin layer all over."
STEP 5: LIPS & BLUSH
"The lips are supposed to look a little cartoon-y. Get more curve to the lips by making rounder shapes instead of pointier ones. You can exaggerate your natural lip line by adding a round curve just outside of the lines. This lipstick texture is creamier and unlike most shiny ones, it stays on for a long time."
"I'm using a cream blush just on the apples of the cheeks."
Click here to see more of Nina Park's fine work.