Test Drive: Summer Beauty Essentials

let’s face it: come July, the most important thing is what’s in your beach bag. we asked three ladies in our office to give three of our summer essentials a whirl over the holiday weekend…
To shop these products, click here. Then get to the beach.

Studio Tour: FACE Stockholm®

for Gun and Martina, the charming mother-daughter duo behind the beauty line FACE Stockholm, the business of mixing color is a nonstop, keeling-over-with-laughter family affair. we spent the day in upstate New York, where the pair gave us a sneak peek of their creative space—a recently converted “brand barn” located on Gun’s property—and invited us to try on all the lipstick colors our hearts desired…
Business As Usual
Gun bought her first piece of property near Hudson, New York, in 1994, and now she splits her time between here and Stockholm, Sweden, where the business is headquartered. “What began as a lovely weekend retreat has become our favorite place to be,” says Gun. (Martina is just a three-minute drive down the road, where she lives with her two children, Theodore and Nikita, husband chef David Weiss, and dogs Foxy Brown and Harry.) “Our family life and work life are really integrated,” says Martina. “We just wear rubber boots and no makeup and mix colors out here.”
Make It Up As You Go
Gun owned three denim boutiques in Stockholm in the ’70s before starting FACE Stockholm. She had grown tired of not being able to find cool makeup colors that matched the bold fashion designs coming out of that time period and opened the first FACE Stockholm in Sweden in 1982 and the first New York location in 1990 on the Upper West Side. “If someone told me I’d be working for my mother, I’d not have believed them,” says Martina, who moved to New York to pursue a music career and ended up coming to work for her mom. “Mia Farrow and Goldie Hawn were some of our first clients, and Whoopi Goldberg loved this black lipstick we carried.”
Lip Service
“We’ll produce 160 colors every season,” explains Gun, who is rarely seen without 10 to 20 swipes of lipstick on her hands and arms. “I don’t look at the numbers or sales figures, I just pick the colors I like.” (Gun’s favorite lipstick is a matte red—she likes FACE Stockholm’s Matte Desert and Seduction.) “Color inspiration comes from everywhere,” she explains. Swatches of grosgrain ribbon sent to the lab will become eye shadows, and heaps of necklaces brought back from India may inspire future lip colors. Martina is quick to chime in on their creative process: “Gun creates, and I edit. My mom will bring 60 things to the table and I have to say no, no, no.” Sometimes Martina’s little girl, Nikita, gets involved in color testing. “She loves pink,” says Martina. “I think it must skip a generation.”
Martina On Gun
“It’s hard to get my mom out of black—I’ve never spotted her wearing anything flowery. She’s always in pants, a jacket, classic black eyewear. She loves clean lines. But there’s always a splash of color in the form of a red lip. My mom is an artist, and it’s an inspiration to be around her.”

Crew Love
“I wouldn’t be dressed at all if it weren’t for Erin, one of your Very Personal Stylists,” confesses Martina, who had unabashedly paired jeans with our Collection shimmer sequin cami for the afternoon of our shoot. But the collaboration started with a phone call from the J.Crew office to the duo in 2011. “It’s so great to work with such creative and like-minded people,” Martina says. Each season, Gun and Martina produce a few lip and nail colors inspired by the palette in our Style Guide shoots exclusively for us. 

Photography by Bryan Derballa.

Shop our entire collection of FACE Stockholm for J.Crew makeup here.

Gift Shopping with FACE Stockholm

on the hunt for the perfect present? We asked the mother-daughter duo
Gun and Martina behind make-up line FACE Stockholm what they’re checking
off their list (and what they’re asking for) this holiday season.
Shop our 101 Gift Ideas here.

Gayle on: Traveling Tricks of the Trade

our fashion director, Gayle, travels constantly for our Style Guide shoots, so it’s no wonder
she’s perfected an impressive regimen to look (and feel) her best while she’s on the go.
here’s what tops her list of rejuvenating must-haves, for both on and off the plane.


“My handbag isn’t complete without a tin of refreshing mints. I have a mint as soon as we hit the runway (and I keep them handy at 35,000 feet in the air too).” 


“Since I usually have to hit the ground running as soon as we land, I always bring along an eye mask and earplugs on overnight flights so I can be sure to get some shut-eye.” 

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Fashion Week: Beauty Notes

we loved the clothes at our spring 2013 presentation, but the icing on the cake had to be the models’ gorgeous hair and makeup. we asked our beauty gurus how to get the complete look (and be ready for our close-up) in no time.
The Face: Flawless and Dewy
1. Prime skin with Laura Mercier Radiance mixed with moisturizer, then dab LMR along the cheekbones for extra definition.
2. Lightly apply a cream blush to the apple of the cheeks for a subtle doll-like effect (try Stila’s Convertible Color blush in Petunia—it’s sheer perfection).

The Eye: Watercolor Wonder
1. Prime the lids with Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer, then brush white eyeshadow over the entire area (we used NYX Cosmetics’ eyeshadow in white).
2. To create the subtle watercolor effect, first blend a light layer of green shadow over the entire lid (try NYX Cosmetics’ jumbo eye pencil—it doubles as a shadow!).
3. Darken the color at the crease of the eye with an additional layer of color.
4. Heavily line the outer half of the upper and lower lash lines for even more impact.
5. Finish by curling lashes and applying two coats of mascara for extra oomph (we’re fans of Maybelline Great Lash).

The Lip: Stained Perfection
1. Moisturize lips, then prime them with MAC Prep + Prime.
2. Color in entire mouth with an orangey-red pencil (we like Make Up For Ever’s lip pencil—it stays on longer than regular lipstick and won’t smudge).
3. Apply a dab of Laura Mercier Radiance at the bow of the lip for a perfect pout.
The Style: A Sleek and Polished Pony
1. Use a straightening iron to create a pin-straight effect.
2. Brush hair back from the forehead and secure into a tight pony at the back of the head with a hair elastic.
3. Wrap a small section of hair around the elastic to cover it, and secure with a bobby pin.
4. Smooth flyaways and the ponytail itself with hair spray for a picture-perfect finish (we used Sebastian Shaper).

© 2014 by J.Crew. All Images and materials are copyrighted by J.Crew unless otherwise noted.

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