February 27, 2014
My fascination with makeup for men began sometime after David Bowie and Adam Ant started experimenting with eyeliner and lipstick and before Marc Jacobs and Tom Ford launched their own man makeup lines. I’ve experimented with makeup quite a bit myself: green eyebrows, stickers on my face, metallic eyeliner, but what got me interested the most was the idea of no makeup makeup. No makeup makeup is the almost deceptively subtle, careful application of makeup to gently highlight certain facial features and conceal flaws to appear as if one’s face was naturally that perfect. Perhaps what discourages most men from wearing makeup is the fear of looking too feminine and done-up, but one thing to note is that the transformative qualities of makeup can go any direction: done right, makeup can make men look more masculine. Today I share with you an expanded version of my man makeup regimen, a collection of techniques I’ve picked up online, from talented makeup artists who have groomed me, and from hanging out at Sephora a little too often, modeled by my dear friend Elliott.
Start with a fresh face, cleansed and toned. Makeup looks best on healthy skin.
I like to start with a silicone-based primer; it does a lot in terms of minimizing pores and fine lines, it gives a silky finish to your complexion, and controls shine. I don’t always wear it, but when I do, it makes a difference.
Rub a couple of pumps of primer on to your hands, and apply evenly to the entire face.
For all of you guys who still get breakouts post-adolescence, I strongly recommend Laura Mercier’s Secret Camouflage concealer, with the matching brush. Each palette comes in two tones that you can blend to perfectly match the skin tone in a specific area on your face. It doesn’t rub off easily, and it doesn’t need powder to set.
Apply concealer on blemishes, a little bit under the eyes and around the nose to minimize redness. For relatively blemish-free skin, I recommend concealing before applying bb cream/foundation for a more seamless complexion tone, and for skin with relatively more blemishes, flip the order so you can concentrate on spot-concealing more carefully.
Of all the BB creams I’ve tried, Smashbox has the freshest, sheer finish, that I think works best for men.
Apply a thin layer all over the face, blending well with your fingers down the neck, sides of your face, and forehead.
The next step is optional, but is a great way of emphasizing your eyes without looking like that punk-rock kid in high school who worked at Hot Topic. I like the Urban Decay Naked Basics palette because it is a collection of neutral browns and beiges, all matte, some of which you can use as eyeliner, as a shadow to smoke out your eyes if you feel like it, or to use for contouring.
Take some dark taupe eyeshadow on an angled brush, dust off the excess on the back of your hand, and gently massage it in to the upper waterline. It makes a subtle, but noticeable difference.
I personally like to wear mascara; on my downward-facing, relatively short lashes, it does wonders at making my eyes seem more open and alert. Men with full, long lashes might be better off just curling them, or using a thin coat on the ends. I like Maybelline’s One by One mascara: it’s thin, easy to apply, and highly realistic.
Fuller, darker brows can really impart a handsome masculinity to the face. This works great for men with sparse eyebrows, or even sparse mustaches. I love Anastasia Beverly Hills’ Brow Wiz: it’s a skinny retractable pencil that goes on quite faintly, and comes with a brush for blending it in, resulting in brows that are very natural and never drawn-on.
Fill in your brows with short, light strokes mimicking the direction of your brow hairs. Fill in the gaps, and if you must, extend at the base and the tips, but try not to go too far.
Blend in vigorously with the brush, blurring out any pencil lines.
As a quicker alternative to an eyebrow pencil, tinted eyebrow gel works to darken and thicken the brows as well as point them in the right direction. I like to use them both for full effect.
Brush upward on the base, sweeping out and down as you approach the tip.
Nude lipstick is another cosmetic that can make one look more manly. In the same way brightly-colored lips enhance the femininity of a woman, de-saturating the lips can have a masculinizing effect on the face. Today we’re using a combination of clear lip balm and nude lipstick, but lip balm+sheer color lip stick combos in nude such as Clinique’s Chubby Stick in Heaping Hazelnut or Whole Lotta Honey work just as well.
Finding the right nude lipstick for your skin tone and lip tone is tricky. I’ve found that lipsticks with peachy undertones work well for fairer, Caucasian skin, and those with brown-beige undertones work great for darker Asian skin. Find one that makes your lips look like a desaturated version of themselves, but not dead.
Always blot on a tissue after.
Go out into the world, a perfectly made-up man, looking like you haven’t got a stitch of makeup on.
products used (clockwise from top left): Bare Minerals Prime Time foundation primer, Smashbox BB cream, Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage concealer, Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage brush, Sephora angled brush, Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz, Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Ebony, Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Gel in Espresso, Maybelline One by One mascara in black waterproof, MAC lipstick in Velvet Teddy, Caudalie Lip Balm, and Urban Decay Naked Basics eyeshadow palette
February 24, 2014
I keep coming back to Manila, as the song goes, and not just because it’s where I’m from. Every time I’m there, I see my notoriously unprogressive hometown flickering with inspiration, new talent, and wonderful things to do. It is catching up with the rest of the world in art, music, and in this Internet-only age, well, all the cool kids dress just as cute as their counterparts around the world. I often get asked what it’s like back there, and it is indeed Crazytown–a place best explored with a trusted local, food is cheap and good, gems can be found all over the cacophonously slow-moving city, and it’s a stone’s throw away from Hong Kong, should the shopping disappoint. But the people–impossibly talented, pleasant, and naturally beautiful, we Filipinos, well, we are just fucking awesome.
Orange is not the new black.
the Greenhills cellphone bazaar
Reformation and black-tie vintage Yohji Yamamoto
society sea-princess Tessa Prieto-Valdes
a backwards men’s pajama concoction on the inimitable Jo Ann Bitagcol
Rajo, Ruffa, and other masked menaces
“Signs of the Times,” a piece made of cut-out newsprint, at architect Sarah Canlas’ abode
“One Day I’ll Be Everything,” by Mich Dulce
sheer shirt of my own design, Damir Doma pants, Birkenstocks, Givenchy clutch
fiesta at Black Market
Kimono from EPCOT Center, AG Jeans, Nike Air Max sneakers
To a Queens-themed party we threw, I came as the Queens Botanical Garden and she came as Fran Fine. Little did we know, they wore the same print.
Anna and Diego
talented new designer Carl Jan Cruz in the most beautiful light pique top–to be worn with silver shorts in the summer
stylist Patrick Galang can dance
patron of the props
February 18, 2014
Victor Basa is a Philippine actor, photographer, and television personality. He stars in the recent controversial series “My Husband’s Lover,” a show that takes a stand in the conversation on equality issues in Asia. “It’s surprising and great to see that people know love when they see it,” says Victor. He and his infinitely fabulous partner Divine Lee are in many ways arbiters of style in my home country, and Victor’s sense of dress represents the increasingly open-minded Filipino man: active, somewhat creative and appreciative of tailoring, and keenly global. He cites the counter-culture movement, Hedi Slimane’s photography, and music of all genres as his inspiration. He says, “Pop’s great. People should listen to it sometimes, if they can get over themselves.”
Victor Basa in a t-shirt from Suan Lum, Bangkok, H&M x Versace trousers, Superga trainers
Victor Basa in a Sandro peacoat and Maison Kitsune shirt
Rolex Submariner, Bergdorf Goodman shoes
Victor basa in a Joy Division sweater, Adidas shorts, and Superga ombre trainers
Gian Romano jacket, Guess x Tiesto jeans
Yankees baseball jersey, Dior Homme jeans, Red Wing boots
Dior Homme jeans
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak
January 9, 2014
Autoctona’s Alessandra Murgia is one of my favorite contemporary jewelry designers. Her sense of restraint and the discipline she puts into the design and fabrication of her pieces is what sets the line apart. I sat with the Portland-based designer and shared a cup of tea with her while gushing over my new favorite piece: her wood and silver “spikes”—somewhat reminiscent of fake gauges and somehow chic and caveman-like, so esoterically minimalist.
Autoctona wood and silver spike earrings
The Dandy Project: Tell me about your line, your philosophy, your influences, and inspirations.
Alessandra Murgia: I set out to create wearables that enable a deeper relationship between the individual and the piece. I want to challenge the conventional idea of what an accessory or a piece of clothing should be and how it should be worn. Forward thinking objects, with an intrinsic sense of modernity. Impeccably crafted, companions for life. My inspiration always comes down to be a formula of archaic and futuristic references. It’s a balance of opposites. It mirrors my actual life, I was brought up in a very old and traditional culture but for the past 15 years I chose to experience some of the most modern and vibrant places in the world.
Autoctona silver stud earrings with extended cylindrical backing
TDP: What type of man do you have in mind when you design your men’s pieces?
AM: I envision a man with a taste for the essential and a meaningful approach to modern style. He has to crave newness and uniqueness. I see Autoctona pieces as tools to express character and personality, that’s the reason why multipurpose objects like Linea or the Bolos are created. They offer a diverse range of interactions and possibilities for the wearer.
Autoctona sliced stack ring
TDP: Tell me about the relevance of the notion of “unisex” today.
AM: I don’t have much affinity with the traditional notions of femininity and masculinity portrayed by the established fashion industry. It has to do with a sense of contemporaneity which neither of those notions offers anymore. My interest is in designing meaningful objects rather than creating a product for either men or women. It’s also a direct consequence of how we live and how those traditional roles of men and women are now blended. I think there is a real desire to express feelings like fragility and ambiguity in men’s dressing and power and strength in women’s.
Auctoctona knuckle rings in silver and brass
TDP: One of the things I love about Autoctona is the restraint and discipline that you place in the design and fabrication of your pieces. Tell me how this comes into play and how important it is in your creation.
AM: It is at the core of our philosophy. It’s about exploring possibilities, utilizations and form of a shape. For instance, the cylindrical shape for our tips, now translated in three different sizes, transformed into a mechanism for the Linea clasp and into an object itself in the Studs selection. It’s about creating signature shapes and continuously renewing them through usage, color and texture. Color and materials are incredibly important. We have now developed our core colors and fades for the nylon palette, and with the introduction of marble our range of materials includes now stone, metal, fabric and wood. But they are in a way elements that serve the creation of the same formula of clean geometry, esoterica references and interplay of textures and colors.
Autoctona rings in marble and silver, from the new collection
TDP: Any exciting plans for Autoctona moving forward?
AM: Yes, I’ve been looking into expanding our range the past year. Autoctona will finally launch a line of companions, including scarves and small leather goods, in 2014. It’s amazing to see our aesthetic applied to a completely new territory. We have just shipped our first capsule collection designed for the Frye Art Museum in Seattle. It was a very special project since day one; I’m very proud of the three objects created. In addition to our custom work with private clients, we also consultancy services, and I’m very excited to see what this new territory will bring.
Autoctona’s Alessandra Murgia and her wood and silver spike earring, photographs c/o Autoctona
January 7, 2014
If I had been Internet-quiet for the past few weeks, it is because I’ve found myself highly involved in that entanglement of friends and family and flights and food called the holidaze. It feels as if I’ve been working in the kitchen part-time since Thanksgiving and the thought of having to stand in front of another mirror to shellack my hair for thirty minutes already makes my head hurt. Somewhere in between Brooklyn, my trip home to Manila, and a little Seoul Cycle are the things I’ve been up to, things I’ve worn, eaten, things that have inspired me, people I’ve hugged and kissed and danced with, all on 35mm film.
view from The Cloisters
Givenchy porn, on Mona Al-Shaalan
Sultan of The Jane
part-time dandy, in Number (N)ine and Allen Edmonds x The Dandy Project shoes
faux fur, real gems by Lanero
those skirted chandeliers
in Yohji Yamamoto and Timberlands
Korean Corso Como
Issey Miyake jersey drop-crotch trousers, woolly socks, and all-black Chucks
New Balance treadmill installation at the aA Design Museum Cafe
Ann Demeulemeester brocade jacket, pin by Old Hollywood
balloons like grapes
December 22, 2013
If you follow @thedandyproject on Instagram, you will notice that I am having a bit of an urban phase: Timbs, jersey tops, and touches of athletic wear. I’d say it’s an unlikely yet natural progression; the voluminous Yohji bottoms I own and my penchant for wearing diamonds in the daytime translate quite seamlessly into a look of hip-hop inspirations. Conversely, I would go so boldly as to say that urban wear is having a bit of a thedandyproject phase, with many of its moguls sporting sharp tailoring, clean lines, and lots of black. These shoes, both in Timberland tan, worn with big coats, bomber jackets, boxy sweatshirts, skinnies in waxed black and “dad” denim, and baggy bottoms, have been in heavy rotation.
tan Timberland boots and Nike x Undercover Gyakusou Lunarglides
Timberland classic 6-inch boots in tan nubuck
Nike x Undercover Gyakusou Lunarglides
November 12, 2013
Daniel Villareal is a designer from Chicago, a one-time reality TV star and sex blogger, a coffee enthusiast, and a resident of New York City. He is a graduate of architecture, and came to New York to find a niche somewhere between architecture and fashion. As a student, Cristobal Balenciaga’s vision of a woman resonated with him and influenced his understanding of form and structure. His sense of style is a fascinating play on gender and theatrics, with unexpected touches of restraint. He barely wears any jewelry, and the night I met him, he wore a women’s fully-sequined sweater in reverse, for a less garish sparkle. Daniel takes inspiration from the forgotten, the details of everyday life that go unnoticed, and the things that are left unsaid.
Daniel wears an unknown sheer body veil blouse, Topshop slim leather pants, and Dr. Marten’s steel toe construction boots.
sheer + steel-toe
90′s vintage Bergdorf Goodman leather shirt, Charles Chang Lim black and white spotted trousers, Gucci loafers, and Robert Marc sunglasses
Gucci loafers with “ghost” horsebits
vintage alpaca wool headscarf, Japanese knit tank, Acne jeans, and Y-3 sneakers
vintage Japanese knit tank
Y-3 floral print sneakers
vintage motorcycle jacket, David Beckhams, and Dr. Martens boots
Vintage riding helmut by M.J. Knoud, Raf Simons face-print tunic, Theory slouch pants, and Duckie Brown boots
November 4, 2013
LPD is one of New York’s most exciting new labels, currently stocked at Net-a-Porter, Lane Crawford, and the tongue-in-cheek VFiles, and I am really enjoying watching the brand grow from its famed t-shirts and jerseys that pay tribute to fashion’s greats, with their names and years of birth printed on the back like football uniforms. What a novel idea, I thought, and of all of today’s fashion parody t-shirts, I find these the most elegant. Ben Fainlight, the designer behind LPD New York, invited me over for a re-see after fashion week, walked me through the line, and showed me a few of next season’s new pieces, a couple of which I’m already crushing on.
A “team Yamamoto” shirt in extra-large, to be worn with flowy culottes in the summer or voluminous hakama pants in the winter.
an ode to the old Margiela, in Margielic white-on-white
With a drawstring waist, pockets (!), and buttery leather, this kilt beats basketball shorts in the summer and works great layered over pants in the colder months.
A minimally detailed scrub top in coated cotton is a fashionable take on the familiar medical top rendered in a subtly edgy thicker material.
October 30, 2013
On my recent trip home, I learned that people in Manila now wear mohair and velvet gowns and neoprene sweaters in 80 degree weather and that it’s totally cool, because not having cold days shouldn’t stifle self-expression in Fall fashion. The Philippines is changing—I’ve had the privilege of spending time with the close-knit circle of talented creatives making beautiful things and making a difference. Also, nature is beautiful and inspiring, and it is creatively healthy to get outside of New York City once in a while. In a country like the Philippines ridden with ethnic halfies, studded with hot, congested city centers and lush, dreamy tropical islands, ravaged by Spain in the past and looking both to the East and West for the future, something great is bound to come out.
model publicist Janthina Fong at her Jewelmer Gala
Josie Natori Fall 2013
Rajo and fireworks on display at the Ayala Museum
Manila’s Rajo Laurel and Liz Uy
experimental young Manila
with Rajo Laurel, in Rajo Laurel
children of the cloth
my slitty friends
Miguelita and Georgina
Balenciaga and Alaia
House of Laurel
bejeweled Roger Vivier
in Jil Sander, Topman, and Guidi
flip-flops fit for a conquistador, c/o Pons Avarcas
this island Boracay
October 22, 2013
I’m sitting in my room in Manila, trip slightly prolonged, looking out into the garden of eternal sunlight, dreaming of the crisp, moody New York City fall. A trip to my tailor’s nearly cost me a finger, as I held up a piece of velvet chiffon and had my finger caught in a dirty steel ceiling fan #sufferingforfashion. I’ve been spending the last few weeks mapping out my looks for this season, and this endeavor involves a good deal of accessory planning. Here are my favorite recent acquisitions, nearly all in my favorite amalgamation of all colors forever and ever: black.
pull-on boots with billowy pants tucked into them or cropped voluminous pants skimming their tops: black pull-on boots by Rachel Comey, dark silver moon boots by Rick Owens
I am an AG jeans convert, and the one thing I find outstanding about their pants is the fabric. Waxed skinny jeans in the most comfortable, un-leggingy stretch waxed black denim without the waxy residue on your fingers. These are the Dylans, in black slick.
Nothing parallels the ease of a zip pouch. It is a satellite of your coat pocket and takes the bulk out of a soft or a fitted silhouette.
There is an unexpected elegance to the shape of the classic Timberland boot. It draws a slim line from the toe up to the shaft, and the lug soles evoke weekends in Aspen. In all-black nubuck, it is understated and handsome.
Tim Hamilton makes the perfect motorcycle jacket. Heavy, luxe, minimally detailed, and with black hardware, it adds a touch of toughness to my Fall pajama looks.
Laird London makes exquisite hats. I have the classic crushable hat, and crush it I will, wearing it out and around town on all my bad hair days until it gets old and rumpled a la my ultimate life peg Yohji-san.