A week or so ago, we hosted a small get together with our friends. We were thrilled to find out that one of them, Erica Wheelan, is the makeup artist for Tony nominated Boeing-Boeing--which we cannot wait to see! We begged her to share her tips on creating Gina Gershon’s sexy cat eyes. She did—and even threw in a bit of dish!
Tell us about Boeing-Boeing:
It is about an American playboy living in Paris who has 3 fiancées who are totally unaware of each other. Each women represents an emotion. The American represents sex, the Italian represents love and the German represents passion. So when I started designing the looks I had to incorporate these emotions into each character.
What does Gina play?
Gina Gershon plays Italian Gabriella. When you think of an Italian women you immediately refer to the greatest Italian women ever, Sophia Loren. That was the basis for the Gabriella look and we posted pictures of Sophia on Gina’s mirror. (Picture from AllPosters.com)
How do I recreate her glam cat eye?
Take a second to look at the shape of your eyes. Notice where your lash line ends and where your crease begins. You want to slant your eyeliner upwards. I recommend to start the slant about 2-3 eyelashes from the end of your lash line. This effect will give up an uplifted appearance and make you look 5 years younger.
For a true beginner, I would recommend lining your eyes using a black eyeshadow—it’s easier than gel or liquid to wipe off if you make a mistake--and an angle brush. Dot the eyeshadow along the root of the lashes following your lash line until you are about 2 to 3 lashes from the end of your eye. Take a second and visualize where you want your slanted line to end (usually just below your crease) and then make a tiny dot. That will be your ending point. Then simply draw a line connecting the dot and the liner. Repeat of the other eye. I find this is the easiest way to have the eyeliner come out the same on both eyes.
When you are happy with how the lines are drawn on both eyes go over the lines with black eyeshadow.
For night time, I would apply a dark eyeshadow on the bottom line and smudge it to give it a smoky effect.
Any tricks on getting it right?
Most makeup artists say to start from the inner corner and work to the outer corner. But MY foolproof trick to applying eyeliner is to start in the middle of the lash line. Sometimes you may apply too much product or the line is not quite thin enough to apply in the inner corner. When you start in the middle you have the ability to draw the line toward the outer or inner corner and blend out the product or get a handle on creating that thin line. I hate to wipe off my make-up and reapply. Who has the time!!
Shadow, gel or liquid?
I am a big fan of gel eyeliners. They have the same long lasting capabilities as a liquid liner but are easier to work with. On the show we use Bobbi Brown Gel Liners in Black Ink and apply it with a thin eyeliner brush. The women have to do their own make-up for the show. The women have more control on applying their line with a gel than a liquid. There is a lot of nervous energy backstage before a performance. You don't want to apply liquid liner with a shaky hand. That is a recipe for disaster. I also like the L'Oreal Voluminous Mistake Proof Pen. It is liquid liner in the shape of a felt tip pen. The pen has an angle design to make it easy to create that slanted line of a cat eye.
Can I try this with other colors?
Sure! It is fun to try using forest green, violet or indigo liner. The L'Oreal HIP line makes some cool colored gel liners. If you are going to use color keep the look simple. Apply a light shimmery eyeshadow in an ivory or bone (like Lorac Eyeshadow in Enlighten) to the entire eye and then draw the liner on the top only. Don't apply liner on the bottom. Use 1 coat of mascara on the top & bottom lashes.
Speaking of mascara…
For evening, it's all about the volume. My favorites are Diorshow in Black and L'Oreal Voluminous in Blackest Black. And if you are a make up diva then fake lashes are a must. I like Ardell Lashes # 110.