She may have played grunge queen Angela Chase in My So-Called Life, but for tonight’s Emmy Awards, Claire Danes‘s beauty look gave a nod to the more glamorous end of the ’90s. “Claire’s Givenchy dress reminded me of the supermodels at the end of the ’80s and into the early ’90s–Karen Mulder in particular,” her makeup artist Matin tells InStyle exclusively. “She was always perfectly blonde with beautiful lips and eyes, and I’ve been dreaming of doing that look, but in a more modern way.”
Rather than playing up just one area of her face, Matin didn’t skimp on the drama, choosing to emphasize both her eyes and lips against a glowing complexion. “It’s more dramatic than usual, but it’s an ode to those glamorous days of the supermodels,” he adds. Of course, Matin and Danes’s hairstylist Peter Butler had a blast while prepping her for the big event. “Peter and I have been working with her for so many years. Her baby, husband, and parents were around, and it truly felt like being at home,” Matin says. “She was playing really beautiful music, so we were listening to that, chillilng out, and she brought along crafts and trinkets she had picked up in South Africa, so we were opening presents and having a lot of fun.” Keep reading to get a behind-the-scenes sneak peek at how Danes and her glam squad pulled her look together, and to find out how you can recreate it yourself!
Matin gave the classic look a current vibe by ditching the heavy ’90s-era powder foundation for Chanel’s lightweight Perfection Lumiere Velvet formula ($45; chanel.com), then touched up individual areas with the Correcteur Perfection concealer ($40; chanel.com). “We used the foundation to even out tone and add warmth, but we didn’t do it to cover her entire face. The skin is very fresh and shows through, which is what makes it modern,” he says. “Perfect the skin, but don’t make it look like you’ve loaded up on foundation,” he advises. “That’s the most important thing to remember. If you keep the skin fresh, you can add extra color and it will still appear beautiful and natural.”
With a gown as stunning as Danes’s, Matin didn’t have to look far to find inspiration for the next element–her showstopping red lip. “There’s nothing more chic than red lipstick on a woman! The colors we chose aren’t as deep as the details in the dress, and they weren’t as bright as the fabric, so it wasn’t too matchy-matchy,” he says. Matin lined her lips with Chanel’s Le Crayon Lip Definer in Rouge Profound ($29; chanel.com), then layered both the Rouge Allure Matte Lip Color in La Flamboyante and the Gloss Color and Shine Lipgloss in Pirate (both available Fall 2014) on top. “If I do a red lip, I’ll usually pair it with a lighter eye, but for Claire’s look, we added a little smoke along her lash lines,” says Matin.
A sweep of Chanel’s eye shadow base gave her lids a budge-proof foundation, then Matin blended the Quadra Eye Shadow in Tisse Rivera ($61; chanel.com) along her lash line, adding the Soft Touch Eye Shadow in Admiration ($30; chanel.com) as a highlight. A liquid liner and a few coats of waterproof mascara grounded the effect.
As for her gorgeous updo, Danes’s hairstylist Peter Butler merged the fishtail braid and low chignon trends into one intricate style that tied everything together. “Since there is something romantic about the dress, I wanted to do a braid,” says Butler, who began by working Leonor Greyl’s Mousse au Lotus Volumatrice ($36; leonorgreyl-usa.com) into her damp strands before blowing them out with a round brush. “Next I pulled her hair into a low ponytail using a bungee elastic with hooks on the end to secure it in place, and created a fishtail braid,” he says. Butler pulled the plait outwards to give it a wider appearance, adding generous spritzes of Leonor Greyl’s Laque Souple ($36; leonorgreyl-usa.com) to ensure a long-lasting hold. He then used hair pins to anchor the chignon to the back of Danes’ head. “I redid it three times, but the third time was the charm! I made sure she was standing while I pinned the braid into place to get a better idea of what it would look like throughout the night,” he adds.