Even before the first model walked the catwalk, the world knew this was going to be a London Fashion Week to remember. As the United Kingdom collectively processes the Queen’s death, the show goes on – as it always should – but not without added chaos. Fortunately, London seems to be doing what it does best: producing unforgettable acts of art both on the runway and behind the scenes. UK fashion designers have a long history of drawing inspiration from youth culture, and the beauty looks of their shows often follow suit. At the Poster Girl SS23 show, brow slits got a high-fashion update thanks to celebrity makeup artist Isamaya Ffrench’s eponymous line and her signature vision. Just days into the most attended London Fashion Week in recent memory, things are already off to an exciting start.
If you’ve attended high school at any time in the last 30 years, you’re probably familiar with eyebrow slits or cuts. Sometimes it involves actually cutting the scar tissue through the eyebrow, but more often, the user simply trims the eyebrow hairs with a razor or even smoothes them with makeup. It’s often debated where exactly the style originated — some say it dates back to old-school mobsters, though eyebrow cuts have been a mainstay of hip-hop and LGBTQ+ culture for decades — but the stunning nature of the look is undeniable.
At the Poster Girl show, Ffrench parted the models’ brows into smooth spikes using the ISAMAYA Browlacq Brow Laminator, leaving plenty of visible flesh cut through the hair. The eye-popping eyebrows looked even more extreme and exciting when combined with barbell-style piercings on the models’ lips, noses and eyebrows. The youth-in-rebellion theme continued with sweat-like eyeshadow – done in an eyeshadow shade aptly named Ffrench, Sweat – for an all-night sensation.
Aesthetically, Poster Girl and Ffrench couldn’t be more of a match. The makeup artist and design duo share a love of the quirky and glamorously unconventional, culminating in this grunge-themed collaboration. Stars like Cardi B, Paris Hilton, Chloë Bailey and Megan Thee Stallion are all documented Poster Girl fans – poster girls for Poster Girl, you might say – while Ffrench’s clients include Bella Hadid, Madonna and Kate Moss. Together, it’s a perfect storm of her-girl synergy.
Ffrench’s London Fashion Week is as jam-packed as it gets, working as lead makeup artist on other shows including the glitter-soaked KNWLS LONDON presentation and 16Arlington. What kind of cosmetic theatrics she has planned next is anyone’s guess.