"Mr. Armani is very precise with what he wants," explains makeup artist Linda Cantello, who's been tasked with translating his latest vision (the desert heat of Morocco's Atlas Mountains) into a cool makeup look for the runway. "He sees everything—the lighting, the makeup, the clothes—and knows exactly how it'll come together."
In this case, the result is an arresting study of blues: virtually-makeup-free skin (just primer and a little concealer—"a younger way to get perfect, lovely skin") punctuated by brilliantly graphic eyes in a palette of midnight blues.
On the eyes, Cantello started with a base of deep marine and black pencils, then followed with a navy powder shadow for a dirty but "never messy" look. (The deliberate smudge of blue at the inner corners was a detail added by Armani, who picked up a makeup brush and swiped on the shadow himself.) Mascara topped the eyes, lips were dusted with a matte powder, and, finally, a sheer bronzer was brushed on in a crescent shape around the eyes and under the cheekbones. The effect: downtown cool in the desert.