In the new summer movie, Salt, Angelia Jolie delivers what might be called a peppery performance -- sharp, sassy and a little stinging. Jolie plays a CIA agent accused of being a KGB sleeper, after which all hell breaks loose. The spy role comes naturally to the celebrated bombshell, and in this film she flaunts two distinct looks. As the good cop, Evelyn Salt, she's all honey blond locks, creamy skin and berry lips. After crossing over to the dark side, Salt acquires an inky trench, dyes her mane black, and sports buff makeup colors. The movie got me thinking about femme fatale style, and why it's so compelling.
Ever since Greta Garbo's turn as an exotic spy in Mata Hari, the idea of a glamorous temptress who could also thwart anyone in her way has captured our attention. Playing characters who could probably wield a lipstick case as a lethal weapon, in blockbusters such as the Lara Croft movies and Mr. & Mrs Smith, Jolie is the leading exponent of the don't-mess-with-me beauty look. But there are many iconic performances from which we can glean makeup influences. Going undercover doesn't necessarily mean being a shrinking violet -- as any Bond girl would attest. Kicking ass always looks best paired with ultra-smoky eyes and scarlet lips. Here are some of my favorite cinematic vixen looks--and how to replicate them.
Angelina Jolie in Salt :To recreate the movie poster's bewitching look, start with a healthy coat of volumizing mascara to frame the eyes. Use a black gel liner to create depth around the peepers. Start from the inner top corner of the eye and extend to the outer corner, graduating in thickness. Be sure to also line the inner rim and lower lash line. Using a charcoal shadow, soften the edge of the liner around the entire eye. Soften further with a pink shade in the crease and towards the brow. The final stroke? A nude pink lipstick like my DéVine Goddess Lipstick in Hess, and a coat of gloss for extra oomph.
Eva Green in Casino Royale :The French sylph can easily pull off dramatic eyes and lips, and it's also her go-to look for red carpet appearances. To mimic her Bond guise, sweep a chocolate shade through the socket, and lower lash line, extending right to the inner corners of the eyes. Sharpen the eyes with a black kohl pencil on the upper and lower lash lines and inner rims. Double up on mascara, and work a rosy blush along the cheekbones to create definition. Finish your vampy look by applying a deep red stain like my Barely Blushing Rouge along the lips and build the intensity. Think about Daniel Craig as you apply.
Anne Hathaway in Get Smart: Agent 99 knew the power of a soft, smoky eye complemented with liner. To approximate her mod girl meets spy girl look, you'll need a healthy dose of liquid liner on the top and bottom lash lines. Use a smoky grey shadow over the entire lid and continue to accent the inner corners of the eye. When working the shadow, do not go beyond the outer part of your liner. Dab a creamy shell-pink lipstick on the lips for a dangerously pretty look and balance with a similar tone cream blush on the cheeks.
Pam Grier in Foxy Brown: With her voluminous afro, bell bottoms and impossibly seductive mien, Grier embodied the 70s secret agent. To revive her killer look, start with a liberal application of black mascara to the upper and lower lashes. Line the top and lower lash line with a brown pencil and smudge outwards. Use a crème or liquid bronze luminizer like my Light Patrol Luminizer Palette on the cheekbones, brow bone and the center of the face. Finish up with a deep berry lipstick and apply lip liner last to tie your foxy look together.
Lucy Liu in Charlie's Angels: Though she had a penchant from black leather ensembles and terrifying chain weapons, Liu always looked as fresh as a daisy when she was in action. Recreate her angelic yet fatal look with a makeup primer, a little tinted moisturizer, peach powder blush and a sheer coral lipstick. For the eyes, sweep a taupe shadow on lids and add a hint of liquid liner. In a word, unstoppable.
Follow Napoleon Perdis on Twitter: www.twitter.com/NapoleonPerdis