Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 5, Issue 36, Tuesday September 16, 2008



Artist's palette

Eyes on you
Flash those peepers in style this season. After a month of austerity, it's time to let loose a little for an Eid extravaganza. The spectrum warms up in anticipation of the cold months ahead and eyes open up in shades of mauve and blue. Add some glam to your gaze with one of these fabulously flashy looks by Farzana Shakil.


Between the Dhaka Fashion Week, the Shadakalo fashion show featuring Bibi Russel and Maheen Khan, the Almira Fashion show, the ICE fashion show, and most recently, Aarong's "Preview" showcase of its Eid collection, Farzana Shakil's Makeover Salon has certainly had a very busy year. And that's just the shows. They're gearing up for the festival/party season, just as the trend transformations begin for this part of the year.

The spirit of the month
This is probably Dhaka at its busiest anyway, with everyone poised for non-stop partying, back-to-back religious festivals and of course, the big weddings, and this is the month when the wheels are set in motion. Ramadan is all about spiritual cleansing; a month of prayer, quiet contemplation, and self-control, when one practises austerity in order to lighten one's soul. The same may be said of the body, which undergoes a month of fasting. "Fasting is a form of detoxification, and if one treats it as such, one can achieve wonders," says Shakil. "Instead of going overboard with the fried, fatty food during iftar and dinner, if you stick to a balanced diet, incorporating a generous allotment of fruits and fresh greens, and plenty of water, by the end of the month, you will feel fitter and your skin will have a fresh, healthy glow, providing a great complement for your new outfits, and presenting you with a clean canvas for the make-up you want to sport."

This clean canvas can further be augmented by opting for grooming treatments throughout the month. Start early, and go for facials, deep-conditioning treatments, mani/pedicures from the early weeks of the month, Shakil advises. Most salons are packed to the teeth during the final week of Ramadan. "If you want to sport a new hairstyle during Eid, it's better to get the haircut or colouring well ahead of the final week, so that if you don't like the hairstyle, it has time to grow out a bit, or you get time to make changes. Get the hair cut/rebonding/colouring done during the earlier weeks, and save the final week for final touch-ups like trimming or threading, so that you end up with a look that's not only fresh, but one that you're already comfortable with."

Trend transformation
As we look ahead towards Eid, we know the mercury will soon dip, the leaves will shed their foliage, and the swirling skies of the monsoon season will also settle down and give way to winter greys. Just so, along with the changes in weather, the season brings a change in beauty trends. Farzana Shakil has her own style forecast for the upcoming festival season:

Hair styles: The straight, sleek look is still very in. One can add to the silhouette with layers with sharp edges. One of the quirky do's Shakil created for the Dhaka Fashion Week included very pixie-like short bobs with pointed ends facing outward, a style that would look very chic on young girls. Although traditionally women here prefer long hair, shorter styles are very much in vogue this season.

For older women, the gelled bun or ponytail sported by the models at Aarong's Preview Eid show would go very well with evening wear. You could dress it up with flowers if it's a fancy event.

Curly girlies should try keeping it as natural as possible, using styling products like hair wax to give it a little extra shine. When opting for haircuts, they should go for steps to add shape, while their curls create all the volume they need.

Hair colour: The coloured extensions that rocked the previous season are passe for this one. Instead, opt for highlights or streaks in warm autumnal tones like copper, gold, red or ash-blonde. Colouring the lower edges of the hair is also very in this season.

Palette for the face: Even as the skies give in to dull winter greys, the eyes light up with bold colours like blue and mauve. These are complemented with a dewy apple-cheeked look. Opt for pinkish blushers to give your cheekbones some definition or create the barest hint of a blush. Similarly, red and pink are going strong as lip colours. This winter, skip the liner and work the lipstick and gloss for a less defined, more natural look. Always remember, though, that don't try all these colours at once; if you're using bright colours for the eyes, play down the lips, and vice versa.

Meet the maestra
The author of 'Looks' the first and only English-language book on fashion and beauty, Farzana Shakil received her BA Honours degree in International Relations from Dhaka University, before changing gears and finding her true vocation in the art of make-up. The journey towards this perhaps started with a youthful knack for doing make-up for friends and relatives, but really took off with a make-up course she received from Make-up Technique International Co. Ltd, Bangkok, Thailand, which was subsequently followed up by numerous beauty and grooming workshops conducted by internationally reputed experts from Asia and Europe. She's certainly come a long way since opening her first salon in 2003.

After wowing thousands of viewers with her magical transformation of Close-up 1 2005 finalist Beauty, Farzana Shakil has been an invaluable part of Close-up 1's talent hunt, as well as the make-up and grooming partner for numerous beauty pageants and fashion shows, including Pantene's "You Got the Look" and the Lakme - Spring and Summer Collection shows. Along the way, she's also picked up some well-deserved accolade, including the Best Make-up Artist 2007 Award from the Mirror magazine, and the Award for Outstanding Contribution to Makeover and Style at the Dhaka Fashion Week earlier this year. International acclaim has come in the form of an interview in the Indian fashion magazine "Stylespeak", which also recently featured her bridal makeovers in one of their issues. She was also a member of a delegation to Thailand as a guest of the Thai Ambassador.

In addition to her work with brides and ramp models, Shakil has worked with names like ETC Fashion Exclusives and Aarong for their ad campaigns, and works with several different magazines like Mirror, ICE Today, Binodon, Anondo Alo, and of course, Star Lifestyle.

A wife, a mother, a tireless beauty expert, Farzana Shakil seeks to balance her demanding life by prioritising her tasks, and advises the same. "Life here is always demanding, always full of stress, no matter what your profession is. The important thing is to try and enjoy what you are doing, and to be happy, because it shows.”

Searing Stares

Smoky eyes are always a favourite when you want to achieve that sultry come-hither effect

Feline grace

Inspired by the exaggerated slant that's Amy Winehouse's signature, this look will have them all going phwoarr!!

Illegal lengths

What lengths would you go to steal the show? Turn heads with dark eyeliner and long, long lashes


Replicate the flamboyant colours of a tropical sunset with mauves, pinks, and red hues

Blue-eyed birdie

Talk about a bird's eye view! Experiment with bold blue shades and tapering contours to create a bird-like look that's instantly eye-catching (pun intended)

By Sabrina F Ahmad



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