Here’s to new scoop about the upcoming Project Runway season 16 kicking off on Lifetime on August 17: The long-running show has a new brand new beauty sponsor! Avon will be providing the makeup for the season.
Tim Gunn announced the news on Sunday, August 6, during a surprise appearance at the beauty giant’s RepFest convention in Nashville, Tennessee. As part of the partnership, the brand will be releasing behind-the-scenes content from makeup artist Hector Simancas and other Avon representatives on the brand’s social channels.
To celebrate, Simancas spoke exclusively with Us Weekly to get all the details. Here’s what the makeup artist had to say about the craziest part of doing makeup for the show and the drama you can expect in the coming weeks.
Stylish: Why was Avon interested in working with the show this season?
HS: The theme of the season is diversity, and that really speaks to what Avon is about. We have models from any skin type, any skin color. It’s amazing because every product can fit [them].
And Avon has a beautiful skin care line, and we were able to use a lot of it before we started the whole process of doing the makeup, so everybody’s skin is just glowing and beautiful. It’s a little bit different from what you normally see on Project Runway. They’re runway looks, but at the same time it’ll be something that you can trust to take right to the street.
Stylish: How does the makeup portion of the challenges work?
HS: Basically, I’m creating things in the moment. One of the amazing parts is I don’t know anything about what is happening in the episode. I have no idea what the challenge is about. So the designers are coming to me, and they have four minutes to give me the ideas and talk about it, and I have to create a look.
It’s really crazy! At one point we used eyeshadow and mixed it with water to create an eyeliner, and we created a mascara using eyeshadow, too. So that’s one of the great things about the makeup line, the way that you can use in different ways to create many looks.
Stylish: Did you find that the designers got how important the makeup was to the overall look, or was it something they had to learn along the way?
HS: Some of the designers were more into us than others. In the beginning it was really hard because it’s so many — to start with sixteen [contestants]. So we have two minutes for each designer to create a look.
But by the middle of the season you can see they’re more into it. They also get more familiar with the products, so they got more creative and a little riskier.
Stylish: Did any of them push back at all?
HS: There was a little bit of argument between a designer and me about a look. He didn’t agree with what I suggested. But in the end it’s a competition, so it’s their look. I can suggest and I can be part of the whole idea. I always try to guide them to the best look that I think can fit the clothing. But I have to give them what they want.
Stylish: There will be an episode centered around Avon. Can you tell us anything about it?
HS: What I can tell you it’s going to be very emotional. It’s going to be a lot of drama and a lot of beautiful looks!
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