I was a fan of Surratt Beauty from the moment it launched at Barneys [thank God for online shopping!], and so it was a real honor to be able to spend some time with Troy Surratt himself at his newly opened counter at Takashimaya, Singapore!
For a celebrity makeup maestro and a walking luxury brand name, Troy couldn’t have been any sweeter and sincere in real life. Even running on fumes, severely jetlagged and having stood on his feet speaking to people all day, he was still incredibly poised, polite and took time to listen and explain his makeup line to me.
“Buy Italian leather shoes, carry French handbags, drive German cars… and wear Japanese makeup.”
— Troy Surrat on why is the line entirely inspired and produced in Japan
Like the beauty nerd that I am, I had to gush over the fine shimmers in Surratt’s eyeshadows. And with a twinkle in his eyes, Troy showed me how much more complex and beautiful they turn out when layered with each other. Taking one of the shades that I’ve been lusting over and forever sold out, Troy swatched Patine (shimmery silvery taupe, bottom left in the display picture above) on top of Noir Le Plus Noir (deep matte black, bottom right in the display picture above). This is a combination I would not have normally arrived at myself, and I was stunned by the resultant complex shimmery black.
It completely changed my perspective on black and neutrals, and showed me how we can still have fun with the staples. However, my color-loving heart had to persist, why an entire collection of 24 eyeshadows but only a small handful of colors? As it turns out, Troy has an almost zen-like approach towards makeup, not entirely minimal, but clean. He prefers a clear wash of luminosity, a subtle hint of healthy color for the eyes. His favorite eyeshadow shade is Idealiste (soft shimmery golden beige), which he says will look good on almost any skin tone, and can be worn alone for bright eyes or layered with something else. Dore Rose is a warmer version of Idealiste, and pairs well with the warm-toned shades in the line.
This underscored a fundamental characteristic of the Surratt Beauty line – that of balance and harmony. A personality trait which Troy attributes to his being a Gemini. For example, there are equal number of cool- and warm-toned shades in the Artistique Blush, and Artistique Eyeshadows. And there are a handful of perfectly neutral products such as the highlight (Artistique Blush Aureole) and contour (Artistique Blush Grisaille) shades that work well with any cheek color on any skin tone. Similarly, Lip Lustre Etoile is a clear gloss packed with shimmers that will pump up the shine of any lip color.
Speaking of the lips, Troy picked up an easy neutral mauve Lipslique and explained his thought process behind the name. There is no better place than heaven, and Troy wanted to name this beautiful moisturizing lip color so. But in a sentimental move to remember his mentor Kevyn Aucoin, he spelt it in like manner – Hevyn.
And before I left, I made it a point to fondle each and every brush in his Artistique Brush Collection!
There are 12 brushes in total – 4 face brushes, 6 eyeshadow brushes, and 2 concealer brushes. The face brushes are made of blue / grey squirrel hair (the 2 are interchangeable, and I’ve been told by my brush expert friends that the Japanese character used is the same), the pointed smokey eyeshadow brushes are blue squirrel whilst the flattened classic eyeshadow brushes are Canadian / pine squirrel (again the same thing), and the 2 concealer brushes are kolinsky.
I am holding my breath until these are finally released here in Singapore (supposedly sometime next month *fingers crossed*), my initial thoughts are that the brushes are all incredibly silky, the face brushes are amazingly soft, but they all possess some nice flex which should make them easy to work with. I’m so happy to see kolinsky and pine squirrel brushes as they are quite rare outside of Japan! The smokey eyeshadow brushes have a very unique pointed shape which Troy said helps to deposit color on a targeted spot and then blend out.
And what’s next for Surratt Beauty? Watch out for a new Complexion collection featuring liquid foundations coming in Spring 2015!
Surratt Beauty can be found at Level 3, Takashimaya Department Store in Singapore!