I was very excited to be asked to do the makeup for Kenya’s first ever online Fashion Week- “ChicoLeco Presents“. Working with Photographer and Media Artist Jim Chuchu, Art Director Mbithi Masya, Video Artist Dan Muchina, and Stylist and Designer Sunny Dolat (and the entire Fashion Week’s Executive Producer), we created 8 videos for 8 different Kenyan designers.

As the Lead Makeup Artist, I was given free reign over the makeup looks. So a few weeks before the shoot, Sunny and I bounced around some ideas for hair and makeup, and most made it on camera. Our ideas ranged from visible contours and highlights, bright eyeshadows and bold eyebrows, to wild lashes and flawless bases for the female models. The male models wouldn’t be left behind, with strong liners and masks that were strongly influenced by the collections, and by the shoot location.

We began very early in the morning. I was really excited (as I usually am for such things), and I could barely catch a wink the night before. My pick-up time was 5:00 am, and true to word Sunny was outside at exactly 4:30 am. Singing songs and causing a raucous (we’re a crazy bunch), we picked up two designers, and then trundled off in the morning mist to Kiambu- our shoot location. Kiambu is between 30-45 minutes north-west of Nairobi. It’s gorgeous in the early morning, with green lush vegetation and little boys on bicycles, waving as we drove past.

We arrived at around 7:30 am where a hot breakfast was waiting. I set up my makeup station and began working on the models. And true to nature, I popped on my iPod blasting music by African artists like Velile, Sibongile Khumalo, Chiwoniso and many others.

First on set was Nick Ondu’s collection- “Urban Hunter”. I’m not a fashion guru or stylist, but I know a great coat or shirt when I see one. So I can only describe this collection as chic, urban and crisp. Nick uses African fabrics exquisitely well- no fraying collars, no hanging threads- just sublime, well-tailored clothing for men.

For Great, I wanted to capitalize on his flawless, dark espresso skin, his bright-white smile and his smizing eyes.I also wanted to create some continuity with his clothing, since he was wearing a crisp, white starched shirt.

Using a silver cream eyeshadow to create a stark contrast with his dark skin, all I did was swipe some on his eyelids and that was it. Quick, distinct and individualized.

Enjoy! ❤

ChicoLeco is a program of The Nest, a collective of designers, artists of all kinds and creatives collaborating together, creating genius.

Strut it Africa is Kenya’s leading Model Management Agency. Thanks Great, for participating.

To check out the Nick Ondu’s entire collection, watch his video here.

About The Author


Kangai Mwiti is a stylist and beauty artist, working in the creative world who believes in giving people experiences of natural beauty and allowing others the freedom to express who they truly are, irregardless of background or creed. She also a killer project manager with a leading multinational in the corporate sphere, and her mission there is to instill within African organisations a passion for excellence.

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