Fit for an empress: Make-up inspired by hit Chinese drama Story of Yanxi Palace

Fit for an empress: Make-up inspired by hit Chinese drama Story of Yanxi Palace
PHOTO: StarHub

"Story of Yanxi Palace", produced by renowned Chinese screenwriter Yuzheng and Chinese online video platform iQiyi, is a period drama set during the Qing Dynasty.

The show revolves around a smart and brave palace maid, Wei Yingluo (played by actress Wu Jinyan) who enters the Forbidden City to uncover the truth behind her sister's death.

In addition to the show's addictive plot and well-rounded characters, the make-up of the characters that draws inspiration from ancient Chinese history also garnered equal attention from netizens

Read on for the key points to recreate the make-up from the show.

1. Gradient lips

The gradient lip is a finish that creates the "just bitten" effect and is a make-up technique that was practised by women in ancient China in the Ming Dynasty. A darker lip colour is concentrated in the centre of the lips and is faded out at the edges.

Traditionally, lips are first covered with concealer and a pigmented lippy is layered over. But now, it's easier to nail the look with just one lipstick or lip tint and a cushion foundation.

Start by prepping your lips with a lip mask or hydrating lip balm. Blot off the excess product with a tissue. Apply your lip colour of choice to the centre of your lips, then smack them together, allowing the colour to slowly blend out towards the edges. Purse your lips and tap your cushion puff on top. If you find the contrast too stark, add more colour to the centre of your lips before blending it out towards the edges with a lip brush.

2. Eyeliner along the lower lash line

Eyeliner along the bottom lash line can make or break your look. For natural-looking definition, make sure your eyeliner on the lower lash line connects with the outer corner of the upper lash line.

Another rule of thumb is to avoid the inner corner and focus the eyeliner on the outer three-quarters of the eye.

Use a light hand to sketch out a soft thin line below your lower lashes so there's a bit of waterline exposed to keep the area looking light. Doing so would add the definition you're going for without making your eyes look smaller.

3. Straight eyebrows

Straight angled brows give your face a lift. It's a natural looking shape that can make tired brows appear fuller, resembling how our brows looked when we were younger and instantly making you appear more youthful.

Start by brushing the eyebrow hairs upwards with a spoolie brush and fill in any gaps with an eyebrow pencil.

To create the illusion of straighter brows, cancel out any natural arch from the brow by drawing a straight line underneath the brows. With a clear eyebrow mascara, lift any downward pointing hairs at the tail of the brow.

For a more polished finish, elongate the tail of your brow with a brow pencil.

ALSO READ: Yanxi Palace lead actress Wu Jinyan has eyes for handsome guys only

China's imperial palace drama, Story Of Yanxi Palace, shatters viewership records

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    Palace intrigue, backstabbing concubines and dramatic plotlines involving maids and eunuchs.

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    China simply cannot get enough of imperial palace dramas.

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    Yet another period piece set in the Forbidden City during the Qing dynasty, like 2011's Empresses In The Palace - one of the most successful dramas in the genre - has become a smash hit.

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    The 70-episode long drama series Story Of Yanxi Palace, co-produced by China's biggest streaming platform iQiyi and production company Huanyu Film, garnered over 15 billion views worldwide.

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    China is home to the world's largest army of netizens, with some 770 million Internet users, and dramas are pulling out all the stops to attract viewers.

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    The Story Of Yanxi Palace alone reportedly had a budget of about 300 million yuan (S$60 million).

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    The show follows a young woman who enters the palace as a maid to investigate the death of her sister and eventually becomes one of Emperor Qianlong's concubines.

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    The cast includes big names such as Hong Kong's Charmaine Sheh.

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    The drama is currently being broadcast on Hong Kong's TVB, which has acquired the rights to screen the show in Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore and Malaysia.

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This article was first published in Her World Online

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