Chromat's Spring 2021 Makeup Look Was Inspired by Gender Fluidity

The ombré colors reflect "the possibility of abolishing the two-system gender binary and really embracing spectrums."

Chromat Spring 2021
Photo: Lia Clay

New York Fashion Week is doing things differently for the Spring 2021 season.

With outdoor events capped at 50 people due to COVID-19 restrictions, designers are debuting their new collections via live streams and digital lookbooks.

While so many events have been canceled and some brands deciding to forego showing at NYFW all together, what hasn't changed is the team at Chromat using their platform to celebrate individuality and spread messages of inclusivity.

For the brand's Spring 2021 collection, Chromat is premiering JOY RUN, a film by Tourmaline that continues to "reimagine athletics as a gender inclusive space."

The piece features student and transgender athletes advocates Andraya Yearwood and Terry Miller, as well as Chase Strangio, an attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and transgender rights activist; Maya Margarita, a non-binary trans femme artist; Chella Man, a deaf, trans, genderqueer artist, maya finoh, a non-binary cultural worker; and Jerron Herman, a writer, artist, and dancer with cerebral palsy.

To help bring this celebration of bodies and movement to life, Chromat founder Becca McCharen-Tran turned to MAC Senior National Artist Fatima Thomas to conceptualize a makeup look that symbolizes gender fluidity.

Thomas created a joyful, colorful look that works well when wearing a face mask, our new normal for the foreseeable future.

Chromat Spring 2012
Lia Clay

"This season, it was all about the ombré colors on the eyes!," Thomas says. "The ombré shades and liners were inspired by color spectrums and the beauty and possibility of abolishing the two-system gender binary and really embracing spectrums."

To get land on the bold eye makeup looks worn by the presentation's cast, Thomas used MAC Pro Acrylic Paint and Chromaline in shades of blue, green, yellow, and white, mixing them together to create custom colors.

After painting on a clean negative space line or soft abstract eyeshadow, Thomas added another layer of product to the looks to make the ombré shades really stand out. The makeup artist finished each look off with a few coats of MAC's In Extreme Dimension 3D Mascara in 3D Black.

Chromat Spring 2021
Lia Clay

"Whether it's color-blocked with diffused edges or really graphic with sharp, strict edges, I mix matching pigments and eyeshadows on top to pull that great intensity," she says.

Chromat Spring 2021
Lia Clay

The cast's mismatched nail art and natural hair textures tie in the collection and film's celebration of individuality and the delight we all experience when moving our bodies — a privilege we've come to appreciate even more while stuck at home during the pandemic.

Updated by
Erin Lukas

Erin is a Brooklyn-based beauty editor and has been with InStyle since 2016. She covers all facets of beauty for the site.

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