True Blue: Franca Riva lightens up for summer

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Franca Riva is a relative newcomer to Beijing. The Swiss architect moved here six months ago with her husband Fabio Molo, who works for the Swiss Embassy, and their 7-month-old son Zeno. She is currently a stay-at-home mother who is busy settling into their hutong home, finding an ayi, and navigating the city. Riva put her new look entirely in the hands of Artistic Director Laurent Falcon in his eponymous new salon in Sanlitun. She enthusiastically agrees to a short, highlighted crop. “Shorter is better because the baby always grabs my hair now,” she says. Because August is our clothing issue, beijingkids offered Riva a total style makeover, with a choice of outfits from bellamode and matching jewelry by Laurent Falcon’s downstairs neighbor, Belita. “I never normally wear makeup, and I don’t wear anything like these clothes in my day-to-day life,” confesses Riva before selecting a summery turquoise two-piece and matching tourmaline pendant. 

Makeup List
Lunasol Water Cream Foundation
IPSA Creative Concealer
Shu Uemura Matte Translucent Loose Face Powder
Shu Uemura blush in Soft Coral
Mac blush in Taupe
Etude House brow crayon
Dior eyeshadow in Bronze and Sheer Glittering Peach
Mac eyeshadow in Carbon
Kate Super Sharp Liner in black
Mac False Lashes Mascara
Carmex strawberry lip balm
Mac Cremesheen lipstick in Speed Dial

Get the Look:
1. Falcon removes about six inches of Riva’s hair, and then begins shaping and sculpting an easy-to-wear, layered crop. He keeps extra length in the crown to accommodate Riva’s cow lick. Because of the fine texture of her wavy hair, the cut has no straight edges. Falcon feathers and thins the ends to maximize curl and volume. Once Riva’s hair is dry, Falcon taps in Osis Dust It to add texture and volume, spritzing with hair spray to finish.

2. For the color, Falcon uses a technique called balayage. Before highlighting her hair, he back-combs it close to the roots, section by section, so that the tufts of hair lift away from each other and the bleach is prevented from bleeding into hair around it. He then spreads bleach onto a plastic paddle and rubs it across the hair. He follows the paddle with a comb loaded with bleach for more intense highlights. Balayage gives a more natural, sun kissed effect and is particularly suitable for short hair.

3. Makeup Artist Leo uses a sponge to stipple a cream foundation across Riva’s face. He then blends several tones of concealer together to match her skin, and applies it under her eyes, on blemishes, and in a line down the center of her nose and chin as a highlighter. He finishes the base with a dusting of loose translucent powder and sweeps a pink blush over the apples of Riva’s cheeks, using an angled brush to contour her jaw line and chin with a taupe blush. For a daytime summer eye, Leo blends taupe and peach shadows across the lid, applies dark bronze and black shadows along the lash line, and finishes with an arc of liquid eyeliner. He fills in Riva’s brows with a dark brown crayon before curling her lashes and applying black mascara. Riva’s lips are balmed and moisturized before being finished with a bright, cheerful pink hue.

Laurent Falcon
Daily 10am-8pm. Bldg43, Sanlitun Beijie Nan (next to Aperitivo), Chaoyang District (6417 1371, 135 0137 2971, 135 0137 3971) 朝阳区三里屯北街南43号楼 (意式餐吧旁边

BELLAMODE (13901013581)

Belita Jewelry
Daily 10am-8pm. Bldg 43, Sanlitun Beijie Nan (next to Aperitivo), Chaoyang District (130 2109 7802) 朝阳区三里屯北街南43号楼 (意式餐吧旁边)



This article originally appeared on page 20-21 of the August 2014 issue of beijingkids. Click here to read it on Issuu. For your free copy, contact our Distribution team at

Photos by PIXstudio

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