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About Face: Wench

It takes a certain kind of person to rock a single-word moniker, think Prince, Cher, Madonna. The common denominator to this list of mononymous talent? Superstardom. Joining the club is Wench, drag empress born in New Mexico, raised in Italy and based in New York City. Only a few months ago, Wench busted onto the scene like avocado on toast—abrupt and out of nowhere, but admired by the masses. Having performed at one of NYC’s most legendary venues, Boom Boom Room, for their Pride Week celebration, while also making appearances across the city’s drag scene, this queen is certainly getting around so to speak. With that said, it’s no surprise considering Wench’s killer looks and impressive makeup beats. We’re talking Ru Paul’s Drag Race Season Finale type of shit.

We’ve summoned the queen to teach us the tips and tricks to breaking into the toughest drag scene in the game and looking good doing it. See below for three of Wench’s most iconic looks.

This beauty look exists at the crossing of smut and high fashion. The look is two separate pieces, a latex skirt and a chain and leather bralette harness. Together they create a very couture backless dress with obvious S&M vibes. I combined this with a purple cut crease using mac pigments to create a dark eye while also accentuating the green in the iris. For the lips a makeup forever rouge creme in c 509.  I was inspired by Kat Von D to bring the dark stars of the dress up to the face,  because I feel like she also exists at this crossing of beauty and sexy smut.

I went to highschool in Florence, and I was surrounded by so much renaissance art. My favourite of all was Botticelli. I studied the history and studied oils and other ‘classical’ forms of art. What Botticelli did that fascinated me is that he re introduced what were the ancients for his time back into the modern to create something completely new, reflecting on old stories and social ideals through a contemporary lens. 

With this look I wanted to bring back Botticellis story of la primavera through serving you a modern floral pantsuit business woman look accented with painted flowers. One detail from la primavera that I love which I tried to incorporate with this paint, are the flowers flowing from the mouth, Botticelli used this to represent the transformation of the nymph Chloris into Flora the goddess of flowers. She transformed when she was raped by Zephyrus, the god of the western wind. So through violence and struggle she became powerful. By combining this myth of violence I try to communicate a story of ancient feminine strength and resilience through a modern makeup beauty look which to me acts as an armor and acts to strengthen.

This look was inspired by the local NYC jewelry and clothing designer Verameat. All of her jewelry pieces are very unique, existing at the juxtaposition of elegant, smutty, and dark. I find there to be a lot to explore with art at this crossing. I wanted to do a classic beauty look with a dark Verameat twist to fit the dress. Three smoky black eyes using a cascade of Stila brown shadows down to Pat McGrath Dark star 006 pigment, winged with Kat Von D tattoo Liner, Pat McGrath mercy pigment in the inner corner of the eyes, adding urban decay glitter in midnight cowboy over the black so it gives that smoldering charcoal look. Kat Von D liquid lip in Outlaw. The third eye brings in elements of mysticism as well as a satire of unrealistic beauty standards.

Images courtesy of Luke Norton and Wench. 

Stay tuned to Milk for more About Face. 

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