Thursday, October 25, 2007

On the Street…..Subtle & Dramatic Part 2, Hong Kong

Really like the look but I really love her makeup

Young ladies here in hong Kong seem to be doing some really nice work with subtle white makeup

Notice how she has softened her eyebrows and made her lips very flat and matte with just the slightest use of white.

It is one of those things that you can’t really put your finger on when she walks by but you can just tell she is doing something interesting.

By the way she is not a stylist or designer – she works in an executive recruitment office.
Going to a “corporate job” with that kind of style is why the young ladies here are pretty cool.


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  1. Oda

    October 25, 2007 at 10:57 am

    Sart, i don’t get your point, it’s not very nice to look sick! You can do subtle and pretty make up, without looking pale as snow…

  2. Iheartfashion

    October 25, 2007 at 10:58 am

    She’s beautiful, and I love the attached necklace on the sweater!

  3. The Clothes Horse

    October 25, 2007 at 11:04 am

    it’s such a great look from head to toe. The embellished shirt, the details on the skirt, I love the shoes, and her make-up just completes it. So wonderful.

  4. The Sartorialist

    October 25, 2007 at 11:11 am

    i dont think she looks one bit sick

  5. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 11:33 am

    i dont know if i like the makeup. dusting one’s face with white powder just makes one look in need of lotion. other than that, i do like her skirt and shoes. i dont think she looks sick, either.

  6. winniethefish

    October 25, 2007 at 11:59 am

    this is something u can only find in hk..
    i adore the way hk gals look..
    they nv disappoint u.

  7. mm

    October 25, 2007 at 12:15 pm

    What is the point in making yourself even more pale? I think she would look fierce in crimson lips and strong eyebrows!

  8. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 12:17 pm

    i really don’t like it all. not the makeup or the outfit.

  9. Asian Models Blogger

    October 25, 2007 at 12:27 pm

    I love the understated look. She does have the subtle look down pat.

  10. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 12:38 pm

    I dont like the makeup i think she looks sick too! she needs a little more of color! life life!!!

  11. dulcinea

    October 25, 2007 at 12:41 pm

    i think she’s gorgeous and natural and a delight. i LOVE that skirt.

  12. Stacy

    October 25, 2007 at 12:57 pm

    I think the nude makeup and light metallic shoes compliment each other perfectly and seem to give her a couple extra inches of height.

  13. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 12:59 pm

    Why has there been so few postings of men recently. There are endless outlets for admiring and commenting on women’s fashion but one of the things I’ve always enjoyed about sartorialist was the amount of focus on high-end menswear. Let’s see some more of that, ok? After all, sartorial refers to tailoring and when I think of tailoring I think of menswear.

    No disrespect to the ladies, they’re all lovely and their clothes are interesting and marvelous but I can see a plethora of female looks in so many places.

  14. applevenusian

    October 25, 2007 at 1:07 pm

    she looks very natural and pretty.

  15. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 1:21 pm

    I agree with Sart on the pale makeup. maybe we dont’ want everyone wearing it, but it still looks interesting, not sickly, and can work for some people. And her face isn’t white white.
    I want her shoes.

  16. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 1:53 pm

    I like her look except for the makeup, she looks a little ill. I mean while the whole Kabuki influence might be there it doesn’t look attractive to me personally.

  17. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 1:56 pm

    i love these hong kong photos – they are the kind that made me start reading this blog and are so refreshing compared to the (admittedly stylish) fashionistas that we see during the various fashion weeks. i’m glad that the ads help make that possible. oh, and i like her makeup, it’s natural and pretty and well done.

  18. fashionholic

    October 25, 2007 at 2:05 pm

    we find you everywhere in the world ;) nice work, fun to see what’s happening in Hong Kong..

  19. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 2:15 pm

    first of all she doesn’t look sick, she looks delicate, underexposed and has a twinge of danger to her. This is a very strong look for her given her features, background and tradition.

  20. The Image Coop

    October 25, 2007 at 2:33 pm

    Unbelievable eyes, she’s got a headstart with those.

  21. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 2:37 pm

    This is why I love this blog. This woman is very stylish while still looking like a normal person – she has everyday beauty, not model beauty, and her look is obtainable. I love the hardware on the shirt.

  22. jamesy

    October 25, 2007 at 2:38 pm

    What a bunch of Wendy Winers….I mean Whiners! This Cutie is rocking an awesome ensemble! Just because you are not used to another countries idea of beauty means you should diss it! Yoew. Come on!!! How many women would look so much more ravishing if they played there looks pale. It brings out bone structure and highlights form….enough with the tarted up looks. Bring on the beautiful and well dressed pale!

  23. alice

    October 25, 2007 at 2:47 pm

    i don’t think she looks sick. i wish i had the guts to pull off this kind of makeup…
    but i don’t think i would have noticed her makeup if you hadn’t pointed it out. i think the subtleness of it would be a lot clearer in person.

  24. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 2:58 pm

    I think she looks nice with her make-up done like that, its really soft and nice, and I also think the way she has done her hair, really clean and simple, adds to the effect too. I don’t think she looks sick at all… very healthy indeed.

  25. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 3:13 pm

    i guess we’re just obsessed with looking ‘healthy’ with an orange tan. i think these posts have signified that not only great style comes from ny.

  26. cris

    October 25, 2007 at 3:20 pm

    pretty. she semms a weel-groomed person. i like this aspect

    hi, fabulous sart.

  27. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    I’m a native HKer, currently living abroad and I must say your photos of the chic ladies in my hometown are definitely making me a bit homesick. Thank you for your excellent work, and I look forward to see some stylish Hong Kong men in your upcoming posts!

  28. daniqueconijn

    October 25, 2007 at 5:28 pm

    really sweet,,
    the look the make up..
    it matches! i like it a lot

  29. The Sartorialist

    October 25, 2007 at 5:50 pm

    for anon 12:59
    you are right
    since I just covered the womens collections I have had a lot of womens images to post

    I am sure when I return to NYC I will be shooting more mens looks when they are right

    I think most people would rather see a few really good looks than a lot of so-so looks

  30. Oda

    October 25, 2007 at 5:56 pm

    Okey i may have sounded a little harsh. Some have missunderstood me, i don’t meen she looks bad, i just don’t think mattening white makeup has ever worked. I have seen it on some runways at a few occasions, but it has always left me feeling that it doesn’t flatter the girl at all. On the other hand, Jamesy; You don’t have to be tarted up to wear some blush, or just go au natural on the lips. As I said, you can do pretty subtle makeup without going all white canvas..

  31. Carolina Lange

    October 25, 2007 at 6:19 pm

    She is quite beautiful and I love her outif, the unique blouse and the cute skirt!

  32. noelle

    October 25, 2007 at 6:22 pm

    eh. i dunno. i think her brows need some work..and i’ve never been a fan of gems attached to sweaters like that….almost like a jewelry dickie.

    the woman in the background in white has done an amazing job with her makeup, though.

    trust me, sart. i’m a professional.

  33. Rebecca H.

    October 25, 2007 at 6:41 pm

    Such skillfully applied make up…her skin looks luminous and it really brings out her beautiful almond eyes.

  34. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 8:28 pm

    i am seriously loving your HK pics. rush to this site everytime i have a comp.

  35. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 8:29 pm

    Thank you….I haven’t been back to Hong Kong since the 90′s and I remember seeing the corporate workers walking around in cool clothes…..lots of style in the masses….. Hope you make it to the night markets! :)

  36. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 8:43 pm

    she’s wearing makeup? i really thought she needed chapstick or something. by the way guys, being asian myself, i can tell you that ‘pale’ is a look desired because it means you’re not a day laborer, that you’re probably rich, and/or you’re mixed nationalities. so… it’s certainly not embracing your “natural” look. they sell “skin whitening cream” all over asia because many, many women think skin with any color whatsoever is dirty and dull. sadly, my aunts included. i can’t tell you how much grief and weird looks i get when i visit them because i rock my natural, healthy (non-orange, mind you) asian-american tan.

    so.. ashy lips and skin is not really my idea of beauty. the outfit’s cute though.

  37. tanya

    October 25, 2007 at 9:02 pm

    For me the white powder works because you end up just looking at her eyes, which has such a strong shape.

  38. Sarah

    October 25, 2007 at 9:43 pm

    Western readers need to understand that the Asian ideal of beauty IS that “Pale as snow” is beautiful. I mean, obviously, China dolls have always had porcelain skin and jet black hair. That ideal of beauty still stands, you know. Coco Chanel revolutionized the West with the idea of tan skin over porcelain complexions, but in Asia, pale/white skin continues to be the standard of beauty. It is perceived as a feature of the upper class and social standing. “Rich” girls are pale. “Workers/working class” girls are dark-skinned. To be tan is almost equal to being a servant. All the maids are pretty much immigrants from the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, etc. You can see them crowding the pedestrian bridges everywhere in Central on Sundays.

    white make-up accentuates eyes and makes them look larger. Many Asians utilize this. (ganguro girls from Japan take this idea to the extreme).

    I think she looks gorgeous, very sculpted, yet soft. I am glad you are enjoying the styles in Hong Kong, Sart. A lot of girls get their clothes for inexpensive prices in Mong Kok. the cheapness (in quality and prices hahah) allows us to experiment much more. I’m also really glad you’re bringing the world’s attention to Hong Kong as a city of fashion. Our proximity to Tokyo often overshadows us, but there are unique qualities in Hong Kong style to offer as well.

    sorry for the essay, i’m just extremely glad to see some attention being given to Hong Kong style at last.

  39. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 10:25 pm

    she looks beautiful and fresh.

  40. Anonymous

    October 25, 2007 at 11:32 pm

    I’m not sure she purposefully drew attention away from her eyebrows…us, ladies from the Far East, often just have very faint and sparse eyebrows

  41. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 12:23 am

    Loving the HK pics but where are the guys? I’m curious how the men are rocking it out there.

  42. Blaise

    October 26, 2007 at 12:40 am

    She has a great outfit, suits her body type well..

    But I don’t see any make up.. Are you sure she’s wearing make up?

  43. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 12:43 am

    To people who think this model looks sick, and are outraged by the fact that someone might want to look pale: there is a different sense of beauty in China. In China, it’s considered much more beautiful to be pale, and in the summer many women carry parasols. It’s not wrong, or sickly, it’s just not a look Americans are used to seeing.

  44. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 12:54 am

    great portrait on the close-up. i love the depth of field!

  45. Melanie-fm HK

    October 26, 2007 at 1:13 am

    Sart, there’s still a lot of beautiful and stylish people in Hong Kong, please find more!! :>
    Anyway, glad that you’re here, welcome!

  46. Escapist

    October 26, 2007 at 1:51 am

    I’m getting an absolutely wonderful impression of Hong Kong.

    So far the posts go to show that you don’t need boldness and lots of eye catching details/colours to actually look beautiful. Hong Kong isn’t about drawing attention to yourself with any means possible.

  47. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 2:22 am

    i just saw you on ABC NEWS! i’m so happy for you! that’s really neat! YOU’RE NEWS! haha. okay, i’m done.

  48. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 2:36 am

    her makeup is awful.It looks as if a 3 yr old was playing with talc. I just don’t get how alot of you say this is pretty. Maybe you all are trying to kiss up.

  49. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 2:51 am

    Is that a necklace attached to a sweater? And are those lose shorts? Or a skirt? I love that I can’t quite tell… it makes the look both breezy and interesting, which is rare.

  50. Splarks

    October 26, 2007 at 7:17 am

    I really appreciate it when you put in your commentary about why you like a particular look. So often I think, “What, she looks like she’s wearing a sack – why is that photoworthy?” And though I may not agree with you, it’s interesting to see exactly what your perspective is.

  51. Calenna

    October 26, 2007 at 8:29 am

    So – white is the current look in HK? Interesting, Sart! It IS very minimalist, but I wonder if her brows are TOO sparse? They don’t seem to have any definition at all… what do people think of that?

  52. Mer

    October 26, 2007 at 8:57 am

    She is beautiful and don’t think she looks sick at all. It’s interesting to use this kind of make up. Why should she look like a L.A rollerskater if she works in a office? I really think is special

  53. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 9:56 am

    Hong Kong is one of the best places on earth. Your pictures make me miss it so.

  54. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 10:33 am

    I’ve just got back from Hong Kong (to Hungary) and I must say I loved the way girls dress there. It’s wild and stylish without trying too hard.
    However, I don’t like the makeup and the sweater of this girl. I like her skirt (or is it a pair of shorts?) and shoes.
    In HK I saw that drugstores are full of whitening products (for skin). I cannot see the point there…HK girls are beautiful as they are, they need no white skin!

  55. Nance

    October 26, 2007 at 11:26 am

    As an asian myself I would like to point out that Asian beauty is all about staying out of the sun and having fair skin. I can’t say the girl featured would be one of the palest I’ve ever seen but she does have a lovely natural look that isn’t over done with makeup. I think she looks gorgeous, great photo!

  56. vveen

    October 26, 2007 at 11:51 am

    remember, Asian people have different point of view on beautiful skin.
    The fairer the better.

    I dont think she looks sick either.
    It’s interesting.

  57. kookaii

    October 26, 2007 at 12:30 pm

    HK was my 2nd home (I’m in my 3rd here in Barcelona), and I do miss living there a lot. The city has the same vibrance as the women who walk her streets.

    That said, I don’t see the ‘ill’ in this photo. Her smile accentuates her perfectly subtle style. Beauty doesn’t always have to jump out and be arresting.

    P.s. I used to live in this area, right by the escalators…

  58. Laura

    October 26, 2007 at 12:57 pm

    The white makeup is fascinating. It’s hard to see exactly what she’s done in this photo but I’m intrigued. There’s a lot of mystery here. Isn’t that what glamour’s all about?

  59. Anonymous

    October 26, 2007 at 1:51 pm

    Her eyebrows are a bit sparse looking. She shouldn’t have lightened her eyebrows if she was going to wash out the rest of her face.
    I’m a little disappointed, Sart! I thought you’d take photos of a different sort of fashion. You should go in the subways – you can easily find ladies who dress well there.

  60. WendyB

    October 26, 2007 at 10:03 pm

    Very nice.

  61. nostalgia

    October 27, 2007 at 12:52 am

    SHes pretty and natural. =) i love her outfit super cute!

  62. Charles le brusseler

    October 27, 2007 at 1:11 am

    She’s beautiful,top the makeup.

  63. Anonymous

    October 27, 2007 at 1:38 am

    This is my first time visiting your blog and I LOVE it. It’s so nice to see fashion laid out with no ulterior motives. Keep up the good work!

  64. Paige

    October 27, 2007 at 3:00 am

    Hmmm about the comment of you having too many shots of women. I do agree, even though I use them myself the most of course, being a woman and all. But it is time to give the men a bit of fashion to look at too. As you already stated.

    Also, I know you have a life and a job and what not, but I would be really interested in seeing shots of different fashions from all around the world. Of course I don’t mean anything too extreme. Just fashion that simply looks good. And fashion with a little change in pace, as I mentioned before.

    Hmmm I think I might want to start a fashion revolution!!!

  65. Paige

    October 27, 2007 at 3:04 am

    By the way, while I was distracted in my comment about another’s comment I also wanted to say, how do you know she’s wearing white make-up? It’s a common chinese thing to do of course right? I’m a bit unsure, but I’m assuming though. I think this is a great shot and that the woman looks wonderfully simplistic and clean. But her make-up to me just looks like her natural self as if she applied none at all. Well, maybe that’s the point. But if so, then why any make-up at all? For the subtleties again I suppose? I do admit that cover-up sometimes does make my face a different better shade than before. Maybe that is why.

  66. willykean

    October 27, 2007 at 3:25 am

    she looks beautyful. HOw can people say she looks sick?

    Her make up is soft and very elegant

  67. Romeika

    October 27, 2007 at 7:12 am

    She looks gorgeous and with that amazing skin she doesn’t need much make-up anyway. The look is pretty clean as well.. Oh, i miss warmth.

  68. Anonymous

    October 27, 2007 at 8:50 am

    When i down the streets everytime,I wonder when i could see pics from hong kong putting up in The Sartorialist and now you did!Very nice photos.Can’t wait for the beijing’s one.

  69. Anonymous

    October 27, 2007 at 10:27 am

    she’s wearing make up?
    I thought her lips were pale due to dehydration or something….
    otherwise, i like the hair; not too fussy but still neat.

  70. Anonymous

    October 27, 2007 at 11:01 am

    i am such a fan and the fact that you’re here in hong kong is absolutely amazing!! hope you’re having a wonderful time doing what you do best : )

  71. Anonymous

    October 27, 2007 at 12:38 pm

    It’s such a treat to see HK street fashion after what seemed like a monotonous parade of fashion editors and socialites. Keep up the great work!

  72. shopaholic

    October 27, 2007 at 8:34 pm

    Love the white makeup. I’m pretty sure Lanvin (probably confused the shows) used a similar highlighting as predominant makeup on its runway.

  73. Anonymous

    October 27, 2007 at 9:19 pm

    Her white translucent skin is coveted look in Asia. You can see that her skin has been rarely touched by the sun and that she takes care to protect it from it harsh rays.

  74. Anonymous

    October 28, 2007 at 12:41 am

    Love it, love her, love the makeup. I especially love what she’s doing with her hands!

  75. Indio Sangriento

    October 28, 2007 at 3:23 am

    I think they all look the same way

  76. Felicia

    October 28, 2007 at 3:51 am

    I really love her skirt and her shoes.But the best is everything together.

  77. Spelling Mistakes

    October 28, 2007 at 4:47 pm

    I admire your work.
    thanks for this great blog.

  78. Liv

    October 28, 2007 at 5:13 pm

    All of you who think she looks sick, go to Japan and look at how many skin whiteners you can find there in a supermarket. It’s an intense amount. It’s just a different view on things ;)

  79. Noomi(Sweden)

    October 28, 2007 at 5:57 pm

    amazing !

  80. Anonymous

    October 28, 2007 at 6:27 pm

    It’s amusing to see how other cultures “interpret” fashion, especially when one isn’t flooding the LV and Channel boutiques to try to “look the part”.

  81. anna

    October 28, 2007 at 7:49 pm

    i must agree with one of the anonymous comments and jamesy’s – out west people obsess about tanning and being “orange” but in many asian countries – and i am from manila – being pale is something many women actually do find attractive. i love how the sartorialist can see beauty in different cultures. i can’t wait for the time when you and your camera will take on the streets of manila!!

  82. martinez

    October 28, 2007 at 8:51 pm

    realmente muy bueno su blog..!!!! me gusto y espero tener un blog tan rico como el de usted..!!!

  83. LolaM

    October 28, 2007 at 10:40 pm

    I love her style. Very original!

  84. rube

    October 28, 2007 at 10:59 pm

    Envious in Boston, whilst staring at my shapeless toothpicky ones–so many women from this part of the world have simply gorgeous legs, there has to be some truth to certain stereotype observations……

  85. Samantha

    October 29, 2007 at 10:13 am

    no offense sarah.. but i thought the makeup was horrible. i mean i am Chinese too and i totally understand the notion of fairness equates to beauty by chinese standards! however, this is what i call really lazy makeup and i am sure my friends and i can do so much better than this!

  86. in_my_opinion

    October 29, 2007 at 2:41 pm

    I am the one who made a comment above about being back from Hong Kong to Hungary and not understanding why HK girls want to look pale.
    I just wanted to say I am totally aware of the fact that there are cultural differences in what we consider beautiful. Still, I don’t get the idea of trying to change skin color. Here in Hungary people want to look tanned. I think a nice, smooth healthy skin is beautiful, no matter what color it is. Fake tan is so artifical…and I guess fake paleness is the same.
    Of course, this is only my opinion.

  87. Anonymous

    October 29, 2007 at 5:27 pm

    I am caucasian (n. european descent) and use white powder as an accent/highlight for my brow bones, cheekbones and at hair line to acheive a sculpted, ethereal look. It makes me look porceline and I always get compliments. Not everyone digs a tan or faux orange glow. To recreate this look delicately, try the Chanel loose powder that comes w/ a puff in the top for a controlled highlight and glow. It really looks lovely.

  88. pearlescent

    October 29, 2007 at 6:47 pm

    Anon 2:22! I found the report of The Sartorialist on abc’s website!! Thank you for telling us! My dream is to see The Sartorialist in action and in the news clip you see him do just that!! You would also probably recognize the people he photographed in the clip :)

    The link is:

    If it doesn’t work, you can find the news clip by going to > then click on news > and type in: “the sartorialist” and it’ll be the first result :)

    Sorry Sart for advertising that you were on the news, but it is too good to be missed.. We read your blog daily and follow your new posts, but this lets us see you in action which is great!! :)

  89. Sandra

    October 30, 2007 at 9:08 am

    it`s a good look for a very young lady, only. I like the skirt.

  90. kate

    October 30, 2007 at 9:56 pm

    You know, I don’t care for any of the individual pieces in the outfit, and I don’t care for the makeup, either. (necklace stitched to top= my 80′s nightmare)

    But put together, the whole look is really interesting. Not sure why, but the sum is so much greater than its parts. Maybe it’s because *she* looks like she likes what she’s wearing?

    I guess that’s style magic working, isn’t it?

    Also, I like her sleek hair over the volume of the clothes.

  91. Anonymous

    November 19, 2007 at 7:55 pm

    i personally love the pale makeup look. but yes, she does need a bit of color on her lips- she couldve of done a lip shade of her natural skin undertone and less matte finish.

  92. Anonymous

    August 6, 2009 at 4:57 am

    excellent work! love hk!

  93. hk girl

    April 28, 2014 at 3:56 pm

    THis is what a girl looks like when she doesn’t wear any make up. The whitish cast is probably just sunscreen.

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