There are people that you meet in life who instantly exude warmth. These are the kind of people, who, naturally, we want to surround ourselves with the most. Erana James is one of those people. Perhaps it is her calm energy or soft accent, or the way it seems like she's known everyone forever – a type of laidback ease that seems to come with the territory of those who grew up in Aotearoa. Whatever it is, she possesses it, and as she gets ready for a special night to celebrate the Chanel Cruise 2022/23 Collection with Sébastien Tellier, it is swiftly obvious why she is pat of a new guard of creatives working with the House.
We meet in her hotel room while the actor is getting ready with Chanel Beauty's Holiday 2022 collection, which somehow feels like a reflection of James herself, made up of warmth and light, designed by the Chanel Makeup Creation Studio to capture all of the facets of the moon. In shadow and in light, in simplicity and in opulence, in shades of amber, red and gold, the moon becomes intertwined with legend in a modern-day fairytale, one that James feels she is living since she began working with Chanel. "I’ve had a relationship with Chanel for about a year now, I constantly feel so grateful to work with such a beautiful fashion House (and wonderful people) that not only celebrates fashion and beauty but incredible creatives – emerging and existing," she tells us.
The look is glowy, a theme that James leans towards in her own beauty routine. Chanel's Éclat Lumiere Illuminating Face Powder does the heavy lifting to achieve this, sculpting the face’s contours and enhancing the complexion with a soft pearlescent glow. On the eyes is the new Chanel Duo Lumière Eye Gloss, which brings light into the eye and accentuates the brows, lashes and lids with a flash of iridescence. The simple look is rounded out with a soft lip, just as James prefers, "I like minimal sort of dewy makeup with a glow (my favourite word). I’m not one for taking big risks with beauty so maybe next year." She says, with an application of Rouge Allure Laque in Rose Mystère on the lip.
The holidays call for a necessary glow, and James' freshly tanned skin (she just returned from a trip to Bali) is accentuated with Nº5 The Gold Body Oil, which is an addition to the Holiday collection and a personal favourite of hers.
Below, as she gets ready for the night ahead, James tells us about her favourite products from the Chanel Holiday 2022 collection, her favourite Holiday memories, and what she's excited to celebrate this year.
The new Chanel Holiday Collection is based on the moon and the light refracted off of it. How does the collection make you feel?
I feel like this new collection highlights all of my favourite elements of beauty. The collection makes me feel warm, like warm skin in summer.
What's your favourite product from the collection?
The iridescence and subtlety in some of the more glossy products (Duo De Lumière) (Gold Body Oil) are some of my favourite.
Tell us about a memorable holiday party moment?
I will sound boring but I’m not much of a partier... Possibly just afternoon Christmas Eve parties in the North of New Zealand, no shoes, harsh sun, lots of sunscreen, and the sound of cicadas.
What about a memorable moment this year?
Now that I’m on a roll with the summery glow warmth from the collection, I would have to say sitting on the side of the cliff shooting a film in New Zealand. -2°, 7am, watching the sunrise waiting for the light so we can start shooting for the day. It was a beautiful moment of stillness before the chaos.
What are you looking forward to celebrating this year?
Christmas feels too obvious so I think I’m excited for the new year. To start fresh and with a clean slate to see what a whole new 12 months could bring.
What’s your general approach to beauty?
It has changed a lot over the past few years I think. Right now I think feeding my body inside and out with good things to promote that “inner glow” (whatever that really means...) But I like minimal dewy makeup with a *glow* (my favourite word). I’m not one for taking big risks with beauty so maybe next year.
Erana James wore CHANEL Cruise 2022/23 collection Guipure Lace Top and Skirt, Coco Crush Fine Jewellery, CHANEL handbag and shoes.