“Every model is a star of Dior’s spring/summer couture show,” explained Peter Philips, the creative and image director of Christian Dior Make-up. Backstage, the Belgian-born genius of cosmetics had done it again, transforming the models’ faces into “fantasy, painterly things”.
“You see, Maria Grazia [Chiuri] really loves girls like Ruth Bell,” Philips said of the catwalk star. “She’s a tomboy but has that very pure, natural look, which we emulated through light-giving make-up. Think pale skin, a little pink blush and no mascara, with beige liner in the waterline, there simply to make eyes look bigger. It’s very ethereal.”
“We wanted the make-up to create a fantasy feeling, Maria mentioning the word ‘painterly’ often. For that, I used Diorshow Mono in Metaphone, a beautiful pearlescent shadow, over the lids, and in the corner, with a warmer glowing pink blush in Rose Chérie and Happy Cherry, on the cheekbones, Cupid’s bow and bridge of the nose. I used the very bare minimum of coverage, depending on the girl’s skin, choosing between Forever, Star, Snow and the new Forever Perfect Cushion for the girls with the best complexion as it has this amazing light finish. It was almost as if we had created soft skin, elf-like make-up.”
Dior also brought back a little magic optimism – so welcome amid the current political and cultural mood, where all around us seemed to be losing theirs. “It’s nice to be able to dream and make sure that creativity, art and fashion are a form of freedom of speech and expression. Make-up can also give a voice to everyone who wants to express themselves. These are strange times, but also times where people are coming together,” Philips added.
Fitting, then, that Dior looked to its lucky star: a reminder of the 1946 tale of the French fashion house’s founder Mr Dior tripping and stumbling across a star on the floor, which he then forever saw as his superstitious symbol. “On our 70th anniversary, we wanted to use our star as a lucky element to the look. We used black, silver and gold stick-on stars attached with lash glue,” Philips said, placing them at the corners for a punkish intense feel, à la Ruth Bell, under the eyes for a dreamy, mysterious look and dotted around the eyes for a ‘fantasy sparkle’.
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“The good news is that the fear has really gone out of make-up, you can walk down the street with a star on your face now and no one will turn their heads,” Philips told me. “This is going to inspire women, but more than ever, women are inspiring themselves thanks to social media and a whole new community with access to fresh ways of playing with products, communicating about textures and the looks they can create. The barriers have been blown away. It’s so fun to see.”
Reporting from backstage at the Dior couture show was also a joyful experience, you couldn’t fail to notice the light and happy atmosphere among the artists and models. “There’s a kind of playfulness and a nice atmosphere to Dior’s beauty,” Philips agreed. “Because most of all, we shouldn’t forget to have fun with make-up.”
The Lucky Star kit
On the skin
Diorblush Rose Chérie and Happy Cherry, £32 each
For the eyes
Diorshow Mono in Feeling, £24.50
Diorshow Khol in Nude, available in May
Lip Sugar Scrub, £24
Dior Addict Lacquer Stick in Tease, available in March
Painted on nails
Diorlisse Abricot, £19.50
Gel coat, £19.50
Dior make-up created and styled by Peter Philips
Photographer: Vincent Lappartient for Christian Dior Parfums
From: Harper’s BAZAAR UK