Destroyer. Syren. Space Black. These aren’t the names of intergalactic rovers (although they sound like they came from another planet). They are three of the quirky products that you can find in Byredo’s new make-up collection.
It is not the first time that the Scandinavian fragrance house seduces us with something that seems otherworldly. When founder Ben Gorham was launched Gypsy waterThe unusual name, the minimalist bottle and the strange, woody smell were unknown, but with a few splashes we fell in love and many imitators followed. We wouldn’t expect anything less from Byredo than insanely cool shots of lipstick, eye shadow and mascara. Gorham referred to ancient relics and gypsy artifacts to make the curvilinear packaging. And he found a colleague for whom molten gold and crystals are substitutes for the foundation and eye shadow: the British makeup artist Isamaya Ffrench.
The two were linked by a universal love of color – but to be clear, we’re not talking about the colors in a pack of eight crayolas. “Books, movie stills, things in my house … I would do an image search on the computer and pick just a few pixels of colors that I loved,” says Ffrench. “I put it in a folder and created this color library.” The catalog took on a vintage vibe – lots of burnt oranges and tones of gold – which Ffrench and Gorham turned into 16 colored pencils, multipurpose pigments for eyes, lips, and cheeks. There are holographic hues, including not one but three shimmering versions of blue, plus eggplant and a deep lilac because “everyone should be purple,” says Ffrench.
When I tested the product line myself, I tried the Ancient shade of the Color Stick, a rich chocolate brown with subtle metallic flecks. The rounded ball makes it just as easy to apply the product to the cheeks as it is to the lips. As a 90s beauty fan, I went for a brown look. I coated my eyes, cheeks and lips in shadow. The finish is semi-matt and super soft. The shimmer was subtle and not overwhelming. I tossed the stick in my “use every time you apply makeup” pile.
Seeing the beauty in mascara tears and deliberately smeared red lipstick, the woman also created her perfect mascara, Space Black (her unconventional thin wand “can get to the base of the lashes and apply the product from the very bottom to the tip”) a more capricious purple lipstick, the smoldering red armchair. The color fluctuates perfectly between candy apple and brick red. The formula slides onto the lips with a creamy satin finish. In addition to this shade, there are 14 other surprising classics (muted tangerines, jumbled magenta), including four vampire purples.
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