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Illamasqua – An alternative to make-up

Illamasqua – An alternative to make-up

In the two and a half short years of its life Illamasqua has become a beacon of unconventional beauty in a world of homogenisation. The status the brand has achieved is quite remarkable, and is now a real competitor to the likes of MAC with its 27 years in the business. I was fortunate enough to be around to witness the dawn of the idea which I remember quite clearly. Sitting with the founder and joint CEO Julian Kynaston, talking about the manifestations and interpretations of beauty: the alternative and gothic world that so inspired him, he let us in to his idea – a night-time makeup for your alter ego. It would be another year before I was invited in to the new Illamasqua offices, then in Soho, to watch the promotional video for this very idea. It spoke to me on a level that was deeply touching and I knew then this brand, this makeup, this idea, would become iconic.

I conducted a few interviews for the company in these fledgling months which focused on its love and flirtation with goth and the alternative underground lifestyle, which I’m going to share over the coming weeks so you too may take a peek at the seeds watered with passion that became this delightful forest.

Articles in this series:

Illamasqua – making-up history

Interview with Alex Box

Not Just Skin Deep – Stories in alternative adornment

Interview with Dave Vanian of the original art team