When you press play on Dior’s Autumn/Winter 2021 presentation, you’re immediately immersed into a world that has been appropriately titled “Disturbing Beauty.” The French luxury fashion house has described the show as being inspired by a dark undercurrent and the female characters of French fairy tales. And this theme is woven into every touchpoint of the presentation—from the ominous atmosphere to the spiked mirrors to the garments themselves. However, the model’s beauty looks especially underscore the show’s overarching bold and dark vibe.
Following the presentation’s debut, I had the chance to join a Zoom call with Dior’s Creative and Image Director Peter Philips. During the conversation, Philips spared no details about the products and techniques he used to create the looks. Ahead, learn more about how the show’s makeup aesthetic came to life and the beauty lessons Philips imparted on us during the chat.
The Beauty Looks Tell a Story of Two Different Worlds
In the visual, the dancers and the models help tell the story Dior’s Creative Director, Maria Grazia Chiuri, was trying to convey. "She gave me a whole narrative about the storytelling, but in short, it was about the relationship between yourself and your reflection, the relationship between women amongst each other, and the relationship between a mother and a daughter or a daughter and a mother," Philips explains.
To highlight the contrasting characters, Philips adorned them in two different makeup looks. "We went for dark eyes for the girls and nude lips for the dancers to really define the difference that, visually, there were two different worlds," he says.
Long-lasting Makeup Starts With Proper Skin Prep
To ensure that the makeup could withstand an entire day of shooting, Philips had to adequately prep the model's skin. "It starts off in the morning with a good moisturizing routine," Philips tells us. He used Capture Totale Super Potent Serum ($85) and followed up with the Capture Totale Super Potent Eye Serum (slated to debut in May).
Then, Philips applied the Dior Backstage Face and Body Primer ($36). "[I applied] lightweight primer all over the face," he says. "I also put a bit under the eye and a little bit on the eyelids. It really helps your foundation to hold the grip to your skin, and it will really enhance a long-lasting effect."
He Wanted to Create a Conceptual Eye Look
It's hard not to immediately become entranced by the deep smokey eyes the models wear in the show. Though a smokey eye is typically synonymous with sexy or gothic makeup looks, Philips intentionally designed the eye makeup to be more conceptual. "We wanted to step away from the classic smoky eye all around," Philips shares. "So I had a smoky eye where only the inner and the outer corner of the eye was caught in intense black and then blended out towards the light center of the eye."
To emphasize the artistry of the smokey eye, Philips opted to forego mascara. "If you add mascara, it becomes more sensual and seductive, which is something I tried to avoid considering the concept of the video," he says.
He Used Two New Dior Products to Create The Show’s Makeup Look
To create the smokey eye, Philips used the limited-release Dior Mono Couleur Couture in Black Bow Matte. "I just took the black [eyeshadow], and I pushed it in with the sponge applicator into the outer corner and into the inner corner," he says. "Then, I took a soft brush and blended it out."
He also used the brand's new Backstage Powder-no-Powder (which will be released March 12) to set the makeup. "It's a formula that can be used as a powder, as a powder foundation, or as a bronzer depending on how you want to play with it," Philips explains.
Everyone Should Create Their Own Trends
When asked about today's beauty trends, Philips replied, "Fads come and go. I think that the advantage of the time we live in is that everybody can create their own trends." For the creative director, beauty is about using makeup to express how you feel and using your tools to create looks that reflect your individuality.