Beauty and Fashion: A powerful alliance
Over the past few years, the beauty industry has been experiencing a significant change as the launches of more and more brands are setting the industry by storm. With an estimated value of $532 billion, (1) the beauty industry is expected to continue on this rising path. Makeup artists and beauty influencers play an important role in defining the next big beauty trends. Subsequently, cosmetic and skin-care brands will continue to benefit from their influence.
Furthermore, a great deal of beauty content creators with a hefty online following don’t shy away from posting fashion content. As François Nars, Makeup Artist and Founder of NARS Cosmetics, once said: “Makeup is an accessory to fashion. You buy a bag, you buy shoes, you put on eyeliner, you buy a lipstick, makeup compliments the clothes.” (2)
So, how can fashion brands collaborate with beauty content creators to expand their reach and impact? To answer that, we have interviewed Christina Kassi, a Houston based lifestyle blogger who creates both beauty and fashion related content, and Marie Thomsen, a professional makeup artist based in Copenhagen who has worked with the likes of GANNI, Stine Goya, By Malene Birger, and ELLE magazine.
The growing interest for beauty:
While celebrity fashion icons, such as Rihanna and Lady Gaga, have successfully launched their own beauty brands, makeup artists are also rapidly gaining strong interest on social platforms. Notably, this increasing digital momentum is evident in the work of veteran makeup artist Pat McGrath and her work with Maison Margiela, Givenchy, Louis Vuitton and Valentino.
We’re also seeing that fashion enthusiasts have a great interest in what is going on behind the scenes of global fashion weeks, and magazines like VOGUE, ELLE, and Marie-Claire are now reporting what’s going on backstage. Pat McGrath herself confirms that there’s a definite interest for backstage interviews from the general public. (3)
Steven Kolb, the Executive Director of Fashion Designers for America, explains in an article for Consumer News and Business Channel that: “When you look at a designer and their collection, the styling and the presentation of that collection is so dependent on the complete look. To have the right makeup and hair, that is an extension of the collection or that aesthetic, is really important.” (4)
With that mind, fashion brands should use the increasing interest in beauty content to give extra, added value to the collections that they have created:
Christina Kassi: “Most major fashion houses have their own beauty lines, so there’s always that intimate connection between the current collection of RTW and beauty products released for that same season. Beauty content creators can help give ideas on how to make these looks wearable and how to incorporate beauty to dress up/down an outfit and give ideas on where it’s appropriate.”
Marie Thomsen: “Beauty makes the product final and compliments a fashion collection. It gives an extra signal of what kind women would wear it. For example, for the last Stine Goya SS20 runway show, we wanted to magnify the play-fullness and the vibrant colors of the collection. We translated that onto the makeup, with bold colored lips to create a funky and funny look to accentuate the colors of the clothes. For By Malene Birger, we wanted to emphasize the strong silhouettes with strong red lips and super slick tight hair to represent a powerful boss woman.”
The engagement of beauty related content:
Instagram and Youtube are the platforms where we mainly consume beauty related content and follow beauty influencers, hair stylists, and makeup artists to learn how to recreate various looks and to get thorough reviews on beauty products.
According to a recent study made by the Cosmetic Executive Women association, the growing weight of the beauty industry is reflected by its impact on the digital landscape.
The analysis also reveals that the beauty industry has the largest share of voices in France, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The market for beauty has also the largest media value in those countries too. (5)
In addition, beauty buyers not only engage with brands on social media more than the average internet user, they are also great at finding new brands and product reviews from bloggers or celebrities. In fact, 1-in-2 consumers say they’re more likely to make a purchase after reading or watching online reviews from other consumers. (6)
These compelling factors are important for fashion brands to consider as many beauty content creators also create fashion looks to share with their beauty savvy followers.
Christina who started her Instagram account with a initial focus on beauty, recently made a shift to create more fashion-related content. She explains why: “When I have asked my audience on stories, they have responded positively to all types of content on my page including fashion, lifestyle, and jewelry. I don’t love categorizing myself, I mostly believe creators can dabble between fashion and beauty quite seamlessly because the two are so intertwined. I love seeing beauty content creators feature fashion pieces and incorporate makeup looks with that, and vice versa! I think fashion brands should consider beauty content creators just as much as they consider fashion influencers.”
Beauty and fashion, a winning combo to express individuality:
According to an article by McKinsey & Company, the influence of Gen Z is beginning to expand and for this new generation of consumers, consumption should be a true expression of individual identity. (7) They are showing a growing interest in brands that encourage them to embrace their individual expression and imperfections. Beauty has become more than a hobby but a true way of expressing their creativity. (8)
Marie further emphasizes this aspect and adds that fashion brands could definitely utilize this opportunity as a way to find people who are less conventional and therefore make a bigger impact:
Marie: “With beauty you are creating a look to give off a certain vibe and showcase a personality. Whether you would go for a no-makeup up makeup or a stronger makeup you’re putting out a certain image and assert yourself in that way. (…) Gucci recently appointed Thomas de Kluyver as the global makeup artist for their revamped beauty line which had a big influence with the overall image of the brand. The models selected are not beautiful in the conventional and commercial way, rather, their imperfections are highlighted and sublimated.
I think we are going to be very bored with the pretty influencer with good skin. Instead, fashion brands should look for audacious beauty bloggers, as long as they have a really good style. Find the right people to stand out because less perfection gives a stronger impact. My advice would be to collaborate with strong personalities, daring and opinionated influencers that match the brands and be inspired by people who opt for different standards of beauty.”
Christina further adds: “I think beauty and fashion help us express ourselves, help us feel what we’re thinking, and can put us in a mood that is definitely empowering! If I have a specific outfit in mind, I always take that into consideration for my makeup look because it will complete everything. Whether it’s a bold lip or a smokey eye, it definitely adds to the overall look and feel.”
It’s important for any brand that wants to be up to date with trends and digital changes, to consider these generational shifts that have started happening. Beauty has become part of the bigger picture when it comes to fashion, individuality and artistic expression. We can find real value when we start seeing beauty and fashion as an item and focus on what can be achieved when the two collide.
photo credit: Copenhagen Fashion Week image bank
Meet the experts:
Marie Thomsen is a professional makeup artist based in Copenhagen. She started her career as a hairstylist before switching to makeup and working with many of the top Danish fashion brands such as Stine Goya, Ganni, By Malene Birger. And fashion magazines such as Costume, ELLE, Cover and Eurowoman.
Christina Kassi is a Houston based lifestyle blogger who loves to get involved with projects in beauty and fashion. She freelancers in photography and cinematography to bring visions to life. She also loves sharing everything that inspires her, particularly in beauty, fashion, and interiors, with the world.
Ines is the French Fashion and Design Researcher at VOCAST. After spending most of her life on the beautiful African continent she has chosen Copenhagen as her home-base. A self proclaimed “beauty addict”, she previously worked in the beauty industry and is now exploring her passion for digital marketing, fashion PR and design.
Acting on the fusion of fashion and sport, our researchers have created lists with handpicked influenceurs, editors and makeup artists from the beauty industry in Denmark, France, Germany, The US, The UK, The Netherlands, Belgium, Norway and Sweden.
Find them in our database and ready to use for your press send-outs.
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