Mak­ing it easy to blend in with the selfie mas­ters

The National - News - Arts & Life - - Front Page - Hafsa Lodi

The value of a flaw­less selfie is not be­ing lost on make- up brands around the world who are grab­bing the at­ten­tion of snap- savvy so­cial- me­dia users by clev­erly us­ing the word fil­ter when mar­ket­ing to the masses.

Ja­panese skin­care and beauty brand Shi­seido did just that re­cently when it launched a new product called the Smart Fil­ter­ing Smoother.

The use of the word “fil­ter­ing” is a very de­lib­er­ate mar­ket­ing ap­proach de­signed to ap­peal to so­cial- me­dia users who use Snapchat fil­ters to make their skin ap­pear smooth and flaw­less in their snaps.

As tech­nol­ogy trends and apps evolve, beauty brands are in­tro­duc­ing prod­ucts such as the Re­touch­ing Wands by Bobbi Brown, the Pho­tore­ady Air­brush Ef­fect line from Revlon, and the Beau­ty­blender, a beauty tool en­dorsed by the Kar­dashi­ans that has racked up a global cult fol­low­ing since it was launched in 2007. Ac­com­pa­nied by Kim Kar­dashian’s make-up artist, Mario De­di­vanovic, Beau­ty­blender founder Rea Ann Silva launched her new Beau­ty­blender pro range to the Mid­dle East makeup mar­ket last week in Dubai. The Burj Al Arab was lit bright pink for the oc­ca­sion, a homage to Silva’s orig­i­nal teardrop­shaped blend­ing sponge, which was hot pink in colour.

“It’s a com­bi­na­tion of the shape be­ing edge­less and the ma­te­rial that’s hy­drophilic – it gets softer and big­ger when you wet it,” says Silva. “Com­bined with the shape and the pore struc­ture of the sponge, it really mim­ics the per­fect skin.”

The inspiration for Beau­ty­blender was born out of ne­ces­sity when Silva, who was work­ing as a make-up artist for film and tele­vi­sion pro­duc­tions at the time when high def­i­ni­tion was be­com­ing the norm, had to come up with a way to adapt make-up ap­pli­ca­tion for the HD screens. At the time, she was cut­ting up generic dis­pos­able piewedge sponges, then bev­el­ling them to avoid sharp edges and thus harsh lines on the face.

“I just took it way fur­ther and was cut­ting those bevels into teardrops,” she says, adding that it was only “when they started sprout­ing legs and walk­ing Beau­ty­blender founder Rea Ann Silva launched her new Beau­ty­blender Pro range to the Mid­dle East makeup mar­ket last week in Dubai away” that she re­alised she could make a busi­ness out of them.

She says they would dis­ap­pear from sets into the pock­ets of ac­tors and other make-up artists.

“So the idea was to sell them to other make-up artists – I never thought at that point that it would be a con­sumer product,” she adds.

To­day, the kits of most make-up artists and beauty blog­gers are in­com­plete without this pop­u­lar tool. Foun­da­tions, primers, pow­ders, con­ceal­ers and their ap­pli­ca­tion tools are bestsellers, in the UAE par­tic­u­larly, where full cov­er­age and matt ap­pear­ances are pop­u­lar – even more so, if you are an avid “selfie” taker.

“You have to blend ev­ery­thing per­fectly, from your con­tour, to your shadow, be­cause on cam­era all of that shows way more than it does in the mir­ror,” says Dubai beauty video blog­ger El­jammi Goza­lli, who has more than 135,000 fol­low­ers on In­sta­gram.

Kar­dashian’s make- up artist De­di­vanovic hosts mas­ter­classes around the world to share his tips and tech­niques. He held one with the star in Dubai re­cently and says that at his UAE classes, women of­ten reveal they like a heavy beauty look, and as the hot day wears on, they keep pil­ing on more make-up.

“Af­ter hours and hours of wear­ing make-up, some­times you feel like you have to redo the skin later on,” he says.

“You really don’t – if you just wet and squeeze a Beau­ty­blender and pat it over the face, it makes ev­ery­thing fresh again.”

De­di­vanovic also rec­om­mends that rather than adding on more make-up, women should use the brand’s Blot­ter­azzi sponge to re­move oil and re­tex­turise the skin.

Silva’s lat­est Beau­ty­blender Pro range, which is only avail­able in the re­gion at Sephora stores, fea­tures her prod­ucts in black, rather than pink – partly, as homage to her make- up artist peers, who tra­di­tion­ally tend to dress in black. Also, the foun­da­tion stains don’t show up on black, and it is a prefer­able colour for male con­sumers.


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