The ‘LUMINOUS ALLURE – IRIS ISSUE Beauty Editorial’ is one of our online ISSUE segments, head to ‘THE IRIS ISSUE’ for the complete editorial and set of images.
Author Margaret Wolfe Hungerford once wrote, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” emphasising that each person’s perception of beauty is unique and influenced by their individual experiences and style. Similarly, makeup is a form of self-expression that not everyone can fully appreciate or comprehend. Makeup serves as a tool, enabling individuals to convey their inner thoughts and transform into bolder, more confident versions of themselves in specific circumstances. This “Iris Feast” editorial, lensed by Plato Kalos, takes us on a visual journey through the mesmerising realm of bold makeup, painted by Chrisa Athina Vertsioti, and perception, exploring the impact of society and our brain on this transformative art form.
Model: Yiannis Andreou
Bold Makeup: A Historical Journey through Luminous Allure
Before delving into the editorial and the LOAD perspective, let’s explore the historical evolution of bold makeup. The history of extravagant makeup is a rich tapestry of beauty practices that have evolved over thousands of years and across diverse cultures. From the kohl-lined eyes of ancient Egypt to the subtle elegance of the Victorian era, makeup has played a pivotal role in self-expression and societal norms. The bold red lips and dramatic eye makeup of the 1920s era and the glamorous allure of Hollywood in the mid-20th century epitomised the bold makeup trends of their respective times. The 1960s ushered in the mod look with vibrant eyeshadows and intense eyeliner, while the 1980s embraced bold and colourful makeup with enthusiasm. Makeup trends have continued to evolve, from the minimalist approaches of the 1990s to today’s resurgence of bold and artistic makeup, where shapes, vibrant colours, and self-expression take centre stage. Throughout history, bold makeup has been a means of conveying culture, status, and personal style, while its story continues to be written with each daring look and artistic flourish.
Model: Christina Smerou
Bold Makeup in Fashion: A Vibrant Canvas of Self-Expression
In the fashion world, where creativity knows no bounds, makeup has emerged as a powerful tool for self-expression, setting the stage for unforgettable campaigns. From edgy cosmetics brands to iconic fashion houses, the marriage of bold makeup and high fashion has given rise to visually stunning and captivating campaigns that leave a lasting impact. Bold makeup has undeniably taken centre stage in beauty editorials in recent years, as makeup artists and photographers continue to push the boundaries of creativity and self-expression. In the editorial of Dazed Beauty named “The Science of Sleep” (2020), dreamy and surreal makeup looks were the protagonists, with elements like glitter, metallics, and shapes creating a dreamlike atmosphere. Similarly, W Magazine in the “The New Royals” (2019) editorial, embraced gender-fluid beauty, bold and unconventional makeup looks that challenged traditional gender norms, self-expression and diversity. Lastly, Vogue Italia’s “The New Beginning” (2021), embraced a playful and artistic approach to makeup, celebrating individuality and self-expression. These beauty editorials serve as a testament to the ever-evolving and diverse world of makeup artistry. They celebrate bold makeup as a means of creative expression, self-confidence, and empowerment, challenging conventional beauty standards and inviting individuals to embrace their unique styles and identities.
The LOAD Perspective
In this captivating beauty editorial, LOAD immerses readers in a world of luminous allure and ethereal enchantment. The eye sees obscure geometric shapes, ambiguous splashes of colour and glistening luminosity covering the faces of the models. Everything is unclear yet mesmerising. The observer tries to comprehend, what is the meaning of this?
Through metallic colours, glittery shine, and unconventional shapes LOAD forms an otherworldly narrative of transformation and self-discovery. Each daring undefined stroke of iridescent pigment and shimmering fleck of glitter symbolises the profound resilience of the human spirit—a reflection of our ability to shine even amidst the darkest of times. The unconventional shapes, free from constraints, represent the boundless nature of beauty, transcending the conventional and inviting us to embrace the extraordinary within ourselves.
The metallic colours, like liquid molten gold and shimmering silver, serve as a metaphor for the resilience of the human spirit. They remind us that even in the face of adversity, our inner brilliance can illuminate the darkest of paths. The dance of glitter, akin to stardust, whispers stories of the ethereal, evoking a sense of wonder and magic. It reminds us that life’s most enchanting moments often emerge from the seemingly ordinary.
The unconventional shapes and avant-garde contours that grace our canvas symbolise the limitless facets of beauty. They defy convention, beckoning us to break free from the constraints of conformity and embrace the extraordinary within ourselves. These shapes tell tales of the uniqueness that resides in each of us, a celebration of the idiosyncrasies that make us who we are.
In the LOAD editorial, we are reminded that true beauty is a multifaceted gem, refracting the light of individuality, resilience, and the enduring magic that resides deep within every soul. It invites us to shed preconceived notions and discover the radiant and unconventional aspects of our being, illuminating our own unique journey of self-expression and transformation. Much like the iris we are hit with visual queues of geometry, light and colour which shape our visions of ourselves and our surroundings.
The Brain’s Response to Bold Makeup
In a mesmerising world where shapes, colours, and brightness come together, it has been scientifically proven that our brain reacts in extraordinary ways. When this eccentric makeup surrounds us, it’s like a beautiful symphony playing in our minds, making us more alert and visually sharp. The striking colours and intricate shapes in any makeup look captivate our attention beyond the ordinary. As our iris explores these intricate makeup looks, a neurological part responsible for rewarding us gets active. This combination of our brain’s response reveals that makeup is neurologically perceived as a form of art, a way to express ourselves. It bridges science and creativity in a journey that’s far from ordinary, unveiling the extraordinary—a vibrant palette that excites our senses, stirs our emotions and shows how science and art are beautifully connected.
In the captivating exploration of bold makeup, from its historical evolution to its profound impact on our perception and the artistry displayed in beauty editorials and campaigns, we have uncovered a multifaceted narrative. LOAD paints a realm where makeup transcends the ordinary and becomes a medium of transformation and resilience. The radiant metaphor of metallics, the enchantment of glitter, and the liberation of unconventional shapes collectively whispered tales of inner strength and the enduring magic within us all.
Through this editorial, we are reminded that beauty, in all its forms, reflects the human spirit’s boundless creativity, resilience, and capacity for self-expression. Just as bold makeup empowers individuals to paint their unique stories on the canvas of life, it also allows us to embrace the extraordinary within ourselves. In the end, beauty truly is in the eye of the beholder and the heart of the one who dares to express themselves boldly.
Written by Errika Moniou
Photographer PLATO KALOS @PLATO.KALOS
In Frame YANNIS ANDREOU @VINYL_FACE, CHRISTINA SMEROU @XKRISTEENA, LEANDROS @LEANDROSGVR
Creative Director ELEKTRA AVGOULI @GODBLESSDRAMA, FILIPPOS VOGDANIS @PHILIP.VOGDANIS, KONSTANTINOS TSAGKARIS @KONSTANTINOS.TSAGKARIS
Make-up Artist CHRISA ATHENA VERTSIOTI @YWCCHRISA
Hair ELEKTRA AVGOULI @GODBLESSDRAMA
Studio STUDIO P56 @STUDIO.P56
Article Errika Moniou @EMONIOU