When Gucci announces the opening of its largest beauty boutique in the region, you know where to find me. Located in Mall of the Emirates, the space lives up to the house’s eclectic style. Think retro meets romance. Upon entering you notice the hand-painted rose printed wooden flooring, imported straight from Italy, naturally. You then are greeted by the fragrance bar displaying Gucci’s iconic The Alchemist’s Garden collection. Around the edge, shelves showcase the brand’s other signature blends from Bloom to Gucci Guilty with drawers underneath inadvertently adding a touch of mystery to the boutique.
The next room is a paradise of powder pink. Velvet tasseled chairs sit in front of boudoir style mirrors framed by light bulbs. On display, the brand’s first makeup collection of 58 lipsticks in balm, satin and sheer finishes, its two limited edition glitter lipsticks and now the new Rouge à Lèvres Mat collection.
In the final pale blue room, reserved for special guests, waits Gucci’s global makeup artist Thomas de Kluyver. “I think the matte texture is going to be great for the market here,” he begins, “Obviously they are longest lasting of the lipsticks we have and they have a powder texture to them.” The shades themselves range from nudes to reds, purples to browns and even forest green. Each can be used on the lips as well as the cheeks, with two formulated for the eyes as well.
As it’s the early morning I opt to try a neutral color. “This is my favorite of the nudes, The Painted Veil,” Kluyver suggests. Arriving in a striking golden bullet reminiscent of beauty products of bygone, the formula is rich with an impressive color payoff after just one stroke. When it comes to picking the perfect shade of nude De Kluyver says, “It’s really about trying on a few different shades and then choosing the one that makes you feel the best. Make it personal rather than getting stuck on the one that may be a celebrity wore.”
This sentiment is key to Alessandro Michele and Gucci Beauty’s message. First introduced with its debut campaign featuring Punk singer Dani Miller’s idiosyncratic gap-toothed smile, the brand is continuing to challenge the industry’s outdated standards. “That’s what’s so nice about Gucci we’re really embracing individuality. It’s about wearing the colors which make you feel good,” says De Kluyver.