Zara’s vast reach is what inspired British makeup artist Diane Kendal—a frequent backstage presence during fashion weeks and a favorite of designers like Marc Jacobs, Proenza Schouler, Tory Burch, and Tom Ford—to join ranks with the global brand for the launch of its first beauty collection. While the fashion and lifestyle behemoth has already dipped a toe in the beauty waters (as of last December, they have an ongoing fragrance partnership with Jo Malone) this marks its first official foray.
Unsurprisingly, it’s going big.
In development, mostly remotely, for the past 18 months, Zara Beauty will launch globally on May 12 with lips, eyes, face, nails, and accessories. The products will find a home in a new beauty-specific store-in-store concept with a sleek, polished white look that mirrors the items themselves. According to Zara beauty director Eva Lopez, the goal for the brand was simple: inclusivity. “Our ambition was to create a collection that anyone, regardless of gender, skin color, age, or personal style will want to use,” she says. “Somebody that wants a classic, softer makeup look can find their products, and somebody that’s more experimental can find the colors they need to create that, too,” continues Kendal, adding “we wanted to appeal to everybody.” Much like at Zara itself there is, quite literally, something for everyone. Standout offerings include a blood orange and turquoise eyeshadow palette; gold-flecked highlighting powder; canary yellow nail polish; a slim-line black liquid liner; and red lips in velvety gloss, powdery matte, soft demi-matte, or a shiny satin finish.
Being able to help build a beauty collection from the ground up was a big thrill for Kendal. “This is the first time I’ve been able to start from scratch with a brand that didn’t already have a pre-existing makeup line,” she reveals. “And the fact that Zara wanted to do it all in an ethically responsible way was important to me.” It is indeed a critical move particularly considering Zara’s immense global footprint. Certified cruelty-free across all markets where it’s sold, all of the Zara Beauty packaging is also entirely refillable, something that, says Lopez, was a specific request from customers. Conceived by art director Fabien Baron, the chic, stark white components are a feat of beautiful design and absolute versatility that belies a deeply affordable price point (ranging from $7.90 to $25.90). Refills cost even less (starting at $4.90) as an incentive for customers to reuse, rather than repurchase.
Hyper-visual storytelling significantly ups the desirability. For its debut campaign, Zara Beauty tapped nine acclaimed image-makers—Craig McDean, David Sims, Fabien Baron, Marilyn Minter, Mario Sorrenti, Nadine Ijewere, Oliver Hadlee Pearch, Steven Meisel, and Zoë Ghertner—to collaborate with Kendal in an effort to showcase the collection’s far-reaching possibilities. “Post-pandemic people are going to want to play with makeup more and really put their face on,” says Kendal, who predicts the duo eyeshadows, which can be applied as a wash of color or built up for a stronger statement will be a fast favorite. As for launching during the pandemic, Zara sees the precarious timing as an asset. “We are missing a lot of things right now,” says Lopez, “and makeup is one of them.”
From Vogue US