Beauty collaborations run the gamut from head-scratching to sublime. And the latest one from François Nars, thankfully, is the latter.
We have always seen Nars as a total artist, not simply a makeup artist. From painting faces at his best buddy Marc Jacobs’ shows — who can forget his triumphant return to the runway with ’80s-inspired makeup to accompany Marc’s decadent collection? — to photographing his brand’s advertising campaigns.
So it’s no surprise that NARS’ latest collaboration is with another artist: Andy Warhol. The collection that Nars created is so large, in fact, that it’s split into two releases. Sephora stores will get an exclusive batch of products on October 1 and Nars counters nationwide will be getting another set of products November 1. Brush up on your sprinting skills, though, and not your painting because we’re predicting these superstar products will go quicker than your 15 minutes of fame.
Sephora’s collection is inspired by Andy Warhol’s Pop Art, which means that beauty junkies can stock up on giftables such as the Kiss Mini Larger Than Life Lip Gloss Coffret ($55), which contains five new lip gloss shades in Nars’ amazing Larger than Life formula all packaged in (what else) a Warhol-style soup can emblazoned with a quad of lip prints. But don’t think that Mr. Nars is just using the Andy Warhol collection to debut a few covetable packaging ideas. Instead of just relying on his tried-and-true formulas, he’s taken the Andy Warhol collection as an opportunity to experiment, just like Andy himself. The Debbie Harry Cheek and Eye Palette ($65) not only combines all the shades you need to look like the chanteuse herself, it’s also the debut of Nars’ new diamond dust eyeshadow formula. Blending deep pigments with actual diamond dust and glitter, the eye shadows take sparkle to a new high.
Another innovation is seen in the Flowers and Self-Portrait palettes ($55 each), which have beautiful designs taken right from some of Warhol’s most recognizable works. You’ve seen beautiful compacts before from just about every other makeup line, but what sets these palettes apart is the way the colors go all the way through to the bottom of each compact. No simple overspray here. Instead, you’ll have deep color all the way through each pan. Nars isn’t rehashing old colors, either. Each Flower and Self-Portrait palette has new shades and each compact comes with a different Andy Warhol quote etched into the mirror. Due to the wild success of the Nars collaboration with Thakoon, the brand plans to debut a set of nail polishes in the Warhol collaboration, too.
And because the release coincides with the start of the holiday shopping season, there are plenty of gift sets, too. Nars is releasing two makeup bags: one with Warhol working in his famed Silver Factory; the other with noted transvestite and Warhol muse Candy Darling. The department and specialty store collection also contains a special film-reel shaped gift box featuring an image of Edie Sedgwick from one of her early film tests with Warhol. Inside, you’ll find one of Nars’ new eyeliner stylo pencils, a lipstick and an eyeshadow/blush duo.
For artists more accustomed to painting on palettes and not on their own faces, each of the products will come with face charts and step-by-step instructions to make at-home application a breeze. In addition, select Sephora stores will host Pop Goes Sephora events celebrating the collaboration. Customers can get one-on-one consultations and lessons on how to use their new Nars products.
Photos courtesy Nars