Dries Van Noten Beauty has always embraced surprising combinations. As Van Noten told us when the brand launched in 2021, with lipsticks and fragrances that ‘can tell a different story. Because with my fashion collections, I am a storyteller. My clothes make you feel certain associations and connections, because I work with all those contrasts, all those opposites.’
The inspiration behind Dries Van Noten Beauty
So, for our December issue story, we took a note out of the Van Noten beauty playbook and mixed clashing colours with bold textures to create six riotous looks that tightrope between brashness and elegance. Paris-based photographer Eva Wang captured these ‘impossible combinations’ (including electric pink lipstick smeared on eyelids or a classic bordeaux-hued shade lined with a bright shock of shimmering gold) in her signature high-gloss style.
The playful ethos of Dries Van Noten Beauty extended to the makeup application, as seen in the lilac eyeshadow applied with a measured messiness beyond the lid, or lip colours that subtly peek outside of the lip line. The same goes for the fashion, by Wallpaper’s fashion firector Jason Hughes, where 1980s exuberance is channelled through a combination of lacquered Barbie-pink lips paired with a gold foil turtleneck, or a furry pastel pink coat contrasting with the texture of a slime green eye.
It’s jolie laide makeup at its very best or, as Van Noten himself puts it, ‘what is beautiful for me may be very ugly for you, and vice versa. Something that is considered by a lot of people as beautiful I think is boring. That’s why I like so much to work with contrasts. I like to have strangeness in my beauty.’
Beauty & grooming editor: Mary Cleary. Fashion director: Jason Hughes. Models: Migoa Guol at Elite Paris, Julia Lamarque at Blow Models. Casting: Ikki Casting at The Art Board. Make-up: Caroline Fenouil. Hair: Sayaka Otama at Walter Schupfer Management. Digital assistant: Tony at Dope Paris. Photography assistant: Fred Barlet. Make-up assistant: Shin Fenestre.
A version of this story appeared in the December 2023 Entertaining Issue of Wallpaper*, available in print from 9 November, on the Wallpaper* app on Apple iOS, and to subscribers of Apple News +. Subscribe to Wallpaper* today!
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Mary Cleary is a writer based in London and New York. Previously beauty & grooming editor at Wallpaper*, she is now a contributing editor, alongside writing for various publications on all aspects of culture.
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