Beauty Dares: The David Bowie Makeover


Our roving beauty reporter Natalie Meehan wipes off her trusty eyeliner and embraces big ch-ch-ch-ch-changes  (sorry – SH)

Try anything face

This is my ‘I’ll try anything once’ face. Please note black eyeliner.

As anyone with eyes will know, David Bowie has been a figurehead of make-up experimentation since he was old enough to hold a brow pencil. From his Ziggy Stardust days to the iconic lightning bolt on the Aladdin Sane LP cover, to Ashes To Ashes’ sad Pierrot doll; Bowie pushed the envelope and inspired a whole generation of glam boys and girls to get busy with pigments and play hard with colour.


I’m a creature of habit. My black flicks on shimmery beige base have been slicked onto my lids every day since I can remember. I wanted to shake things up and try something a little more exciting – something a little edgier. Some colour.



counter photo

There was an obvious place to go. British colour brand Illamasqua are known for pushing creative boundaries with their bright, bold looks. As part of the V&A Bowie retrospective, Illamasqua’s Creative Director and all round MAKE UP GENIUS Alex Box has made public three custom-made Bowie illustrations to be showcased in the Selfridges Concept Store. I went along for a perv, and to have a makeover with Illamasqua’s fabulous Key Artist, Mika, who swiftly transformed me from my usual office-face to a Bowie-inspired 1970s starlet in under an hour.




Illamasqua Face Products



1. Matte Primer, £22.50

2. Skin Base in 8, £27

3. Powder Blusher in Lover, £18

4. Loose Powder in 010, £23








illamasqua eye products


Using a handful of products, Mika fashioned me a bright, punchy eye on a flawless, fresh base. He used a custom mix of both eyeshadow and intensely pigmented powder blush (top tip there – use blush for eyes and vice versa! There are no rules, my pretties!) to create a deep, sexy magenta, topped off with a flash of awesome Liquid Metal liner in ‘Electrum’, for a zap of gold that popped against the bright pink.



1. Eyebrow Cake in Motto, £14.50

2. Powder Blusher in Thrust, £18

3. Powder Eye Shadow in Livid, £15.50

4. Masquara in Raven, £15




illamasqua lip productsHe mixed me a bespoke lip colour by blending together Resist lipstick with a pencil in Thrash and then slicking over lipgloss in Torture to create a rich, sunset pink. Lush.



1. Lipstick in Resist, £16

2. Sheer Lipgloss in Torture, £14

3. Medium Pencil in Thrash, £13



To have such a different look (and one that I hadn’t actually applied myself) was both exciting and slightly terrifying – I tried not to ‘cheat’ and peep while he worked – but I LOVED it. Mika told me he’d had tons of women coming in for Bowie-inspired looks for nights out – but while he’d really gone to town on some, with lightning bolts streaking across faces, he’d also created more wearable, softer interpretations a la Let’s Dance and Low.


bowie eyes

Walking through Soho after my session I felt half self-conscious, half like I wanted to strut into the nearest bar, scream “I’M HERE!” and wait for everyone to fall at my feet and genuflect. Make up has that power, yo!


What do you think? Would you like to try out something a little more creative than your usual day-face? What’s your favourite Bowie look? Get at me in the comments!







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