It’s More than just Glitter and Gems – it’s Gen Z’s Gateway to Editorial Makeup (Op-Ed)

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More than a year and a half ago, the hit TV series about troubled teens “Euphoria” premiered on HBO. After receiving major success, it’s highly anticipated season two had to stop production due to the pandemic. HBO has even released two special episodes to hold it’s viewers over until they’re ready to start production again.

Despite the show’s content being quite controversial, what really made “Euphoria” stick out was the makeup. Every character’s makeup look gives insight into their personality and even what they were feeling in the scene. Doniella Davy, the makeup department head for the show, is responsible for the array of glittery, colorful and bold editorial makeup looks.

Doniella Davy

Although the makeup style can be found on magazine covers and runways for decades now, “Euphoria” has reintroduced editorial makeup to the general beauty community. Especially amongst Gen Z. Editorial makeup is makeup used on models usually for magazine spreads and runway shows. This kind of makeup is typically very bold and not worn everyday. Whether these teens should be watching the show is another matter. Despite that, Davy’s use of graphic liners, gems and glitter has piqued many teens interested in the makeup form. 

Thanks to social media, we have seen the emergence of  “Euphoria” challenges, Instagram posts, lookbooks and makeup tutorials. The show has popularized editorial makeup amongst Gen Z to the point that they’ve begun to solely refer to it as “Euphoria makeup.”

Although the show has brought editorial makeup back to the mainstream, teens need to realize it existed before “Euphoria.”

Pat McGrath

For instance, Pat McGrath! She is probably one of the most iconic and influential makeup artists in the world. Some may even say she’s the Queen of editorial makeup. She is known for her unique, bold, colorful makeup looks that set trends for the rest of the makeup industry and how she’s able to build her billion dollar empire. She practically invented “Euphoria” makeup. To McGrath, this isn’t a trend, she’s been doing this her whole career.

Beneath the glitter and gems, it’s helping young people use makeup as a creative outlet rather than a means to appeal to societal standards of beauty. Instead of the previous Kardashian-esque “Instagram baddie” makeup, teens are trying out the subtler, more natural yet still bold look. 

Makeup doesn’t have to be about covering up or enhancing your features, but about expressing yourself. Editorial makeup puts less of an emphasis on beauty, but on creativity. Life can be your runway and your face is a canvas. 

“Euphoria” has exposed everyday people to editorial makeup. Hopefully we will see more looks in season two.

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