As more men are dabbling in makeup, the Augustman team tries out gender-inclusive cosmetics that honour the notion of beauty.
Hear me out. Cosmetics are slowly becoming integral to men’s grooming, especially concealers, foundations and eyebrow pencils. As gender-inclusive beauty brands like Fenty, Gucci, and Morphe continue to rise and blur gender norms, the stigma that comes with men wearing make-up plummets. Take a look at social media and you’ll find a multitude of photos of men in makeup and beauty tutorials for gents. The antiquated concept of cosmetics being feminine is also challenged by the new wave of key opinion leaders and Gen Zs who believe that beauty is for everyone. Today, makeup is no longer a question of gender or sexuality, but a form of self-expression and a way to bring out the best in you.
With make-up becoming more mainstream, the Augustman team decides to try out the beauty range from Gucci, one of the first few brands that believe in gender inclusivity. Before we jump into the review, it’s of paramount importance to note that your experience might differ from ours; every skin type reacts differently to products. We recommend dropping by the first Gucci Beauty boutique at ION, opening end of this month, and counters for a consultation and test drive.
“Makeup can be used to construct the identity we wish to project, yet this does not mean it has to change what is already there; it should be about enhancing individuality, not concealing it,” said Alessandro Michele, Creative Director of Gucci. “This idea is cultivated carefully through the tools we choose to use, as much as by the ones we choose not to.”
Now that this is out of the way, here’s what I think.
As one with sensitive skin, I am opposed to luxury cosmetics as they usually come with fragrance, a superfluous ingredient that could irritate the skin. Though apprehensive, I took a leap of faith and formed a beauty routine with the Silk Priming Serum, Cushion Foundation, and Beauty Mist, that follows my usual morning skincare regime.
The subsequent step to sunscreen, the lightweight primer affords hydration while smoothing out the complexion. It’s almost like a hyaluronic acid serum but without the sticky finishing. While it also promises a subtle luminous sheen, I couldn’t discern a perceivable difference from a well-moisturised skin. However, it did live up to its claim of ensuring my foundation stays put for long. Incidentally, the cushion foundation came after, and I must say flabbergasted is an understatement of my impression.
Formulated with SPF 22, anti-pollution, and anti-blue light properties, the lightweight and moisturising cushion packs a punch. Instead of irritation, I noticed an immediate blurring effect and soft glow finishing as it plumps the skin ever-so-slightly. The application’s made easy as well. It comes with a tear-drop-shaped cushion that helps to blend the hydrating formula seamlessly into the skin and hard-to-reach corners. My only gripe: it doesn’t withstand excessive sweat; I suggest setting your face with powder if you’re running errands the whole day under the sun. Else, the mist could come in handy. A natural alternative to powder, the beauty mist helps to set and further soothe the skin after foundation application with its blend of film former actives, black rose oil, and hyaluronic acid. Personally, I’d also use it to smooth out any cracks that come with sweat.
Here’s what our contributing fashion editor, Daryll, thinks.
Instead of the aforementioned products, Daryll put the Natural Finish Fluid Foundation, Waterproof Eyebrow Pencil, and Universal Nourshing Lip Balm to the test.
Based in a tropical climate like Singapore where humidity is constantly at its peak, coupled with his combination skin type, he was first concerned about using liquid foundations. On the contrary to conventional foundations, thankfully, “the Gucci Fluid Foundation is rather lightweight and is buildable,” noted Daryll. As someone who doesn’t use foundation at all, he approached this long-wearing and non-greasy formula like a liquid concealer, applying it onto sections of his face where redness often occurs. He mentioned that a little goes a long way, and the great thing about it is the immediate and natural results. “The liquid quickly transitions into a powdery form, leaving a blurry soft focus, concealing skin concerns like enlarged pores on nose, and blemishes around my cheeks all while looking natural.”
With naturally sparse eyebrows, Daryll followed up with the Waterproof Eyebrow Pencil. Conceived with a fine, sharp tip, the Stylo À Sourcils Waterproof Pencil promises a fuss-free application – and our contributing fashion editor couldn’t agree more. “It allows my brows to appear defined, and still ’soft’ all at once, with a finish that emulates real-life brow hair – which I can fully get behind by,” highlighted Daryll. “I love the sharp edges that allow me to create the strokes, layering them accordingly to achieve a more brushed out effect when needed.”
Topping off the no-makeup-makeup look, the Baume Nourrissant Universal nourishes his lips effortlessly while reducing areas of dryness on his face. He thinks of it as a multi-purpose lip balm as it plumps and hydrates thanks to all the good stuff like Jojoba, Castor Oils and Black Rose Oil. “Once applied, the fragrance-free balm feels easily absorbed on my skin, leaving behind an instant sensation of moisture without the greasiness. With any excess left, I apply it to my nails and cuticles to soothe any dryness too.”
That said, as mentioned, you could reap more benefits than us. It all depends on your complexion and application. A pro tip by local makeup artist Zoel Tee: less is more. If the coverage isn’t enough, try building it up gradually instead of slapping on a thick layer. You want to achieve a flawless countenance, not prepare for a Chinese street opera.
(Images: Gucci Beauty)
(Header Image: Gucci Chime for Change)