By and  on December 3, 2004

NEW YORK — Gucci Westman, international creative director at Lancôme, has created her first cosmetics color story for the brand by putting the girly back into glamour.

It’s meant to be in step with fashion, Westman said — observing that “we’re definitely heading toward celebrating being women. [Look] how feminine the clothes are, the tweeds and the curves and the skirts. It’s a lot more fun to dress up and exciting to be a girl.

“Personally, I’ve never worn this much makeup,” she continued. “But now I’m just so excited to get dolled up, lately. And for a makeup artist, that’s really not that common. Typically, before, I would just wear a little black eyeliner and that’s it.”

In fact, there’s a swing in popular mood toward looking and feeling pretty, Westman added. “[The trend is] to be beautiful, to just be pretty — beautiful clothes, pretty beautiful makeup. I love feeling pretty, and when women feel pretty, I think it’s the best feeling — we’re lucky we are allowed to express ourselves. Boys have electronics and we have makeup.”

With a little help from her pal, Drew Barrymore, who appears in the ad for the collection, Westman has put together a palette that recalls star-studded days on the beaches of Saint Tropez in the Sixties. Some of the colors are bold and vibrant, such as Mediterranean greens and blues. But the collection, called Spring 2005 in French Riviera, is designed to be mixed and matched, allowing consumers to produce fresh, subtle tones dripping with femininity.

The collection will appear on counter throughout Lancôme’s U.S. department store distribution of 2,200 doors from mid-to-late January. In Europe and elsewhere, the collection will make its debut in February. And Lancôme and its L’Oréal parent have high hopes for this launch. Although executives declined to break out sales targets, industry sources estimate that this collection could do as much as $10 million at retail during the spring season, which is significantly more than the brand’s last seasonal target.

For her part, Westman frames the project in artistic terms. “I was inspired by artists like Chagall and Degas, and Georgia O’Keeffe — just in the way to mix bold colors, like very vivid colors either subtly or boldly,” she said. “They are very true to what you see, if you look at this color and then you put it on your hand, it’s what you get.

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