Mario Dedivanovic is evolving his Master Class format.
On Saturday, the makeup artist hosted 1,600 people at The Theater at the Ace Hotel in Los Angeles for the latest installment of his seminar series. The sold-out event drew initial buzz as Kim Kardashian, Dedivanovic’s longtime client, served as the model, but as the six-hour class unfolded, Dedivanovic showcased a new way for brands to debut product.
Dedivanovic helped Tatcha unveil its newest offering, Dewy Skin Cream, marking the first time he helped a brand launch a product during the class — he’s hosted between 40 and 45 so far. Speaking via phone, Dedivanovic explained that the decision came naturally for him, as Tatcha founder Vicky Tsai is both a friend and longtime sponsor of the gift bags.
“For years at my Master Classes, I always used a very emollient moisturizer ‘cause that’s what I like to use as a base, and [Tsai] told me that she’s coming out with a new product that’s inspired by me,” said Dedivanovic. “My clients tease me because I always say I love an exclusive. I thought it would be cute to be the first one to show [the product] at the class.”
In an e-mail, Tsai confirmed the product was inspired by Dedivanovic and noted his passion for education. “The reason people fly around the world to go to his Master Classes is because he is genuinely motivated by wanting to teach and inspire other people,” she said. “He puts his heart and soul into these classes, squeezing them into an already-full schedule and pulling all-nighters to fly in.”
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More newness at the class came via Kardashian, who spoke from a client’s perspective on what she does and doesn’t consider appropriate from a makeup artist, and Anastasia Soare, founder of Anastasia Beverly Hills, who made her debut at the series to give an eyebrow tutorial.
“She’s literally the queen of the eyebrows and she’s responsible for the entire trend of eyebrows,” said Dedivanovic of Soare. “She’s been doing Kim’s brows for 10 years and I’m close with her. I did the palette with her and I did a partnership with her in 2015, so I thought, how amazing would it be to get Anastasia on stage?”
These developments cater to the Master Class audience, which is mostly comprised of aspiring makeup artists, fans and even future makeup moguls; notably, Huda Kattan, Makeup by Ariel, Makeup by Samuel and Makeup by Ari have all attended past sessions. But for brands, the Master Class additions offer a different way to reach new audiences, especially those as engaged and digitally savvy as Dedivanovic’s.
Still, Dedivanovic said, not so fast.
“I don’t sell product in the Master Class, it’s about what’s in my kit,” he said. “Obviously, the students want to know what it is, but I don’t involve brands in my demo whatsoever. No one ever can have a say or ask me to use something. Even all the people who sponsor the gift bags, no one can tell me, ‘you have to use this’ or ‘can you use this?’ I use whatever comes out of my mind that day.”
Some things, it seems, are still sacred and for now, the Master Class will remain a #SponCon-free zone.
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