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EXCLUSIVE: Maybelline New York Takes On the Metaverse

Maybelline is dipping its toes into Web3, starting with sponsoring a virtual fashion competition.

The world’s biggest makeup brand is betting on the metaverse.

Maybelline New York has sponsored a digital fashion competition in the virtual realm, which took place Thursday. Called “Fashioning Masculinity,” the competition’s aim is for its participants to “reflect on the redefinition of dressing masculine identities,” per a statement from the brand.

The initiative falls under Maybelline’s continued collaboration with Ready Player Me on makeup looks for metaverse avatars, in conjunction with hair styles from sister brand L’Oréal Professionnel.

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The contest was created in partnership with digital fashion brand Artisant, as well as Jenny Metaverse Dao, a contemporary art collection in the space. The contest takes place on Spatial in Agora Space.

The strategic goal of the sponsorship is to meet consumers where they are, said Shivani Shah, senior vice president of global brand experience at Maybelline New York. “Today, our consumers are in multiple worlds. They’re in the physical world, they’re in the digital world, and now they’re in the virtual world,” she said. “Our objective is to mirror the strategy that we have in the physical world, so for us as Maybelline, we want to provide makeup.”

With the space being so nascent, Shah said “the standard KPIs that we measure ourselves against today just don’t really stand. What these kinds of competitions and initiatives allow us to do is to build brand love and proximity with consumers in a very targeted way. This competition is fashion designers, they’re in the fashion world, and this is an opportunity for us to really be where they are.”

Jenny Metaverse Doa will purchase the first, second and third-place designs for 1 ETH, 0.7 ETH and 0.3 ETH, respectively. Those winners are Creature by Morchen Liu, Duality by Monika and Dandy by Florencia Arezzo.

Maybelline will collaborate with the latter on a Ready Player Me makeup drop for avatars, while L’Oréal Professionnel will team with Machismo with Frills by On-Click Closet for hair.