Make Up For Ever has always prided itself on marching to the beat of its own drummer — and it’s underlining that point with a new campaign that features reportedly the first transgender female model in a major cosmetics campaign, Andreja Pejić. The news follows Monday’s announcement that transgender female Bruce Jenner will now be known as Caitlyn Jenner.
This story first appeared in the June 10, 2015 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The cosmetics campaign’s tagline, Be Bold. Be Unexpected. Be You is intended to celebrate the transforming nature of makeup, said Laure de Metz, general manager, Americas, for Make Up For Ever, adding that Pejić’s journey of personal transformation, dedication to living life by her own rules and fearless commitment to self-expression personify the campaign’s tagline.
“Andreja epitomizes beauty and personal strength and is committed to living the life she wants,” said de Metz. “She has made some incredibly bold decisions in her life and we celebrate her commitment to be true to herself. Make Up For Ever embraces and encourages personal transformation we all make throughout our lives.”
In nearly a decade working as a well-known androgynous model for both men’s wear and women’s wear, Pejić, then known as Andrej, modeled for top designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier and Marc Jacobs. In 2014, Pejić underwent gender reassignment surgery, transitioning to live as a woman.
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“It’s a dream to have a cosmetics contract as my first major campaign as a female model, and that it is with Make Up For Ever, a brand that stands for helping people feel confident in expressing themselves, is beyond words,” said Pejić. “Being bold is about freedom. It’s hard for anyone to grow up and not be afraid of what others think. Makeup helps me express myself, and I’ve used it in varying ways throughout my life. I have strived to live life on my own terms, to never have to hide and to never have to feel shame about who I am. I can be proud of that and I’m equally proud to share that message through this Make Up For Ever campaign.”
Pejić is joined in the campaign by actress and Instagram star Jamie Chung, with makeup looks created by Mélanie Inglessis.
“Have fun, don’t be afraid to honor what you feel,” said Chung. “Make Up For Ever is inspiring people to do the most important thing in life – to love and accept ourselves, and celebrate individuality. Everyone should be proud of that and I’m proud to be part of a campaign that stands for that.”
The campaign — which includes a comprehensive digital campaign, in-store activations and events — will bow on July 16 at all Sephora stores in North America, including Sephora inside J.C. Penney. Shortly thereafter, limited-edition eyeshadow palettes curated by Pejić and Chung will be introduced. The limited edition eyeshadow palettes, $48 each, feature four full-sized shades and will be available on Sephora.com, beginning July 19.
The digital campaign will include online content and a series of consumer events at Sephora. Make Up For Ever, Chung, Pejić and Inglessis will promote the #BeMakeUpForEver Challenge with their social followers. The challenge engages fans to create and share three of their most bold, unexpected and transformative makeup looks, inspired by the “Be Bold. Be Unexpected. Be You.” campaign visuals. Weekly winners will be chosen based on the level of transformation shown and the artistic quality of the looks. Each will win a personalized eyeshadow palette featuring images of their winning looks, in addition to $500 in Make Up For Ever products.
As well, from Aug. 12 through Aug. 26, the campaign will be featured in all Sephora North America windows. America windows and print advertising will appear in beauty and fashion books, including Allure, InStyle and Marie Claire. Sephora will also blanket artistry towers with the new campaign imagery.
“This campaign that celebrates individuality and creativity is very close to my heart because the message means a great deal to me,” said Inglessis. “I’ve never been cookie cutter. I have my own style, my own strong personality, and I love working with a brand that truly wants me to be me.”