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Wednesday September 10, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Saturday September 13, 2014 MYT 12:30:25 PM
by william k.c. kee
From kooky pop divas to cartoon clans, one make-up brand has them in its hands.
Ay caramba! That was my first reaction when M.A.C Cosmetics announced a make-up line inspired by The Simpsons.
Being a fan of the yellow family, I was naturally excited and intrigued; never mind that I won’t get to wear the eyeshadow or lip gloss. (Unless, its “D’oh!” Halloween.)
To celebrate The Simpsons’ 25th anniversary, M.A.C has created a make-up line devoted to its long-suffering matriarch, Marge Simpson.
Like the world occupied by the Simpsons, the collection is brimming with bright colours.
There are eyeshadows in shades of green or blue, depending on the palette chosen (priced at RM162), along with coral and pink blushes (RM88).
Those looking for original lip gloss shades will have their pick of orange, fuchsia, purple and, of course, yellow (RM74). And for anyone who’s dreamed of having long, thick lashes like the mother of Lisa, Bart and Maggie, a false pair is available for RM55.
My personal fave is the range of nail stickers featuring the show’s characters (RM58); what better way to pay tribute to America’s longest-running animated series?
Instead of a conventional press release, M.A.C issued a funny “interview” with Marge herself on the collaboration. (For an excerpt, please see sidebar.)
You have to hand it to M.A.C for consistently producing the season’s most coveted shades, as well as limited edition celebrity and themed collections.
This is one of the reasons it stays at the forefront of the beauty industry, by being current and cool. Not to mention its ability to rope in the world’s biggest names, from Rihanna to Nicki Minaj and Ricky Martin to front its campaigns.
In fact, it’s thanks to M.A.C that I got to meet Lady Gaga in Tokyo in 2010. At the height of her fame, the eccentric pop star was M.A.C’s Viva Glam spokesperson.
Although she made us wait for more than an hour, while she dined on sushi for lunch, the resulting interview was memorable.
In my cover feature on her (The world gone gaga, June 10, 2010), I described my encounter as such:
“I am the first to enter the room, and when Gaga orbits into my viewpoint, I actually let out a gasp. In person, she looks exactly the same as the eccentric persona showcased onstage and in music videos.
She is small-sized but undeniably, larger than life. For our interview, Gaga is wearing an outfit and accessories created by Japanese designers.
Her whole body is encased in a white, sequinned lace catsuit by Somarta while a nude-coloured veil by Yoshiko covers her entire face.
Instead of normal footwear, she is wearing perilous eight-inch black leather booties. When we ask her about the shoes, she lifts up her right foot, almost comically, to find out the designer’s name. (It is Noritaka Tatehana.)
Gaga’s bleached hair has been teased into a beehive do, and artfully plastered with black and white bobby pins.
On the floor next to her is a Hermes Birkin bag, which is scrawled with Japanese words ‘I love my little monsters.’ (Gaga affectionately calls her loyal fans ‘Little Monsters.’)”
To our (pleasant) surprise that day, Gaga was articulate and knowledgable. She spoke at length about the initiative with M.A.C, to create awareness about challenges that women face in their fight against HIV/AIDS. Gaga had helped to design the Viva Glam lipstick that bore her signature; every cent from the sale of the lipstick went towards helping women, men and children affected by HIV and AIDS.
Besides Gaga, M.A.C’s bestsellers include its collaborations with Barbie and Hello Kitty. The former, released in 2007, was called Barbie Loves M.A.C and featured shimmering candy colours with names like “Sweet and Single,” “Real Doll” and “Happening Gal”.
The Hello Kitty Colour Collection was released in 2009, to the delight of its legion of fans. Never mind the latest controversy that Hello Kitty is not, in fact, a cat, but back then, it was the purr-fect synergy between the two young-at-heart companies.
Let’s not forget M.A.C’s recent tie-in with blockbuster movie Maleficent. Its True Love’s Kiss lipstick, matching star Angelina Jolie’s shade in the film, was sold out online almost immediately.
Call it a gimmick or clever marketing strategy, no other cosmetics manufacturer has that element of fun that M.A.C maintains.
Who else do you know that can gather a yellow family, Disney villainesses, plastic dolls and kooky pop divas under one roof?
William’s favourite catchphrase from The Simpsons is Bart’s 'Don’t have a cow, man!' What’s yours? Send feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q&A with Marge Simpson
Tags / Keywords:
The Simpsons, fashion, columnist, The New Black
#The New Black: From kooky pop divas to cartoon clans, one make-up brand has them in its hands.
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An editor in the Features section of The Star, William K.C. Kee has been in journalism for close to 20 years. In his fortnightly column, he writes about the fun and fabulous nature of fashion.
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