5 things you need to know about Chanel's new makeup boss

Lucia Pica will be creating the colours we'll be putting on our faces for at least the next few years. Here's what we know about her

By Kate Guest | Published: 5 Jan 2015

Chanel makeup boss
Photo: Chanel

As of January 1, Chanel has a new global creative makeup and colour designer. She is Lucia Pica, an Italian freelance makeup artist who is hugely respected among fashionistas for her editorial and runway work, but not really known outside the industry (yet) in the way that Tom Pecheux or Pat McGrath are. So here are five things we do know about the Italian woman who will be creating the makeup colours we’ll be wearing for the next few years.

1. She fills a position that’s been empty for nearly two years
Chanel has been without a creative director for makeup since makeup artist Peter Philips (now at Dior) departed in 2013. Although Lucia’s job title is a new one, like Philips she will be responsible for new products and colour direction.

2. She trained under Charlotte Tilbury
Born in Naples in 1976, Lucia moved to London in the 1990s and started her career at Pop magazine, before moving into runway work under the tutelage of legendary makeup artist Charlotte Tilbury. She has since worked in editorial for fashion-led magazines such as i-D and Another, on runway shows for the likes of Moschino, Peter Pilotto and House of Holland, and on campaigns for Louis Vuitton, Elie Saab, Giorgio Armani, Stuart Weitzman and, of course, Chanel, among others. (Chanel’s Fall and Holiday 2014 and Spring 2015 beauty campaigns all feature her work.)

3. She loves colour
Lucia is a colour fanatic (which might have something to do with being from fast and frenetic Naples). Metallic eyeshadows and juicy lips are a trademark. She also embraces unorthodox eye/lip combinations, and isn’t afraid to highlight both at once. She has said she admires women “who are not afraid of strong eyeliner or real lipstick that pops” – exciting news, given she has just been put in charge of coming up with new colours and pairings for a fashion house with one of the most cultish beauty offerings around.

(Photo: Alasdair McLellan/i-D magazine)

4. It’s not yet clear whether she will do the makeup for Chanel’s runway shows
Lucia will work with Chanel’s makeup studios in Paris to create new products, however it is unclear whether she will also create the beauty looks for Chanel’s runway shows. Tom Pecheux has had that duty since Peter Philip’s departure, but with so many other shows on his plate, perhaps we can anticipate a change.

5. She thinks Coco Chanel was a beauty pioneer
Lucia told i-D magazine: “I think that because Coco Chanel herself was such a strong, aspirational woman, she really paved the way for a kind of beauty that lets the real woman shine through.” Makeup, she says, “is a powerful tool and a wonderful way of enhancing one’s beauty, giving oneself a confidence boost, but I don’t think it should ever become a crutch or a mask to hide behind. Whether the look is natural or more pushed, I like to retain the modernity and character of the woman in my work, because as a woman I want to be able to relate to the woman I portray.” 

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