The house of Hermes does not rush. For illustration: It took 85 years following its founding as a saddlery atelier in 1837 to branch out into handbags – as natural and easy as the progression might seem. And it was not till 1967 that it introduced women’s ready-to-wear to accompany the luxurious, playful-meets-practical (and in-demand) accessories that it had by then long become synonymous with. So while it debuted its beauty metier two years ago – a move that has been as measured as the ones before – it was not until this past January that it announced its creative director: Gregoris Pyrpylis.
Hailing from Greece, the handsome 35-year-old is somewhat of an insider secret. His CV boasts stints at an eclectic range of industry authorities: MAC (where he got his start in 2006); Tom Pecheux (he was the makeup guru’s first assistant); Bioderma (where he became the world’s first makeup artist to represent a dermatological brand); and Shiseido (he was appointed its ambassador in Europe).
The recently released Plein Air complexion balm collection is inspired by the freshness of being outdoors – a nod perhaps to Hermes’ sporty equestrian heritage.
Judging from his Instagram account (@gregoris – it’s blue-ticked), he’s a favourite of celebrity beauties who move and dress to their own beat: Alexa Chung, Laetitia Casta, the French actress Adele Exarchopoulos to name a few. In short, he’s a bit of a dark horse in the glam-obsessed, showgirl world of beauty – apt for Hermes, if you think about it.
Since entering the cosmetics arena, starting with the refillable, lacquer-tubed Rouge Hermes lipstick line in 2020, the Maison has held fast to its independent-minded, craft-and-function-focused ethos. Only three other product categories have been revealed: blush, nail polish and a tinted complexion balm named Plein Air, which launched in stores here last month.
Each one has been the result of a collaborative effort between all of the brand’s creative heads: artistic director Pierre-Alexis Dumas, who oversees all the metiers; Pierre Hardy – creative director of shoes and jewellery – is in charge of designing the packaging; and house perfumer Christine Nagel makes sure that everything smells good.
Now with Pyrpylis – whose makeup mantra is to elevate, not transform, one’s individual beauty – in the fold, what should one know and expect? He tells us in his own words.
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