BRIGITTE REISS-ANDERSEN

BRIGITTE REISS-ANDERSEN

LAURENT WITH YVES

Makeup artist Brigitte Reiss-Andersen on her induction into an iconic fashion house.

Yves Saint Laurent S/S 1993 campaign, photograph by Helmut Newton, makeup by Brigitte Reiss-Andersen

In the ‘80s, I was chosen to be the assistant to the great makeup artist José Luis, the man who created the Yves Saint Laurent cosmetic line.

If memory serves, it was the first line created by a living fashion designer.

We worked closely with Mr. Saint Laurent, who was EXTRAORDINARY. He would talk to my mentor at length about what colors we could take from the collection, because the fabrics were bought long in advance.

The color combinations he chose were really unusual: red and hot pink, yellow and purple, turquoise and brown

ALL OF THAT translated into the makeup.

Yves Saint Laurent at work, photograph by Pierre Boulat

His vision had to be accomplished; you had to think out of the box all the time. I absorbed everything I possibly could.

I saw the clients who came to the couture house: extremely affluent, chic women from every corner of the world.

There were wealthy Indian heiresses, mistresses of South American tycoons, and wives of African presidents, as well as legendary movie stars and socialites.

Yves Saint Laurent with a model, photograph by Reg Lancaster

The couture house itself was impressive, too; the décor, the hierarchy, the way people were moving.

You had to have good taste and manners, otherwise you couldn’t survive there. If you made three wrong moves, you were out. It was an education.

Every minute was an education.

— as told to The Thick

Did you see? Makeup artist Beau Nelson meets Iman, flip through the premier issue of Versace The Magazine at The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Library.

Yves Saint Laurent S/S 1993 campaign, photograph by Helmut Newton, makeup by Brigitte Reiss-Andersen