Illamasqua’s Alex Box On Makeup, Karlie Kloss And Innovation

Amanda Elser

Everyone who is in the beauty industry is passionate about what they do (it is hard to make it if you only “like” beauty products), but we don’t think we’ve ever met someone quite as in love with the art of makeup as Alex Box, the Creative Director of Illamasqua. We got the chance to sit down with Alex to pick her brain on the launch of the new Illamasqua scent Freak, her experiences backstage at fashion week and what new beauty innovations she and Illamasqua have up their sleeves.

On Freak

“We developed a new technology that actually allowed us to use poisonous plants in the perfume that before would have hurt the skin,” she explained. “We wanted to create a scent that would make the person feel a bit adventurous while they were wearing it.”

On her signature lipstick

“I’ve been wearing red lipstick since I was 12,” said Alex. “I used to mix colors trying to create my perfect blue red, then we made Box,” Alex said getting choked up. “There is something about wearing a product made by you, named by you. It is all my dreams come true.”

On makeup and color

“We are trying to make people aware of colors,” she explained. “We encourage people to start with their nails and work their way up… Makeup is my tool, my paint. When a color is highly pigmented like ours the pay off is immediate.”

On the Illamasqua Photoshop rumors

“We often get accused of faking our images,” she said. “No one can believe I made the line that straight or the backdrop that beautiful. We started taking behind-the-scenes images and videos to prove them wrong. And when we do prove people wrong they end up loving the brand even more.”

On the beauty backstage at fashion week

“A lot of the times the makeup backstage at fashion week is like a stamp,” she said. “It disregards the soul of the model. It is like their is no one underneath. I always tell my assistants to respect the face. It is a very intimate thing touching someones face for an hour, I end up falling in love with the character I create.”

On Karlie Kloss and Raquel Zimmermann

“The two of them are such a pleasure to work with backstage,” she said. “They love getting right into the inspiration and want to be integrated into the whole thing. That is why they do so well, they love what they do and they leave with a smile.”

On the naming process

“It usually involves just me and David emailing hilarious things back and forth,” she said. “I have to say, my favorite name is probably Load which is a creamy white nail polish. We love watching people process the name.”

On the future of Illamasqua

“We are very aware of our following,” she said. “We want to honor our fans with the direction we take the brand. Makeup is a lifestyle choice and we aim to help people become their own experts. We are always on the look out for new formulas and textures. We want to see things develop in a three dimensional way.”