Vintage map

Browse all

Alessandro Michele' heritage to the beauty industry

How did beauty communication change thanks to Gucci Beauty

Alessandro Michele' heritage to the beauty industry How did beauty communication change thanks to Gucci Beauty

When Alessandro Michele arrived at Gucci in 2015, his encyclopedic approach breathed new life into the image associated with the Italian fashion house. The former creative director's varied stylistic and aesthetic innovations did not stop at the fashion world, but expanded into the beauty universe with the relaunch of Gucci Beauty. The line that was born in 2014 with 200 references on par with other beauty lines of luxury competitors, from 2019 onwards has literally become a representation machine to build brand loyalty with new user members of Gen-Z in beauty products, seeking greater inclusivity and diversity, but above all the visual representation of their values in a luxury brand. It could not be otherwise given the value the Roman designer has always placed on the concept of beauty: "I come from the Roman suburbs and I had a very hard time understanding who I was. Beauty was a lifeboat. I built a space, an alternative world. I won, we won all those who believe in the idea that being different is an added value," as he had said in an interview. 


Smiles with space between the teeth, elderly models, models with down syndrome, and casts representing all shades of phototypes become the banner of Gucci Beauty from 2019, which brings back an opulent, retro aesthetic while managing to tell stories made of images. The first lipsticks in the line showed beauty as imperfection in 2019 in all the coolness of the campaign shot by photographer Martin Parr: used as a stick in a playful way, the lipstick becomes a way to experience the pleasure of rediscovering the limits of one's face, even dirtying one's teeth and lips to "become a child again," as Michele himself had said at the launch. This aesthetic choice has continued in all subsequent campaigns, placing beauty products as tools to emphasize a beauty that is actually personality, playing with the boundaries of the beauty label that follows the rules and redefining them from within. For example, the beauty campaigns of Dior Beauty or Chanel Beauty follow a cleaner color choice, aimed at communicating hygiene and perfection, resulting in the eyes of those looking for art and enriching details in the content they consume, communicatively flat. In the Gucci Beauty campaigns, the colors and faces of the models are real, rich in details that establish a conversation through the particularities of the faces with the viewer, losing that "glossy" effect characteristic of campaigns intended for glossy magazines.


Beauty according to Alessandro Michele is concrete, material, alive, experimental, highly customizable and volatile: Blush De Beautè is applied directly before romping on the dance floor as in the campaign two months ago, not in a placid hotel room. Gucci Beauty has popularized the aesthetic of the peculiar, moving away from images of perfect faces by Western standards and embracing the Eastern world where Gucci has much traction, participating in building the artistic and unconventional allure investigated by Michele in the global brand identity, which has totally changed the image of beauty in the luxury world. According to a Statista report, millennials accounted for 62 percent of Gucci's customers in 2018, according to fourth quarter results. According to Deloitte, Millennials and Gen-Z will account for 40 percent of the overall luxury market by 2025, and investing creative force in representing them in their kaleidoscopic facets has been Alessandro Michele's goal. An approach that will surely leave its mark on the future of creative direction, which according to the old regulations will have to deal with both directing the image in fashion and beauty, but also in the industry in general, but how? Certainly, the entire industry has moved perforce toward a the new generation of users with different needs and ideas following in Michele's footsteps, and Gucci Beauty will continue to be an opinion leader when it comes to beauty communication.