Lee Dong Wook for Boy de Chanel Makeup

This September, Chanel will launch Boy de Chanel, a new makeup line for men. Always on-trend, the brand has chosen popular South Korean actor Lee Dong Wook to front the beauty campaign.

The fashion house’s inaugural makeup line for men, Boy de Chanel also marks the first time Chanel is using a Korean celebrity as a campaign model.

Already well-known for his expressive eyes and intense acting, he reignited his career with the hit Korean drama series, Guardian: The Lonely and Great God (aka Goblin).

Playing a grim reaper role, his character had a tragic story-line with a redemptive trajectory. So immersed was he in the role that he was dubbed the “Grim Weeper”, his eyes effortlessly bringing on the waterworks.

What really drove the show for me, though, was the love-hate bromance he had with lead actor Gong Yoo, my favourite Korean ajusshi hottie!

Newly-single and currently starring in the Korean hospital drama Life, he has just come out of a much-publicised romance with Korean celebrity Suzy, frequently known as the nation’s sweetheart. I was surprised by this match based on their public lives but life (ha!) goes on for Dong Wook-sshi.

His confidence and vulnerable masculinity, together with a sophisticated image, make him the perfect face for the line. Thanks to his sculpted features, he’s often lauded as a modern-day Greek god. He’s also graced many a fashion magazine cover with his brooding good looks and chiselled form.

Would Chanel have picked G-Dragon, if he weren’t serving in the military right now? He’s been Kaiser Karl’s fil du jour for some time, and was a frequent face at the brand’s fashion shows. That said, Kwon Ji Yong has a flashier and edgier style, so Lee Dong Wook is certainly the more conservative and urbane choice.

“You are unlike anyone else…”

A most beautiful declaration. The words of Boy Capel to Gabrielle Chanel, ringing with promise: the immense freedom of being no one but oneself, breaking free of codes and rewriting the rules.

By creating BOY DE CHANEL, its first makeup line for men, CHANEL reaffirms the ever-changing codes of an unchanging vision: beauty is not a matter of gender; it is a matter of style.

 Arthur “Boy” Capel, Coco’s muse and lover, has inspired several of her creations, including a fougère fragrance. This makeup line is unsurprisingly named after him, the perfect eponym.

Is Chanel embracing exclusivity or is this merely a shrewd marketing manoeuvre? In creating a separate line for men, I wonder if they aren’t reinforcing gender differences instead.

Savvy selling subterfuge or not, I’m all for it – the matte midnight-blue packaging of Boy de Chanel demonstrates the understated flair that Chanel does so well, and the minimalist design makes me want the products for myself!

Textures with instinctive use, imperceptible formulas and longwear
you can count on for a natural result

The first products to feature from this line are three essential grooming items: a foundation, a lip balm and an eyebrow pencil.

Promising easy-to-use textures, a lightweight touch and a long-lasting finish, I like how they suggest a subtle spirit for a flaw-softening natural look.


Boy de Chanel Le Stylo Sourcils Eyebrow Pencil

An elegant pencil to easily define and fill out the brow line, like self-confidence in one stroke. On one side, a spiral brush grooms and adjusts coverage. On the other, a retractable and tapered twist-off tip, continuously sharpened for perfect precision.

A combination of natural flexible waxes and emollient oils makes application fluid and instinctive. Ultra-comfortable but assuredly waterproof, its formula stays put for 8 hours.

4 shades: N° 202 Light Brown, N° 204 Grey, N° 206 Deep Brown, N° 208 Black

I love the Chanel Stylo Sourcils Waterproof Defining Longwear Eyebrow Pencil (S$59) and this looks like it’s similar, if not entirely the same, save for the non-glossy packaging.

The tapered tip lays down colour easily, whilst the spooly brush offers controlled definition, unlike similar tools on other eyebrow pencils that tend to brush off/smear the product. My review, here.

Boy de Chanel Le Teint Foundation Tinted Fluid SPF 25/PA++

A filter of vitality, invisible to the eye and touch. A foundation in name only…

Natural Correction: Soft focus powders correct imperfections with a sheer touch. The complexion is pure, even and refreshed with new energy.

High Protection: Hydrating, antioxidant kalanchoe extract improves skin oxygenation. Combined with SPF 25 sunscreen, it shelters the skin from the sun, free radicals and oxidative stress every day. Protected from ageing traps, the skin breathes anew.

A Second-Skin Effect: Its fresh, fluid, ultra-fine and lightweight texture is non-occlusive. Enriched with a hyaluronic acid derivative, it stays comfortable all day long. A polymer that resists excess sweat and sebum ensures irreproachable hold no matter what the day brings. And an airy micro-mesh that follows every contour of the face glides instinctively and effortlessly under your fingertips. Imperceptible and weightless, it leaves the skin even, luminous and perfectly shine-free.

4 shades: N° 20 Light, N° 30 Medium Light, N° 40 Medium, N° 50 Medium Plus, N° 60 Light Deep, N° 70 Medium Deep, N° 90 Deep, N° 120 Deep Plus

This seems to be the counterpart to Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Foundation SPF 25/PA++ (S$82), perhaps minus the Healthy Glow Booster mineral pigments which aren’t mentioned in the product description.

The Boy version sounds like it would probably offer a natural glow without descending into a dewy finish.

Boy de Chanel Le Baume Lèvres Matte Moisturizing Lip Balm

A lip balm that protects, softens, restores comfort, mattifies and hydrates for 8 hours without fail…

A stick that cares for the lips without making compromises. A formula that is fine and ultralight, yet packed with jojoba oil, nourishing shea butter and an antioxidant Vitamin E derivative. On the lips: a featherweight effect. Lips are naturally smooth, supple and soft, without a hint of shine.

One word stands out: matte. Most gents would steer clear of glossy lips, and I imagine this would be the anchor product of the line when it first launches, and the entry point to the rest!

For reference, the tinted Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Lip Balm—the only lip care product in Chanel’s makeup range—is S$50.

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Now, all we have to do is wait. Launching in September 2018, Boy de Chanel will make its first drop in South Korea. It will subsequently be available on the Chanel website in November 2018, and at Chanel beauty boutiques worldwide from January 2019.

BOY DE CHANEL, a name that captures the very essence of masculinity today:

A concept liberated from restrictions. A fluidity. An art of living. A state of mind.
Simply be yourself, only better.

BE ONLY YOU.

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