I have a conspiracy theory for you! No, it’s not the one about the Denver International Airport or Beyoncé (but Solange does make a cameo.) I am almost 100 percent convinced that Baudrillard faked his death in 2007 so that he could, ten years post-mortem, publish a sequel to 1989’s America — he’s a little bored with the written word, so he’s decided to express his latest theories on the hyperreal via Dior and the most epic high-desert fashion show ever. Yesterday at the brilliant Maria Grazia Chiuri’s cruise show, there was plenty of simulacra and simulation to go around: fancy tiny hot dogs and huge kissing hot-air balloons, a rainbow-bright version of the Hollywood sign reading DIOR SAUVAGE, gallant Violet Grey-ers liberating golf carts to drive lazy beauty editors around (Cassandra! Give that trio a raise! They deserve it!), models kicking up dust on the packed-earth runway to the sounds of Peaking Lights (and later shuffling feet to Solange, who made a pit stop en route to Arcosanti).
But perhaps the most hyperreal of all was the makeup. It happened around 7:48 PM: as the sun melted down into the hills, it strobed the cheeks of all of the guests with the most amazing highlight: Dior global makeup artist Peter Philips had teamed up with God and Kevin Systrom to create a a special limited-edition real-world IG filter! The filter, unfortunately, is limited-edition–my least favorite beauty-industry marketing strategy–but Philips promises DiorSkin luminizer in Pink Glow is 💯dupe.)
A few hours earlier, Philips had dabbed a creamy, glazed-terra-cotta lipstick (Rouge Dior in Ready) on seven key spots on each model’s face: on the lids, the bridge of the nose, cheeks, a bit on the forehead and, last but not least, “under the chin to frame the face,” he says. “I wanted them to look fresh but flushed, like they just had exercised. Using lipstick as blush isn’t new! My grandmother did it,” he says. But what is new is his placement: he used his thumbs to press the color just below the apples of the cheeks, tracing where the models will get marionette lines if they don’t stop smoking, exactly where my best friend turns red when she’s super irritated with me but is trying to pretend everything’s cool. Really, everything’s cool.
The effect? Less cutesy than pink popped on the apples. And less severe/try-hard than color draped around the cheekbones. And out on the runway, kissed by the magic-hour sun of the Dior/God/Instagram collab, we all believed, yes, everything really is cool.