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With a career in makeup spanning over two and a half decades (seeing the arrival, departure and return of blue eyeshadow), locally grown yet internationally renowned Rae Morris is an undeniable force of nature: her creative energy is felt immediately as she enters a room. Placing her top tier beauty resumé aside (which includes but is not limited to the 150+ shows she has directed — one of them being today’s Melbourne Fashion Week opening runway), it’s Morris’ commitment to innovation that truly sets her apart.
A hairstylist at the time, Morris’ career catapulted in a literal flash as she was snapped fixing Naomi Campbell’s lips backstage in Istanbul, circa 1993. In her own words, the transition from hairstylist to makeup artist — and then to product developer — “happened organically.” Fate couldn’t have worked out more in our favour, because as a result, we scored what could possibly be the most incredible mattifying powder — and the most beautifully crafted makeup brushes — of all time.
Stroll through your local MECCA and you may even miss it — but be warned, this next-gen mattifier is not one to miss. Oxymoronic by description, the completely transparent powder developed by Morris is ‘gel-like’ in consistency, perfectly absorbing surface sheen for a velvety, mattified appearance. According to the makeup mogul, “it’s hand pressed, lasts twice as long and doesn’t change your skin — it just takes away the shine.”
Totally unique in its innovation, the Invisible Mattifier Powder is formulated with silicone resin microspheres which magically diffuse light in every direction, resulting in a soft-focus effect. Unlike a traditional setting powder, the resin helps to 'fill’ imperfections in the skin and redirect light, without changing the texture of either bare skin or makeup. “Because your skin moves,” Morris explains, “if you then powder your foundation and that creases, the creases become visibly deeper, collecting product. That’s why baking and all that only really works on very young skin or skin that doesn’t have lines. A lot of powders contain pigment too, so it’s actually like putting on a second foundation.”
Made for absolutely everyone to use (and love), Morris praises the universal nature of her sought-after powder; “what I love, is that it can be used on the darkest of skin to the palest of skin, and under a macro lens on a beauty camera it is not detected. I was first testing it on the gorgeous Sudanese models at fashion week and it was those girls that pushed me to do it. I also didn’t realise how much men — especially bald men — don’t want that shine. I think there’s a bit of a gap for men — the minute they hear that word ‘makeup’ it’s so far from where they are. But I think they are really going to start taking on things that make their skin look better with no evidence.” When it comes to using it herself, Morris likes to dust it over the skin following makeup application, and then again “as you get too shiny during the day, applied on those t-zone areas.” READ MORE: Our MECCA men reveal their hero products
If you haven’t already, this is a product you’re going to want to see in the flesh (and on it, too).
Albeit the winner of a Good Design Award, Morris’ brush collection is more than just good — it’s fundamentally extraordinary. So much so that it’s been acclaimed as not only the most innovative, but one of the best makeup brush ranges (ever).
“My brushes are made with calligraphy technology,” she starts. “What calligraphy does is eliminate hard edges — you put the product on the tip of the brush and then with a hint of pressure, it becomes bigger and cleaner. Your blending time is probably cut down by 80% with the calligraphy.” Having originally developed the brushes for her own kit after meeting a Korean brush maker at an American Conference, demand grew as models — and other high-profile artists — requested a set of their own.
READ MORE: The calligraphy-crafted makeup brushes about to change everything
“The man who currently makes my brushes is the last living Japanese master the world,” Morris continues. “Japan have only ever had 40 people awarded as a master of craft — it took lots of convincing and four years of back and forth, and now I am the only person he makes brushes for.”
A self-proclaimed “lover of storage solutions”, taking the brushes to yet another level of superiority are their magnetised handles, which connect to the steel Rae Frame, Plate and Magnet Holder for simplified brush sorting, storing and drying (with points for improved brush hygiene). “The magnetic thing,” Morris recalls, “I’m just surprised no one did it before.”
Shop below to get your hands on Morris’ runway-approved beauty essentials.
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