Stories
Great Chemistry (2) November 25, 2013

In this, the second of three interviews with Chemist and MAKE UP FOR EVER Head of R&D Richard Girousse, we discover that real men do wear mascara. Apparently, it’s the only way to really know when you’ve got the formula right.

Before anyone else tries the products I formulate, I try them. On the backs of my hands, under my arms, my face, my eyes. I am the first guinea pig.

Great Chemistry (2)

November 25, 2013

In this, the second of three interviews with Chemist and MAKE UP FOR EVER Head of R&D Richard Girousse, we discover that real men do wear mascara. Apparently, it’s the only way to really know when you’ve got the formula right.

Before anyone else tries the products I formulate, I try them. On the backs of my hands, under my arms, my face, my eyes. I am the first guinea pig.

You’ve been at MAKE UP FOR EVER for 18 years now so you are a makeup expert. When you first started, did you try and explore how women feel about their makeup or was it strictly about the chemistry for you? 

I can’t think of it as strictly chemistry – it’s chemistry in action – so I needed to learn about application, what real women look for in their makeup products and how they perform. For instance, when it was time to test our sweatproof bronzer, we tested them on dancers – they sweat a lot! – wearing white shirts to make sure the product doesn’t come off before it is taken off. It’s the best way to know if the products really stay on in extreme conditions. And I try the products too. Of course, I don’t wear makeup every morning

Some mornings surely? Fridays perhaps??

No, sorry! But I always test the products. I need to know how to wear them, how they should go on, what they feel like. So I test everything, foundations, mascara….before anyone else tries the products I formulate, I try them. On the backs of my hands, under my arms, my face, my eyes. I am the first guinea pig. And I am still alive!

How is your application technique? Are you any good?

Not bad! Though it’s purely to check the technical aspects of the makeup. I test the mascara on the hairs on my arm, not just my eyes. I remember a while ago we were developing new mascara colors. We have to be sure that the texture and performance stay the same, so I was the tester – Dany Sanz, (Founder and creative Director of MAKE UP FOR EVER) applied the mascara on me and we went about our day.

At the end of the day I went back home with the mascara still on. That’s how I knew we had a really good product – I was so comfortable in it I forgot I was wearing it. If I left the office with it still on, that’s the best test. My wife gave me a funny look when I walked in, that’s for sure.