"Backstage, I only have five or six bottles of foundation in my kit because I can mix them together for a perfect shade match,” says makeup artist Peter Philips. "We can't expect the everyday woman to do that."
Still, in an age when pro products fly off the shelves and tutorials come at the tap of a finger, there’s room for an arsenal that's both rigorous enough to look flawless under high-definition on set and user-friendly enough for the real world. That’s what Philips, creative and image director for Dior Makeup, had in mind for Dior Backstage, a sweeping new 60-piece collection that hit shelves this month. Only this time, along with finely tuned eye shadows, powerfully pigmented lip colors, specialized brushes, and an array of face palettes, he's delivering something still more covetable and hard to find: an encyclopedic range of foundation shades.
It's a far cry from two decades ago, when model Debra Shaw, fresh from a breakout appearance in Vogue, had to tote around her own base because makeup artists rarely knew how to work with her dark skin tone. Her first job with Philips was "like a Cinderella situation, the perfect fit," she says, recalling his skill at matching complexions. Here, five of the most coveted reimagined backstage essentials for every day—and everyone.
The Face and Body Foundation
With the collective call for inclusivity reaching a crescendo, the forty-shade foundation colorway caters to an impressive spectrum of skin tones. And just as exciting is the innovative formula, which is waterproof, heat-resistant, and buildable with a natural, luminous finish. "On photo shoots we don't just put foundation on the face, but add glow to the neck, legs, and décolletage," explains Philips.
Dior Backstage Face & Body Foundation, $40, dior.com.
The Glow Face Palette
"As soon as it left the labs, it went straight into my kit and hasn't left since," says Philips of the assemblage of mother-of-pearl highlighters, adding that he likes to blend the iridescent powders and dusty pink pigment into the cheekbones to wake up a dull complexion, then add a veil of bronzer for all-over warmth.
Dior Backstage Glow Face Palette, $45, dior.com.
The Contour Palette
"Easy" is the phrase Philips uses most often when describing the Contour Palette with its featherweight, multi-color sculpting powders, which vanish into the cheeks to imperceptible, yet chiseling effect. "It's inspired by Bella [Hadid], she loves it," he adds.
Dior Backstage Contour Palette, $45, dior.com.
The Lip Palette
Featuring punchy neutrals in glossy, satin, and matte finishes, the lip colors can be worn alone, densely monochrome, or combined for a gradiated look. "If you want to create more volume in the lips, use one of the top line shades on the inner corners and then a darker shade on the outer for an ombré," he offers, adding that for application, you can use your fingers or a brush for pitch-perfect precision.
Dior Backstage Lip Palette, $49, dior.com.