kiss and make-up with yadim

We get lippy with Dior's International Make-up Designer and the guy behind the brush for our New York Now shoot, Yadim.

by Felicity Kinsella
May 22 2014, 5:25pm

Photography Sharif Hamza

Prince, Madonna, Rihanna - you clearly have to be super talented to be known by just one name. Would you know you by one name? Yadim (we won't ruin the mystique by gracing you with his second) is one of those people. Starting off as a MAC counter boy, he backpacked across fashion week to work with the stars, assisted the one and only Pat McGrath for half a decade and just over two years years ago was announced as the International Make-up Designer for Dior. Phwoar! He worked on 30 faces for our New York Now shoot in The Future Fashion Issue of i-D so we get to know the man behind the brush, afterall make-up's only skin deep...

You used to dress up as a club kid, what did you wear and how did you do your make-up?
We'd really make all our own outfits. I mean I was 15 and broke so we had to make do with what we could afford. Of course we wanted to look like Leigh Bowery, but we really just ended up looking like freaky kids starved for attention (which we probably were). Make-up was usually what I spent the most time on. I'd go to art supply stores and fabric stores and go crazy with the glitter and beads.

Where did you hang out and who with?
At the time it was all about going to underground warehouse parties and raves around LA and Southern California. I'd hang out with club kids and ravers and it was just utter madness. Some of them would work at the parties so we usually didn't pay to get in.

You started off buying your own plane tickets and staying in hostels so that you could assist backstage at fashion week, how long did you have to do that for before you got snapped up?
Yeah, for a few seasons before I started working fulltime. It was difficult and exhausting and expensive, but probably the most fun and exciting thing I'd ever done at the time. I got to work with some of the industry's best.

Do you get to spend much time with Raf Simons?
I get to work with Raf for the Ready-To-Wear campaigns that I shoot with Willy Vanderperre and Olivier Rizzo. Anthony Turner does amazing hair for these and we all work together to come up with the beauty look for the campaign.

How did you get to be known by just one name? 
When I first signed with an agency, my agent recommended I only use my first name professionally. I didn't really think about it much. It just sort of stuck.

Who are your other favorite people also known by one name?
Madonna. Duh

You shot 30 new faces in the New York Now shoot for i-D, what was it like on set?
It was like one big party! Seriously, we're all quite good friends (DanAlastair, Shon and the entire crew) so it was like getting to create sick pictures with your friends. We all push each other and aren't afraid to just play and experiment. It's a fun environment.

Were there any standout up-and-comers/new faces?
That's like having to choose a favorite child!

Where do you get inspiration from?
I get a lot of inspiration from everyday life, people walking down the streets, fashion magazines, books, art exhibits, traveling. The people I work with are a constant form of inspiration.

What are you up to today?
I'm shooting today.

Do you have a dream fashion story in your head that you would love to do the make-up for?
I feel like I get to plug my dream stories into the things that I do. Maybe they don't look exactly as I imagined, but that's even better.

Do you ever get star-struck by the people you're doing the make-up for?
Of course! Who wouldn't? Most of the time I'm more star struck by the photographers or stylists Im working with than the talent.

What's your favorite story that you've worked on?
Again, impossible to choose just one! For i-D, the last one with Dan and Alastair was really fun to work on.

Which fashion show do you think has had the most amazing make-up ever?
That's tough. I really love what Julien DYs does for Comme des Garcons, but of course I come from the Pat McGrath school and sometimes I'm still so floored by what she does.

Who is the most beautiful woman in the world?
My Mom. Inside and out.

What are your top 5 make-up tips?
1. Find a good moisturizer for your skin type. I love to use Avene Cicalfate when I work because it has a nice slip and works well with make-up. Also it's fragrance free and great for sensitive skin so I know I can use it on anyone.
2. Curl your eyelashes! This is the quickest way to beautify without much fuss.
3. Use mascara, I really like Volume Express Falsie Big Eye Washable in Very Black from Maybelline.
4. Use a good lip balm, right now im using Baby Lips Dr Rescue from Maybelline.
5. Whiten your teeth using an at home whitening system like Crest Whitestrips. Its inexpensive and it works!

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Hopefully still doing what I love! I can't imagine doing anything else.



Text Felicity Kinsella
Photography Sharif Hamza