By Sameeha Shaikh

I Tried Prada’s New Beauty Range And These Are My Honest Thoughts

As the Italian fashion house makes its first foray into make-up and skincare, we put it through its paces.

Every so often a beauty launch intent on shaking things up comes along and the industry perks up and listens. Prada’s new offering – its first-ever make-up line and revived skincare range – is just that. The iconic fashion house’s rumoured line has finally come to fruition and it is far smarter than we imagined. Taking its MO for all things classic and modern, Prada presents a new vision of beauty, think: avant-garde, tech-first refillable foundations, eyeshadow palettes and lipsticks, paired with high-performance skincare.

Having already mastered the perfume arena with the launch of Prada Paradox last year, the brand’s first foray into make-up begins with Prada Colour, which is perhaps its most exciting development. I met creative make-up artist for Prada Lynsey Alexander inside the label’s mint-coloured London showroom. Here, she explained how the shades, textures and finishes of every single make-up offering were carefully inspired by Prada’s archive collection – a vast edit comprising 27,000 textiles and patterns. ‘The dialogue between pigment and pixels’ also ensures that the collection speaks to a modern, digital-savvy audience.

Prada Colour

It’s something that comes into play with Prada Monochrome, the brand’s refillable lip colours. Interestingly, where other brands launch matte and satin offerings, Prada’s take on lipstick sees two perspectives on matte and matte only. Prada’s Monochrome Hyper Matte Durable Weightless Lipcolour and the Prada Monochrome Soft Matte Buildable Weightless Lipcolour are each available in 13 shades and figure as a reimagination of the brand’s signature materials – Saffiano leather and Re-Nylon, so much so each matte bullet is embossed with one of the two different textures. With impressive staying power and a lightweight feel, the category of matte has been reinvented with a durable, pigmented formula that doesn’t compromise on comfort.

As for shadows, Prada’s Dimensions Durable Multi-Effect Eyeshadow brings six iconic runway prints to the palette, each armed with three neutrals and one eccentric accent in four different finishes including satin, soft matte, hyper matte, and meta foil. As an eyeshadow obsessive myself, this was the standout of the collection. Each speaks to Miuccia Prada’s defining ‘ugly/chic’ ethos, featuring unexpected colours you might not usually reach for but, when paired together, create a plethora of impressive looks.

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Finally, foundation. Prada’s Reveal Skin Optimizing Foundation concentrates on correcting tone, texture and radiance with IRL (In-Real-Life)-micro-filter technology and a skincare-first formula enriched with vitamin E and 100% active niacinamide. The result is a soft-filtered, second-skin finish that is perfect for those who prefer a breathable demi-matte effect. Where other brands are keen to break the next record for the largest shade range (an important consideration for any complexion launch), Prada has launched to market with just 33 shades but promises a flexible and buildable coverage that is backed by AI-powered technology. While it may seem limited, Lynsey assures me that the foundation range is inclusive of all skin tones and undertones, having been based on an algorithm of 3,000 different skin tones scanned for greater accuracy and personalisation in colour-matching during the design stages.

Prada Skin

Prada had a brush with skincare previously in 2000 before being discontinued shortly after. The revived line features a cleanser, serum and cream that can be used day and night, and is built with the purpose of supporting the skin to adapt to a changing environment. A clever complex of natural active adaptogens (from 15 rare plants), proxylane, hyaluronic acid, vitamin CG, and ceramides underpin each product, as well as Prada’s Smart Technology which renews the top layer of the dermis and reinforces the skin’s protective barrier function. The Prada Augmented Skin The Cleanser & Make-Up Remover purifies the skin with amino acids, glycerin, and Lactobacillus ferment, readying it for the next step – the Augmented Skin The Serum – Face & Eye which works to refine texture, tone, volume and radiance, albeit with a hefty price tag which can’t be overlooked. Lastly, the Augmented Skin The Cream – Day & Night, is an equally pricey offering which packs a punch with a rich, nutrient-loaded formula that took over three years to develop.

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Its biggest lure is perhaps the streamlined approach to skincare. Each product functions as a hybrid, combining multiple steps into one and blending functionality with luxury thanks to high-performing formulas and decadent optically illusive reflective packaging.

Our Verdict

This premium range delivers on all fronts. Each product in the line is carefully considered for a specific purpose. As delightful as they feel, coughing up for a cream is a hard sell but the make-up offerings are certainly worth the attention of anyone looking for next-level buys. From the lipsticks to the shadows and foundation, each is hyper-flexible, blendable, breathable and a joy to use.

Prada Monochrome Hyper Matte Durable Weightless Lipcolour

Fashioned on Prada’s Saffiano leather, this deep matte is surprisingly easy to wear and packs mega pigment that will keep lips stained all day.

Prada Monochrome Soft Matte Buildable Weightless Lipcolour

Prada’s only other lip offering features a soft matte finish that is reminiscent of the brand’s iconic Re-Nylon fabric – and it’s as uber-comfortable as you’d hope.

Prada Dimensions Durable Multi-Effect Eyeshadow

The stand out of the entire bunch. This on-the-go palette is loaded with four complementary hues and four exciting finishes that’ll help you to create range of looks that up the ante.

Prada Reveal Skin Optimising Foundation

There may only be 33 shades on offer, but each promises to be stretchable and flexible for all skin tones and undertones, plus its skin-first approach makes it a dream for any skin type, too.

Prada Augmented Skin The Cream

A multitasking hero to be used day and night. This decadent cream is loaded with a cocktail of 18% Proxylane, 2% vitamin CG, and 0.2% ceramides for healthier, radiant-looking skin.

This story first appeared on GRAZIA International.