The world of haute couture (or “high fashion” for the uninitiated) is often out of reach and alienating for the vast majority of women. Thanks to Parisian beauty guru Terry de Gunzburg, such is not the case anymore—at least where luxury makeup is concerned.
Prior to launching BY TERRY, her namesake cosmetic line, Terry carved an unconventional path to success. When she realized she was more drawn to art and beauty, she gave up medical school and studied makeup artistry instead. During a summer session in the prestigious school of the Carita sisters, a last-minute change of plan sent Terry on the set of a Vogue photoshoot. What seemed like a stroke of luck became her entry point into the lavish world of beautifully crafted, made-to-measure fashion. Soon, she was working side by side with Yves Saint Laurent as the brand’s international creative director.
Fifteen years later, she left Yves Saint Laurent to start her own signature line of makeup, skin care and fragrance. Her aim was to apply the same exacting standard found in haute couture on beauty products and make these available to more women. The result is BY TERRY, a luxurious line of cosmetics that are elegantly formulated, beautifully encased and surprisingly effortless to use.
To help you get to know this Hollywood-favorite brand more, we sat down with the beauty guru herself. Here she talked about the inspiration behind her signature line, the top five products you have to try and some tips and tricks on how to use them like a pro!
DERMSTORE: Take us to that moment you decided you wanted to start a makeup line. What was the situation back then?
TERRY DE GUNZBURG: Back then, I was the Creative Director of Yves Saint Laurent Beaute for many years. After Mr. Saint Laurent retired, I decided to start my own brand with a unique concept and service, which we still offer today in our free standing stores in Paris called Haute Colour. We provided the ultimate made-to-measure makeup products that were innovative and of the best quality. Haute Colour required an in-person consultation as the makeup and formulas had to be created from scratch. Many of our clients wanted ready-to-wear products to take during vacations, business trips and short getaways, so I created a full ready-to-wear collection range of makeup tools that were multi-tasking and anti-aging.
What was lacking in the industry that you wanted to fill with BY TERRY?
As I am sure you may know, I created, while working with Mr. Saint Laurent, the notorious Touche Eclat. It revolutionized the world of makeup due to its success and popularity, but also because it was a multi-tasking tool, easy to transport and effortless to use. I felt the industry needed more innovative tools that were as efficient and effective as the Touche Eclat while providing anti-aging benefits.
What was the inspiration behind the brand? What is the brand’s beauty philosophy?
Part of my inspiration has always been to provide the world a much easier and effective way to apply and use makeup. The BY TERRY philosophy is quality, innovation and integrity.
Describe the BY TERRY woman—what is she like?
The BY TERRY woman is all women looking for innovative multi-tasking tools that are easy to use, effortless, effective and of the utmost quality.
For someone who is new to the brand, which BY TERRY products should they absolutely try first?
This is a very hard question since I love all my products, but I would say to the new client to BY TERRY to try these five products:
I was looking for a very light pink, anti-aging glaze for the lips. My scientist in our lab made a mistake and added 50 percent more of the anti-aging elements in the original formula. I was attracted to the color and the rest is history. It became a cult favorite as it’s very effective. Use under or over lipstick. It can also be used on the cuticles.
I was looking for a lightweight, brightening foundation. This is like the Touche Eclat, but with a larger brush to make it easy to apply on the entire face. It has our iconic click mechanism making it very easy to transport.
I wanted a luminous and radiant shadow that was easy to carry, so I created my cream shadows in a retractable pencil format. I also added the Tahitian crush black pearl for anti-aging benefits. You can apply directly with the crayon onto the eye lids and blend with either a brush or fingers.
Over the years I always heard clients saying they did not have full or great lashes, so I created our mascara collection with the growth booster formula. This is very popular as it thickens, lengthens, defines lashes while making them grow naturally. Applying a colorful shade over a dark shade, always makes the eyes pop.