Did you know that the Canadian national synchronized swimming team has an official makeup sponsor? It’s Make Up For Ever, based in Paris. The company is known for its long-lasting and highly pigmented makeup, and its skin-perfecting foundations and powders. Long associated with synchro, it’s a partner of the French National Swimming Federation and is the title sponsor of the Make Up For Ever Open, an international synchro competition that has been held in Montreuil, France, each spring since 2010.
You’d think makeup would be the least of an athlete’s concern on the day of competition. Not so for synchronized swimmers. Fifty percent of their scoring is based on ‘artistic impression’ for choreography, music interpretation and manner of presentation’including judgment of their makeup. The remaining percentage evaluates ‘technical merit,’ which ranks degree of difficulty, execution and synchronization.
Make Up For Ever artistic director Dany Sanz, who launched the company in 1984, trained in fine arts before becoming a makeup artist. In 1993, French synchronized swimming champion Muriel Hermine approached Sanz in search of makeup that lasts in the water. Sanz created a selection of products for Hermine, which led to the development of the brand’s waterproof Aqua Collection. ‘I especially like working with athletes,’ says Sanz. ‘It’s different from other artists, since they work in such extreme conditions.’ She says she has seen big changes in the look of synchro swimmers. Because more waterproof colours and finishes are available today, the swimmers are able to ‘adopt the current fashion and beauty trends.’
As the Canadian synchro team prepares to head to London, Make Up For Ever is providing the cosmetics and application skills. (The look above is one of four the team plans to be sporting for their Olympic routines.) The team will receive lessons from two of the company’s Canadian ‘Artistry Experts.’ Once the athletes get to the Olympic Village, it’s all in their hands’they’ll be applying their makeup for competition at the Games themselves.