The cosmetics company Illamasqua has partnered up with London-based funeral home Leverton & Sons to offer a new service they named "The Final Act of Self Expression."
Oh, yes, they want to be the makeup artist at your funeral.
I always thought that for most people, the presiding emotion associated with death was fear. Fear that our loved ones will miss us. Fear that we'll leave unfinished business. Fear of the unknown. But I also always thought that somewhere -- maybe -- really deep down in a corner of our brains we rarely, if ever, visit lies the emotion of relief. At the risk of sounding morbid, relief that we won't have to worry about death anymore. Relief that we won't have to stress anymore. Relief that petty things like what we look like on the outside will be a thing of the past. Holy balls, was I wrong.
Before I get to the details of this service, can we just all agree that this is totally gross and inappropriate? Capitalizing on people's funerals? Instilling more vanity in people than they already have? It almost seems like a tasteless Saturday Night Live skit. Seriously, who thought of this? And even more curiously, who's buying this?
The photo that accompanies the advertisement for "The Final Act" on the Illamasqua blog is of a beautiful -- YOUNG -- woman, dripping in jewels, wearing a turban, and of course, rocking some seriously smoky eyes and dramatic red lips. It almost looks like an album cover. Or an advertisement for perfume, or ... anything other than funeral makeup. I'm not quite sure who they're marketing to.
I don't think people who are young -- like the woman in the ad -- really think about death all that much. And if they do, they're probably a bit on the neurotic side (like me) and aren't all that concerned with the glamour aspect of it, which, ironically, I didn't know existed until now. And are people who are old -- like, really old -- concerned with this sort of thing? Unless the deceased were some sort of fierce biotch who worked in the fashion industry her whole life, I kind of doubt it. (And if she were, she'd probably have her own makeup artist already.)
Bottom line, this is weird. And creepy. And I'm not a marketing person, but I really don't know who Illamasqua is targeting here. Other than really vain, really neurotic young people.
Would you purchase this service?
Image via puuikibeach/Flickr