Dazed Beauty contributor and makeup artist Daniel Sällström is championing the ultra-masc and ultra-femme, all at the same time
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Ask Daniel Sällström how he wound up as a makeup artist and he attributes it to his teenage years as a goth living in Gothenburg (no, really). “Growing up a goth I think one of my first beauty memories was falling in love with Siouxsie Sioux from Siouxsie and The Banshees. She is definitely one of the reasons I got into makeup,” he explains, before adding that it was the desire to "party, be headless and to feel more anonymous" that saw him relocate from the Swedish city to London at 20.
Quickly, Daniel became a well known face about town, hanging around at nights like Boombox, Anti Social, All You Can Eat and Ghetto at Nag Nag Nag, no doubt wearing the kind of demure, blend-into the crowd, girl-next-door looks he is known for today (please see picture below). His flair for makeup artistry was spotted by someone from MAC during this time, and he was offered a job at Selfridges for the brand.
Skip forward a few years and Daniel’s painting the faces of Jazzelle AKA @uglyworldwide, Kelela and FKA Twigs. His recent NOWNESS film Fashion Disciples: Black with Isaac Lock parodies the idea of fashion industry ego beautifully, he's a Dazed Beauty Contributing Beauty Editor and he continues to meld his passions for drag and makeup by championing the perfect contour in his personal life. “For me it’s all about duality. I feel most beautiful when I’m my most masculine (gyming loads and buffing up) and when I’m my most feminine (in the full drag illusion),” he explains. “Beauty is all about your individuality. That’s why I don’t like “trends”.” To Daniel, the future of beauty is less about nostalgia and more about progression. “Just be you and be a freak,” he grins.
If you could bestow yourself a new sense on top of your existing ones. What would it be?
I don’t know if it classes as a sense but being able to transform myself. Basically mystique.
Ok, so you can transform yourself into someone else, who would it be?
It would be waking up as Tyson Beckford one day, and Pamela Anderson the next. Then that just on repeat for the rest of my life please.
God – or let's just say a higher power of some sort – is only letting who they follow on Instagram into the afterlife. What kind of pic would you put up that perfectly sums you up as the person you were back on Earth?
Say you had to donate a feature or limb of your body to an icon of yours. You get nothing in return. What feature or limb would you give and why?
I’ll give my left arm to Erykah Badu because mother is other-worldly. And I’ll give my IBS to Theresa May (not because she’s an icon but because she deserves it). Maybe it will humble her?
It’s 30 years from now. You stumble home at 3am and catch your reflection in the fridge door. What do you look like?
Like a 60-year-old "twink". There’s a new subculture for you…
If you could be a mythical creature, what would you be?
A Griffin. The ultimate confusion.