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Alexa Demie Dazed Beauty
Alexa wears t-shirt Made Worn from Guild LA, jeans and shoes Depop (@Throwbacks Vintage), earrings Alexis BittarPhotography Bunny Kinney, styling Julia Ehrlich, make-up John McKay, hair Lauren Palmer Smith

Something wicked this way comes: ever wanted to be a witch?


TextNellie Eden

Our editor Nellie Eden invites you to celebrate Dazed Beauty’s magick one year anniversary

Welcome to Witch Week, a campaign dedicated to exploring how witchcraft, magick and beauty intersect. Discover photo stories shot featuring real witches in NYC, a modern reimagining of the witch, and one witch’s mission to get a tan, as well as in-depth features exploring herbology, science and alchemy, and male witches. Elsewhere, we’ve created three special covers to celebrate the campaign and our one year anniversary – something wicked this way comes.

We’ve recently celebrated our one year anniversary. It’s been an emotional ride. I’m not sure the internet was expecting us when we arrived, and now, just over 12 months later it’s incredible to look back at the unique and indelible mark we’ve already left on the beauty industry, and the remarkable platform we’ve opened up for our community and beyond.

No one day is the same at Dazed Beauty, whether we’re 3D scanning Kate Moss’s head, or building custom algorithms to merge with Kylie Jenner’s face, we hope to remain radical in the face of blandness, stoic in the downwind of predictability, and steadfast in our pledge to put individuality and self-expression first. We are Instagram, we are the industry, we are you and me. To quote Bunny Kinney, our editor-in-chief, from his original editor’s letter from last year, Dazed Beauty is: “A space for us to document, deconstruct, and experiment with beauty in all its forms, in every dimension, and tell the stories of the lived experience each one of us has in our own individual bodies as we navigate the world, both online and off.” We hope we’ve remained true to our promise of remaining challenging, anti-establishment, diverse and exciting. 

Welcoming you then to our big birthday bash: Witch Week. A whole seven days of witchiness, magick, and transformation complete with three huge digital covers. We began to plot Witch Week after being inspired by the etymology of the word glamour, which originates from the Scottish word gramarye around 1720. As Grace McGrade puts it in her edifying article, “a glamer (or glamour) is considered a spell that would affect the eyesight of the beholder, making objects or people appear beautiful or fascinating.” 

Taking that as a starting point, we’ve cast three spells on four famous faces for our moving covers. Grimes is transformed into fantasy characters that reflect the beauty and magic of destruction and dystopia by Isamaya Ffrench and Ben Ditto. Alexa Demie of Euphoria fame becomes a modern sickle-wielding Wednesday Addams witch, courtesy of director Bunny Kinney, and Lily McMenamy and Alton Mason transfigure into vampires at the hand of Ivar Wigan for our final cover. 

Beyond our bewitching covers, we have a cauldron-load of magick; spells, incantations, essays, short films, quizzes, and spellbinding photo stories. The decision to focus on magick was twofold. Magick presents an exciting mode of expression, a mystical crystal ball through which to imagine parallel universes, creatures, futures, and of course identity – but it’s also an increasingly important doctrine which young people are adopting to live within as a way to navigate this increasingly nervous planet. It’s a natural extension of wellness and spirituality for 2019. It’s non-essentialist, anti-capitalist and broadly speaking, infused with a sparkling positivity and care. We’ve asked lots of practising witches, young and old, from across the world, from varying backgrounds and belief systems, to contribute their thoughts and feelings to the week and what’s become abundantly clear is that for the next generation (marked by their secularity) magick has become increasingly important. I found it inspiring to discover how inclusive and personal witchcraft is, and I have found the stories and lessons from young witches touching, and enticing.

Witchcraft now feels necessary. It feels punk. It feels personal. This is something the brilliant Amelia Abraham delves deeper into in her piece on why the witching community has become an unexpected safe haven for LGBTQ+ people. Punk comes through strong in Till Janz’s contribution to Witch Week: ‘Magick Youth’, a portfolio of some of Dazed Beauty’s most creative community members. Till has conjured a post-apocalyptic near-future with stylist Georgia Pendlebury. Working with make-up artist Georgina Graham, nail artist Sylvie McMillan, and hairstylist Jose Quijano, he supplanted this cohort of witchy young things into the future, where they’ve had to evolve and adapt, growing cosmetic defences for this new world: Extra-long eyelashes, curled nails, and contact lenses. 

Filmmaker and photographer Benedict Brink and stylist Isabel Bonner, look back, and bring some much-welcomed 80s horror to her short beauty film. Canadian duo, stylist Taylor Thoroski and photographer Etienne Saint-Denis imagine the witch for now: long-nosed, devilish, chic, and seductive. 

Dabbling with spell-casting yourself? We have morning routine beauty spells from Grace McGrade for you to try. We have a herbology guide for the green-fingered among you, and one witch’s advice for matching the lunar cycle to your skincare regime. Photographer Bella Newman has captured the real witches of Brooklyn. If you feel like learning about the future of science and beauty from witch and all-round genius Lauren Bowker (who designs hair dyes that see your hair colour change in real-time…) read this. Fancy learning about how witchcraft has been co-opted by big business? Read this piece, straight from multiple witches’ mouths, here. We speak to the inspiring eco-witches wrangling magick and the power of nature in a bid to save the planet alongside Extinction Rebellion. Harrie Bradshaw took time out of his busy schedule to speak to world-famous mystic Uri Geller about, well, spoons, and how we might all manage to manifest a reverse decision on Brexit if we concentrate hard enough. 

It’s a wild and wondrous week of magick, dreaming, ecology, beauty, and wellness and we hope you get lost in it. Whether you believe in magick or not, the positive outlook that is the watermark of the next generation of witches is something we can all believe in and that’s truly special. 

Something wicked this way comes... 

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