Now, the Imperial Palace of China is selling the “600th Anniversary of the Forbidden City” series of makeup. 

Yes, you read it correctly.

The Imperial Palace is selling makeup with Chinese antiques and traditional art themes, including lipstick, eye shadow, foundation, high burnishing powder and so on. 

Moreover, this is not the first time the Imperial Palace has sold cosmetic products. Every time the Imperial Palace sells cosmetic products, it can set off a buying spree among young consumers in China. Because of the exquisite design and appearance, the collection value of these cosmetics is often higher than the use value.

It is as if the antique-themed cosmetics themselves have become antiques.

In 2020, the Imperial Palace of China will celebrate its 600th birthday. Over the past 600 years, the Imperial Palace has witnessed the rise and fall of many Chinese dynasties, as well as the rapid growth of the people’s Republic of China.

In the eyes of ordinary Chinese, the Imperial Palace has always been like a starry sky in a distant place, recording and reflecting the whole country.

Based on this impression, the “600-year-old limited cosmetics in the Forbidden City” is named “Shining Star River”. It contains a set of lipstick, an eye shadow disc, a box of highlights and a box of blush.

Copper Gold-plated Disc Sun, Moon and Star dial

The appearance of the whole set of cosmetics is inspired by the Imperial Palace collection “Copper Gold-plated Disc Sun, Moon and Star dial“.

The collection is an instrument for measuring the time by measuring the corresponding scales of the sun, the moon and the stars. It has a height of 18 cm and a diameter of 13.7 cm, made in Cologne, Germany. The instrument is engraved with the Latin COLON and Roman characters in 1541 and may have been brought into the palace by ohann Adam Schall Von Bell, a missionary who came to China at the end of the Ming Dynasty.

One side of the instrument is a sundial, and the dial is engraved with solar lines, time lines, northern latitudes and the zodiac, with ears, straight watches and falling lines. The other side of the instrument is the moon dial, which is made up of three overlapping discs. The first is the zodiac of the zodiac and its degree table, the second is the date and timetable, the third is the straight table of the moon, and there is a hole in the center of the disk. You can see the lunar phase diagram depicted by the chassis. The star dial is at the outer end of the moon dial.

The lipstick in the “Shining Star River” series takes the starry sky as the main pattern, and there is a clock engraving on the top of the lipstick. The lipstick paste is emblazoned with a Chinese moire logo. Lipstick is divided into 10 color numbers, these colors are taken from the red of different places in the Imperial Palace, or the color of the palace walls at different points in time.

The appearance of the high burnishing powder is taken from the moon dial in the sun, moon and star instrument, and the paste is transparent and shiny white. The Imperial Palace officials quoted the title Qingcao Lake in Longyang County by Tang Wenru, a poet of the Yuan Dynasty, to describe the flickering sense created by this highlight: “After being drunk, I don’t know that the sky is in the water, and the boat is full of clear dreams.”

The appearance and interior design of the eye shadow disc are taken from the orbit of the sun, moon and star planet. it uses the arrangement of the zodiac to provide users with 12 different colors, all of which have shining characteristics to imitate the color of the stars.

Shining Star River is not the first series of cosmetics launched by the Imperial Palace. 

The National Palace Museum first launched make-up products in December 2018, and on the 9th of that month, the Cultural Innovation Museum of the Palace Museum first released six “Palace lipstick” and two series of make-up, namely “floating Sky and Crane” series and “Dark Night and Snail” series.

The six lipstick colors are all inspired by the scarlet national treasures of the Imperial Palace, while the design of the appearance is mainly inspired by the imperial concubine clothing and embroidery of the Qing Dynasty.

For example, the color number “Lang Yao glaze red” is inspired by Red-glazed Lute-shaped Zun Vessel, Lang Ware, and its design is inspired by magenta satin embroidery and hundreds of flowers. The color of lipstick paste is in harmony with the tone of the outer tube.

The series of lipstick “floating Sky and Crane” combines the Forbidden City’s “black lacquer drawing golden sea eagle picture pencil case” and “red lacquer frame satin embroidered landscape pine crane enclosure screen” two national treasure collections.

The makeup of “Dark Night and snail” color makeup is inspired by the Imperial Palace collection “Black lacquer inlaid Snail Flower and Bird Luohan bed”. The outer box is colorful and shines like a pearl on a cultural relic. 

“Black lacquer inlaid Snail Flower and Bird Luohan bed” is an antique of the Ming Dynasty. The bed is flat on all sides, with black lacquer texture and hard snail flower and bird inlay. The bed is covered with a drawer board, with three whole board girders on the left, right and back, tooth strips and legs are embedded with broken flowers and inverted horseshoes. It was discovered by Shanxi in the 1950s and later collected by the Imperial Palace.

In addition to launching its own cosmetic products, the Imperial Palace has also launched a number of joint models with other cosmetics brands. The one that has attracted a lot of attention is the joint model of the Imperial Palace launched with Chinese cosmetics brand Mao Geping.

The jade cloud multi-purpose eye color plate is taken from the Imperial Palace in front of the Hall of Supreme Harmony, with the whole boulder carved in the middle of the steps of the Imperial Palace. The sea water on Danbi stone, the shape of Yunxia and the pattern of pine needle were extracted, and the powder pressing technology was used to make the relief effect.

The blush of the Yuyun red plate is taken from the lacquer ware of the Ming Dynasty cultural relic “Daffodil Pattern Disc”. It takes the red daffodil pattern disc as the prototype, and the fine texture of the disc is made in the blush with modern powder pressing technology. Reengraved in the disc of flowers and leaves surrounded by layers, bright colors as lifelike as lacquer ware, is a re-interpretation of the precise craftsmanship of ancient lacquer ware.

The design and appearance of silk elegant lipstick plum comes from “the folding fan of Jiang Tingxi painting Mei Bamboo Picture of Emperor Kangxi Linmi Shu”, which is painted by the Qing Dynasty painter Jiang Tingxi.

There are nine colors in this series of lip balm, among which the designer takes “#600 Yin Hongxi” as the main color this time. It is the red used in the New year or marriage in ancient China to show the grandeur, and it is also one of the colors that best represent Chinese red. Compared with the lipstick released by the Imperial Palace itself, Mao Goping’s lipstick is more practical and prefers the carmine used by ancient Chinese women.

It is worth noting that almost all cosmetic products in the Imperial Palace are limited edition products and are only sold within a specific period of time. Among them, “floating sky and crane” series and “dark night and snail” series have been discontinued. This is also one of the reasons why the beauty makeup of the Imperial Palace is so popular.

If you are interested in cosmetics from the Imperial Palace, you can find more product information on the official Weibo account of Imperial Palace Taobao. In addition to cosmetics, they also sell many other products related to the culture of the Imperial Palace.