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We Turned Strangers on the Internet into What They've Always Wanted to Be

Then we asked members of the public whether they looked better normal, or as their alter-ego—be it a goth, a Trekkie, a Juggalo, or a human doll.

by Holly Falconer
Dec 1 2014, 6:44pm

PHOTOGRAPHY: Holly Falconer
STYLING: Kylie Griffiths

Stylist's assistants: Rachel Williamson and Beth Whitehead
Makeup: Michelle Dacillo using Mac
Hair: Elvire Roux using Bumble and bumble
Body painting: Tom Scotcher
Street interviews: Georgia Rose

For this shoot, we asked a bunch of people on the internet what they've always wanted to be. Then we told them to come to our office so we could turn them into that—be it a goth, a Trekkie, or a human doll. Finally, we had a walk around and asked strangers whether our makeover recipients looked better before or after, because what fun is changing your look if you don't get a strong reaction from random passersby?

All clothes model's own; American Apparel top, Blitz Vintage trousers

"My name is Eloise, I'm 22, and I'm being tattooed all over. I'm doing this because I've always wanted loads of tattoos and once, when I was younger, I got a tattoo of Buddha on the back of my neck and it looks like a steaming poo, so I decided not to get another tattoo after that."

But, passing strangers, does Eloise look better post- or pre-makeover?
John, 34: Tattoos—yeah, I love that. She's expressing herself. I offer spiritual consultancy—I work with energy—and I think that's important.
Julienne, 26: I love this one—she looks like an East London lesbian.
Stuart, 22: She looks good in both. The one with tattoos I'd like to be my friend.

All clothes model's own; T-shirt from Rokit

"My name is Ken. I want to be a Star Trek fan because I'm a really crazy guy and I really like Star Trek, and I just want everyone to know I love Star Trek and I'm crazy!"

But, passing strangers, does Ken look better post- or pre-makeover?
Fabien, 26: I live in East London and I think people with a special look are better than normal people, so I'll go for Star Trek.
Julia, 23: The post-makeover is too old -chool to be true. I like him as he normally is.
Alex, 22: He just looks like an idiot.

All clothes model's own; River Island shirt and jacket, New Look trousers

"My name is Faye. I'm 30, I live in London, and I want to be transformed into a serious businesswoman. I want to do this because I feel like, now I'm 30, I really need to dress a bit more seriously and smart."

But, passing strangers, does Faye look better post- or pre-makeover?
Stuart, 22: I like her as a businesswoman. She looks a lot classier. The little hand gesture—I like that.
Ellie, 26: If I had to decide? Businesswoman totally. She looks like a bitch.
Sarah, 31: I like the pre-makeover. She looks more natural. She looks more like herself.

All clothes model's own; Topman polo shirt and trousers

"My name is Melanie and I'm 34. I'm being turned from a woman into a man. I'm doing this because I feel like men represent power and strength, and I'd really like women to feel powerful and strong, which is why I'm becoming a man for a day."

But, passing strangers, does Melanie look better post- or pre-makeover?
Stuart, 22: No way. What! You're joking! That's a chick? She could be a sick actor playing both a guy and a girl.
Paula, 25: Oh my God, I love both. In real life is she a woman or a man?
Julienne, 26: I love her as a man. It's, like, perfect. I love gender bending!

All clothes model's own; American Apparel scrunchies, Motel dress, Claire's Accessories jewelry and bag

"I'm Iris, I'm 27, and I'm being turned into a human doll. I always wanted to be a doll when I was younger. I wanted to live in a big pink doll house and dress like a doll, so I'm here to have my dreams made true!"

But, passing strangers, does Iris look better post- or pre-makeover?
Paula, 25: Very nice. I like the second look—it's very 60s.
Alex, 22: I don't know what that is but I'm not liking the color scheme. She looks like a rainbow.
Julienne, 26: I love that—she looks like Sheila, that singer from the 80s.

All clothes model's own; Absolute Vintage bow-tie, jacket, and shirt from Rokit

"I'm Tom, I'm 22, and I'm from Brighton. Today, I'm becoming a Juggalo. The reason is because I think they look kind of weird, and I like weird, subversive faces. Also, I think the music linked to them is pretty cool."

But, passing strangers, does Tom look better post- or pre-makeover?
Julia, 23: I like the second one more because it has more white in it. I like white.
Stuart, 22: I prefer the second one. He reminds me of the Joker. He looks quite sick.
Ellie, 26: He looks better normal. The Juggalo outfit is a bit desperate, tbh. Like, what's he doing with his hands?

All clothes model's own; So High Soho feather boa, New Look dress, Absolute Vintage gloves

"I'm Tabitha, I'm 30, and I live in London. Today, I'm being made into a drag queen because I've always liked things that are quite over the top. I'm still thinking of my drag queen name, so I'll have to get back to you on that."

But, passing strangers, does Tabitha look better post- or pre-makeover?
Stavros, 21: Transvestite all the way. I love a drag queen.
Paula, 25: I love the second look—she's such a diva.
John, 34: She's not limiting herself. I think it's important to express your sexuality, and she's obviously doing that, so it's cool.

All clothes model's own; Charlotte Simone scarf, Topman jacket and shirt

"My name's Jon, I'm 28, and I'm from Croydon. Today I'm being made into a pop star because I went to university and got a degree in pop recording and I want to be a really big pop star."

But, passing strangers, does Jon look better post- or pre-makeover?

Ellie, 26: The blue one suits him better. He looks more alive.
Julienne, 26: He looks fierce.
Paula, 25: I like the fluffy thing very much.

All clothes model's own; Claire's Accessories jewellery and gloves, model's own top

"Hi, I'm Helen, and today I'm being made into a goth. I'm doing this because I've always wanted to rebel and see what it's like to look different in public. Goths are normal people, too. Also, I want to be able to wear outrageous makeup for a day."

But, passing strangers, does Helen look better post- or pre-makeover?
John, 24: She looks cool, like the hippie mother who'd make peppermint tea and let you and your mates smoke weed. I like the makeover too, though—she's expressing her inner anger.
Ellie, 26: She can pull off goth really well.
Sarah, 31: That is terrifying.