My First Fashion Week: A Beauty Lover’s Backstage Experience at Jonathan Simkhai

For Part 2 of “My First Fashion Week Series,” we’re now going to let Industrie’s resident beauty lover Robin Edwards take you backstage and share with you what it was like to be completely immersed in the hair and makeup prep for Jonathan Simkhai’s New York Fashion Week presentation.

If you’re new to this series, we gave up our seats and backstage access to two “NYFW Newbies” and gifted them with the opportunity to experience it firsthand (and help knock a few things off their beauty bucket lists). Our resident salon pro Paige Weiss who is no stranger to NYC (she lives and works in the NYC area) kicked things off and walked us through what it was like to attend a hair test. She shared her experience from the “roundtable” discussion where Thomas Obsorn, VP of Education & Creative Director for TIGI Americas and his team collaborated with Jonathan Simkhai to develop what the overall hair style was going to be for his runway presentation. You can read all about that, HERE. The following day, Robin, equipped with her camera and notepad, went backstage to see what it takes to bring that roundtable discussion and collaboration to life. Here’s what she experienced:

The runway show was being held at MILK Studios, and I got there around 2pm to watch the hair and makeup teams prep the models. Being backstage was exciting, because I couldn’t wait to see what the fun buzz was about. I bounced around between the hair prep area and the makeup prep area (they were two separate rooms). You could tell the hair and makeup teams were completely immersed and focused on what they were doing. The stylists and artists were professional and organized and seemed up to speed on the looks that were planned for the show.

For the hair, a romantic and soft chignon/knot that sat close to the nape and the hair kept smooth and straight on top was created, and all the hairstylists helped if and when they couldn’t get it just right. The knots seemed deceivingly intricate and some of the stylists stepped in to assist each other. You can learn how to recreate the hairstyling, HERE. For the makeup, the faces were kept clean looking and bright—glowing cheekbones, no bright colors or heavy contouring. Lips were kept nude, brows were filled in to appear natural. A very fresh “all American” face to pair perfectly with the polished hairstyle.

All in all, the teams worked harmoniously with each other, which kept the backstage area free from stress and the models calm. The models were great. I got to interact in conversation with them a little, largely due to the fact I kept sticking my camera in awkward places in and around them and the stylists! They remained lighthearted, happy, laughing, smiling, and kept making little jokes and comical faces.

Attending Fashion Week is an experience unlike any other. As we progress through this “My First Fashion Week Series,” we hope this inspires you, especially all you hair and makeup pros out there, to embark on an adventure and work hard towards making your dream to Fashion Week a reality.