We’ve already brought you the cult staples, and now comes the five new kids on the backstage beauty block. They criteria for this list is that the products, upon first sight, must elicit the same emotions you felt in high school when first spotting the new crop of hot foreign exchange students in the cafeteria each semester. Intrigue. Mystique. Whatever the Japanese word for “fascination” is. Canadian for, “I want.” (It’s “May I please have,” they’re so darn polite!) Here’s the NYFW International Backstage Exchange Programme’s Class of 2014:
Éminence Organics Neroli Age Corrective Hydrating Mist: The milky white facial mist was discovered on a makeup artist’s station at Derek Lam—it’s the milky white aspect that piqued our interest. Neroli, while supremely sexy smelling, works as an antiseptic and skin-softener. Then there’s coconut milk, and the other organic super ingredients that sound like the juice selection at Organic Avenue, that you can simply spray on your face every day when you start to feel old around the 3 pm naptime you wish you had.
Quick & Perfect Punky Super Gell: The huge white tubes emblazoned with a silly winking pervert were everywhere backstage at Donna Karan, where Eugene Souleiman was creating an elaborate updo requiring the models’ lengths to be wrapped smoothly around the circumferences of their heads. The look called for glue, really, and that’s basically what this nearly impossible to find Japanese hair gel(+l) is. It even smells like glue! The comic strip-like directions recommend distributing and then blow-drying to set hair into whatever shape desired, and that’s exactly how Mr. Souleiman used the stuff as well. The resulting look is shiny and absolutely immobile.
EO Hand Sanitizer: With the recently proposed ban on the antibacterial ingredient triclosan (doesn’t it just sound evil?), keeping one’s eye out for a good healthy alternative is important. Well, we do important work here at ITG and found one makeup assistant with a stockpile of the lavender-scented, ethanol-based gel at his station. Available in wipes and spray form as well.
Precision Cotton Swabs: Did you know that “Q-Tips” is actually a registered brand name? Like Ziploc bags and Velcro? The brand does make pointed, spade-shaped Precision Tips™, but they come in all shapes and sizes—Aaron de Mey had a small tray full of flat, stiff ovular-tipped swabs backstage at Opening Ceremony, and we came across the poke-your-eye-out elongated points above at the beauty supply. They’re excellent for creating a detailed wing, precise clean-up when aided with Bioderma, and super sharp lip color edges.
Kérastase Nutritive Irisome Touche Perfection: Dubbed “The Chapstick of hair” by a clever PR rep backstage at Jason Wu, the balm was used to smooth flyaways for a softer version of slicked-back hair than a gel or pomade would give. This stuff doesn’t have the holding power of the other methods, but it gives an immediate deep-conditioned softness to hair. “Chapstick” is actually a great descriptor—you simply smooth some over anywhere your hair is feeling, or looking, a little dry, be it at the top when pulled into a ponytail, or to calm your ends.
Photos by Mathea Millman.