Behind-the-scenes of this season’s shows, I’m reminded that fashion’s ritzy artifice is held together by T-pins, white foamcore, Sharpies and the glossy paper from that Canon SELPHY printer everyone uses as the millennial substitute for Polaroids. When I started working in production, I always found this “industry standard” amusing — that stylists and producers and brand directors all use these flimsy Staples supplies to organize boards of looks for everything from castings to fittings to runway shows to e-commerce shoots.

These are the banal objects that keep a backstage operation running (pretty) smoothly while sleep-deprived teams of makeup artists, hairstylists and dressers try to achieve one common goal: to get the models ready by show time.

While navigating the labyrinths of various backstages to document said process, I picked up a few beauty tips so that you and I can recreate the runway looks in the comfort of our own hobbit holes. Take a spin through the tricks below and then revel in the transformation from off-duty to full looks in the slideshow of 70 (!) backstage photos underneath.

Tip #1: Lower lash wings at Jill Stuart

For eyes that multitask, flip the switch and draw a wingtip on the bottom eyelid with unapologetically thick liquid liner. The ultimate perk of this method, as demonstrated by Jill Stuart, is it leaves ample room for loads of glitter on the top lid.

Tip #2: An oil base at Kate Spade

Channeling New Orleans in New York’s Grand Central Oyster Bar, Kate Spade’s beauty look called for a fresh and warm flush that’s easier said than done. Before applying any other product, makeup artist Romy Soleimani of Streeters primed every face with MAC’s Care Blends Essential Oils (in lieu of a traditional moisturizer) to set a smooth base for foundation and blush. Big Easy, indeed.

Tip #3: Pastel eyes at Oscar de la Renta

To initiate the color-shy, look no further than Tom Pecheux‘s subtle flicks fluttering out from the eyelids at Oscar de la Renta. Pecheux’s gestures looked almost as if they had been colored on with oil pastels rather than MAC Chromacake. (Bella Hadid got to choose whatever color she wanted. She picked periwinkle.)

Tip #4: A sweaty glow at KITH Sport

The KITH Sport collection revolved around athleticism, so Streeters makeup artist Erin Parsons leaned on earth tones to create a post-soccer glow. After setting the scene with a “beefy” brow and nods to the 90s supermodel archetype, Parsons walked me through her dual bronzer and highlighter application:

“We took the bronzer, started at the apples of the cheeks and swept it downward. And then a little on the temples, a little up on the forehead, dust on the nose and the chin, just the places the sun would hit.” For a little faux sweat, add highlighter into the mix with something like the Master Strobing Stick on the eyelids, the brow bone, the cheek bones and maybe the collarbone too if you’re going the extra mile. That’s all it takes to look like Mia Hamm after warmups, faster than you can say “shin guard.”

Tip #5: Orange juice eyes at Delpozo

Gen Z yellow may be the chromatic heroine of this fashion week, but the Delpozo show made a case for looking like a tall glass of Tang with shades of cantaloupe and clementine around the eyes, achieved with orange eyeliner and matching glitter that ascends all the way to the browbone.

Tip #6: Air-dried texture at Mansur Gavriel

While scrunchies stole the show at the nape of Mansur Gavriel necks, Bumble & Bumble’s Laurent Philippon’s approach to prepping the hair was key, first spritzing it with Bumble & Bumble Prep Spray and then allowing the models’ hair to air-dry for texture before loosely taming a sophisticated ponytail with MG’s newest accessory.

Which one will you try?

Photos by Edith Young. Title cards by Emily Zirimis. 

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  • Harling Ross

    I <3 edith young

  • Imaiya Ravichandran

    wait, you can write, too ?!!!!!

    • Harling Ross

      she is a triple threat. her third threat is that she also designs t-shirts.

      • Amy L Campbell

        EDITH you write SO WELL!

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  • I love the makeup from Oscar de la Renta! Gorgeous!

  • elpug

    where’s the 3rd arm in picture 5 coming from

    • ihaveacooch


    • Nschne

      I can’t stop staring at it now and it’s freaking me out!

    • Summer

      Wait…. it’s a mirror?? No… Yes? Now I’m freaked out too……….

  • Cynthia Schoonover

    I fell in love with the alligator or maybe it is a crocodile straw bag in the Kate Spade section of photos. Kate Spade creates a lot of whimsical designs.

  • sofia

    Oil base seems to be good. Im gonna try it. Thanks for sharing.

  • le nguyen
  • Sayonara cat

    Oh, crap. I know that I am officially an oldz when the models look like babies to me

  • Jessica Downing

    Super into that lower lash winged liner!

  • Thanks for advice… Like it !

  • Teresa

    Loving all the curly hair especially in Kate Spade’s show. I’ve been getting a lot more compliments on my own hair recently (even from men who weren’t alive in the 80s) even though I haven’t been doing ANYTHING different – nothing but a good haircut. I thought everyone was finally ~maturing~ and realizing straight isn’t the only good look (especially on someone who looks dumb with straight hair 🙋🏽) but now I think curls are just coming back into style. Regardless, yay!!!!

  • Sarah

    Lower lash wings for the win