One of the best parts of fashion week — aside from the fashions, of course — is the anticipation of what beauty looks will accompany the head-turning silhouettes. Often times, they're marked by out-of-this-world eye embellishments (who could forget the whopping 60 looks Pat McGrath created for Marc Jacobs Spring/Summer 2020?), a bold lip, or larger-than-life hair. And while the continued innovation of fashion week beauty will always be at the front of mind, there are a few products that— no matter what — will always be put to work during the bustling season. They've become backstage staples of sorts, gracing the kits of some of the greatest makeup and hair artists of all time.
Chances are, if a fashion week beauty look has ever caught your eye, these must-haves probably had something to do with it. And as we approach another season of runways (though many are virtual), we anticipate that this lineup of five will still be ever-present.
Ahead, check out the tools, skin care, and lippies that makeup artists and hairstylists swear by for creating many of the most talked-about styles seen at NYFW, PFW, and beyond.
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No matter the show, hairstylist, or style, you can count on seeing endless Dyson Supersonic hair dryers backstage. Take Jawara, Global Styling Ambassador for Dyson Hair, for instance, who considers the heat tool an absolute must-have for any show he works on.
While we never know what to expect in the eye department for a Pat McGrath-keyed show, we can always expect glowy skin. At Paco Rabanne's spring/summer 2020 showcase, Dame Pat McGrath went for fresh-faced beauty using this highlighter must-have. "In this show, it's all about the skin," she told TZR. McGrath used a mixture of her Skin Fetish balm and highlighter to create a dewy look and lit-from-within glow.
For the past 10 years, Maybelline has been a staple of fashion week festivities, and this lipstick is partly why. According to a Nielsen study (per a press release from the brand) — the Maybelline SuperStay Matte Ink is sold every six seconds in the U.S. Often used backstage on models, Maybelline reps say it also continues to be one of the brand's highest-selling products, noted for its matte and smooth finish and long-lasting wear.
Even with the most understated of fashion week looks, a smooth and even complexion is an absolute must. This formula, the first from MAC's Studio Fix foundation collection, is relied on often to create just that. Its buildable coverage and pore blurring capabilities make it a must for a great photo payoff and light-friendly appearance.
When it comes to eyeliner, this Dior formula is undefeated. Smooth with a high-octane color payoff, Peter Philips, key makeup artist for Dior, recently used it for Dior's Spring/Summer 2021 show. "We wanted very strong eyes so a framed eyeliner was perfect," Philips told TZR in a 2020 interview discussing the show's look. "But we didn't want a winged eyeliner because we didn't want to make it to look too retro. So we kept the same thickness of the liner strokes consistent, trailing it all-around, reaching the waterline. You can see the very intense black, and it has a bit of a smudge. We went for a sharp eye with soft edges."