EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE: Backstage New York Fashion Week

Life Outside the Tents as A NYFW VIP: Lounges, Swag Suites & Dinner Parties

When you think of Fashion Week you may think of the backstage scene that I've been tweeting about all week, or the runway shows themselves, but truth is, there's so much more when you're a NYFW VIP.  Since all editors, bloggers and influencers end up in NYC for the shows with the same goals, brands take full advantage and host dinner parties, pampering lounges and after parties all for a little face time.  Here's some of my fashion week extracurriculars... I know, it looks like a lot of work (wink).

Birchbox Lounge

Set up conveniently across from Milk Studios where a variety of shows took place this season, I popped in before attending Christian Siriano near by on Saturday.  First things first, I got down to business by creating my own Birchbox.  Next, I indulged in a little pampering with a mani (shade: Color Club in Status Update), grabbed a snack from WichCraft and caught up with some friends.

Style Coalition Lounge

I popped in the Style Coalition Lounge at the Empire Hotel before going backstage to Zac Posen on Sunday night to catch up with my friend Yuli, who runs the organization. They partnered with Microsoft and my fave stylist, Ted Gibson.  The best part?  It was exclusive so there weren't a thousand people running around and it really was a break from the hustle and bustle.  While there, I had my hair touched up by Ted Gibson's stylists and left looking glam!

Dinner with NARS

Each season NARS rents out parts of restaurants in the West Village and throws a dinner party.  This is what I was most excited for this season.  Between all the running around and waving hello to friends backstage I got to catch up with my media friends over wine, cheese plates and chocolate covered strawberries in the garden of Palma.

Allure Beauty Lounge

After going backstage to interview Reem Acra before her show (see post here), I headed to the Empire Hotel to stop by a few suites.  Allure had SkinMedica preforming facials, Maybelline giving makeup touch ups and manis and a whole fragrance bar set up with samples from different brands along with Sephora pulled up on iPads for easy purchasing.  Smart.  I would have loved a SkinMedica facial, but my makeup was set for the day and I didn't have the time.

Clarins Lounge

The brand just launched their Beauty Flash Blog so I was eager to see my PR friends and learn more about it.  The Courtin-Clarins girls were there (the granddaughters of the founder of Clarins) so I filmed a video interview with them, which will be live soon!  I'm so glad they're getting involved with the brand.  They're super chic and approchable.  Other editors were getting makeup touch ups and mini massages in the suite as well.

Backstage Marc by Marc Jacobs, Where Glam Squads 'Got Their Slap On'

"Makeup is about getting your slap on," remarks makeup artist, Dick Page for Shiseido.  Backstage at the Marc by Marc Jacobs show was surprisingly quiet, until I began speaking Mr. Page.  "Why not do scruffy eyes and a little bit of lipstick...  Why not," he questions.  His motto set the theme for the entire look, "Just do your f*cken makeup! It's not that serious." 

"I want to see that the makeup looks wrong enough before the models walk out onto the runway," comments lead makeup artist, Dick Page.

"It's left over makeup, not perfect," Page says.  "You can even do it in a dirty city bathroom."

The hair was kept simple, because Guido Paulo of Redken accessorized each of the models hair with two scarves.  "When wearing a hair accessory you want to play your hair down," he explains.

The hair was texturized to make it "gritty" and then it was twisted back in no specific  style or form making each of the model's a bit different.

Top Models, Rich Girl Hair and Mega Lashes Backstage at Zac Posen

This season I'm only covering a few shows, my favorites.  Being my favorite designer, I jumped at the opporunity to go backstage to Zac Posen again this year as some of my career highlights have been with him including my first fashion show and a private meet and greet with the designer himself at his show room (see post).  Unbelievable.  And I'll tell you, no one knows 'rich girl hair' like him.  Here's my experience this year, through photos.

Some of the models hair was colored prior to the show with John Frieda's Precision Foam Hair Color to pump up or down their color for added shine.  "Rich girl hair is all about texture, solid color shine," remarked Harry Josh, John Frieda colorist.  "It creates an expensive look."

Inspired by lounge singer, Lena Horne, the look represented a strong, yet delicate socialite.

Top models walked in the show including Coco RochaNaomi Campbell and Karolina Kurkova.

Essie used shades ranging in depth to match all of the models skin tones to elongate the hands. Shades used: Glamour Purse, Brooch the Subject, A Crewed Interest and Not Just A Pretty Face.

"Because we're working with various skintones, we wanted to do something equally flattering to everyone, so we went with a strong lash look by using two pairs of lashes intergrated on each girl," commented Kabuki, the lead makeup artist from MAC cosmetics."

Celeb Manicurist, Deborah Lippmann Talks Nail Trends & Working with Top Designers

Nails have been the icing on the cake backstage during the past few seasons of NY Fashion Week.  Anxious to see what I was going to see backstage this season, I chatted with Deborah Lippmann, who is in charge of creating the nail look for countless shows this season including Kate Spade, Cynthia Rowley and Honor to name a few.  We discuss upcoming nail trends, the creative process of working with designers and her most memorable NYFW moment.

What do you predict will be some of the biggest nail trends for nails the Spring/Summer 2013 season?

White. We will definitely  see dark white, and opaque, full-coverage glossy white.I also think that we will see a stiletto nail shape, or a softer version of the shape which is almond-shaped.  There will be versions varying from almond to stiletto, but I think that is going to be the shape of the season.

How will nail art play a part?

I think nail art is still big, and it’s such a fun way to express yourself.  We haven’t seen the end of it.

You're working with some fantastic designers including Kate Spade and Cynthia Rowley.  What's the creative process like when preparing for a show?

It starts with a flurry of emails that begin weeks in advance. Then, I often receive inspiration boards from the designer, but it differs with every designer.  Sometimes I see inspiration boards, or sometimes I see clothing weeks in advance.  There are also times when I don’t see anything until the hair and makeup test 24 hours before the show.

It’s a creative process starting with the designer's vision, which is then interpreted by the styling team, and the beauty team which includes hair, makeup and nails.

Did you create any special colors specifically for this season?

We did actually.  We created a mint green shade for Kate Spade.  It's going to be part of the nail look, but the shade probably won't become part of the collection.  Also, in order to achieve the look that Cynthia Rowley envisioned, we layered two colors from my existing line to create the right look for the show.

What's your most memorable NYFW moment?

Narciso Rodriguez Spring/Summer 2012.  It's a really memorable moment for me.  I have worked with Narciso for many, many seasons, and we did several variations of a nude nail. Its a very minimalist look, and we always went for a very naked-feeling nail look.  Twenty four hours before the show I got a call about how they wanted a certain shade of grey for the nails, and I thought it was somehow an April Fool's joke.  I was excited, but surprised.

I created the shade, and once we got it approved with Narciso we had to create ten bottles for my team to use backstage.  When we got to the show, all of the models were asking what the color was because they loved it. We realized then that we had to put the shade in the line, and Narciso named it Stormy Weather.

To collaborate with Narciso on a strong color was so unexpected, and it was a great moment.  That's one of the great things about how that creative process happens, and how so much can happen at the last minute that ends up being incredible.

What do you think you owe your success during NYFW to?

People ask how you get to be really successful as a manicurist and get to the next level, and you have to always be willing to work and embrace whatever comes your way. Take the job that starts at 4AM, and then the one that starts 8PM that night.  You have to be willing to be there and be a part of it because things happen in the moment.

Bloggers Share the Craziest Things That Happened During NY Fashion Week

It's the first day of NYFW and I've been covering backstage since the spring of 2006, which makes this my 13th season attending.  Woah!  That's crazy!  Besides doing our jobs to bring you the news from backstage and front row, my friends and I have experienced some pretty crazy things through out the years.  Here are our top "OMG" moments: I'll kick it off with a story from when I worked at Cosmopolitan magazine.  I was attending the Zac Posen show for the first time.  Zac Posen, my favorite designer.  Being that he's an investor in the line, Diddy (yes, as in Sean Combs) was sitting in the front row.  I couldn't believe that 1. I was at a Zac Posen fashion show at 22 years old and 2. I was there with Diddy. I was obsessed with him.  So what did I do?  I obviously let my 22-year-old self get the best of me and followed Diddy backstage after the show.  I did not belong there!  Zac and friends were popping champagne so I decided to act like I belonged and joined in!  OMG.  I got a pic with my main man, Diddy, who at the time was there with Kim Porter (and preggers w his twins).  Post show I watched him get into his Rolls Royce and allow Kim walk in the rain pregnant to hail a cab.  I lost all respect!

The craziest thing I ever experienced during NYFW would definitely be when I saw L.A.M.B - and it was Gwen Stefani's very first show.  I've been obsessed with all things Gwen since I was 12 years old and getting to see her debut collection at Bryant Park AND having a reserved seat (with my name and all! LOL) was a top 20 highlight of my life. - Jamie Stone, QueenoftheQuaterLifeCrisis.com

The craziest thing I've experienced was the party to celebrate Kim Kardashian's spot as beauty editor at OK magazine (it was a short-lived gig). It was a major affair with a ton of beauty execs, editors and bloggers and totally over-the-top, Kim-style. Unfortunately it was at that event that we learned Patrick Swayze passed away, losing his years-long battle with cancer. But the DJ played an amazing line-up of tribute songs to the fallen star including Time Of My Life and everyone celebrated a little Johnny Castle moment in his honor. And no one was in a corner, obviously. - Amber Katz, BeautyBloggingJunkie.com

I had a pretty typical jam-packed day of 5 shows, an event and somehow decided to post an exclusive editorial during all of this as well, which meant that I had to schedule a phone interview in the midst of the chaos. So, my event obviously ran an hour late and I had missed the phone interview call. I went running down the street to hail a cab (with a coffee in one hand, mind you) jump in and interview a very well-known makeup artist with a cup of coffee between my legs during the most nauseating cab ride I've ever been in while scribbling notes on the back of press sheets from shows and partially on my bare legs. In that moment I realized that fashion week had won. - Rachel Adler, BeautyHigh.com

Even though it was only the first week of my senior year at Barnard, since I was Fashion Assistant at FHM, I somehow managed to score a 2nd row invite to my very first show: Betsey Johnson. As you can imagine, little 21-year-old me was nearly passing out from excitement. (It was one of my first celebrity sightings, too: Kimora Lee Simmons, in all her giantess glory! Seriously, in heels, she's like 7 feet tall.) The dresses were candy-colored tutu confections and the champagne was especially delicious since I'd just turned legal. The memory is bittersweet, however, because for me that show represents a New York City that no longer exists. The location? Tavern on the Green. The date? September 10, 2001. - Nadine Jolie, NadineJolie.com

I've always been a huge fan of Herve Leger. The bandage style sucks you in and creates curves you never even knew you had! So, I was beyond thrilled when I had the chance to borrow an outfit to wear to Herve Leger's Fall 2012 show. I chose a black and blue dress with neon green piping. When I walked into Lincoln Center I felt a little self-conscious. As much as I adored the dress it was certainly a statement for a daytime show. But backstage I ran into designer Max Azria. He commented on how he loved the color and gave me a kiss on the cheek. It was a major OMG moment. I took my seat smiling from ear to ear. - Sydne Summer, SydneStyle.com

All kinds of craziness has happened over the years, but the top memorable was the time I covered my first season as a beauty intern at Women's Wear Daily. I was super green around the ears and was told to do backstage beauty interviews. So exciting! I interviewed this one amazing makeup artist who have me all kinds of great quotes and tips. Unsure of her name, I asked her to spell it for verification purposes. She stopped what she was doing, asked me if I was serious, and then grabbed my notebook. In big huge letters she wrote "PAT MCGRATH." I died. Luckily she laughed it off and told me that I had a lot more learning to do if I was going to make it in the industry. Boy was she right! (And yes I still have that piece of paper w/her name on it lol.) - Andrea Arterbery, GlamazonsBlog.com

Years ago, the very first season I did *anything* remotely fashion week, during the week I went to Robert Verdi's lounge - at a time in history I didn't even know who he was! One of the brands that was sponsoring it that season had done a stupid early  breakfast (and we know how well I handle schlepping from Brooklyn for early AM things) - and I was pre-coffee and somewhat drowsy as I dazedly walked out of the elevator, saw some people I knew on the inside and started to excitedly wave - and then walked FACE FIRST into his glass doors (not realizing there were doors there at all!) - Patrick and Ashley (who at that time I didnt' even know) saw, and had looks of abstract horror on their face as their rushed to open the door (which, was after all, A DOOR0, and let me in, and I had the most unattractive bloody nose EVER - right in the middle of the lounge's kitchen area. Sexy. They were all SUPER nice about it (though I was a complete asshole). - Aly Walansky, ALittleAlyTude.com


How to Wear A Dark, Berry Lip this Fall

Spotted: Dark, berry lips backstage at the fall 2012 fashion shows of Donna Karan, YSL and Gucci. The vampy trend is a throwback that originated in a much more romantic way in the 1920's, resurfaced as Gothic glam the '90's and is now influenced by vampire culture, in a modern, yet feminine way.  As of late, I've been receiving a surplus amount of these pigments to test out, and spoke with Giorgio Armani's Celebrity Makeup Artist, Tim Quinn to find out how to rock the trend the right way. Tip 1: Find the Right Shade

"For the dark berry lip I look to all the elements; hair, skin and eye color," Quinn explains.  "Cranberry tones work well on fairer complexions and blackberry shades work well on both dark complexions as well as the very fair skinned, dark haired beauties."  His favorite is the Armani Rouge d'Armani Lipsticks, specifically Rouge #408.  I've been wearing Mark Make It Rich Lip Color Crayon in Peony.  It works for my skintone, but they have berry shades that flatter all for only $11.

Tip 2: Choose the Right Texture

Sheer? Glossy? Matte?  Who gives?  You have to!  This fall it's all about a saturated matte finish.  This way, it doesn't compete with the textures of your fall wardrobe.  The pigment compliments it.

Tip 3: Stay in Control

When going bold on the lip keep the rest of your makeup simple as the dark lip needs to remain your focal point.  "Not too smokey on the eyes, not too much color on the cheeks, and make sure that you wear the lip with confidence," Quinn states.

NYFW Beauty Trend: Matching Lips & Tips

This season one of the biggest trends I've spotted backstage is matching nails and lips, which means it's going to be super hot for fall.  Backstage at Zac Posen where models wore striking, yet classic red lips and nails, I had the chance to catch up with my friend and MAC Makeup Artist,Kerri Blair to chat about the look. "The lip and tip is definitely one of the hottest trends this fashion week so far," commented Blair.

The true red created for the lip at Zac Posen is Cherry Red Lip Pencil and a red lip mix gloss.  To match the lip, the closest nail polish MAC had is a new shade called Flaming Rose, which will be out in the Fall.

"Classic red lips and nails are just as important as a black dress," commented Blair.  "The color looks good on any skin type because it's neutral with a little warmth and a little coolness mixed together."

Coming soon from MAC, (and I can't wait for this) will be matching sets of lipsticks and polishes that further encourage the trend and take the guesswork out.


Spotted at Rachel Zoe: My Favorite NYFW Beauty Look So Far

All weekend I've been checking out the scenes backstage and tweeting the details from @BeautySweetSpot, but I had to share this look with you here as well, because I'm completely and utterly obsessed.  Not surprisingly it comes from the glam squads and brains of Rachel Zoe.  I went backstage to her show yesterday at the top of the Empire Hotel to find a surprisingly calm scene, but the look was all about rock and roll.  Think Kate Moss leaving a speak easy night club on a Thursday night.  I want to look like this every night! Maybelline Makeup Artist, Charlotte Tilbury created what she called a very classic feline eye complimented by fresh skin and a nude lip.  "Any woman will look fabulous in this look no matter what age or race," she commented.  The eyeliner was everything!  Tilbury used Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel EyeLiner to thickly line the models upper lids. Then, she smudged it out a little and took a brush to line the crease of the eyes for extra intensity.  Two sets of false lashes were applied and then tons of mascara.

I love it when I go backstage and see looks I would actually be excited to recreate that night. The hair was something I would also replicate any night out.  Kerastase Lead Stylist, Odile Gilbert center parted the models hair and blew out it out using Kerastase Mousse Volumactiv to create texture.  Her rock and roll twist was to add what she called "a little girl braid" on the side of the girls "sexy" hair that was about an inch thick.  Simple, but I loved it.

Inside the Celeb Chaos Backstage Heart Truth's Red Dress 10th Anniversary Fashion Show

Last night, I celebrated my unofficial start to fashion week by going backstage for the Heart Truth’s Red Dress Fashion Show at the Hammerstein Ballroom.  Celebs and other influential women walk this show for heart disease so backstage was nothing like most shows I attend.  I found myself in the middle of hair and make stations for A-Listers like Minka Kelly, La La Anthony, Gloria Estefan, Rose McGowan, Christie Brinkley and the Editor-in-Chief of GlamourCindi Leivi.  Honorable women!  Overwhelmed, I did what I do best... So here's how it worked.  Bobbi Brown was the makeup sponsor for the show, Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spas stylists were in charge of hair and Deborah Lippmann's team of manicurists were on nails, but these women who were about to walk the cat walk weren't models, they were celebrities, so the idea of looking at them like a blank canvas and creating a universal look for the show was out the door.  In fact, most of the women brought in their own glam squads to ensure they felt confident walking the runway.

Each of their looks were more enhanced versions of themselves all complimented by their stunning red dresses.  I can't even tell you who was wearing my favorite because each dress really matched well with the celebs personalities so it was hard to choose.  Of course I scored some video interviews that I'll share within the next few posts.  It was amazing to speak with Christie Brinkley (she just kept talking, but I'll edit the video don't worry) and Rose McGowan and I chatted it up and I caught some on film (one word: Botox).  Minka Kelly was hiding and didn't come backstage for a second.

Watch the Gen Art Fashion Show Live at 5pm on BeautySweetSpot.com

Tonight is the Gen Art fashion show, which is being hosted by Entourage's Emmanuelle Chriqui and sponsored by Crest 3D White.  Emerging designers and celebs will be walking Crest's white carpet before the show and one of the designer's challenges is to create a 'radiant collection' inspired by a bright smile.  Here, I'm live streaming the red carpet and show so you can watch too!  It starts at 5pm tonight, don't be late!  Tune in after the jump...

A Peek Inside My NYFW Prep: It's As Real As It Gets

It's New York Fashion Week and I'm beyond thrilled to check out another season (it really doesn't get old).  Each season for the past six years I've been going backstage to interview the glam squads before the shows and watching the shows to see the latest and greatest from all of the designers.  This year, I have several fun projects to juggle between the madness.  Here's four ways I prep and that really help to keep me sane... I Have Clones

I have help!  Ever since I've been freelance I've had interns help me for BeautySweetSpot during NYFW so I can focus more on freelance writing assignments and other projects that I'm actually getting paid for.  It's all about the hustle, so I try to clone myself.

I Have A Strict Schedule with An Open Mind

I have a redicilously organized schedule that only looks redicilously organized to me.  I swear if you were to look at it you would only find yourself confused, but I've been doing my schedule this way for about two years and it works.  I attempt (attempt being the key word) to have a plan, a set schedule of events, shows and backstages that I'm attending and potentially covering going into the week.  However being a NYFW veteran, I'm flexible.  I had to learn how to deal with my Type A personality and go with it.  It must change at least twice a day as more invites are sent out and I run into industry friends and make more plans.

I Strategically Pack My Mobile Office

I pack a tote that includes a freelancers must haves for one of the most thrilling weeks of content gathering: camera, iPhone, iPhone charger, mini MacBook Air, Mac charger, flats, notebook, and a Luna Bar.  I also toss in whatever lipstick color I'm wearing that day, blotting papers and business cards.  Having a mobile office is priceless!  There will be days where I'll have about two hours until my next show or event and can pop into a coffee shop or NYFW sponsored lounge and get some work done.

I Fill My Wardrobe

I'm not one to plan out "looks."  Therefore, I'm normally somewhat scrambling to get dressed everyday, but like to be sure that I have something appropriate to wear each day.  By appropriate I mean chic.  I do a closet scan a week before to see what I'm lacking and add fillers (ie: a new pair of heels or an event-worthy dress I haven't worn before).  This season I didn't need any fillers.  I'm good, but what I did do and I do every season was stock up on necessities like tights.  If I'm wearing them daily, I will get a run in them!

Spotted: Jessica Szohr's Bob Styles, Get the Look!

Yes, I spotted Gossip Girl's Jessica Szohr out and about during New York Fashion Week with a mid length bob.  Even though I caught glimpse of her before Herve Leger, she also attended several other shows like Marchesa and I got the 411 on her bob transformations from Pureology Colour Ambassador, Ruth Roche, who worked with Jessica throughout the week. "Since Jessica still has some length to her bob it leaves her with a lot of styling options," commented Roche.

To achieve smooth bob (as seen at Herve Leger), all Roche did was blow dry Jessica's hair with a round brush, but shine serum was the key to creating smoothness and adding a bit of separation.  She used Pureology Colour Stylist Cuticle Polisher.  I use this too and just place a small amount in my hands, rub them together to warm it up (so it distributes well) and then rub on my ends for added smoothness.

To get a more texturized look like the style Jessica rocked at the Marchesa show, Roche blow dried her hair and then used a 1 1/2 inch curling iron to randomly curl sections of her hair inwards and outwards.  The trick to this 'do was to leave the iron in longer on some sections than others and pulling other curls out a bit so the curls were all different.  In the end, the loose waves were texturized with a lot of movement.

The Beauty Loot that Got Me Through NYFW

New York Fashion Week is over and while I had a great time checking out the shows and interviewing glam squads and designers, I'm excited to get back to my normal routine.  You know – actually have a life.  As a reporter, covering fashion week is far less glamourous than you'd think.  It's a 25 hour, eight day week that allows for little to absolutely no sleep due to intense deadlines and non-stop shows.  I guess you can say it's a bitter, sweet week.  Here are the hero products that got me through it without looking like a hot mess. Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray, $39

It's the perfect combination of a dry shampoo and a hair spray.  On days when I skipped a shampoo and had to be at a show at 7am (Victoria Beckham on Saturday morning) I spritzed this on my roots and through my hair and it added volume and a bit of workable control. Backstage tons of stylists were using dry shampoo as a styling product, not just to control oil. You'll be hearing more about this in another post.

Kerstin Florian Correcting Eye Rescue Pad, $100 for 5

I stopped by Robert Verdi's Suite in the middle of the week to check out some new product launches and found these eye pads.  I literally put them on right then and there in the middle of the day and like a mask, they helped to soothe fine lines around my eyes and depuff underneath (which at this point was much needed).

Laura Mercier Oil Free Tinted Moisturizer, $42

As the days went on I began to get paler and paler.  I normally don't wear any face makeup so I bought this tinted moisturizer in a shade darker than I normally would wear and mixed it in with my moisturizer to dilute it a bit and applied it daily to create a lively appearance.  Otherwise I would have been walking around looking like a corpse.

Sally Hansen Salon Effects Nail Strips, $9.99

I've written about these before and have worn them over and over.  They're real nail polish strips that you stick on your nails and last up to ten days.  I chose a metallic fishnet pattern and decided to rock them because I knew they wouldn't chip during my busy week.

Backstage Beauty at Diesel Black Gold

It was a nice change of pace from the NYFW headquarters at Lincoln Center to check out a new venue – Pier 94.  After taking a peek at the Diesel Black Gold Spring 2012 collection it was evident that the ginormous warehouse was the perfect venue for their show.  The clothes had a utilitarian feel with a heavy emphasis on metallics.  In contrast, the hair and makeup with loose ponytails and fresh faces hinted at a sexy beach vibe.

To recreate loose, sexy waves that you get when going to the beach, Redken's lead stylist Guido used Guts Volume Spray Foam throughout damp hair and allowed to air dry.  Afterwards, Guido made a low ponytail and purposely took out a few strands for the desired look.  CoverGirl lead makeup artist, Pat McGrath, took things back to the supermodel era with the likes of Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington.  She achieves the look with a shimmery gold eyeshadow around the eyes and bronzed glow on the cheeks with nude lips.  For a lasting effect, McGrath used Covergirl Intense Shadow Blast in beige blaze.  





Come Backstage with BeautySweetSpot's NYFW Team

Well it's here!  New York Fashion Week has arrived quicker than summer ended.  This season I have two talented team members to help me tackle my busy show schedule.  You can expect to see backstage coverage from Rag & Bone, Cynthia Rowley, Jill Stuart, Helmut Lang, Monique Lhuillier, Victoria Beckham, Alice & Olivia, Betsey Johnson,  Ports 1961 and Milly (just to name a few) as well as show coverage and exclusive designer interviews. I have some really exciting projects going on throughout the week including hosting backstage videos and the after party for the Duckie Brown men's show for Conair and covering shows for other publications.  Stay tuned for exclusive coverage.

Meet my team!

Bri, a blazer obsessed fashionista with a nail polish collection to die for

Her fashion week must haves: flats, cherry chap stick, Blackberry, concealor (to hide tired eyes), cell phone charger, planner, camera, multiple pens, bobby pins, Ahava mineral hand lotion, pink notebook

Michelle, a pop culture junkie who knows how to rock a red lip from day to night

Her fashion must haves: Evian face mist, iPad, Bobbi Brown Lipstick in Hollywood Red, Almay Black Eyeliner, granola bars, Starbucks, iPhone, Flipcam

J. Crew Continues to Thrive as A New Addition to NYFW

For the first time, J. Crew will be debuting their Spring/Summer 2012 collection during New York Fashion week at Lincoln Center this September.  While this news may come as a surprise to some, for those who have been paying attention to the direction of the brand, it's expected. I know when I get the J. Crew catalogue I flip through to check out the models first, then the clothes.  Top models, Crystal Renn (one of Zac Posen's favorites) and Arizona Muse have appeared in recent catalogues and next season, Liu Wen and Jacquelyn Jablonski are taking the spotlight.

Because of the new-ish direction, cosmetic companies are now partnering with J. Crew creating beauty loot so you can mimic the looks of the models in the catalogues.  Poppy King, the Lipstick Queen, created a reddish-coral lipstick called Poppy King for J. Crew Lipstick and there's Face Stockholm for J. Crew Nail Polish collection too.

Maybelline Great Lash Celebrates 40 Years in Style

You know it – the legendary pink and green mascara tube that's been selling out on store shelves since 1971.  That's Maybelline Great Lash.  Now, 40 years later, it's America's best selling mascara with a tube being sold every 1.7 seconds.  No lie. To celebrate it's anniversary, the brand partnered with top designers – Max Azria, Tracy Reese and Vivienne Tam to design a limited edition collection.  Since Maybelline sponsors New York Fashion Week, it was a natural fit.  Each designer created a black graphic print unique to their brand on the pink tube and sealed it with their signatures.  My favorite – Max Azria's (obvi) it's a sexier black lace pattern.

*Available in September.

Breakfast at Tiffanys, Backstage at Monique Lhuillier

Backstage at the Monique Lhuillier fall 2011 show Val Garland for MAC and Jan Arnold for Creative Nail Design were joined by Odile Gilbert for Kerastase to create a glamourous yet edgy look. "The gowns are cleam, long and slender," commented Arnold. "Think Angelina Jolie in The Tourist."

The nail color was made of a combination of two shades layered on top of each other: Silver Chrome, Desert Suede and lined them with Dark Ameythest (which will debut in Fall 2011).

Gilbert created a twist of ponytils that were strategically placed and pinned around the head to resemble ribbons and added a black velvet bow into each of the models hair for a girly, Breakfast at Tiffanys effect.

Garland made the eyes the focal point of the face using a combination of blacks with deep plum for a smokey effect.

My Date with Zac Posen

This morning I had breakfast with Zac Posen in his NYC showroom.  No, really – I did.  My favorite designer of all time.  I've been to two of his shows in the past, but never in his showroom – laughing with him, asking him questions and really getting to see the true passion behind his work.

Last season he launched his Z Spoke line during New York Fashion Week, but this season the talented American designer taking both of his collections to Paris so I am honored to have seen the collection before it showed on the runway.

Check out the video of the complete walk through!

Of course we talked beauty!  This was the first runway show Mr. Posen's ever done where the models let their hair down.  "It made the clothing very approachable and readable and was one of the easiest stylistic changes I could make with the collection," commented Posen.

With some of the most sought after models in the world in the look book like Coco Rocha and Crystal Ren, the hair was effortless and rock and roll inspired – or as Zac likes to call it, "rich girl hair."

Celebrity Stylist, Larry Sims, of got2b created the look for today's private presentation with the brand's new collection called Rockin' It.  His go-to product?   Got2b Rockin' It Dry Shampoo.

Visit my Facebook page to check out the album from the preview.

You'll die over this video of Zac Posen describing "rich girl" hair.