He’s back again! Super talented makeup artist Alexander James has taken the time out of his busy fashion week schedule to share with us the top secret beauty essentials that every pro is using backstage during New York Fashion Week. For those of you who missed his last post about beauty essentials to survive Winter, here is a little info about him: 

With clients like Moda Operandi and having worked backstage on Pat McGrath’s team for shows such as Givenchy, Calvin Klein, Diane Von Furstenburg, Kanye West (Yeezy), Anna Sui, Diesel Black Gold, and Victoria Beckham, he was the perfect contributor for this post. Go check out his website to see some of his gorgeous work. So with out further ado, turning the reins over to Alexander. 


As a makeup artist, If there’s one thing you’re doing backstage (other than frantically powdering noses and tripping over photographers), it’s having a peak to see what’s in the kit of your next door neighbor. Fashion week is like a makeup bootcamp, and the new recruits are always looking to see what the veterans on the team have stashed away in their box of tricks.

PaPaw Ointment

Lucas Papaw Ointment Runway Beauty Essentials.jpg

I’ve mentioned this product in my last post. An ointment derived from the Australian Pawpaw superfruit, this all-in-one salve heals everything from the scabbiest of cracked lips to bug bites, rashes, and burns.

I received this as a present from an Australian friend of mine, and was quite shocked that every time I pulled it out of my kit, every model would exclaim how much she loved it. A couple of weeks later I was on a big shoot and grabbed a 400 degree curling iron – from the wrong side. Without time to run to the pharmacy for the impending blisters and seeping wounds, I slathered some of the Papaw ointment on it and powered through the rest of the day. By the end of the day I had forgotten about the burn completely, and the next morning there wasn’t a single blister or even a red mark on my hand.

Try setting a thick layer of the ointment over the lips after you apply your facial moisturizer, and then let it soak in for 20-30 minutes while you do the rest of your makeup.

Lucas Papaw Ointment set of 2 $24

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage Concealer

Laura Mercier Runway Beauty Essentials

When the show calls for a no-makeup makeup, and your model is having her monthly break out (Yes, models do get pimples too) you’re in a jam. That’s why every single makeup artist backstage I met pulls out their palette of depotted Laura Mercier Secret camouflage concealers to handle the job.

As a concealer, it does exactly what the name says; it camouflages close to anything, without revealing that anything is there. The texture is what makes it stand out – not too greasy looking, not too dry and patchy; just a beautiful satin finish that blends into the texture of raw skin flawlessly.

Because of how stable this formula is, I work this product on the back of my hand to warm it up before applying. Then I use my finger to gently dab over blemishes, redness, or any unsightly imperfections.

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage $35

MAC Prep + Prime Refined Zone

Mac Prep and Prim Runway Beauty Essentials

Forget powder! This little bad boy banishes shine AND smoothes texture while leaving a silky-matte finish on the skin. This oil-dispersing product has a watery gel like formula and a clear color that gives day long results. It’s a great way to get matte skin without the powdery look!

NOTE: When using this product, less is more! If you use too much, the silica in the product will begin to ball up. For optimal results, take a pin-head amount with a clean finger and rub in circles over the back of your hand. Then, with whatever is left on your finger, gently tap over the area to be mattified.

MAC Prep + Prime Refined Zone $22

Bio-Derma Micellar Cleanser

Bioderma Runway Beauty Essentials

When you’re working fashion week, you can work up to three shows a day; but the girls are sometimes working five. This means the your model often has her last show’s makeup on when she sits in you chair, and you have to get it off – fast. This is where a Micellar Cleanser comes into play. Micellar cleansers are water with the additions of Micelle cleansing molecules that pull oil, dirt, and makeup of the skin like a magnet without stripping, drying or irritating the skin; and the real kicker, without the need to rinse! Gentle and extremely effective, no-rinse micellar cleansers are the wave of the future, and Bio-Derma’s is specially formulated for even the most sensitive and dry skin types.

Bio-Derma Micellar Cleanser Sensibio H20 500ml $19.95

MAC Taupe Blush

MAC Taupe Blush Runway Beauty Essentials.jpg

For those of you who have given up on contouring, I’d like to end your despair by introducing you to Taupe blush by MAC. This perfectly cool-toned sculpting powder is the holy grail of contouring for the no-makeup makeup looks backstage. Use a fluffy brush to softly shape your eye socket or graze it along cheekbones to add a graceful definition and balance to your face.

MAC blush in Taupe $17

Hope you all enjoyed this post and a huge thank you to Alexander for contributing. As always thank you for reading and if you have any ideas of things you would like to see on the site then let us know in the comments. 


The Everyday Editor

All Beauty Photos by Jessie Ajluni


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