FASHION WEEK: Essie and Kerastase Backstage at Jill Stuart

By Alison Alhamed | 09/07/2013 9:18:00 AM


The saying "It takes a village" never rings more true than at a fashion show. Imagine all the hair designers, fashion stylists, make-up artists, nail techs, people with clipboards, beauty editors and photographers all crammed together to create the perfect look, get the exclusive interview or capture the perfect backstage story--THIS is what it's like covering Fashion Week.

The scene backstage at Jill Stuart's Spring/Summer '14 New York Mercedes Benz Fashion Week show was MOBBED. Often, make-up is done on one side of the tent, and hair is done on the other, with nails wherever the nail tech can fit. At this show, held at Lincoln Center, it was all in one itty-bitty space!

Make-up artists from Sephora were creating metallic eyes and glowing skin using Laura Mercier, Bobby Brown, Mark Jacobs, Givency and Josie Maran products. Hair designers were busy whipping up a "rock and roll, look with a messy part--very fun style," says Odile Gilbert, lead hair, who used a combination of Kerastase Powder Bluff, Kerastase Boucles D'Art and Kerastase Laque Dentelle.

The nail look was a combination of three key Essie lacquers: to begin, lead nail Julie Kandalec applies one coat of Essie First Base, then two coats of the brand new black and navy After School Boy Blazer, and tops with one coat of Good to Go.

"I'm super into blue for both fall and spring," Kandalec says. "And this look has a little unexpected rock and roll look. You don't usually see navy in the spring, but I love it!"

With an open-toe shoe in the fashions, nail techs had to paint both hands and feet--not an easy task when it's a zoo backstage!

In the end, everyone rolls up their sleeves, kicks off their heels, and gets to work. Even if it means sitting on the floor, getting hair product sprayed all over you, working on a model whose feet are more brusied than a banana (poor ladies! Those shoes are NOT comfortable!). It all comes together to create TOTAL beauty.






ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Alison Alhamed

Alison Alhamed, Editor in Chief of Modern Salon Magazine | Editor of First Chair

Since July 2008, Alison has worked across all brands under the MODERN SALON Media umbrella, including MODERN SALON, SALON TODAY, FIRST CHAIR and MODERN SALON TV. Alison’s passion for the beauty industry grew even deeper after she enrolled in beauty school, working as an editor by day and a student by night. Alison earned her cosmetology degree from Pivot Point International in Bloomingdale, Illinois, in May 2011.

You can find Alison on Google+ or e-mail her at


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