It’s actually not so hard to look airbrushed.
Yeah, watching models do their thing during Fashion Month (that’s four weeks of shows in New York, London, Milan, and Paris) and the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show looks like some non-stop, wildly glamorous event, but some of the less-Instagrammed side effects involve jet lag, over-worked skin, and stressful runs to and from shows (think go-sees on America’s Next Top Model times 100). Yet, their skin still somehow manages to look amazing even backstage when they’re makeup-free.
Sure, some (OK, a lot) of that has to do with genetics, but these women also have regular access to the best beauty pros in the world. Translation: Backstage at fashion shows is a chamber of skin care secrets. So, we did as any inquiring mind would do and pulled a few of the dewiest-complected aside to get their tricks to keeping blemishes at bay and getting that glow we all wish we had 24/7. Here, the chamber is opened.
Multi-masking is a skin savior.Balance is key when it comes to keeping your skin clear. You can’t just strip your skin of oils without giving it all those nutrients it needs. Heather Medendorp uses a black charcoal mask to help clean out her pores and then follows it up with a cucumber mask to replenish any moisture her skin is still craving.
Replace makeup with moisturizer.If you’re wearing makeup all the time, your skin is bound to get thirsty. Even if you have oily skin, your face needs to stay hydrated. “After every show I make sure to have a makeup wipe to take my makeup off right away,” Bella Harris says. “And the most important thing is to keep your skin moisturized. I use Cetaphil mainly.”
Clear blemishes with tea tree oil.If your skin tends to break out, tea tree oil (which is antibacterial) can really get in there and clean your pores out. Megan Puleri likes to use a gentle scrub from Neutrogena and then a tea tree oil toner after. If her skin still needs some attention, she’ll go for a facial.
Steam can help open up your pores.
After weeks of walking the runways, Olivia Hunter goes makeup-free in her down time. Tons of gunk can get stuck in your pores after long days of shows with heavy makeup on, so she gives her face a deep clean with an at-home facial steam. “You get a bowl of hot water with some mint tea and put a towel over your head while your face is over the bowl,” she says. “Everything feels completely cleared out.”
Toothpaste a zit when you’re really in need.
You’ve seen how Bella Hadid wakes up jet-lagged skin, but when it comes to a sudden onset zit, she lives by one of Gigi’s skin care hacks. “My sister always told me to do this, and I feel like it works really well—the toothpaste-on-the-pimple trick,” says Hadid. Be careful though, toothpaste can dry your skin out and make it more irritated, so don’t overdo it. As an alternative, these hacks also get the job done.
A religious skin care routine is key.
With so much happening all day between shows and makeup changes, a majority of models told us a steady nighttime regimen (so their skin can calm down) is crucial. Nicole Atieno’s first step is to take her makeup off with a face wipe, then wash her face with a hydrating cleansing cream (because sometimes wipes aren’t enough). After that she might use a scrub or a mask on her T-zone if she feels like she needs it before finishing off with moisturizer.
DIY can do a face good.
After long days of putting all kinds of products—with all kinds of ingredients—on, Jay Wright tries to undo that damage by going natural at home. After a show, she loves to make a mask with avocado and honey to keep her skin moisturized and bright. Check out some of our favorite natural and organic brands here.
Oils aren’t just for your face and hair.
Walking around in heels constantly for weeks straight? Super tiring, yes, not to mention it’s a one way ticket to blister city. (Those of us reporting backstage tend to stick with flats.) Atieno always gives her feet some love with ingredients like coconut oil, olive oil, and shea butter to make sure she’s as comfortable as possible when she’s walking down the runway.
Ice can help firm up your skin in a pinch.
Icing your face isn’t the most pleasant way to treat your skin but Victoria’s Secret model Jasmine Tookes swears by it. She typically ices her face at night to tighten her skin and help blood circulate to her face faster. Just wrap some ice in a cloth or splash your face with some icy water to de-puff quickly.