What Really Goes On Backstage During a Fashion Show

by Gaby Agbulos   |  Jun 13, 2017
Image: Unsplash Art: Clare Magno
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Bright lights, covet-worthy clothes that are bold, cute, and sexy all at the same time matched with flawless makeup and seamless choreography. Models that glide on the runway are perfection personified. In the audience, we mere mortals watch in awe. With each step, twirl, and turn, we think, "Damn. How do they manage to look so good?"

Cut to reality: Backstage is a different story altogether with an exciting flurry of activity that runs through each model, stylist, makeup artist and production team. What happens backstage is the exact opposite of a fashion show's elegant end-result. The atmosphere is frantic and full of panic, and the only place where the chaos stops is when the models finally step onstage. Of course, it's not just stressful for the models, but for everyone around them, too. The people doing their hair and makeup, the crew that place their markings so they know where to go, the team that makes sure that the music and lights are properly timed and that the entire production is flawless.

In short everyone backstage is stressed.

People often think that models have it easy. They walk down the runway, look pretty, get invited to the coolest parties, and get paid for doing so, too. The truth is, modeling is hard work and plenty of people don't often realize that until they've seen what goes on behind the scenes. Before the fashion show, models are required to attend go-sees and auditions, where they undergo close scrutiny and even face rejection. On the day of the show, they get up for an early call time for rehearsals and makeup. During the show, if you're a model and your walk isn't in line with the music's beat, you may get thrown off the lineup on the spot, too. Yikes! If you don't remember where to walk, you might end up falling off the stage. On top of remembering where and how to walk, you have to make sure that with each step, you look confident and strong, so you can sell the clothes you're wearing with each pose that you make.


When a model goes onstage, there's no more time to do a retouch. Makeup artists painstakingly make sure that once the model leaves their chair, her makeup will stand out against the harsh lights onstage. Stylists make sure that the clothes fit immaculately and are wardrobe-malfunction-proof. It's all in the details and there are a gazillion details in a show that could spell disaster if overlooked. 

In the end, everything needs to come together in order for everything to look put-together.

Fashion is a form of art. Designers put their heart and soul in each piece that they create and the models, along with hair and makeup artists, lighting technicians, musicians, and everyone else—no matter how big or small your role is for the show—need to work hand in hand to make sure that the fashion show goes on perfectly for the audience. In short, everyone plays an important role to make the show a complete success. It's definitely not as easy as people make it out to be, but so long as everyone involved are dedicated enough to make the show that they're producing the best one yet, all the blood, sweat, and tears backstage? They're all worth it.

Want to share your unique experiences in fashion, too? Leave a message below or tweet us @candymagdotcom. We always love hearing from you!

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About the author
Gaby Agbulos
Candymag.com Correspondent
Gaby Agbulos is a strong, determined spirit that enjoys doing anything as long as the people she loves with her. She enjoys listening to music, writing stories, and meeting new friends, especially if by friends, you mean puppies.
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