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by Liv Reis

“Models at NYFW are as young as 15 years old.” Says Gerard Scarpaci who works at ARROJO SALON, NYC and has styled hair at NYC Fashion week shows for more than 20 years. “I am sometimes shocked by how young they are. They come from all over the world and may or may not speak English. Many are students, others get in to the party scene and live hard lives, drugs are prevalent. This hard lifestyle can show on their faces.” Models “age-out” quickly, so by the time they are 25 they are no longer employed in the top designers’ shows (unless they are “super models”). There has been a backlash against the industry’s preference for models who are too thin.
The models would develop eating disorders in order to be “thin enough”, and this would then give girls and women a very unhealthy, unrealistic and distorted view of what is beautiful.”
“Most of the designers are out of their minds” Gerard admits, It’s not their money they are using, there is someone directing and dictating to them. Celebrities are paid to attend the shows. It creates a buzz and increases media coverage. Regarding the beauty products used at the shows and the makeup and hair stylists – the show doesn’t pay for the products and stylists, the product brand (eg Revlon, KMS or MAC) pays for them to use their products and for the stylists connected with their brand to do the styling. 90% of the designers at Fashion Week will never be heard from again.”

It’s a “slow roll to insanity”. Stylists arrive very early in the morning, set up and wait for the models to show up. Most models are doing multiple shows, so they usually run late and and sleep deprived. Those oh-so-sleek ponytails aren’t as the writers describe as being “a very minimal look” but are actually the result of the stylists having 10 minutes to do their hair!
Fashion week is a hectic time but, it always amazes. The beautiful colors and exotic fabrics in the limelight just for that one week! Try to make it next time!