There will not always be a stylist, make-up artist, and hair stylist on set with you, specifically for your test shoots, you should always be prepared with basic items that might be needed:
These can come in handy if a garment gets torn or needs to be quickly altered on set.
Used to clamp clothing if it’s too big or somehow needs to be altered.
This is a stylists’ best friend and is used very often on shoots. It helps a garment stay in place, hides straps, closes gaps, and helps with a quick alteration on set.(Try the “Hollywood Fashion Tape” [pictured] from Beth, Bath & Beyond, www.bedbathandbeyond.com, or Topstick, which is originally used to attach hairpieces, but has become a great stylist tool, www.sallybeauty.com).
This can come in handy to remove lint and hair from darker color fabrics, and will help to minimize retouching on your images. (I love the “Travel Size Lint Roller/Refill” and “Rescue Sponge” from Miss Oops [pictured]. The Rescue Sponges are great to remove deodorant or make-up from your clothing without any water and the travel size lint roller is perfect for a model bag, www.missoops.com).
I called upon Beauty Editor and cosmetic expert, Artemis, to give me a few cosmetic suggestions, so the following are some of her recommendations and favorite products to include in your model bag:
Make-up and brushes:
When it comes to choosing the correct make-up, Artemis says, “Make sure that your foundation matches your skin tone. In a photo shoot, you need to match your face to your body. You should also include setting powder and concealer”.
False lashes and glue:
False eyelashes can help make your eyes look bigger and are especially important when shooting full-length shots. Artemis says: “Ardell Lashes and Duo Eyelash Adhesive are the best!” Both are available at your local drugstore.
Artemis suggests “Elnett by L’Oreal” because “you can brush it out & move on to a new style without residue”. This becomes very important on shoots where you will be doing multiple looks and hairstyles will be changing.
Curling and Flat Iron:
Artemis recommends the “T3 Tourmaline blow dryer” and “CHI by Farouk flat irons” [both pictured].
Always use lotion on the areas of your body that will be exposed when shooting. This will keep your skin from looking dry and ashy. Artemis’ fave is “Nivea Essentially Enriched Daily Lotion for Very Dry, Rough Skin. It is a body cream that includes oil, so it makes skin very shiny, without being greasy”. Available at your local drug store.
Clients will sometimes request extensions to achieve the look of fuller or longer hair, so having extensions that match your hair color precisely will give your clients more options when deciding what hair styles to choose for you. Stores that sell hair extensions can help you achieve the perfect match for your hair color, and you can take your extensions to your hair stylist and have them styled specifically to suit your haircut.
It’s also a good idea to bring a hair brush, hair bands and bobby pins.
As a model, you should have a variety of basic heels, pumps, and boots in different colors that will work for any situation. From a stylist perspective, it is much easier to use a pair of the models shoes because we know they will fit well and most often we have to return the shoes that we have pulled for shoots so it can be tricky to keep them looking unworn, especially when shooting on location.
Pumps and heels that you select for your bag should all have a thin heel that is at least 1.5″ to 2″ high with a somewhat pointy toe. If you are a shorter model, then select a higher heel to compensate and give the illusion of a longer leg. You do not need to break the bank on shoes that you will be using strictly for your bag. Stores like Payless Shoe Source and Target offer great basics that are very affordable. I recommend that you start building your shoe collection with the following basics:
Basic pumps in black, brown and metallic. (Try the BCBGeneration ‘Alena” pump from Nordstrom [pictured], www.nordstrom.com, or the “Mossimo ‘Virginia’ pumps from Target, www.target.com.)
Strappy sandals w/ heel- black, metallic in silver and/or gold. (I love the “Miss Puerto Rico Divina Sandal” from Payless Shoe Source [pictured] because of the multi-tone metallic color and the extra high heel, www.payless.com).
Nude and/or clear heels– these are important specifically for runway modeling when your shoe needs to remain inconspicuous.
Boots- black/brown– mid-calf length boots with a thinner heel are best. Grey is also a great basic color to have as well. (Try the “Saddle Stitch Fashion Boot” from Lane Bryant, www.lanebryant.com, or the Sea Platform Boot from The Avenue, www.theavenue.com [both pictured]. Boots from Torrid, The Avenue, and Lane Bryant will all offer boots for wider calves.)
So, there you have it! Having a complete model bag is a great start to accomplishing all of your modeling goals. It is so refreshing to work with models that are prepared and have taken the time to focus on the job at hand and bring the correct “tools” with them to a shoot. Remember- “Luck is when preparation meets opportunity”, so always be prepared, put your best foot forward and handle yourself with professionalism- I guarantee it will be noted!