Toronto Fashion Week is just over a week away, which means it’s time to make like a beaver and get busy preparing all your outfits, appointments and survival essentials. There’s nothing I love more than a good survival kit and, having spent enough time wrangling the fashion and festival circuits, I thought I’d share a few of my favourite things. Pack them in your tote, store them at the office or keep a stash in your car — just make sure you have these can’t-live-without products on-hand during Canada’s most stylish week.
1. No matter how slammin’ you want to look in your five-inch stilettos, a lot of standing (and walking) goes on during Fashion Week as you wait to go into the next show. Those feet are going to get tired, so make sure you pack a pair of compact flats in your bag like Dr. Scholl’s Fast Flats ($12.47 at Walmart).
2. It’s not just feet that will be feeling fatigued, since your eyes are also in for a rough ride of late nights (did anyone say after-party?) and early morning wake-up calls. Canadian skin care company Elizabeth Grant has just the remedy for your tired and puffy peepers in the form of their Collagen Re-Inforce Rejuvenating Gel Eye Pads ($35 CAD, available at www.elizabethgrant.com).
3. Ah, Batiste Dry Shampoo. This little beauty gem will help extend your blowdry and let you go an extra day without washing ($8.99 from Shoppers Drug Mart).
4. I’m currently obsessed with Garnier Skin Renew 5 Second Blur Instant Smoother because, unlike other skin primers and perfectors, it comes in a great big generous tube ($19.99 at mass market drug stores).
5. The most important thing to remember during Fashion Week is to stay hydrated! It will keep you awake and looking fresh, but to save the planet from plastic bottles, plan on carrying your own drink canister at all times. Vancouver-based Obakki’s Of BKR Bottle ($29) will do just the job, while also contributing to building wells in South Sudan.
6. And while you’re hydrating that body, don’t forget to spritz that skin with Kosmea Australia’s Hydrating Rosewater Mist ($26.99, available at www.abundancenaturally.com). Made with a thousand delicately distilled rose petals, it will hydrate, refresh, soothe, cool and protect you from the bitter winter and harsh heating in the tents.
7. SkinCeuticals Serum 10 ($96 CAD, available at www.skinceuticals.com/canada) is a one-stop, do everything beauty product to both prevent and fix any Fashion Week skin problems. Use it as a detox at the end of the week or lather it on at the beginning because once absorbed, this defensive serum can't be washed or rubbed off. It remains effective for a minimum of 72 hours! Mind is sufficiently blown.
8. So here’s my dirty little secret: I always keep some sort of snack in my bag because food is sparse and far-between at the tents. I’ve also recently discovered Canadian-based company Girlnola, makers of a yummy, gluten-free Berrynana Mix for just $4.99.
9. Finally, for all those Fashion Week quick fixes, you’re going to need the help of a good concealer (both for hiding dark circles and the occasional pimple). I love Hard Candy Cosmetics' new Glamoflauge Light ($5.98 CAD, available exclusively at Walmart), which is cheap enough to keep one in each of your bags, allowing you to cover at will all those pesky imperfections. It also comes with two different colour tips for customizable colour combinations, allowing you to achieve the perfect skin-tone match.