Monday, August 12, 2013


On August 9th, I had the pleasure of sitting in on the dress rehearsal for the fifteenth annual Chicago Macy's Glamorama, “Fashion In A New Light”.  Without a doubt, this is one of the city’s most important fashion extravaganza of the new season and most anticipated.  As a professional performer, I know all too well the importance of a dress rehearsal.  For those that had any involvement in structuring the performance, but especially the on-stage performers, show time is always a time of excitement, peppered with nerves and anticipation.  For those attending the show, dress rehearsal or not, there is always an aura of excitement, and for an event such as this, it’s THE fashion highlight for Chicago's media, sponsors and fashionistas.

The palpable excitement of this show combined artistry with showmanship and also philanthropy, as a fundraiser for Ronald MacDonald House Charities.  For entertainment, there was Sheryl Crow, Cirque de Soleil, and Summer Set (winners of Macy's iHeartRadio Rising Star contest).  For fashion, there were some of fashion's hottest designers, including Philosophy, Weekend Max Mara, Tommy Hilfiger, Diesel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Rachel Rachel Roy, Maison Jules, and TALLIA Orange

Well-scripted, rehearsed and executed, the visuals for each exciting fashion segment were carefully choreographed to spotlight fashion’s hottest trends.  The use of lighting, where colors changed dramatically within each segment, underscored the show’s theme “Fashion In A New Light” by transforming individual looks into personalities of their own.  The show was a feast for the eyes with a rapid tempo that never dragged and kept you wanting more. 

While the show's costumes were the designer fashions and the main attraction, noted Lancôme National Makeup Artist Alex Sanchez performed his makeup wizardry by bringing each designer's outfit to life with flawless looks in the season's latest and greatest colors.  He and his crew turned out some of the most exquisite looks for the show by using iconic Lancôme Paris Cosmetics.  The color palates and finished looks beautifully accentuated each individual designer fashion segment, emphasizing the show's theme.  While each designer fashion represented individuality, so too did the Lancôme Paris colors, which were transformed from subtle to intense, natural to glam.  

Before the start of the dress rehearsal, I had a few moments to chat with Alex Sanchez backstage and what I took away from our time together was his incredible passion for art and architecture, especially design elements of form, function and beauty.  This passion was apparent in the variety of looks he created throughout the designer segments.  The gamut ran from unstructured, casual, funky, classic, dressy to tailored.  Adapting makeup to a "look" is key in how one develops that "look", no matter the clothes or label.  Beauty is universal and lies in how one perceives it.  A person must feel "dressed" in their own skin.  Like any work of art, a clean canvas is key and when dealing with the application of makeup to the skin, it is critical that the individual maintains a skincare regimen that maintains their "canvas" in a healthy condition.  As I’ve written so many times before, it’s great getting validation from someone like Alex Sanchez.  Good skincare is indeed the basis for all great looks.

I also had a chance to try some of the new Lancôme Paris colors and test how easily they went on, how easy it was to take the colors from a natural and subtle look, to an intense glam look; I was also interested in seeing the endurance or staying power of the colors and to see if there was any fade.   For the eyes, there were two palate compacts; Hynose Star 'It Accessories (Midnight Rush) and the other in browns, Hynose Drama 'It Accessories' (Taupe Craze); both all-in-one color compacts included base, lid, crease, highlighter and liner/contour colors.  Ease of application was wonderful and pulled double duty, dry or wet; staying power was favorable and I loved the ability to be subtle or intense with the applications; the browns especially flattered my fair skin tone.  

For thick lashes, there was Hynose Drama Mascara (black); sometimes it clumped and I had to separate the one in blues, lashes, but the look was intense and lashes appeared fuller and longer.  For the cheeks, there's Blush Subtl (Cedar Rose); used sparingly, this color accentuated my cheeks beautifully; the loved the brush, which had a luxurious feel to it.  For the lips, there was Gloss In Love (Peach Show) and Rouge In Love lipstick (Soft Peach); application was easy and colors went on smoothly without smudging or feathering; the lipstick went on first, followed by an application of the gloss, which intensified the colors, while maintaining the natural subtlety of the colors.  

Lastly, there was an intense True Red Vernis In Love nail color, which I didn't get around to trying, but when I do, more than likely it'll be on my tosies; there’s nothing like having red nail lacquer on the toes to glam-up the peds!  To see the entire line of beautiful colors, go to
The beautiful Lancôme Paris colors made the fashions looks in the show come to life, and while I'll never be a fashion model, at least I can wear beautiful colors inspired by fashion on my perfectly maintained skin.  In closing, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the performances by Cirque de Soleil, Cheryl Crow and Summer Set at the dress rehearsal.  Cirque's Mystere was well represented with the phenomenal talents and body-perfect athletes, whose ballet movements were a marvel to watch.  The musical numbers of both Cheryl Crow and Summer Set were obliterated by too heavy a bass that should've been adjusted by the sound engineers as the dress rehearsal progressed; it was disappointing to lose out of these acts and their respective performances by not being able to hear a truly balanced representation of each musical group's harmony and solo bits; even portions of the music in Cirque's presentation were obliterated.  I realize that it was the dress rehearsal, but in every dress rehearsal I’ve performed in, sound, lighting, blocking, script and movement were always adjusted as it was occurring if it was off even a miniscule amount.  I hope that the necessary sound adjustments were made in time for the actual show, which was later that evening, so those in attendance had a much better appreciation for the individual talents of each group.

In closing, always remember that being fashionable is enjoying the skin you're in and not being affected by someone else and what they look like or what they’re wearing.  Dress for yourself and enjoy whatever you wear and whatever look you’re going for that defines your individuality and uniqueness.  That is part of real beauty.

That's it for this edition.  Until the next one, remember to take care of yourself and those you love. 

By Terry Herman

Terry Herman is a recognized expert in the industry, and regularly covers issues that include business, management, operations, customer care, treatments, products, and trends. In the 1990s, she authored an extensive "Glossary of Spa Terminologies" and holds two copyright registrations.  Consumer and trade publications have also interviewed her as an expert.  She also conducted an extensive nationally broadcasted interview tour on aspects of creating an at-home spa, interior design, stress and time management.  Her work has been published extensively in print and online in both consumer and trade publications.  In addition to writing, reviewing and being interviewed as an expert, she is also a management consultant and motivational speaker.  She currently serves on EXPERIENCE | PREMCHIT Journeys In Retreat To Wellness Advisory Board, which is comprised of ten international experts in various fields of wellness and spa.  She also served as a Group Manager for the popular LinkedIn group, The Spa Buzz.  You can email her at


(Introductory photo from  Photo of Alex Sanchez from primpandpout, Instagram.  All other photo credits as represented by Lancôme Paris.)

N.B.  Google’s blog platform is incompatible with my Mac OS X and Firefox browser latest software versions, which is why some web links appear in different colors and why when attempting to have embedded images their sizing is consistent and/or can’t be sized. 

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