On April 21st and 22nd, the massive beauty convention known as "Beautycon" descended upon New York City. With a myriad of tutorials, samples, demonstrations, and panels available at the event, it ended up being a real who's-who of the cosmetics industry. We visited the event to see what all the fuss was about, and what we found was a fun and informative convention full of the right products to help take your beauty routine to the next level. And don't worry - if you think New York's looked exciting, you can still make it to LA's on July 14-15th!
Beautycon was held at the Javits Center in NYC, which made it an epicenter of activity for the day. Upon entry, one could immediately sense the buzz in the air as thousands of people excitedly queued up to get a look at the future of cosmetics. Upon entry, one couldn't help but notice the class and elegance with which fellow convention goers carried their selves. Fans, influencers, children and the merely curious mixed it up on the floor and at panels. With a wide variety of activities and diverse groups of attendees and guests, Beautycon set a standard for true representation.
Among the many panelists and guests for the event were Paris Hilton, Korean model Irene, Zendaya, Gigi Gorgeous, and Laverne Cox. A predominant theme among several of the guests' panels was overcoming adversity, which gave the event depth and highlighted how cosmetics can be used for impactful change. Speakers Bobbi Brown and Laverne Cox proved particularly graceful and resonated well with the receptive crowd. Even if you were just passing by the stage area while searching for the next best booth, you couldn't help but listen to their compelling stories.
At the SHE-eo panel, SOKO Glam founder Charlotte Cho spoke about moving up from selling Korean beauty products from her personal belongings and starting off as a two person business before striking gold. Moderator Gigi Gorgeous was very nice, punctuating the responses from panelists with insight. The panelists spoke about women supporting women, with Bobbi Brown noting "watch your words on your YouTube channel; be constructive, so people can build each other up. [...] The same women that you knock, you're gonna see at the top." With a common theme of humble beginnings, the panelists concurred that there was "no limit to what you can do as women."
Korean beauty was a highlight of the event, with a whole K-Town section of the convention floor dedicated to the best and brightest names in the field. Having the star power of figures like Irene helped, but there was also a certain excitement among fans and aficionados just looking to check out the latest Korean beauty supplies. Brands like Amorepacific and Laneige represented alongside Sulwhasoo and IOPE, with some of the hottest names in the industry coming along to dish out tips and tales.
As a component of the larger movement known as the Korean wave, the Korean beauty industry's recent success on the world scale has been exciting to watch. Throughout flyers, advertisements, displays, and conversations, Korean beauty products dominated. Based on the guests and the impressive floor space dedicated to K-Beauty, it was clear that the organizers saw a lot of potential in the scene and its offerings.
Korean model and personality Irene's panel was very well received, and her subsequent meet and greet drew one of the largest crowds of the event. Walking with poise and confidence, Irene solidified her place at the forefront of the Korean wave. She spoke about beauty with a refreshingly grounded perspective and made a point of encouraging people to challenge expectations and overcome personal obstacles. In addition, she launched her merchandise line at the event, which served as a perfect cherry on top to her "Niche is the New Norm" panel.
The floor space given to beauty brands to show off their work provided some of the most interesting sights of the event, with many brands opting for fabulously detailed sets and props. The elaborate displays helped provide thematic imagery alongside the products showcased, with powerhouse Besfren New York standing out. Free samples (and accessories like the light-up crowns seen throughout the event) were plentiful, and brands like Laneige_US and Amore Pacific made a point of having areas where fans could take photos.
Live DJs C. Devone and Tiff McFierce kept things exciting for everyone with a mix of dance jams and badass bangers, filling the social lounge with a great soundtrack to the meetings with creators. The area acted as a sort of resting zone for tired convention-goers, while simultaneously carrying an upbeat vibe. You could apply your free face mask and listen to a sizzling Beyoncé mash-up; anything was possible.
Beautycon was notable because it was genuinely diverse, a showcase of people of many different backgrounds presenting to an audience with just as much variety. Some guests dressed up for the occasion, with one particularly brave soul opting for a transparent-jacket-over-turtleneck look. You could find brilliant makeup on people of all ages and genders, which made the event a bastion of expression. For those who were looking for something completely new, several spots on the floor had full makeovers available, with long excited lines eager to see the makeup artists' work. Beautycon was part fantasy world, part motivational, and all excitement. At Beautycon, beauty was more than just looks; it was what you could create when you're equipped and inspired.
Beautycon will be at the LA Convention Center in Los Angeles, California on July 14th and 15th this year. Tickets are still available here, so if you're looking to get in on a full weekend of cosmetic fantasy and fun, get on it now!