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Fashion Week Fades in Importance

I always love to receive resumes from applicants ages 18-24 that want to be in the beauty business. They think of glamour, lights, action and cameras. They think of celebrities, fashion and press. And most importantly, they think it is fun and a cool thing to do.

While we are in the beauty business and the business of helping others look beautiful, the glamour has typically been reserved for Fashion Week. Fashion Week is the term for the week of fashion shoots, runway presentations and such by name brand designers. Fashion Week takes place in Paris, Milan, New York and LA.

Fashion Week happens twice a year for spring and fall and usually six months prior to the start of the season (Fall 2009 is already out). Invitation only, the editors of the fashion magazines along with hordes of photographers are there to alert the world of  upcoming collections.

Most of us learn the details in magazines such as Vogue, Allure and Glamour. We see celebrities and 16-year old models doing their thing. Women love this stuff and magazines are more than willing to give them all they need to see and know.

However, the recession has brought major changes to the beauty industry and at the end of the day, who really buys the clothes we see in the magazines? Certainly not the typical reader. But those that can throw down $25,000 and up on a Chanel dress or a Prada jacket are no longer wanting to be on the VIP list to be called when the clothes arrive. Hence, stores that cater to this crowd are down big time.

We also know that chains such as H&M dig this stuff and copy what they think is hot. And sure enough, they introduce "what's hot" into their spring and fall collections.

But a funny thing is happening for the first time since fashion was invented. People no longer care about spring and fall as "tipping" points to buy clothes. This has fashion houses and retailers shaking because if this trend becomes permanent, the entire makeup of the industry will change.

Consumers are no longer swayed by an editorial feature. They have plenty of everything at home including shoes, handbags and cosmetics which all base their sales on seasonal releases.

It's time to change consumer habits before they change them for good the wrong way. Those that figure this out sooner than later will around once this mess is over.

Happy Monday!

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