IMATS NYC - The Preparation!!!
This is the first year IMATS will be held in NYC and many of us are excited! For a lot of us, including myself, this will be our first IMATS experience. I am not an expert on makeup shows but I can share a little insight on what to expect and how to prepare for the big day(s).
¦ What should you EXPECT?
Crowds, long lines and lots of waiting. Pack your patience...it will be a long day for sure. Get there as early as possible to get the most out of the show. Be early for any shows/classes/demos you may be interested in seeing because they will fill up fast.
Expect the unexpected. Many companies debut new products at these shows. The products may not be available to the mass market for months and you will be able to take advantage of the preview.
¦ Do your RESEARCH beforehand
Make sure to check the IMATS - NYC Website for a complete list of exhibitors and classes/events that are scheduled for the show. Most of the exhibitors have website which are linked through the IMATS exhibitor list. Do the research and check out any companies that peak your interest. Remember that some of these companies are new and relatively unknown but may have great products available.
¦ Create a LIST/PLAN
The best advice I can give you is to create a LIST and take with you. Your list should include
ü The companies you want to browse
ü The specific products you want to check out
ü The shows/demos/classes to want to attend
¦ Study the FLOOR PLAN
Grab a copy of the Floor Plan from the IMATS website and highlight the booths that you are interested in visiting. This will help to minimize the time spent walking around in circles or searching for a specific booth or company.
¦ Be prepared to pay CASH
Cash will be the preferred form of payment at these types of events. I know not all of us are comfortable carrying cash around, especially a lot of it, but be prepared to pay in cash for your purchases. Many of the smaller booths may not have a system to process credit/debit card purchases so cash will be the only available way to purchase items. Also, the credit/debit card systems can crash and leave you with a list of wants but no way to pay.
Besides, having cash will definitely keep you on budget since once it's gone it's gone!
¦ Will DISCOUNTS be offered at the booths?
Discounts are offered at the discretion of each exhibitor. Discounts are not guaranteed and may not be offered so do not be disappointed. Many of the smaller 'indy' companies may not offer a discount but may offer great deals and bargains. The larger companies may only offer discounts to PRO members. But overall, there will be great buys available for you to take advantage of. Bear all this in mind when considering what to purchase.
¦ What COMPANIES should you see?
I know you all want to know which companies to check out from the current Exhibitor List and I want to say that this is subjective. It will depend on what you are interested in. I would advise that you check out companies that are not easily accessible to you first off and grab products that are hard to find. Then check out the well-known companies for products you need to stock up on or products you just always wanted to try.
C BeautySoClean - Specializes in products used to sanitize makeup without altering the texture or formula. Great for makeup pros and those of us who live for great hygiene.
C Embryolisse - Great skincare products that are well loved in the industry. The products are also harder to get a hold of.
C Inglot - Great products all around and only available in select cities. They also have great deals and are usually crowded.
C Glamcor LLC - New on the scene with state-of-the-art vanity setups, LED lighting and even brushes. Great for PROs and up-and-comers.
C OCC - Another great company that is hard to check out in person. Take advantage of the chance to play around with the products while you can.
C There will also be many brush companies in the mix so be sure to check them out to see what they offer.
C I think the student competition will be a great hit so maybe plan on attending that show at 2pm.
¦ What to TAKE with you?
Enthusiasm, patience, excitement, your love of makeup...but you probably already knew that. But to be more practical, here are a few things that are essential:
ü Be sure to bring your e-ticket, a copy of your receipt and picture ID. There will be an Online Pre-Sale Ticket desk at the main entrance to grant you entry to the show. Otherwise, you can purchase your ticket at the door - 1 day ticket: $40 USD, 2 day ticket: $70 USD.
ü Your pre-written LIST/PLAN and highlighted FLOOR PLAN.
ü Watch or cell phone to keep track of the time. You wouldn't want to miss the shows would you? And set alarms for shows you don't want to miss!
ü Professional documentation if you wish to sign up for any PRO ONLY programs offer by companies at the show. Typical documentation includes: Composite Card, Business Card with name and specific profession, Editorial Page with name credit, Union Card, Professional License, Diploma/Certificate, Publication Masthead, Program/press Materials with name, Contract on Production Company Letterhead, Crew/Call List on Prod. Co. Letterhead, Professional Letter of Reference of Employment.
ü For PROs, remember to carry Business Cards. This is your time to netwrok so be prepared to hand out many business cards and receive many in return.
ü A snack and a bottle of water. You will get hungry and you may even forget to eat lunch. But we need our strength as we 'oooh' and 'ahhhh' at all the pretty makeup.
ü Wipes. A must-have for me since you will be getting your hands dirty!
ü A camera to capture great memories and experiences, awesome swatches and products, people you meet and just the overall euphoria of it all.
ü Pack light! You will be carrying around a lot of products once you start purchasing so make sure your hands are mostly empty to start with. A big empty (comfy) bag may actually be a good choice to take with you as well.
ü Wear comfortable shoes and clothes for lots of walking and standing.