Keywords: ethereal & whimsical...
photos courtesy of Cantu

Excited. Anxious. Nervous: These are all words that describe my feelings toward being invited backstage to my first New York Fashion Week event.

Not to mention it’s for Tracy Reese, an American designer that creates ready-to-wear feminine pieces in elaborate colors and designs for women of all shapes and sizes. In addition, Cantu sponsored the event, bringing in top hair stylists including celebrity hair stylist Bok-Hee. Within that short period of time, I was able to watch the stylists model some of the collection in action. I also spoke with Cantu’s global stylist and correspondent, Maria Antoinette, on hair trends on the runway and some of Cantu’s top products used in this show.

tracy reese fro at new york fashion week

After a quick admiration of each other’s hair, I asked Antoinette about her thoughts on the top haircuts, hairstyles and hair colors for this season and show.

“I think that we are evolving into embracing the way our hair naturally grows out of our heads. I’m seeing it everywhere. Texture has been big now for a few years, that’s been a trend--and I don’t really feel like it’s a trend when you’re born that way--but it is being embraced and that’s always a warm feeling.” says Antoinette.

As far as pulling some runway inspiration from this season's NYFW, Maria notes "texture, braids, loose waves" making major splashes. "Just an effortless effect of hair--it doesn’t have to be so prim and proper all the time."

curly hair at new york fashion week

So, the trend report says: simplicity is key"A lot of people are going for very simple, very easy type hairstyles. As far as colors? I would say that we’re really moving into a more natural effect…”

Antoinette went on to mention that there will always be a natural or two in the room who loves playing with vibrant color. However, soft and natural tones ranging from blondes to auburns to deep browns are definitely in for the upcoming season.

Naturally, I had to know what top 3 products were being used by the hair stylists backstage.

Cantu Wave Whip Curling Mousse has been a big hit during Fashion Week. "It’s got a great hold and it gives great shine." 

Maria's personal favorite? The Coil Calm Detangler "is one of my tried and true products. I love it so much. This just does amazing with detangling. Even if you’re not ready to shampoo but style, it’s great to try to break up and loosen the hair so you’re not [causing breakage and damage].”

Lastly, she tells me more about Cantu Extra Hold Edge Stay Gel, a must for sleek runway looks. "Even though we want effortless, we still want it to look finished--sometimes so this is a great way to incorporate that. I’m seeing a lot of [stylists] dabbing it on their edges and getting the flyaways into a controlled state.”

natural hair at new york fashion week

bok-hee at new york fashion week

How to get the looks

Lead hairstylist Bok-Hee created several ethereal and whimsical looks that incorporated half-up messy buns with jeweled barrettes and baby’s breath. A look that worked well with the natural hair textures of each of the models and added to the garden setting of the location. Find out how to get the look with this hair how-to by Bok-Hee:

1. Starting with the natural hair texture, work through a small amount of mousse like Cantu Wave Whip Curling Mousse to define natural wave pattern.

2. Take a large section from the sides, top and crown area and loosely pull into messy half bun, using an elastic to secure it in place. Make sure to leave a few wispy pieces falling naturally along the sides of the face back through the nape of the neck.

3. Gently tug on hair that is pulled back to add slight imperfections, then loosely pin the bun to head.

4. Spritz Cantu Coil Calm Detangler to loosen and define texture of hair that is not in the knot.

5. Finish off the look with a few  sprigs of baby’s breathe or jeweled barrette.