Hello lovely followers,
I hope you are all having a great week so far!
This post has been a very long time coming! I attended IMATS back in May this year and it has been on my draft list for ages! I first attended IMATS with a friend a few years ago, long before I became a makeup artist and beauty blogger, and even then I was hooked!
So what is IMATS?
IMATS stands for International Makeup Artist Trade Show! It is the world’s largest celebration of makeup artistry and creativity. Every year, thousands of make-up artists, exhibitors, and enthusiasts attend the how to discuss, display and collect the best the makeup industry has to offer. Professionals from the fashion and film sectors also attend to provide education and demonstrations at IMATS, and new products often debut there. IMATS also features a make-up museum and the Battle of the Brushes student makeup competitions, where international makeup students race to create winning looks! It’s basically a makeup lovers paradise!
Before IMATS, there were no trade shows specifically designed for make-up artists so to address this, Emmy Award-winning make-up artist and Make-Up Artist magazine publisher Michael Key held the first IMATS in August 1997 in Los Angeles. IMATS then expanded to Europe in 2002, with the debut of IMATS London and now you can attend it in many different places around the globe – the show is held six times annually in Los Angeles; New York; London; Vancouver, B.C.; Sydney; and Toronto.
This year’s IMATS was, as expected, amazing! I booked my ticket to go months in advance for £45 and by the time the day finally arrived I was so excited I could barely sit still! It was at this year’s event that I actually found out you can sign up for a Pro card which provides lots of additional benefits depending on which level of card you qualify for. I will definitely be applying for the card for next year’s show – you can find out more here.
This year, I attended the event alone and despite arriving pretty early I still had to queue to get in. However, the buzz in the queue was great and everyone was super excited! Once I arrived at the entrance, this is what I walked into:
The atmosphere was crazy! Everywhere you looked there were people shopping, trying makeup, displaying artistic work – it was overwhelming! The first thing I decided to do was find my bearings, as there were loads of makeup brand stands I wanted to visit. Looking back and through the many photographs I took, which are all shared in this post, I am sure there were some I missed!
Where do I start? There were some familiar loved makeup brands and then a whole host of brands I had never heard of or tried before. I was literally in heaven! I’ll start with the brands we all know and love:
- Kat Von D
- Urban Decay
- Beauty Bakerie
- Lime Crime
- Makeup Forever
- Bobbi Brown
As you can imagine all these stands were busy all day long! A few of them I could not even get close enough to look at the displays!
You can see all the brands had good sized displays and there were some lovely products to buy! Most of the items were available in their normal stores although some of the brands did have offers purely for the show. Watch out for my next post with details of all the makeup I spoilt myself with!
The lesser known brands and those that I had never heard of or bought anything from were:
- Treasure House of Makeup
- Royal Langnickel
- Makeup Atelier
- Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics
- The Makeup Outlet
- Guru Makeup Emporium
- Bdellium Tools
- Louise Young
- Naked Cosmetics
- Lash Unlimited
- Ben Nye
Exploring these brands was the most fun for me! They sold general makeup and accessories to heavy duty theatrical face and body cosmetics! I got to test makeup by brands I had always wanted to try like Makeup Atelier and Ben Nye and play with lashes by Velour! One of my favourite discoveries was Guru Makeup Emporium which stocked Danessa Myricks photographic makeup – her makeup is exceptional! But my highlight had to be visiting the HakuHodo stand! This brand produces some of the finest makeup brushes in the world! There were so many to pick from, I was like a child in a candy shop! You could tell just from the feel of them that they were going to deliver excellent results and the available ranges covered every type of brush possible.
Was it worth attending IMATS 2017?
Without a doubt yes! If you love makeup and meeting other people that love makeup, this is the event you have to attend each year. You’ll see what treasures I picked up in my next post, but even without spending, it is such a fun and vibrant day out, filled with colour and variety and just by talking to the brand staff you can learn so much. I am already planning for 2018 IMATS – tickets will go on sale 6 months before the day, which will be in May again. For full information check out the IMATS website here. Who’s going to join me? Let me know in the comments and don’t forget to follow and subscribe!
Watch out for my next makeup reveal post on my gorgeous IMATS purchases!