There’s unseasonably warm and then there’s record-breaking heat. Back for our second behind the scenes visit to Charleston Fashion Week on Wednesday, we got to see Hair and Makeup Director Ashley Brook Perryman’s team rise to the challenge not only with their assigned tasks but also with the wilting temperatures inside their tent.

Arrayed on either side of a table about as long as three Escalades parked bumper to bumper, hair dressers on one side and makeup artists on the other, the team already had a successful opening night behind them and they bent to their work on this afternoon shrugging off the weather like the veterans they are.
“Remember that year it poured down rain?” someone remarked, sparking laughter and perhaps, at this moment, a nostalgic fondness for sweetly refreshing thunderstorms. While portable fans struggled to offer relief, models were attended and cycled through the work stations without pause. Each designer’s models have individual looks to go with their runway garb, so if you’re showing as many designers as CFW does every night, work for the hair and makeup team just keeps coming.

But these pros stay at it, on their feet, all day long. And they come back to do it again year after year. They’re happy to tell you how much they love it. But we really didn’t need to be told. You can see it in their concentration, their cheerfulness, and energy. No matter what the weatherman throws at them.

Even as staff went back and forth distributing water bottles, we began wondering if makeup and hair products can actually melt. 

Amidst all the carefully choreographed bustle, more than just the team’s stamina and resolve got tested.

A tech crew member trundled past and hunched down at the portable power junction hunting a popped circuit breaker, shaking his head. “I hate hair dryers and curling irons.”

If the magic has a price it might well be measured in watts and water bottles.

And that magic? Well, no matter what got thrown at them, everybody looked amazing.

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