If you like beauty and you like drama… then this Beautycon NYC 2019 Recap is 100% for you! This year’s event was full of awesome moments, but unfortunately, the overall experience didn’t live up to the hype that was promised online.
I can’t lie, I’m still salty that many of the major American prestige brands did not exhibit at Beautycon NYC this year. Also, I was rather annoyed that certain brands were advertised as event sponsors but weren’t there (looking at you Bondi Sands, Dermablend, Essie, and Say Yes To). Nevertheless, I was impressed by the level of effort that the attending brands put forward.
Without a doubt, my favorite booth at the event was Sexy Hair’s “Knotty Bar” where visitors were able to have their hair styled by a professional hair stylist. Personally, I had my hair french-braided on the top and then wrapped into two teased, space buns. I felt super cute and bold the entire day. 😀 Also, Maybelline created a cute experience for attendees. Booth visitors were able to travel through a Metro-Inspired Station full of photo opportunities. Also, they gave out a free fake tattoo and a free brow product.
Honorable mention to Love Beauty and Planet who were encouraging attendees to recycle. I loved this message because of its importance to society and the environment.
Y’ALL – CVS Health had the friendliest staff at the event. Visitors could clearly tell that the staff had a passion for the brand and for the products they were selling. I loved that the booth was manned by people who work in the corporate office AND staff who work directly in CVS stores.
CVS Health, Sally’s Beauty, Revlon, and Pixi by Petra offered the best freebies. CVS Health gave out prescription bags filled with $30 worth of products from some of the new brands sold in their stores. Revlon gave attendees ~$30 worth of products by providing a full-size foundation, liquid lipstick, and some cute hair products. Pixi gave away an eye pencil, eyeshadow duo, and lipstick. Finally, Sally’s gave attendees everything they needed to take their hair color to the next level with a full hair dye kit.
I nearly screamed when I saw that Sol de Janeiro was selling products for 25% off. Similarly, I was impressed by Pixi’s 20% off discount (which was also extended after the convention). Jouer had an INSANE discount on the Skinny Dip Palette ( 2 for $15.00 USD… for a $40 palette)!
Beautycon Event Organization
This event was a mess. To summarize the experience as briefly as possible:
- Early Access attendees who arrived early on Saturday were left waiting outside with no clear direction of where to queue
- Early Access attendees were shuttled into the convention center late due to inefficient line management (anywhere from 30 – 60 minutes after the promised entry time)
- Hauler Bags were miss-filled (more on this below)
- Talent arrived late (more on this below)
Hauler Bag Drama
If we’re friends on Twitter, you’ll have seen my tweet regarding the lackluster Hauler Bag. To say this in the simplest terms:
- Beautycon overhyped the Hauler bags and they were more than half empty (and were a third of the value of previous years)
- Hauler bags mainly consisted of haircare products, but the products don’t work for all hair types (ex. they don’t work for my hair)
- Half the Hauler Bags weren’t stuffed correctly, so many attendees (including me) were missing all of the full-sized products in the bag
- Both the staff and the CEO were rude when customers brought these issues to their attention and did nothing until a group of us refused to leave the customer service area
- Many individuals never received the correct bag, but those of us that had our bags refilled had to wait more than an hour for a resolution
- The CEO was antagonizing people on Instagram and Twitter with rude comments
- Cardi B, the main headliner, arrived 3 hours late to the event
- The MainStage hall at the Javits Center was not properly managed, so people flooded the aisles and the entire room from front to back
- Beautycon staff locked people into the hall and we weren’t allowed to leave and re-enter because the MainStage area was over the max capacity
- Those of us that waited for the longest to see Cardi, couldn’t even see her when she arrived, because of the latecomers who flooded the aisles
- Women started a brawl in one aisle as tensions rose while everyone waited for Cardi to arrive
Final Thoughts & Would I Go Again?
I was honestly so shocked at the complete mismanagement of this event… especially given how this was hyped up online. I had a good experience at the LA convention, but this year’s NYC convention was so frustrating. Also, the attitude of the CEO was completely unprofessional. So many of us had to save up to attend this event and Beautycon ultimately failed to deliver on their promises and actually put people in danger on Sunday due to their mismanagement.
Unless Beautycon does something to make the situation right and unless they secure more prestige brands in 2020, I would not attend again.
Have you gone to Beautycon NYC before? What was your experience?