#6 | Backstage Etiquette: How to Behave?

Entering the glamorous world of modeling isn't just about strutting down the runway or striking a pose for the camera; it's also about mastering the art of backstage etiquette. Behind the scenes of runway shows and photoshoots lies a bustling environment filled with energy, excitement, and, at times, chaos. Understanding and embodying backstage etiquette is crucial for models who wish to thrive in this fast-paced industry.

Backstage etiquette goes beyond mere politeness; it's about conducting oneself with professionalism and grace in every interaction and situation. Whether you're navigating a crowded dressing room, waiting for your turn in hair and makeup, or rehearsing choreography with fellow models, how you carry yourself backstage speaks volumes about your character and reliability as a model.

In this article, we'll delve into the importance of backstage etiquette and provide valuable insights on how to navigate this dynamic environment with finesse. From respecting your peers and managing your time effectively to communicating clearly and handling pressure with ease, we'll cover all aspects of backstage conduct to help you shine both on and off the runway. So, get ready to elevate your professionalism and make a lasting impression behind the scenes of your next modeling gig. 


1. Understanding the Environment 

Backstage is a world unto itself, teeming with activity and pulsating with energy. It's a realm where time moves at lightning speed, and every second counts. As models, we step into this whirlwind of excitement, knowing that behind the scenes lies a canvas where dreams come to life.

Picture a backstage area bustling with hairstylists, makeup artists, wardrobe assistants, and models, each with a task to fulfill and a role to play. The space is often cramped, with barely enough room to move, yet somehow, amidst the chaos, there's an air of anticipation and anticipation.

In this environment, the ability to remain calm and composed is paramount. Despite the frenetic pace and the pressure of impending deadlines, maintaining a cool demeanor is key. It's about keeping your wits about you, even when the world around you seems to be in a frenzy.

Adaptability is another essential trait backstage. Circumstances can change in the blink of an eye, requiring us to pivot and adjust our approach accordingly. Whether it's a last-minute wardrobe malfunction or a sudden change in the show's schedule, being able to roll with the punches is crucial.

In the midst of the chaos, remember to breathe, to stay centered, and to trust in your abilities. With the right mindset and a willingness to embrace the unpredictability of backstage life, you'll not only survive but thrive in this dynamic environment.

2. Respect for Others 

Respect is the cornerstone of backstage etiquette, binding together the diverse individuals who collaborate to bring a vision to life. As models, we are part of a team—a team that includes hairstylists, makeup artists, wardrobe assistants, and countless others, each contributing their expertise to the production.

In the frenetic environment backstage, where tensions can run high and time is of the essence, showing respect for one another is paramount. It's about recognizing the value of each person's contribution and treating them with the dignity and courtesy they deserve.

When we respect our fellow models, we create an atmosphere of camaraderie and mutual support. We understand that we are all in this together, striving towards a common goal, and that our success is intertwined with the success of those around us.

Likewise, showing respect for hairstylists, makeup artists, and other crew members demonstrates our appreciation for their talents and hard work. It's about acknowledging the expertise and dedication they bring to their craft and recognizing the vital role they play in the production process.

Being courteous, cooperative, and considerate of others' time and space is not just a matter of professionalism; it's a reflection of our character and integrity as individuals. By embodying these qualities backstage, we not only elevate the experience for ourselves but also contribute to the harmonious and collaborative spirit of the entire team.

3. Time Management

Time management is the backbone of success backstage, where every minute is precious and can make all the difference between a smooth production and a chaotic mess. As models, we must recognize the critical role that punctuality plays in ensuring the seamless execution of runway shows and photoshoots.

Arriving punctually for fittings, rehearsals, and call times is not just a courtesy; it's an essential part of our professional responsibility. Being on time demonstrates our reliability and commitment to the production team, instilling confidence in our ability to fulfill our role effectively.

To excel in time management backstage, it's essential to stay organized and prepared. This means packing your model bag with all the essentials well in advance, from wardrobe options to beauty products, ensuring that you have everything you need to perform your best.

Following the schedule closely is another key aspect of effective time management. Familiarize yourself with the production timeline, including rehearsal times, hair and makeup appointments, and show start times, and adhere to it rigorously. By staying on schedule, you not only avoid delays but also contribute to the overall efficiency of the production.

Remember, time is a precious commodity backstage, and how we manage it speaks volumes about our professionalism and dedication as models. By prioritizing punctuality, organization, and adherence to the schedule, we set ourselves up for success and ensure that every moment backstage is maximized to its fullest potential.

4. Professionalism in Action

Professionalism is more than just a word; it's a mindset and a set of behaviors that define how we conduct ourselves in the modeling industry. Backstage, professionalism is not only expected but also essential for success. It's about embodying a positive attitude, following instructions diligently, and executing tasks with efficiency and precision.

Maintaining a positive attitude is one of the hallmarks of professionalism backstage. Regardless of the challenges or setbacks we may encounter, approaching every situation with optimism and resilience sets the tone for a productive and harmonious environment.

Following instructions from the production team is another critical aspect of professionalism. Whether it's adhering to rehearsal schedules, following wardrobe guidelines, or executing choreography accurately, our ability to listen and follow directions demonstrates our commitment to the production's success.

Efficiently handling wardrobe changes is also indicative of professionalism backstage. Models who can transition seamlessly between looks, ensuring that each garment is presented flawlessly, are highly valued for their reliability and attention to detail.

The impact of professionalism extends beyond the backstage environment; it shapes our reputation and opens doors to future opportunities in the industry. Models who consistently demonstrate professionalism earn the trust and respect of their peers and industry professionals, paving the way for continued success and advancement in their careers.

5. Communication Skills

Effective communication is the lifeblood of backstage operations, facilitating smooth collaboration and ensuring that everyone is on the same page. As models, honing our communication skills is essential for building strong working relationships with hairstylists, makeup artists, wardrobe stylists, and other crew members.

Clear and concise communication is key to conveying our preferences, needs, and expectations backstage. Whether it's discussing our desired hair and makeup looks or providing feedback on wardrobe choices, articulating our thoughts and preferences in a straightforward manner ensures that everyone is aligned and working towards a common goal.

Voicing concerns is another important aspect of communication backstage. If something doesn't feel right or if we have reservations about a particular aspect of the production, it's crucial to speak up respectfully and assertively. By addressing issues proactively, we can prevent misunderstandings and ensure that any concerns are addressed promptly.

Resolving conflicts diplomatically is also an essential skill for models backstage. In a high-pressure environment where tensions can run high, conflicts may arise from time to time. By approaching conflicts with a calm and composed demeanor, actively listening to the perspectives of others, and seeking mutually beneficial solutions, we can maintain harmony and keep the focus on the task at hand.

Ultimately, effective communication backstage fosters a collaborative and supportive atmosphere, where everyone feels heard, valued, and respected. By mastering communication skills, models can enhance their professional relationships and contribute to the overall success of the production.

6. Personal Presentation

Backstage, personal presentation is not just about looking good; it's about projecting professionalism and confidence in every aspect of our appearance and demeanor. As models, our personal presentation speaks volumes about our attention to detail, self-respect, and commitment to excellence.

Grooming plays a crucial role in personal presentation backstage. Clean, well-groomed hair and nails, fresh breath, and subtle, tasteful makeup contribute to a polished appearance that exudes professionalism and attention to detail.

Attire is another important aspect of personal presentation. Dressing appropriately for the occasion, whether it's a casual rehearsal or a formal runway show, demonstrates our understanding of the dress code and our respect for the production's aesthetic.

Body language is a powerful form of communication, and how we carry ourselves backstage can influence how others perceive us. Maintaining good posture, making eye contact, and exuding confidence through our demeanor all contribute to a positive first impression and convey professionalism and self-assurance.

By paying attention to our personal presentation backstage, we not only enhance our own confidence but also inspire confidence in others. A well-groomed, well-dressed, and confident model is a valuable asset to any production, and by prioritizing personal presentation, we set ourselves up for success both on and off the runway.

7. Handling Pressure and Stress

Backstage, especially during high-stakes events like fashion shows, pressure and stress can be ever-present companions. As models, it's essential to develop strategies for managing these challenges effectively, ensuring that we perform at our best even under the most demanding circumstances.

One of the most powerful tools for handling pressure and stress backstage is deep breathing exercises. Taking slow, deep breaths can help calm the nervous system, reduce tension, and restore a sense of calm and focus amidst the chaos.

Visualization techniques are another effective way to manage pressure and stress backstage. By mentally rehearsing our performance and visualizing success, we can instill confidence in ourselves and alleviate anxiety about the outcome.

Positive self-talk is also crucial for maintaining a resilient mindset backstage. Instead of dwelling on negative thoughts or self-doubt, consciously replace them with affirmations and encouraging statements. Remind yourself of past successes, focus on your strengths, and believe in your ability to rise to the occasion.

Additionally, it's important to prioritize self-care backstage, even in the midst of a hectic schedule. Taking short breaks to rest and recharge, staying hydrated, and nourishing your body with healthy snacks can all help mitigate the effects of stress and keep you feeling grounded and centered.

By incorporating these strategies into your backstage routine, you can navigate high-pressure situations with greater ease and confidence, ensuring that you perform at your best and shine on the runway.


As you continue to develop your skills and navigate the world of modeling, take a moment to reflect on your behavior and habits backstage. Consider how you can enhance your professionalism and conduct to elevate your performance and make a positive impression on those around you. Here are some questions to guide your self-assessment:

1. How effectively do I communicate with hairstylists, makeup artists, and wardrobe stylists backstage?
2. Am I punctual and organized, or do I struggle with time management and preparation?
3. Do I maintain a positive attitude and demeanor, even in high-pressure situations?
4. How do I handle conflicts or disagreements backstage, and are there areas where I could improve my conflict resolution skills?
5. What steps can I take to enhance my personal presentation, including grooming, attire, and body language?
6. How do I manage pressure and stress backstage, and are there strategies I can implement to improve my resilience and composure?

By reflecting on these questions and considering ways to improve, you can continue to grow and thrive in your modeling career.

In conclusion, mastering backstage etiquette is essential for success in the modeling industry. By conducting ourselves with professionalism and grace, we not only enhance our own reputation but also contribute to the overall success of productions. I encourage you to implement the tips and strategies provided in this article to elevate your backstage etiquette and make a lasting impression behind the scenes. Share your thoughts, experiences, and additional tips in the comments below to foster a community dialogue on this important topic. Together, let's continue to support each other and strive for excellence in our modeling careers.

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