nat geo nyfw 2024 queens bear hologram with model

Experiential at NYFW 2024: Candy Shoppes, Skin Sanctuaries and Holographic Bears

Five stylish activation ideas from New York Fashion Week

New York Fashion Week (NYFW) is a biannual affair that typically overflows with exclusive runway shows and afterparties. But in recent years, it has also inspired innovative sponsorship tactics that reach beyond VIP soirees—and the winter 2024 edition was no exception. Whether acting as official NYFW 2024 partners or simply seizing on the event’s hype, a select group of brands brought fresh thinking to the Big Apple. Here’s what caught our attention.

bose-nyfw-2022-ticker-getty-teaserFrom the NYFW Archives:

Nat Geo’s Holographic Animals

National Geographic made quite a splash in its official NYFW debut on Feb. 10 with “Nat Geo Presents: Fit for a Queen,” an experiential event and runway show celebrating the brand’s new docuseries “QUEENS” about sisterhoods within the animal kingdom. More than 200 industry influencers, celebrities, fashion tastemakers and media attended the event, which featured catwalk looks curated by rising fashion star Sakinah Bashir, and all inspired by late ’90s runway shows.

Plant Kween opened the show as “Mother Nature,” and Sophie Darlington, a wildlife cinematographer who worked on the series, was featured as a model in Act 1. Each of Nat Geo’s looks was crafted with an eye toward transcending fashion and highlighting how the brand is “reshaping the natural history genre” with influential females at the forefront. To help bring that concept to life, the brand unleashed a series of life-like holographic projections of female animals, including elephants, lionesses and bears, that “walked” the runway alongside women and gender-nonconforming models as a means of offering a new perspective on queendom. (Agencies: Pop’N Creative; PRG)

Nat Geo_NYFW 2024_Queens_elephant hologram

Photo credit: Kristina Bumphrey/PictureGroup for National Geographic


GT’s Boost for Behind-the-Scenes Crews

Kombucha brand GT’s Living Foods made its NYFW debut this year in partnership with American fashion brand Eckhaus Latta to celebrate the launch of its new AURA Collagen Tea, which is designed to aid natural collagen production that restores hair, skin and nails. While other sponsors were busy catering to designers, celebrities, models, media and other VIPs, GT’s was delivering a boost to the people behind the scenes. The brand treated makeup artists and hair stylists (as well as Eckhaus models) to a little backstage TLC, including hand massages and AURA Collagen “teatime.”

GT’s additionally hosted a NYFW afterparty with Eckhaus at the PUBLIC Hotel to introduce AURA to more fashionistas and give them the opportunity to have their auras read. Well played.

Photo credit: Maya Hayat; Jared Siskin/Getty Images for GT’s Living Foods


Primark’s Pop-up for Everyday Fashionistas

Primark popped up in New York City’s SoHo neighborhood on Feb. 10 with a public event that promised to turn everyday consumers into influencers for a day. The brand leaned into #girlmath tutorials and style hacks inspired by TikTok trends, and, naturally, provided plenty of opportunities for content creation.

The “phones encouraged” event included guest stylists Lilliana Vazquez and Melissa Garcia, who shared content, accessorizing and style-on-a-budget tips. Giveaways, gift cards, beverages and bites were in the mix, too. What we loved: social media “Tiny Mic Talks” with everyday fashionistas, who weighed in on their favorite Primark apparel, fashion trends and styles that give them “the ick.” (Agency: CNC Agency)

Photo credit: CNC Agency


YSL Beauty’s Candy Shoppe

YSL Beauty leveraged the hype around its viral Candy Glaze lip gloss with a Candy Shoppe pop-up in SoHo that launched with a celeb-studded kickoff event on Feb. 8 featuring a performance by Jack Harlow, before opening up to the public for one day on Feb. 9.

Inside the two-floor venue, attendees could enjoy candy- and makeup-inspired installations; “couture” confections, claw machines that dispensed heart-shaped pouches, primers and other beauty products; photo ops; makeup touch-ups; product giveaways; a lip reader; custom cocktails and lipstick engraving. Now that’s sweet. (Agency: Industria Creative)


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Cetaphil’s Sensitive Skin Sanctuary

Skincare brand Cetaphil and fashion/media brand Highsnobiety partnered on a stylish “sensitive skin sanctuary” pop-up hosted on Feb. 10 that was designed to pamper New Yorkers in the midst of NYFW’s hustle and bustle. The experience included skin consultations, beauty services and custom hydrating beverages, among touchpoints built to relax and refuel attendees.

Cetaphil also deployed influencers and contest winners from 14 different countries to be the “Face of Cetaphil” during NYFW, where they acted as on-the-ground correspondents at events and activations to put the brand’s sensitive skincare formulas to the test.

Finally, as Alice + Olivia’s exclusive skincare sponsor, Cetaphil could be found backstage at one of fashion week’s top shows offering a skincare prep area where models could meet with a Cetaphil expert and have their skin “prepped” using the brand’s products.

Kait Shea
Posted by Kait Shea

Kait joined EM in 2015 and today enjoys her role as senior editor, digital content. When she’s not in reporter mode, rocking mermaid pants at Comic-Con or running laps at MWC Barcelona, you can find her at home listening to music.
View all articles by Kait Shea →

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