IMATS LA 2013!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

It's almost time for the International Makeup Artists Trade Show in Los Angeles! This will be my 2nd IMATS and my 3rd trade show so now that I'm comfortable with how trade shows work I'd like to share some of my advice to those who are going for the first time.

  1. Wear comfortable shoes!
  2. Look nice but be comfortable!
  3. Have cash! Some vendors DO take debit/credit cards as many now use Square or PayPal but many are CASH ONLY.
  4. Download the IMATS app. Not sure when the 2013 app will be available but if IMATS releases an ap again DOWNLOAD it.
  5. Have extra batteries on hand. There are outlets along the convention floor where you can stop and charge your camera or iPad or iPhone but you're not suppose to use those outlets so have extra batteries on hand for the items that takes batteries - everything else make sure you have a full charge.
  6. Take EXTRA money. Also while products will be discounted at IMATS what ever you normal would spend online save at least twice that for IMATS because will all the great deals you're bound to want to buy more than you intended.
  7. SET A BUDGET! Trust me you're going to encounter really good deals on products and you're going to encounter new products you've never heard of or dreamed about.
  8. Know what you're buying! Make sure that deal you're encountering really is a deal since some companies tend to mark up their prices to "discount" it at trade shows. Some deals are fantastic and some are okay.
  9. Check out companies you're NOT familiar with. At my first IMATS I encountered a new company I had never heard about - Saucebox Cosmetics - and ended up buying a few items and later bought more from her site. She'll be one of my first stops at IMATS this year.
  10. Arrive early! If you haven't purchased your tickets for IMATS yet you better do so because at the door it's typically SOLD OUT. I had my badge on so I was able to bypass the line but that line extended out the front door and wrapped around the building.
  11. Remember when I said know what you're buying also know where your favorite vendors are located. I went around and around the place and missed several booths I wanted to visit last time.
  12. Do you have a beauty blog site? IMATS is the perfect place to network so make sure you have some networking (aka business) cards on hand! At IMATS and CPNA I only had my business cards for Makeup Talk on hand but this time I'll have my business card AND my personal one for my own blog. I would suggest having two types - one with just your blog name/url/contact info and one with your mailing address and phone #. As I said perfect place to network BUT you don't want to give out your networking/business card with your personal info to just anyone. Save the ones with your phone # and address for those companies asking for that info and trust me, there are vendors and PR people there who WILL ask for that info.
  13. Have your iPad or tablet with you if you plan on networking. I had mine at IMATS in June but didn't really use it but found at CPNA it was a great way to show vendors and the PR people I spoke with my own blog and also Makeup Talk. Sometimes it's just easier (and faster) to show off your site if you have access to it. (Keep in mind WiFi will be available at IMATS but there is a fee. CPNA WiFi was free.)
  14. Expect HUGE lines especially on Saturday and Sunday. Friday is Pro Only day so don't expect to get in and talk to people that day. If possible make appointments before hand to talk to company representatives who will be there.


  1. Can you give me an idea of the brands that will be there???

    1. I sure can. :D

  2. Hello, I was wondering if you can give me more details about wifi? Will there be a password provided? How do we connect to the free one?

    1. Here's the reply:

      "Wireless internet costs $25 per day at the Pasadena Convention Center."

  3. Hi Holly. From my understanding WiFi will be available for a fee. I've contacted the Pasadena Convention Center to find out how much the fee is and am still waiting to hear back.


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