Cool rain pounds the windows, but inside the 69th Regiment Armory in Manhattan, it’s as hot as an orchid nursery. Makeup artist Tom Pecheux, wearing a plaid shirt, is breaking a sweat as he gilds a caravan of angels — Victoria’s Secret Angels. He has been here since 8 a.m., making these already-stunning girls look otherworldly beautiful. “I apply the lashes one by one to keep the look very fresh,” he says. “Full lashes give a lot of glamour, but they can be too heavy.” Blow-dryers are humming, hairpieces are being brushed out, lipgloss is being generously applied and legs, miles of them, are getting the bronzing treatment. This is a full-on beauty moment.

“Tom, Tom —
deux minutes,” says a male voice through an intercom. “Chanel Iman, Chanel Iman!” The supermodel is being paged, but she’s ignoring the call; she’s sitting in the stairwell talking on her cellphone. “No dramatic lines,” continues Pecheux, barely above the din. “And a little contour to bring up the cheeks. Peachy colour!” Another blast from the intercom: “Tom, Tom!” This beauty club is on the move; showtime is only 20 minutes away. “Can we get all the models to the elevator? We are heading to the backstage!” booms the voice once again. Then, suddenly, like a nightclub at 3 a.m., the models and their fluffers are gone, leaving behind only journalists and platters of crudités.

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Tom Pecheux’s beauty checklist

What does it take to make the Victoria’s Secret Angels so beautiful? Here’s what:

• Bioderma Hydrabio Lait
• Makeup Remover
Smith’s Rosebud Salve
• Embryolisse Concentrated 24 Hour
Miracle Cream
• OMI Menturm Medicated Lip Balm
• Johnson’s Body Care Deep
• Hydrating Extra Dry Skin Lotion
• Neutrogena Make-up Remover
• Cleansing Towelettes
• Weleda Iris Moisture Cream
• Kiehl’s Superbly Restorative Dry Oil
Care by Stella McCartney
• Nourishing Night & Day Cream
• M.A.C lashes/singles
• Victoria’s Secret Love Rocks
Eau de Parfum Spray
• Shu Uemura Face Powder
Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage
• Murad Firming Bronzer SPF 15
• Boots No7 Mattifying Make-up Base
• VS Eye Sparkle
• Boiron Homéoplasmine Ointment
• L’Oréal Paris Elnett Satin Extra
• Strong Hold Hairspray
• Bumble and bumble Styling Lotion
• Victoria’s Secret So Sexy
• Natural Hold Hairspray
• Trident White Gum (sugarless)
• Tweezers

Products to try: Shu Uemura Face Powder Matte in 7YR Medium Light ($43); Tweezerman Wide Grip Slant Tweezers ($30); L’Oréal Paris Elnett Satin Hairspray ($15).

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