Fashion week is a time of year that, for style insiders, is kind of like a holiday—it’s exciting…and also extremely hectic. With back-to-back runway shows, parties at night, and events in the morning, models, designers, influencers, and editors often prep for fashion week the same way one might get ready for a marathon. Lots of water. Lots of healthy food. Lots of sleep. Rinse and repeat. To commemorate this thrilling time in the industry, we asked the Style Director at ELLE.com, Nikki Ogunnaike, to take us behind the scenes. With experience in fashion at In Style, Vanity Fair, and Glamour.com, Nikki is a true fashion insider. Nowadays, at Elle, she is the go-to style expert for 25+million readers and followers, making it the most popular fashion and beauty magazine website. Below, this Nigerian-American editor takes us through a typical day during fashion week, and tells us about the self-care routines she practices during this busy time.

Can you share a typical day during fashion week/month? 

8 A.M. If I’m on it, I’m about to head out for a run or to some sort of workout class to get some much needed endorphins to get me through the day. If not, I’m hitting the snooze button for the fifth time, then scrolling through Instagram for a bit. 

10 A.M. I’m definitely at a show by this point! In New York it would be my first of the day, in Paris my second of the day. 

3 P.M. Eating a late lunch! Either scarfing down Dig Inn in the car or sitting somewhere with friends to catch up on the shows we’ve seen so far.

5 P.M. The shows don’t stop y’all! There are at least three more shows before the evening is over. 

8 P.M. By this point I’ve caught my second wind, maybe had a glass of wine, written a blog post or two, and am heading to my last show of the evening. Night shows are always fun! They feel like a party. 

What are you most excited to cover this Fashion Week?

I can’t wait to see what designers like Kerby Jean-Raymond and Christopher John Rogers will do. New York City especially has some budding talent that deserves some shine, so I’m excited to see what they bring! 

Since fashion isn’t always as glamorous as it may seem, could you share one thing that you stress about during or before this busy time? 

I always stress out about paying enough attention to my family, friends, and boyfriend during this time. Fashion week can take over all of your time, but I really don’t want my loved ones to feel abandoned, so I try to schedule at least a phone call in between shows to catch up. 

How does fashion week coverage differ from what you usually curate and edit for the publication? 

Because fashion week can feel like the world’s coolest party that not everyone has access to, we try to balance fashion week-related content with our usual mix of stories. It’s double the work, but ultimately better serves the reader. 

How do you stay calm or cope with a busy schedule? Are there any self-care routines or rituals you swear by when things are extra crazy?

My tips: Plan as much as you can beforehand. Lay out your outfits, pack snacks and a portable charger in your bags, and organize your schedule. You’re most likely not going to have a lot of time at your desk so you want to have as much with you as possible, especially when there’s a break so you can catch up.

As for self-care routines, I try to squeeze in as many workouts and get as much sleep as possible. It’s easy to burn the candle at both ends, so I try to be cognizant of not over-extending myself.  

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