Being a frontliner is not for everyone, if you are not ready to commit to it 100% don’t even bother or else you risk being eclipsed by the other frontliners who had their act together. This year I saw too many frontlines who missed the bus or who simply looked busted. So for 2010 if you DO decide to pay all that money for a frontline costume, do it justice and please, wear it well!
2. When taking up the responsibility of being a frontline you also take up the responsibility of looking impeccable from head to toe that means shelling out extra for proper makeup and having your hair styled to match your headpiece. Weaves, wigs, braids are all acceptable in managing the hair. RAGS on your head are unacceptable!
3. Leave the knapsack behind! I cannot believe how many frontlines I saw lugging around the Goody Bag (knapsack) on the road! First off get a man purse to do that job for you; the only thing in your hands should be a matching mini bag or a pouch. No totes, no sequined hobos; make the purse small and cute, you will be surprised how many essentials can fit in a tiny bag! That knapsack is a big FAT no; it does not even MATCH!
5. Frontliners do not do runs! Ick, I absolutely HATE runs in stockings and with the rhinestones on costumes that are now a trend (which I hate) most of us wearing stockings were either shredded by the end of the day or shredded other’s tights. Although I coated all my rhinestones I still managed to snag my tights on my hand band, luckily I walk with EXTRAS as well as clear nail polish. In the event that you do not have extra tights simply dab some clear nail polish on the run to prevent it from shredding. Ideally you can also wear two pairs of tights and just peel off the one that gets damaged. Of course I applaud all the ladies with the perfect legs that went tights-less, I think this is the first time I ever saw that as being a good thing in the face of all those ugly ripped tights.
6. Personalizing your costume is a nice touch, go the extra mile and add body jewelry, body art or even some extra feathers and bling. However there is a fine line between cute and cosquel. If your costume is mainly earth tones why add yellow feathers to it? If you are looking for a contrasting colour to turquoise and brown why fuchsia pink? Customize the costume to make it look better not worse!
8. Be gracious for photographs and practice your poses BEFORE Carnival so that your best side can be captured. Do not let the backline Betty’s jump in and steal your thunder in photographs.
9. On that note stake your claim in the front of the section when crossing the stage. The Betty’s did not pay extra for the frontline so therefore they should respect your space and stay behind! Kudos to section leaders and security that made sure frontlines got to cross the stage first and in all their glory.
10. And finally wear your costume, and wear it proud! I was so happy this year to see frontline ladies in full costume down to last lap! Headpieces and backpacks still intact, you did well.