At the end of every year, we always look to the future and wonder what it will hold. After the disaster that has been 2020, this has never been truer and for a lot of people, kissing this year goodbye will be something we can’t wait to do.
But are we happy to kiss 2020’s trends goodbye so soon? Especially when we haven’t really been given the chance to show off our new eyeshadow palette, our new eyeliner techniques and that amazing new lipstick that was being saved for a special occasion. So, even though the office Christmas party may not have taken place and the gatherings between friends have been few and far between, the good things we can take into 2021 with us is a brand-new makeup kit and some new skills ready to show off our fabulous faces to the world.
So, what are the hottest trends of 2021 and how can we go into the new year prepared to serve some looks?
One of the biggest trends going into 2021 is clear and radiant skin. And thank. God! After going near enough the whole year of 2020 wearing little to no makeup, it seems so fitting that the new year won’t be about piling it all back on again but instead celebrating clean and clear skin and showing it off as part of a full look.
Ok, so maybe this might be too much of a big step for a lot of people, stepping out into the world with a naked face, but there are ways around it. Using a colour correcting primer, or CC cream should give skin that even texture, and wintery blush shades swept over the cheekbone and around the temple provide that icy glow that shows off great skin, without having to completely bare all.
Eyebrows are having their moment right now and I am here for it. For 2021, think youthful, playful and always go big to make a bold statement. Feathered eyebrows are taking the beauty world by storm and are easy to create with a spoolie brush, a great eyebrow pen and some setting gel that doesn’t flatten them down completely. Use the brush again to get a little volume and don’t focus on being so neat and tidy. The fluffier the better.
Modern Smoky Eye
The smoky eye is a classic and will never go out of style, but for 2021 and in keeping with the natural tones of the face, the smoky eye has just had a revamp – less blacks and deep shades of brown, and more ambers, corals and leafy greens are being heralded as great colours to enter the new year with, that will also compliment and highlight any flecks in the eyes and still mean business.
Keep the shades dark underneath the eye and in the creases and finish off with brown eyeliner and some feathery mascara for the ultimate take on the smoky eye classic.
But, this is ok, as we can still rock red without applying it like war paint to our lips. Red eyeliner is going to be huge in 2021 and in all different shades. A slick cat-eye teamed with cherry red eyeliner is a look to die for and doesn’t really need much else going on with the eyelids as this colour carries itself. Burgundy is also a gorgeous option for those wanting a little toned-down version of this, or coral if you are having a more vibrant day. Bright red is great on dark eyes and more than makes up for the fact that we can’t wear it on our lips every day.
The 90’s Revived
Speaking of vibrant colours, what better way to express ourselves than with a little 1990s revival in 2021. Ok, so back then the use of colour wasn’t always complimentary, but it was fashion, dahling! And when we look back on the trends of 90s past, they sometimes left a lot to be desired in terms of grooming, shading and balancing colour.
But fear not, this revival is probably not to be taken too seriously. Just keep it playful with some light pink blush, some pale blue on the eyes and extra shimmer for good measure. Keep it on trend with liner on the bottom water line only and mascara to finish it off. Or for a more modern take on the nineties, keep the eye colours highly pigmented in pinks and purples and match with a bubble gum pink glossy lip (for mask-free days of course) and a soft kohl wing over the upper lid. Excuse me while I go dig out my old hair crimpers and cassette player, because this is one revival I am digging!
So, glitter can be messy, but so was 2020, so why not at least bring make sure whatever mess we carry forward into 2021 at least looks good! Glitter has been around for decades, and these days it is mostly saved for festivals and costume parties, but a little sparkle is just what the new year needs to make sure it isn’t all doom and gloom from the get go.
In terms of wearing glitter as part of a daily makeup routine, it looks great when placed in focal points and in small amounts with some petroleum jelly or makeup adhesive. Just under the bottom lash line is a brilliant way to bring focus to the eyes and goes well with minimal makeup on the skin by brightening the face up with little to no effort. It doesn’t have to be precise or have clean lines, which is near impossible with glitter anyway, but just have fun with it and team it with black mascara and those fluffy eyebrows and it is definitely a look! For the wintery season, you can’t go wrong with silvers and golds, but it’s always fun to get blues and greens involved, which would suit all eye colours.
For 2021, the cat eye is back, but not as you will have seen it before. The future really is now and the modern twist on this classic is easy to pull off once you know how. The half cat-eye is fire right now and suits all eye shapes, and not only that but its easier to apply than the full cat-eye as there is less to go wrong.
To do this look you have to start your liner from the centre upper lid above the lash line and draw outward and upward following the shape of the lower lash line into a clean point. A gel eyeliner or a pen eyeliner is best to get this right, it just neds a steady hand and a daring imagination. This half cat-eye tends to lift the eyes up a bit more and draw focus outward which is great for close set eyes and almond eyes.
To add a bit more drama, (only a little, we really don’t need much more drama in 2021) you can finish the cat-eye underneath the bottom lash line from the inner corner and stopping just before the halfway point. This is especially flattering and really gives the appearance of upturned eyes with only a clever trick of the hand and an eyeliner pen with staying power.
For the bold and the brave, 2021 has just the hottest trend in store. Taking the cat-eye and the flick to a whole new level, graphic eyeliner combines a bit of that nineties flare with geometric shapes, sharp lines and a playful attitude. The best thing about going graphic is there are rules that a designed to be broken so you can really have fun with it and work out patterns and colours that suit and flatter your face.
Foregoing your favourite eyeshadow palette is the only downfall, but it will be worth it so stick with me. Graphic eyeliner is about creating floating lines and negative space while serving up a look that naturally compliments the eye shape. Start by adding a full cat-eye to the upper lid but instead of following the lash line, follow the crease of the eyelid and flick outward toward the end of the eyebrow. You can add further lines in the same direction but leaving that negative space to really open the eye up and emphasise the shape.
If this still isn’t bold enough, swap out the classic black liner for greens, violets and blues and really try to experiment with this to find your perfect shapes. All this needs is some soft mascara to finish off, drawing outward and upward to follow your lines. Oh, and don’t forget your primer. This is really important as the lids tends to be a hotspot for grease and build up, and this is one look that needs to stay put for the duration it’s on.
Eyelashes have already come a long way and they have really got to a point where even extensions and false lashes have the potential to look so natural that it’s hard to see where we can improve. Well, 2021 is all about long, feathery, natural-looking eyelashes and I think it’s safe to say that it’s what we all really want for years to come.
If you are already blessed with longer lashes then this one should be a doddle for you, it just requires some natural looking mascara and a healthy eyelash serum to keep those bad boys strong and long every day. If you need a boost in eyelashes and extensions are your weapon of choice then your eyelash technician should easily be able to create those long, feathery sets of eyelashes that will see you through for the next few months.
If you are just up for trying something a little less permanent, then when choosing false eyelashes go for some that are lightweight, durable and with a clear band where possible, so they look more natural on the skin. If you like to be in control of where your lashes have volume then buying individual eyelash sets may be better, although they take a bit of getting used to when applying, you are able to build volume where you think your lashes need it most and they won’t give off an exactly symmetrical vibe which is a bonus for looking more natural.
The best thing is that you won’t need to wear mascara that can clump eyelashes together and end up looking really heavy which keeps up with the extra-feathery look that 2021 craves.
Going into the new year, everyone is optimistic for some positive change and while it might not seem important to some, wearing makeup can be important to others’ identities. So, in terms of hot trends for 2021, makeup with staying power is a must, using sticky primers to grab onto foundation so that it doesn’t rub off onto the mask and really going all out with the eyes if they are going to be the main focus, are all really important. Clear skin as a trend is fantastic though as it really is what the skin needs to stay hydrated underneath face masks, and it doesn’t necessarily mean wearing no makeup at all but taking the steps to make sure the face feels fresh and doesn’t just look it. But with the only thing really missing from the hot trends this year being lipstick and lip colour, here’s hoping that is back with a vengeance right in time for 2022!