2020 is finally over and what a year it was! From the threat of a third world war and bushfires to a pandemic that has taken over a million lives, 2020 was not a great year for the world in general. And honestly, we are ready to embrace the top beauty trends for 2021.
However, the human spirit being what it is, we withstood it all, and adapted to the new way of everything – living, learning, working and even caring for ourselves.
Since the pandemic is still going strong and new strains of the virus are emerging, it looks like we’ll be continuing some of these ways for the foreseeable future. As we enter 2021, beauty trends are changing to reflect the new normal, and product companies across the world are adapting accordingly. Let’s take a look at the top beauty trends for 2021, and how your personal care routine is going to change in the New Year.
Top Beauty Trends for 2021
1. Luxe Hygiene
Hygiene products were probably the most sought after personal care products in 2020, with even brands like Louis Vuitton and Dior manufacturing sanitizers. In the early days of the pandemic, sanitizers were just basically alcohol, which is effective against germs, but drying on the skin.
As the demand for sanitizers and hand soap continues to be high, more and more beauty companies are entering the fray, and are now making more luxury hygiene products. These will contain more hydrating and skin friendly ingredients, along with more pleasing fragrances, without compromising on the efficacy of the product.
2. Clean Green Skincare
People had become increasingly aware of what was in their products in the pre-pandemic era, but this trend saw a major rise in 2020 as customers demand only the best for their skin and hair. As the world woke up to what life could be like when humans retreated indoors, people across the globe became more concerned about toxins and chemicals in their products.
As a result, 2021 will see a steep increase in plant based products, with ingredient lists that contain more botanicals. What was once a niche industry is becoming more mainstream, as consumers are more interested in knowing what ingredients go in their products and how they affect the human body.
Another area of focus in top beauty trends for 2021 will be products that maintain the skin microbiome. Be prepared to see more products that contain probiotics and prebiotics to balance the ecosystem of microorganisms that live on the skin. While cruelty-free products have always been popular, there is bound to be an increased demand for organic and vegan products as well.
3. Sustainable Beauty
Another top beauty trends for 2021 will be informed customers. Along with being concerned with the ingredients in their products, consumers are also becoming more conscious about the impact of their products on the environment. Brands are moving towards sustainable practices, right from sourcing their ingredients to retailing them in stores.
Packaging is one of the biggest issues when it comes to sustainability, and that is why more companies are moving towards things like shampoo bars. Many companies have also started selling refills, so bottles and jars can be reused. In 2021, we are likely to see more brands do this, while also offering to collect used packaging to recycle.
Since the pandemic affected many of the demand supply chains, especially internationally, the focus moved on to local brands. As a result, expect to see a boom of homegrown product manufacturers, which are also gaining popularity among consumers who’s rather support local businesses.
4. Bare Faced Makeup
With people stuck indoors for the greater part of 2020, heavy and intense makeup looks took a backseat and the no-makeup look became popular. The glowing skin, dewy look will continue to rule the roost in top beauty trends for 2021, especially since most of our faces are still covered behind masks. Yet, we still show our faces on Zoom meetings, which is why makeup is still very much relevant.
The focus in the New Year will be more on people embracing their own complexions and scars, rather than on covering up ‘imperfections’. The trend of applying layers and layers of makeup has taken a backseat, and multipurpose products are grabbing the spotlight. Products like tinted moisturizers and BB creams are coming back, with more nourishing ingredients.
5. New Age Solutions
The pandemic has subject us to a host of new problems like maskne and dry hands, and beauty companies are fast rising up to the challenge with new age solutions. With more exposure to blue light and toxins from indoor paint, products are focusing on protecting against the harmful effects of these.
Dry hands from the frequent use of sanitizers and hand soap has also resulted in a boom in the hand care market. Some companies even launched new hand cream ranges and donated the first batch to healthcare workers.
Another problem that is expected to see specialized solutions in 2021 is maskne, or breakouts resulting from too much mask usage. Breathable makeup, hypoallergenic products and soothing formulations are going to become more popular in the New Year.
6. Dramatic Eyes
With the bottom half of the face and cheeks hid behind masks, the focus has moved to the eyes, with people opting for brighter colours and unconventional styles of makeup. With Zoom meetings still the norm, users are more concerned about under eye bags and dark circles, and are seeking out products to solve these issues.
In makeup, colours are going to be everywhere, from liners to eye shadows to mascara. Neon colours are going to be hot, as is the cat eye or other dramatic liner styles. Sharper lines and space-styles are also seeing top beauty trends for 2021 as a comeback this year.
One of the biggest problems we faced in lockdown was with taming our eyebrows. As a result, the skinny brow is on its way out, and fluffier brows are in. People are also beginning to embrace the unibrow, while keeping it neat and groomed.
7. No Transfer Lipstick
Lipstick sales have dipped drastically in 2020, but are slowly picking up in time for the New Year. For many women, a dash of color on the lips is more of a psychological pick-me-up, even if it’s not visible from behind the mask. Due to this, people are choosing more nudes and browns, colours that match their lip tone rather than bright reds or intense berries.
Another important lipstick trend in top beauty trends for 2021 is transfer-proof lipstick, so that it does not adhere to the mask. Liquid lipstick will become more popular, as will lipstick stains that will offer a bit of colour without transferring on to the mask.
8. Long Lasting Formulas
One of the main instructions the experts have given us is to avoid touching our face all the time. This eliminates the opportunity to touch up makeup when out and about, and this has led to an increased demand in long lasting formulas.
Whether it’s eye liner or lipstick, products are now expected to stay put all day, without transferring to the mask or melting in heat and humidity. It’s a tall order, but beauty companies are already on the way to coming up with the right kind of makeup that’ll check all these boxes.
9. Bangs and Shorter Lengths
With hair dressers and salons closed during lockdown, many of us resorted to cutting our own hair. While it did result in some disasters, many of us realized that shorter lengths were more convenient and easy to style. This trend is bound to continue into top beauty trends for 2021, with choppy styles gaining more popularity.
Bangs are also big right now, and will continue to be throughout the New Year. With celebrities and influencers sporting bangs of various lengths, it has become quite a rage. Many people have also seen cutting their hair at the end of the year as a symbolic way of bidding it good bye and welcoming a better 2021.
Another style that’s gaining popularity is braids, which is an easy way to keep hair from getting messed up while still looking good. People are experimenting with different kinds of braids, and 2021 is likely to see some new styles on that front.
10. Natural Hair
It’s always been the case – people with poker straight hair want curls, and the ones with curly hair want to straighten their locks. This desire has been fueling the mega industry of flat irons and curlers and all kinds of styling products. However, as we got less access to these products during the pandemic, and the lockdown ensured we weren’t out in public as much, people began to embrace their natural hair.
Now, the trend is here to stay, and people are learning to love their own hair texture and are looking for ways to maintain it. So we can see a bigger focus on products that ensure hair health, rather than changing its texture completely. Low maintenance hair styles are on the rise, and people are going farther away from heat styling devices.
Hair colouring also saw a new low, as people chose to flaunt their greys rather than color it themselves. With female celebrities uploading pictures of themselves in all their natural glory, grey hair has gained greater acceptance and will continue to do so.
11. New Gadgets
Every area of our life is getting smart, from our phones to our coffee makers, and it’s no different when it comes to beauty. With more and more people choosing to stay home and doing their own beauty treatments, companies are coming up with new devices that make this easier.
We can look forward to several new gadgets in 2021, for eyebrow shaping, manicures, pedicures, hair removal as well as for hair care. Beauty products will get smarter, as you sync them with your phone or tablet. For men, there has been an increase in various kinds of trimmers and beard styling tools. The Dyson Hair Dryer created a boom in 2020, with people experimenting hair styles thanks to its versatile tools that came along with it.
12. Customized and Inclusive Beauty
2020 saw the start of the customized beauty market, and this is going to boom in 2021. Many brands are offering online consultations to find out a customer’s skin type and specific skin issues, and recommending products that are ideal for them. Companies are realizing that a one-product-fits-all solution does not work anymore and are opting for the personalized route.
Makeup has become more inclusive, including men and people from other genders. Brands are also including more shades that are inclusive of all complexions and skin types. The same applies to hair care, as specialized products are manufactured for all hair textures.
So that’s our look at the top beauty trends for 2021. Some of these have their roots in 2020, while others had started earlier but picked up steam when the pandemic set in. Whatever the case, we can expect to see some interesting developments in the beauty industry this year, and hopefully the changes should be better for us and for the environment!