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The Pros Predict 9 Beauty Trends You’ll Be Seeing All Year

By Marissa DeSantis

Despite the rocky start, we still have high hopes for 2021—you know, like finally being able to leave the house. But while we wait for life to slowly return to normal, we have a whole new crew of beauty trends to look forward to. From skin care to makeup, hair, and even nails, we asked industry experts to weigh in on what our beauty routines will look like in the year ahead. To no one’s surprise, they all agreed that the pandemic will continue to impact what we put our focus on, which might actually be a good thing.

Without red carpet events and traditional fashion week shows in 2020 to influence our beauty routines in the year ahead, 2021 will truly be about finding what works for you—and it looks like we have plenty of time to figure it out.


Treating “Maskne”

“Unfortunately, this isn’t going away soon,” Dr. Libby Rhee, dermatology advisor for Rory and founder of Liora Dermatology & Aesthetics says of the breakouts we’ve all experienced since we started wearing masks. Celebrity esthetician and skincare expert Gina Marí agrees, explaining that wearing a mask for a prolonged period of time prevents the skin from being able to breathe properly.

“That causes the pH level of our skin to elevate, creating a breeding ground for acne-causing bacteria.”

The first step to preventing maskne is making sure your mask is clean (whether that means washing a fabric mask after every use or throwing away a disposable one). You’ll also want to wash your face with a gentle cleanser before and after wearing your mask and stick to a non-comedogenic moisturizer. Skip foundation whenever possible, and try placing a pimple patch like Peace Out Salicylic Acid Acne Healing Dots over existing breakouts to treat them while your mask is on. Marí also notes that investing in a blue LED light therapy tool can help treat maskne at home.


Matte Lipstick



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A post shared by Carolina Dalí-Trites (@carolinadali)

Speaking of masks, since we’ll be wearing them for the foreseeable future, long-lasting formulas will continue to be a makeup-must. In particular, glosses and creamy or high-shine lipsticks will take a backseat to matte formulas, according to makeup artist Carolina Dali. “I foresee people wanting a strong lip color that’s highly pigmented,” Dali says, sharing that her go-to is the Christian Louboutin Beauty Matte Fluids Lip Color. “You can confidently wear it under your mask without worrying if it’s going to transfer or bleed,” she adds to the perks of choosing a matte formula.


Be Your Own Hair Stylist

With restrictions and closings still in place for many salons across the country, it’s all about DIY, according to Riawna Capri, co-founder of Nine Zero One Salon and In Common Beauty. “You are your own stylist, and you call the shots,” Capri says, adding that all you need is some help from “the University of YouTube.”

In terms of color, the celebrity stylist says we’ll continue to see people embracing their natural hair color more, with heavy, dark roots making a comeback.

Capri explains that she thinks there will be more variety when it comes to cuts, as people are more likely to experiment with cutting their own hair than dyeing it since it poses less risk of long-term damage. “We’re looking at unintentional asymmetrical cuts to choppy blunt ends, and definitely kitchen-cut bangs,” she notes.


Rainbow Bright Nails



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“I think there will be a lot of candy colors this year,” celebrity nail artist Ashlie Johnson predicts, naming Candy by Peacci as one of her current favorite polish shades. Nail artist (and Dua Lipa’s go-to girl) Mei Kawajiri agrees, citing the pandemic as part of the inspiration behind bright, multi-color manis. “Nails should be enjoyed—even in hard times—as they bring many of us joy and happiness,” says Kawajiri, who even collaborated with ManiMe to make custom designs accessible right from home.


Blue Light Protection

As we continue to work from home (and do everything else from the couch, too), you can guarantee screen time will remain at an all-time high. Combine that with the growing concerns around and increased research into blue light’s effect on the skin and its aging process, and you can expect to see more focus on products that protect the skin against blue light. While there are already quite a few serums and moisturizers on the market, Marí likes Goldfaden MD Mist RX, which boosts hydration while also protecting the skin from blue light with a combination of antioxidants.


Bold Makeup Colors



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A post shared by Erin Parsons (@erinparsonsmakeup)

While we enjoyed a break from our daily full face of makeup in 2020, nearly a year later, we’re missing the fun of trying out new colors and formulas. Makeup artist Erin Parsons says we’ll be seeing more makeup in the year ahead—even if we are still wearing masks. “I think we’re going to see a lot more artistic makeup and individualism when it comes to makeup trends in 2021,” Parsons explains. “Since we’re all craving more excitement, we’ll see more vivid and bright palettes,” predicts Parsons, who’s tried everything from glittery smoky eyes in bold blue to pastel shadows and multi-color winged liner looks.


Custom Skincare

We have more choices when it comes to skincare products than ever before, but Dr. Rhee believes that 2021 will see a shift from following trends to making informed choices based on your individual needs. “Consumers are becoming more educated and aware of product ingredients,” Dr. Rhee says. “They are thirsty for more knowledge so they can be empowered to make the right choices for their unique skin rather than simply having more choices.”

While that doesn’t mean that popular ingredients like vitamin C, retinoids/retinols, and hyaluronic acid are going away anytime soon, it does mean tailoring products to your specific skin type and concerns. It can also be done virtually thanks to telehealth services like Rory, whose Nightly Defense treatment is individually customized by a healthcare provider.


Fuss-Free Nail Art



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The demand for nail art isn’t going anywhere in 2021, but both Kawajiri and Johnson agree it’s all about simplicity. Since intricate designs are hard to recreate at home, Kawajiri says that stick-on gels and press-on manicures can help you achieve a detailed look in minutes. “These designs would usually take upwards of two hours to achieve at the nail salon,” she notes of her ManiMe collection specifically. “It’s the perfect solution to getting a salon-quality manicure in just five minutes at home. Plus, they will last up to 10 days without chipping or damage.” Johnson adds that in addition to ManiMe, she likes Static Nails and KISS for press-on options.


Accessorized Updos



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A post shared by Nine Zero One (@ninezeroone)

Admittedly, it’s been a while since we’ve broken out the curling wand (or even the hairdryer if we’re being totally honest). Capri thinks we’ll continue to see more updo styles like top knots and ponytails—both slicked back and tousled—in 2021. To perk up ponytails and top knots, you can choose from a variety of hair accessories that includes everything from rhinestone-embellished hair clips to pretty patterned scarves and monochromatic scrunchies.

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