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The Pioneers of Makeup

We’re seeing it now more than ever; creative minds are stepping into the spotlight! Art is being appreciated in a new way, the more unique the better. It feels like the diverse personalities of people are finally being embraced, and what better place to show off your individuality than through makeup? That being said, what trends have we watched transform? Through the influence of both runway looks and the minds of significant figures in the industry, we can see a change in makeup that can only be described as a growing expression of originality.

If you travel far back enough into makeup’s past (i.e. The early 2000’s) we can see that eyebrows have come a long way. It’s kind of hard to believe plucking your eyebrows into a thin line used to be in fashion, but ask anyone who’s done it; it's something they regret. Bushier brows used to be unfavorable until runway models embraced the trend, and Instagram influencers soon followed suit, but with their own twist. The phrase “Instagram brows” became well known for the next three years. These blocky eyebrows were usually achieved by using products like Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade, and a thick concealer like Tarte’s Shape Tape to make clean lines. Soon enough, most influencers were drawing on their brows, but it quickly became easily overdone, and eventually turned into a trend hated by many. However, thanks to editorial artists (those who create looks featured on the runway), a new, more natural, but equally dramatic style were created. True “bushy brows” eventually took the reins in 2018 and 2019. By using products like a brow pencil and a clear brow gel, simply filling in the sparse areas of your brows with a pencil and brushing them up into place achieves a natural, softer look, while still appearing bold.

Another way to make a statement with your makeup is through colorful eyeshadow and bold liner. A few years ago it wasn’t really common to see colorful eye makeup; almost every nude look you’d see on social media was achieved using the Urban Decay Naked palette or one of Morphe’s endless warm-toned palettes. Combine your brown shadows with a black wing and cut crease, and you have every eye look from 2015. Soon enough, makeup artists began incorporating more color, glitter, and even gloss into their eye makeup. Now we’re seeing the full artistic potential of makeup artists being uncovered. There’s more color than ever, green shadows with a white wing, red lids that shine, even colored liner in curved lines above the eyelid; there are no lines makeup artists aren’t willing to cross. This is a booming trend recently, as it gives artists an outlet to treat their faces like a canvas and get experimental with their routines.

One major pioneer in makeup trends is Pat McGrath, founder of the luxury brand Pat McGrath Labs. Known in the industry as the “Mother of Makeup,” many of her runway looks serve as inspiration for an endless amount of makeup artists. One scroll through her Instagram (@patmcgrathreal) and you can tell that the glittery and soft statement looks come naturally to McGrath. A staple product used to achieve her looks has to be the Mothership III: Subversive Eyeshadow Palette, which offers a collection of both glimmering shimmers and matte pressed pigments.

One hit show that has created new and fresh techniques is the teen drama series, Euphoria. The show is a dramatic depiction of a suburban town whose teenage citizens are struggling with drugs and identities; it is popular for being socially aware and diverse. However, what the show is mostly credited for is the unique looks that mirror editorial styles. The use of rhinestones on the lids and brow bone gives a unique flair that you can immediately recognize as Euphoria inspired. One could even add some glitter using Stila’s Glitter & Glow Liquid Eyeshadow for a similar blingy effect if you’d consider gluing rhinestones on your face a hassle.

Speaking of trendsetters of this makeup generation, K-Beauty is delivering now cherished makeup choices. A personal favorite trend that has come to the western world is glass skin or dewy makeup. Glass skin refers to a skin complexion that is glowing and supple, and it is properly achieved in Korea through a skincare regime. The west soon caught on and ditched the full matte face. Now, the dewy, healthy glow is on the rise, even lip looks have switched to the glossy shine. Probably one of the biggest names in makeup right now, Glossier, is seriously pushing a ‘clean-and-clear skin’ agenda. The Glossier Skin Tint gives your skin a glowing appearance, almost as if you’ve just washed your face. While the full coverage, the matte foundation is still popular, natural skin is becoming a preference for many.

Makeup is a major confidence booster for many; regardless of who the wearer is, it’s an outlet for self-expression. There is no right or wrong technique or preference, but moving with the trends shouldn’t be seen as throwing yourself away in an attempt to conform. Makeup is a great way for the world to see you as you want to be seen.

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