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TikTok beauty trends 2023: macro aesthetics set to dominate from grunge to “barely there” base

Posted by Caroline Edwards in Trends

2 months ago

On TikTok #beauty has surpassed 130 billion views. Throughout 2022, the trends that dominated this vertical included heavy blushsiren eyesbleached and thin brows, and monochrome makeup. As with fashion, beauty trends on the platform move swiftly, which means it’s essential for brands to hop onto new formats as they emerge to fully experience the benefits. The Y2K aesthetic will continue to shape trends but also expect to see looks inspired by the 2010s and dewy foundation.

CORQ analysed the top-performing social content in the beauty vertical over the past three months as well as cultural trends to predict the most popular beauty trends for spring/summer 2023 (SS23).

1. Brown lipgloss 

Glossier has been prolific on TikTok to promote its now-viral Balm Dotcom collaboration with hot chocolate brand Swiss Miss. What’s the big deal? TikTok is obsessed with this limited-edition product – Victoria Lyn’s campaign showcasing the collab has more than ten million views. Similarly, Fenty Beauty’s Gloss Bomb in Hot Chocolit went viral in September thanks to presenter Kimberley Possible’s video from August. Not to mention, Steph Hui’s video trying the product in September also has more than 6.4 million views. TikTok just can’t get enough of a shimmery, subtle brown tint, with #brownlipgloss having 41 million views on the app.

These lip products are part of a wider trend. This is a natural progression from TikTok’s obsession with model Hailey Bieber’s “brownie glazed lips” – which consisted of lining her lips with brown liner and topping it off with clear gloss – from late August. She was called out for appropriating from Black and Latino communities, as this liner and gloss combo was a staple in the Nineties and early Noughties. Consumer trend platform SPATE found there has been an overall increase in searches and interest in brown lipgloss and predicts a 30% growth over the next year.

2. Nineties grunge

Thick, black eyeliner was a constant across designers’ recent spring/summer 2023 fashion week presentations, including Ann Demeulemeester, Christian Dior and Versace. Bold, dark and slightly punk – and a beloved makeup go-to for TikTok It girl Julia Fox.

As CORQ has predicted with SS/23 fashion trends, Nineties grunge is making a comeback thanks to the revival of the 2010s micro aesthetic indie sleaze, which included aspects of grunge. It’s very Tumblr – the micro-blogging platform continues to impact trends today. On Pinterest, interest in dark feminine makeup has spiked, and this moody, glam look will migrate to other platforms like TikTok.

TikTokers have been adopting darker makeup looks – smudged eyeliner and smokey eyeshadow are building off of the “anti mascara eyes” trend. This moody look is also part of the growing #messygirlaesthetic trend on TikTok – the antithesis of the clean look and that girl trends – which only makes sense as TikTok gets bored of simple, natural makeup looks.

Creators have gradually been adopting this – Alexandra Clare has showcased a shimmery look reminiscent of Skins character Effy Stonem, while Kirsty Belle Addison has shared a tutorial for grunge makeupAoife Cullen has showcased editorial “messy makeup” looks and Frankie Darling created a bold graphic eye look.

3. Shimmery and dewy skin

Gone are the days of thick, cakey foundation – minimal and glowy foundation will be all the rage in spring/summer 2023. Think little to no foundation for a “barely there” look and dewy finish.

This is thanks in part to the viral success of Charlotte Tilbury’s Hollywood Flawless Filter, TikTok users thought was a foundation but is actually a face illuminator with minimal, glowy coverage. #FlawlessFilter has more than 122 million views and The Female Formula’s vox pop series found it was interviewees favourite product of the year – high praise, which is contributing to the trend of luminous makeup.

This is part of the wider clean and minimalistic makeup look, which was seen on the runways at Victoria Beckham, Stella McCartney and Erdem’s SS/23 shows via radiance and glowing skin. Creators such as Lydia Jervis and Isabelle Kate Munroe have shown off luminous makeup bases – Munroe shared a hack for glass blush and used the viral Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter face illuminator for minimal yet glowy coverage. Meanwhile, Jess English posted her shimmery glass skin look and Rogina Shrestha’s date night makeup featured a dewy look.

4. Dopamine beauty

Vibrant and bold eye looks are set to be key. Halpern, Alice + Olivia, Germanier, Paul & Joe, GCDS and Bibhu Mohapatra all had bright pops of colour included in their beauty looks, ranging from purple eyeliner to colour block eyeshadow and contour using vivid pigment.

Creators have long been experimenting with dramatic eyes. Beauty influencers have gravitated towards dark, shimmery shades of blues and greens since Q3. As seen with the beauty trends at fashion week, makeup artists will likely pivot to using more matte shadows rather than duochrome pigments.  Think of it as the latest evolution of dopamine beauty – playing off the aura makeup trend from summer – with creators using vibrant colours and asymmetrical shapes.

By Caroline Edwards, CORQ news and features writer. Picture credit: Kanchat Boonphong via Instagram.