Bold new beauty: 2021's best beauty trends for you
2021 is the year of you—so do what makes you feel (and look) amazing.
LOOK YOUR GLOWIEST
Winter skin can be dull, but makeup artist Nam Vo has the lowdown on keeping your radiance.
START WITH SKINCARE. “It’s better to create good skin rather than the illusion of good skin with makeup.” Vo’s number one tip? Exfoliate so your skin can absorb hydrating creams more effectively. She loves the Paula’s Choice 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant ($30, paulaschoice.com).
PICK YOUR BASE. After applying your moisturizer, go for a “glowy” formula to create dewy skin (we heart Beauty Bakerie InstaBake Aqua Glass Foundation, $34, beautybakerie.com). Apply with a damp beauty sponge to really help it sink into the skin. Opting for concealer? Add it only where you really need it.
BRING IN BLUSH. Try tapping E.L.F. Jelly Pop Flush Blush in Berry Pop ($6, elfcosmetics.com) into your cheekbones for a natural, flushed look.
HIGHLIGHT RIGHT. "If you have acne or other texture on your skin, go for a wet formula like the Makeup by Mario Master Secret Glow Highlighter [$22, sephora.com],” Vo says. Hint: Shimmer can enhance blemishes, but a face gloss can blur your skin since it’s reflective.
GET A BOOST OF BRIGHTNESS
If you've spent hours on IG trying filters that transform your hair color with fun, bright shades, or you've been gushing over Charli's pink 'do, revamp your look at home—no bleach required. Overtone ($32, overtone.co) makes vibrant (and temporary) color-depositing conditioners that work on darker shades.
LEARN THE ART OF LIP LINER
This '90s staple is back. "Liner allows you to define—and sometimes redefine—the shape of your lips," says makeup artist AJ Crimson. Start by tracing the line of your natural lip with your pencil (try NYX Professional Makeup Slim Lip Pencil in Espresso, $4, nyxcosmetics.com) before using a lip brush to fade the edges so the outline isn't so harsh. Crimson likes to match the liner to whatever hue is going on top. "You can create dimension with a slightly darker shade on the edges and a lighter shade in the center," he shares. Remember to blend!
WEAR BODY GLITTER...BECAUSE DUH.
Highlight your collarbone and shoulders with a little shimmer to help you forget that you haven’t seen the sun in months. Try Colourpop Sol Shimmering Dry Oil Mini in Mai Tai ($10, colourpop.com).
TRY THE BANGS THAT LOOK BRILLIANT ON EVERYONE
It’s the question everyone asks at one point in their life: “Can I pull off bangs?” The answer? A resounding yes...as long as you get curtain bangs. Think shaggy, effortless pieces that— as the name suggests—frame your face perfectly. A model and Insta girl fave (versatility + easygoing vibe), curtain bangs work on just about every face shape.
Bang beginners should ask their stylist for a cheekbone-grazing fringe you can tuck behind your ears, keeping the edges longer than the middle, with soft ends starting in the center of the pupils and working to the jawline.
WIND DOWN WITH A WASTE-FREE FACE WASH
Try these waste-free bar soaps that cleanse just as well as the bottled stuff while staying super eco-friendly.
Lano Egg White Cleansing Bar, $6, lanolips.com
Beekman 1802 Milk Bar Probiotic Facial Cleansing Bar, $12, beekman1802.com
SheaMoisture African Black Soap With Shea Butter, $5, sheamoisture.com
ROCK WIND-SWEPT HAIR ON PURPOSE
Sidestep sleekness for a minute: This romantic style brings on the spring feels.
GET WILD WITH ANIMAL-PRINT NAILS
How do you DIY purr-fect cheetah nails? Start with a classic French mani but paint the tips caramel instead of white. Then take a fine brush, dip it in black polish and add spots. Finish with topcoat.
FIND YOUR MOST GOSSIP GIRL-WORTHY HEADBAND
Rewatching GG to prep for the reboot is giving us major headband envy. Channel Blair Waldorf vibes (without the mean-girl attitude) by choosing the chicest Queen B crown.
Rhinestone Padded Headband, $14, urbanoutfitters.com
Anais Headband, $20, anthropologie.com
Benevolently Braided Headband, $19, modcloth.com
STAIN YOUR LIPS
Give your lips that faded effect with a lip stain or blotted lipstick.
Flower Beauty Bitten Lip Stain in Play, $10, flowerbeauty.com
APPLY CHIC SPIDER LASHES
Add some falsies for the most doll-like gaze The longer, the better. (Try KISS Lash Couture Triple Push-up, $7, kissusa.com.)
MAKE BLACK SHADOW WORK FOR YOU
A true smoky eye is all about the blend. Add lots of mascara and keep everything else simple. (Try Wet n Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow Single in Panther, $1, wetnwildbeauty.com)
TRY WEARING JUST A LIP
A scarlet lip pops against clear, dewy skin. No other makeup required.
Coloured Raine Matte Liquid Lipstick in Vanity Raine, $17, colouredraine.com
FAKE A BROW LAMINATION
Use wax to brush brow hairs up for an instant face-framing statement. (Try Fenty Beauty Brow MVP Sculpting Wax Pencil & Styler, $20, fentybeauty.com)
PUT A BOW ON TOP
Complete a high pony with a prim, girly ribbon. Pair with a fluffy frock. (Try Madewell's Oversized Bow Hair Tie, $19, madewell.com.)
CURATE YOUR MAKEUP BRUSH COLLECTION
Here are the top five must-haves for any kit...
We love L.A. Colors’ affordable, super soft brushes, $1 to $4, walmart.com
Medium fluffy brush. "I like to use these for blush, but also for foundation," says makeup artist AJ Crimson. "they're magic!" Hint: Get two so you don't have to double dip.
Small fluffy shadow brush. Concealing with a fluffier brush helps diffuse the product to make everything look more natural.
Angled brush and a spoolie. Use a double-ended brush to fill in your brows with the brush-side and blend with the spoolie.
Thin liner brush. "You can turn just about any product into liner with a good brush, trust," reveals Crimson.
Powder brush. "This will help you finish off any look," he says.
CREATE NO-CHIP NAIL ART
If you’ve ever tried your hand at re-creating Instagram nail art, you know how hard it is. To get amaze artwork without the Picasso-level talent, celeb nail artist Miss Pop suggests nail strips. “They’re perfect even for people with preschool arts and crafts skills,” Miss Pop says. Here’s the step-by-step...
GET PREPPED. File your nails into shape, gently push back the cuticles, wash and dry your hands, then wipe your nailbed with a cotton pad dipped in oil-free, acetone-based polish remover.
CREATE YOUR ARTWORK. Take nail scissors and cut the strips into different shapes, then remove the shape from the plastic backing. Use tweezers to set it on your nail, layering each piece however you like. Mix the colors together, create new patterns and have fun.
MAKE IT LAST. Seal your hard work with a topcoat to keep it lasting up to 14 (!!) days. Just avoid washing your hands for about an hour after application to make sure the strips stick.
Hey, girl! Just wanted to let you know that this interview originally ran in our February/March 2021 issue. Want more? Read the print mag for free *today* when you click HERE.