Trend Tracker: Where Did That Beauty Trend Come From?

Eye makeup girl with a flowers

2017 has been the year of surprising beauty trends — some gorgeous, some gruesome, and some that are just downright strange. We give you the DL on the weird and wonderful trends of the year. Where they come from might just surprise you.

Thalia Phamova, SHISEIDO UK National Makeup Artist, talks us through her favorite 2017 trends… and those she’s not so fond of!

Just-kissed lips

“Blurry lipstick” — aka smudgy lipstick that looks like you’ve just emerged from a particularly passionate kiss — has been everywhere. “I love the new blurred red lip look,” proclaims Phamova. “Gone are the perfectly contoured lips of the past few seasons. Instead, these bold red colors are applied with fingertips.” The beauty of this “smudged-on-purpose” look is that all the strong, feminine and powerful connotations of wearing red lipstick remain, but at the same time, it looks more modern, relaxed and less try-hard than conventional red lips.

This trend was kickstarted at Fashion Week this year, where models were given a look that was “worn-in and blurred, like they’ve been wearing their makeup all night”. For inspiration, take a peek at the fall/winter ’17 runway shows where the trend originated. Check out Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, where Val Garland began the trend, as well as Roland Mouret and Vivienne Westwood. After all, who can resist an on-trend lip look that’s conveniently easy to apply in the back of a cab?

“Without the usual harsh border we’ve come to expect with statement red lips, the overall effect is prettier, younger and cooler. It changes the whole look,” says Phamova. Happily, this trend shows no signs of abating for 2018. Time to pucker up!

USE: SHISEIDO Rouge Rouge in Ruby Copper, which is a vivid, warm red. Apply with fingertips and artfully (or artlessly) smudge the edges over your natural lip line.

Lips Makeup

Liner love

“2017 has seen the return of the focus on eyeliner, but with a twist,” says Phamova. “The twist is that rather than a smooth line, the eyeliner is applied with a disconnected line for a pop-art effect,” she explains. This clever trend comes to you direct from the international runways at Fashion Week, where most beauty trends originate. It plays on the eye-elongating effects of a cat’s eye feline flick on the outer corner of the eye, combined with a playful, mirroring triangle of black liner on the inner corner of the eye. The vibe is fresh, modern and has a cleaner look than traditional eyeliner.

It also nods to the artfully-applied charcoal liner worn by Japanese geishas as part of their immaculate makeup. For a modern party look just in time for the holidays, team discontinued eyeliner with almost-bare skin (no blush and definitely no contouring) and glitter statement lips as seen here at Fendi.

USE: SHISEIDO Inkstroke Eyeliner. This ultra-smooth, smudge-proof gel glides on for a highly-pigmented effect that’s water-resistant. Apply using SHISEIDO Inkstroke Eyeliner Brush for the precision that this look requires.

Make up trend: blue shiny eyeshadows.

Pastel princesses

“Pastel eyeshadows ruled once again this year,” Phamova says. Taking inspiration from a classic 50s palette, there was a flurry of lavender, baby blue, soft pink and mauve shades on the runways. At Emanuel Ungaro and Fendi, glitter mauve or bright pastel blue on the upper lids was worn with a contrasting shade on the lower lash line. Paired with matte orange-red lips, this cartoon, early 60s look has a pin-up girl allure with a youthful edge.

Meanwhile, at Chanel and Adam Selman, the models channelled a Clueless vibe with pale pink shadow worn as a wash all the way up to the brows (Adam Selman), or matched with powdery pink blush and glossy rose-tinted lips (Chanel). This look can also be traced back to Korean beauty bloggers, who’ve made the pretty-in-pink K-Beauty trend of pink lids (think subtle, shimmery pink hues) combined with matching cheeks and glossy lips a worldwide hit.

USE: SHISEIDO Paperlight Cream Eye Color in Sango Coral or Hisui Green, which give a translucent matte effect. Apply all the way up to the brows. Mix and match colors if you so desire.

Stranger than things brows

You’ve probably noticed the feathered brows all over your Instagram feed. This trend originated with beauty bloggers playing around with looks, then uploading them. “Feathering” is a technique that maximizes the breadth of your brows and is done by applying water or a light gel to spread the strands of hair. Phamova, however, is not a fan. “This is one trend I won’t be missing as we head in 2018!” she laughs. “I don’t know why this one went viral. Plus the wiggly brow look is one of my least fave trends. Personally, it’s not my thing,” she adds.

Painterly liners

Another trend we have Instagrammers to thank — or blame, depending on your perspective! — for is the highly decorative eyeliners embellished with glitter, crystals or flower designs that were all over social media this year. From floral motifs to sparkly daisies applied in the shape of a winged eyeliner flick, if you like to decorate your face, this is the trend for you. But if you’re more of a fan of subtle or elegant looks you might agree with Phamova. “These creative eyeliners are a step too far in my opinion,” she says. “It’s too much and seems designed more for a close-up social media selfie than for real life,” she explains.

Hair glitter

While glitter lips have been a huge trend this year — thanks to the prevalence of all those backstage images from the international fashion weeks — a new glitter look also took center stage. Cue glittery hair partings! The trend was all over social media, especially during festival season, where Coachella and Burning Man beauties snapped images of their disco buns and embellished partings.

Harking back to the late 90s/early 2000s new millennium club culture, where the sparklier, shinier and more metallic your makeup the better, this glitter root trend is an example of a street style look becoming a mainstream beauty trend, thanks to the power of social media. However, it’s not without its detractors, Phamova being one. “This is another trend that 2017 could have done without,” she laughs. “I can’t help it, but instead of glitter, it reminds me of dandruff!”