One good thing that came of 2020? We’ve used this unpredictable year to experiment with our beauty routines (like choosing to cut bangs at home or trying out the Ariana Grande cat-eye), and we’re taking that newfound creativity with us into 2021. From shag haircuts to the emergence of ‘80s eye looks, here are nine beauty trends that are going to be huge in 2021, according to the pros.
The 9 Beauty Trends That Will Be Huge in 2021
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1. Shag Haircuts
This ‘70s-ispired cut plays with layers and texture and works on all hair types. Already seen on celebs like Miley Cyrus, Nick Stenson, MATRIX artistic director, believes it’s going to make a big statement in the upcoming year. “Bobs and layers will continue to grow in popularity, which means natural texture styling is going to be a major note for 2021. Think fewer curling iron curls and more diffused texture that’s manipulated with just the right amount of product for a disheveled feel,” he said. Whether you prepare to go the mullet route or want a casual choppy cut, the style gives off major rock ‘n roll vibes.
This year has kept some of us away from the salons, so we’ve taken things into our own hands. Only, it’s harder than it looks. But wigs are a great way to switch things up without commit to a drastic style (or worse, attempting said drastic style at home). And no, we’re not talking about the ones in the costume store. There are plenty of places to find this ready-to-go accessory that actually looks like your own hair. If you’re new to the game, check out this handy video to learn how to install one yourself.
3. Money Piece Highlights
Instead of getting a full color, opt for just a splash of brightness in your strands (usually two shades lighter than your natural hair color). But while last year it was all about using them to frame your face, this year, try taking the approach across your whole head, “The money-piece highlights will continue with the addition of chunkier pieces throughout,” said Andrew Fitzsimons, celebrity hair stylist and TIGI Copyright brand ambassador. Just take a look at Beyonce and Kate Middleton who are perfectly rocking the approach. It’s a subtle change that makes a big impact.
Raise your hand if you contemplated (or went full throttle) on cutting your own bangs during quarantine. Good news: The classic style is officially back, so breathe a big sigh of relief if you took the plunge. “We'll see more curtain bangs but with more texture and less length,” said Fitzsimons. “We've seen this trend all over the internet, especially on TikTok. It’s soft face-framing bangs that start by the cheekbones and split down the middle.”
5. Uncomplicated Embellishments
Messy buns, ponytails and taming flyaways have been the focus this year, because, well, they’re easy. And the simplified approach to everyday styling is going nowhere fast. “I think we’ll see a continuation of the casual styles in 2021,” said Annagjid “Kee” Taylor, celebrity hair stylish and natural hair YouTuber. But this year, expect to see those laid back looks accentuated with accessories like crystal bobby pins and extra-large scrunchies for an added punch that shows up well on video calls.
Shop accessories: Tasha Bobby Pin Pack ($20); Slip Large Scrunchie 3 Pack ($39); Lele Sadoughi Headband ($95)
6. ‘80s Eyeshadow
We’re traveling back to the ‘80s for its bold, eye-catching colors. “Personally I think eyes are where you can really have the most fun with makeup. Since we’ll probably be wearing masks for the first half of the year of 2021, eyes will still be the primary focus,” said Robert Sesnek, celebrity makeup artist for CATRICE Cosmetics. Think royal blue, bright yellow (aka one of the Pantone colors of the year) and even rich black (for a smokey eye). This is the chance to try those the over-the-top tones in your palette that have always caught your eye.
Shop eyeshadow palettes: Juvia’s Place ($20); Violet Voss ($30); James Charles ($39)
7. Colorful Cat Eyes
Ariana Grande proved this year that while the cat-eye look is here to stay, changing the color or style takes it to the next level. “The cat eye is constantly being modernized which I love,” said celebrity makeup artist Jamie Greenberg. Play with a brown, blue or a colorful liner to get the job done. Also, go for a natural or dramatic style by messing with the length, height or even creating a negative space eye look.
Shop the liner: Sephora ($11); Urban Decay ($22); Marc Jacobs ($26)
8. Arched Eyebrows
Now that your brows have had the chance to grow to their fullest au natural extent, remind them who’s boss by sculpting them into the latest trendy shape. “We’ve been selling tons of our essential tool kit: scissors, tweezers, brushes, dermablades. So more at home maintenance, people are taking the bull by the horns and trying to get in there themselves,” said Joey Healy, brow expert. But the look to achieve this year? Strong arches. “A little bit more arch gives dimension to the face, especially now that we're covering half of it,” he said. “But we’re not going back to the 90s. That boy brow from 2014 is moving out, and we're seeing a little more structure and lift in the brow, which I like.”
Shop the brow: Glossier ($18); PYT ($16); Benefit Cosmetics ($14; $12)
9. Concealer And Balms
We’re saying goodbye to full-makeup looks (especially when masks have become the norm for now) and focusing on minimal styles. That means forgoing foundation and opting for much lighter coverage, like cream-based products, concealers and balms for a radiant glow. “Maskne is real, and I think people are trying not to trap makeup under their masks and really take better care of their skin,” said Healy.
Shop the look: e.l.f. Cosmetics Poreless Putty Primer ($8); Josie Maran Illuminzer ($26); Younique Touch Skin Solution Concealer ($29)