Graphic Eyes Is One of the Biggest Makeup Trends of 2022
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In 2021, makeup triumphantly rose from the ashes left from the coronavirus pandemic. Vaccinations were administered, masks were shed, and we all hesitantly dipped our toes back into the makeup waters with tinted moisturizers, lightweight mascaras, and clear brow gels. Next year will be a different story entirely. With things more normal than we've had them in the past couple of years, folks are flocking to makeup with texture, shine, and bold color in rebellion of makeup-free at-home life — our trend forecast for the year serves as proof of that.
We scoured all the newest products on the market, scrolled endlessly through social media, and polled some of our favorite makeup artists to determine the biggest 2022 makeup trends. TL;DR: we're all about to learn how to make a big impact with a small amount of effort.
Easy makeup looks never go out of style, and that's why makeup artist Tommy Napoli insists that skinimalism isn't going anywhere in 2022. "People's priorities are different after COVID-19, at least for their everyday [makeup]," he explains. Not to mention that many are still searching for "an antithesis to layered and powder-heavy Instaglam makeup" after spending most of the 2010s wearing just that. Makeup artist Delina Medhin concurs: "I'm seeing that people are wearing less complexion [makeup] in general," she says.
And thank heavens because we don't think anyone wants to go back to blending their full-coverage foundations for 10 whole minutes every day. Instead, we're happy to sacrifice some visible texture, discoloration, and blemishes for products that are easier to apply and far more comfortable — like Cle Cosmetics's CCC Cream or the Best of Beauty-winning Estée Lauder Double Wear Sheer Long-Wear Makeup.
We'll be wearing less extreme highlighters, too, if makeup artist Lavonne's predictions are correct (and they always are). While wet-looking dolphin skin has dominated trends in the past couple of years, what she describes as "luminous" finishes — not matte, not extremely dewy, but somewhere between — are about to take off. "Runway looks dictate makeup trends for the following year, and the Spring season shows had elements of this," she explains. (And she's right — just take a look at the photo above from John Richmond's Spring/Summer 2022 show at Milan Fashion Week.)
Pat McGrath's Skin Fetish Highlighter & Balm Duo, Lavonne adds, is perfect for that lit-from-within kind of glow. Similarly, Ilia Beauty's Liquid Light Serum Highlighter, an Allure editor favorite, provides a subtle shimmer that looks just like candlelight.
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MdSolarSciences Mineral BB Cream
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Ami Cole Skin Enhancing Tint
Keeping with the theme of natural makeup, folks are on the hunt now more than ever for complexion products that have some kind of skin benefit to them, such as UV protection, hydration, or oil control. Because of that, the market is flooded with multitasking base makeup — or as Napoli puts it, "any product that color-corrects the look and benefits the health of the skin."
He offers up MdSolarSciences Mineral BB Cream as an example. "It's a full-spectrum sunscreen that doubles as a primer and offers a slight tint," he explains. "It blurs, especially on camera, and has been a go-to for me and my clients." Medhin, on the other hand, loves Ami Cole's Skin Enhancing Tint "for lightweight coverage that still lets your skin look like skin." Its formula contains barrier-balancing glycerin, moisturizing pumpkin seed extract, and stabilizing magnesium.
"It's 2022" might feel insanely futuristic to say, but as far as lipstick goes, we'll actually be traveling to the past this year — specifically, the 1990s. "Lip liner is here to stay," Medhin exclaims. "I think defined lips will be a big trend." The then-popular deep lip liner/light lipstick combination was already making the rounds in 2021, and its renaissance is far from over. One of Medhin's favorite products for recreating the look is Charlotte Tilbury's Lip Cheat Lip Liner in Pillow Talk (a classic, if you ask us). Lip glosses and other slick lipstick formulas will continue to be favored over matte lipsticks, too, Lavonne adds.
On that note, the glossy, rich, brown lipsticks worn by every supermodel of the '90s will experience a comeback in 2022 as well. For example, Clinique's Almost Lipstick in Black Honey — a shade launched in the 1970s that was revamped and popularized in 1989 — has been selling out nonstop, thanks to a resurgence on TikTok.
New shades have been cropping up with similar red-brown color hybrids, like Glossier's Ultralip in Ember or Ogee Sculpted Lip Oil in Viola, which Napoli says he's been using as a Black Honey alternative. What is it that draws people to these sheer throwback shades? "They fall right in line with the skinimalist look because they're a could-be-or-couldn't-be kind of lipstick look," he explains.
The Euphoria effect lives on: both Lavonne and Napoli namedrop high-impact eye makeup looks — whether colorful, sparkly, or graphic — as a big trend to look out for in the coming year. Like Lavonne established earlier, beauty trends tend to start on fashion runways before tricking down to the press, celebrities, and influencers, and bold eye makeup was littered all over Spring/Summer 2022 runways during various Fashion Weeks held recently. For example: Alexandra Moura (shown above), Rodarte, and Weinsanto.
Not being on TikTok is 2022's equivalent of living under a rock, so you haven't been privy to TikTok trends like purple blush… well, that's on you. Cream and powder formulas in shades of plum, violet, and lavender have been making the rounds across the app for their quirky vibe and universally flattering effect. (Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush in Drama Cla$$ and Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush in Matte Deep Berry are just a couple that made the app's users sing their praises in late 2021.) We'd go so far as to say that purple is the new pink in general — if you start seeing similar eye shadows, lipsticks, or even hair colors cropping up all 2022 long, we won't be the least bit surprised.
This year has had its fair share of interesting eyebrow trends — bleached brows, eyebrow slits, colorblocked brows — but the one with the most staying power is, undoubtedly, disco brows, a TikTok-viral trend popularized by Megs Cahill, pictured above. As you can guess, disco brows are basically just soap brows with a little bit of pigment mixed in. They're so popular that beauty brands like Halsey's About-Face have created products dedicated entirely to them (Fractal Glitter Brow Gel), breathing new life to the trend for 2022.
No surprise, seeing as Napoli predicts that we'll be looking to amp up texture in general throughout the year. "Shine has had a big moment this decade, and now we're looking to bigger, more festive, confident textures," he explains. Colorful disco brows are a prime example of that.
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Pixi On the Glow Blush
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Undone Beauty Water Bronzer
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Byredo Colour Stick
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CoverGirl Clean Fresh Cooling Glow Stick
Everything's easier to use when it comes in stick format — deodorant, face masks, sunscreen — and the same absolutely goes for makeup. Looking for the quickest makeup ideas possible, consumers are fleeing to foundations, blushes, highlighters, and any other stick makeup, Napoli observes. "Stick blush, in particular, is going to be big this coming year," he elaborates. "Pixi by Petra's latest cream blush, On the Glow, comes in three fresh shades in a twist-up stick form for the makeup novice or more casual makeup wearers." We're also fond of Colorescience Sunforgettable Total Protection Color Balm, yet another skin-protective multitasker with SPF 50.
Similarly, Undone's Beauty Water Bronzer recently went viral on TikTok for its sheer finish and convenient stick format. Some other new stick-format favorites of ours include Byredo's Colour Stick and CoverGirl Clean Fresh Cooling Glow Stick.
Wherever your makeup tastes lie on the low-key to high-key spectrum, being trendy is totally within your reach in 2022. For those about to roll out of bed, slap on some tinted moisturizer, and call it a day — and also for those about to spend 30 minutes perfecting their graphic eyeliner — we salute you.
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