What’s inspiring you right now? It’s certainly not the same things that were pre-pandemic. Two years later, and nothing is the same when it comes to self-expression.
Branding Is Back
Right On Time
Secondhand Is New
Instead of swatching lipsticks in store, we’re picking up eyeliner tips from TikTok, and showcasing it in the metaverse. Screen style is the new street style.
Main Character Gloves
Celeb Beauty Entrepreneurs
Are *Actually* Legit
We’re keeping it real and living in the now versus staging the perfect, filtered #latergram. Above all, we’re letting our personal style reign — so in 2022, buck the tradition, find joy in dressing, and just go for it.
From Farm To Fashion
Techification of Beauty
Sweet, Skin-Care Dreams
Diamonds Are A Tooth’s BFF
Barbie Dream Closet
Make It Modest
☻ ☺ ✺ ☻ Forget runways and rules, long live style. ☻ ☺ ✺ ☻
Welcome To The Meta Verse
Clean Is The New Luxury
Temporarily Permanent Tattoos
Written by Frances Solá Santiago, Alexandra Polk, Nadia Ebrahim, Emily Ruane, Irina Grechko, Amanda Mitchell, Megan Decker, Sara Tan, Karina Hoshikawa
Face Off (Frances Solá Santiago)
Two years into the health crisis, celebrities and brands have turned our day-to-day safety practice into a full-fledged fashion statement with facial covers that feature little more than two eye slits. Take, for example, the Balenciaga leather face mask Kim Kardashian wore last summer (!), Evan Mock’s spiked latex covering at the Met Gala, and Ye’s recent disguises. Add this to this winter’s balaclava craze, and going incognito has become the ultimate signifier of our times.
Astronaut Couture (Alexandra Polk)
What do Buzz Lightyear and Rico Nasty have in common? They both know how to rock some interstellar footwear. Yep, Houston, we have a solution to metaphorically depart this COVID-ridden planet: the chunky celebrity-favorite kicks known as the Moon Boots. We first saw the Space Age-era style completing the outfits of moody emo kids back in the early 2010s; now, you can spot them anywhere from Dua Lipa’s IG grid to viral TikToks. Prepare to see them taking over 2022 (from now to infinity and beyond).
Branding Is Back (Frances Solá Santiago)
It’s the era of logomania 2.0, with outfits featuring double the branding, double the excess. From Gucci x Balenciaga’s runway “hacking” last year to the Skims x Fendi collab, collections are filled with items allowing consumers to rep their favorite brands on the street (and on the ‘gram). And while it may have seemed like our austere pandemic times may have obliterated the need for such flashy displays, it only validated the notion that every action has an equal and opposite reaction.
Take Flight (Frances Solá Santiago)
Butterflies take flight once they’ve matured enough in their cocoon. This spring, the Y2K fashion comeback is ushering people to undergo their own metamorphosis, thanks to brands like Blumarine, Zero + Maria Cornejo, and Alexis Mabille. While the trend may seem a 2.0 version of our past lives, it’s anything but, with modern butterfly embellishments, prints, and details that bring our mall-era, Mariah Carey-obsessed selves into 2022.
Right On Time (Frances Solá Santiago)
Forget designer handbags: The luxury watch craze — propelled by a boom in the secondhand market and the creators democratizing the once-intimidating timepiece landscape through digital content — has made the accessory a must-have. Thanks to more resources like the popular blog Dimepiece, dedicated to demystifying the male-dominated market, women are now investing in watches with the same fervor they once did a Chanel flap bag. What’s more, they’re using watches to celebrate big life moments, from engagements to career milestones.
Skin-Care Transparency (Amanda Mitchell)
If there’s one thing that the last two years has revealed, it’s that a lot of us ran out of any kind of ability to keep stuff private, and we really didn’t care. We’re seeing the same rise on social media with people finally talking about and showing a bit of transparency when it comes to beauty maintenance. From wearing pimple patches out in public to masking on social media, counting Botox and fillers as skin care, we’re all just saying our most quiet parts out loud. The rise of cosmetic surgeons and dermatologists on TikTok becoming social media stars has also helped to metaphorically peel the label back on what used to feel like unspoken secrets, for the benefit of everyone. Get in losers, we’re no longer gatekeeping and girlbossing, we’re just glassy skinning.
Gla-Ma Vibes (Nadia Ebrahim)
These aren’t your grandma’s bloomers. Okay, well, maybe they are, but designers are giving them a major fashion upgrade. Vintage bloomers, the 19th-century undergarment historically worn beneath dresses, are coming for the bike shorts that have had us in a chokehold since 2019. With royalcore and cottagecore continuing to take over and hemlines shrinking in fashion, it makes sense that the Victorian silhouette is having an outerwear moment. Today’s bloomers are mini, bold, ruched, ruffled, laced, and definitely worn to make a statement.
Secondhand Is New (Nadia Ebrahim)
Thanks to a shift in the shopping habits of today’s eco-conscious customer, it’s no surprise that resale has skyrocketed in the last few years. With luxury brands quickly embracing it, it wasn’t long before mainstream brands like Levi’s and The North Face got on board, too, with their own secondhand shopping programs and vintage offerings, carried alongside brand-new store merchandise. Are the glory days of scouring the racks of thrift retailers or independent vintage stores coming to an end? We hope not, but the way we thrift is certainly changing.
Triple Threat (Irina Grechko)
While the frivolous mini bag trend was all the rage Before the Pandemic, the last two years gave rise to practical totes of gargantuan proportions, necessary to hold our hand sanitizers, face masks, and other new essentials. This spring, designers are meeting in the middle, with models at Ulla Johnson and Altuzarra carrying two or even three smaller bags each. Manifesting in styles ranging from necklace-like holders and dangling coin purses to identical satchels in different sizes, consider this the solution for your messy spillover shopper, not to mention lopsided posture. Your chiropractor will thank you.
Scammer Style (Frances Solá Santiago)
We’re often told to dress for the job we want. Some people take it more seriously than others. For make-believe socialite Anna Delvey and disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes, their uniforms were as much part of their narrative as their fake storylines. Fast-forward to 2022, their style will be immortalized on television with the premiere of Inventing Anna on Netflix and The Dropout on Hulu. While we can see past the black turtlenecks and thick sunglasses into the ugly realities of their scams, who says it’s illegal to enjoy some grifter fashion?
Main Character Gloves (Nadia Ebrahim)
matters gloves into our own hands and dressing like the main character we are. The opera glove, an accessory once reserved for elite society, is back, and an invite to the debutante ball is not necessary. In the last few months, elbow-length styles fit for Bridgerton have popped up on runways like Balenciaga, Marine Serre, Moschino, and LaQuan Smith and made appearances on celebrities ranging from Beyoncé and Cardi B to Olivia Rodrigo. But for us regular folks, the avant-garde accessory has become a fun — and COVID-approved way — to play up any outfit.
Playing Chemist (Karina Hoshikawa)
Ampoules, tinctures, vials, and pipettes certainly wouldn’t be out of place in a chemistry lab — and thanks to a growing number of brands, they’re now hardly a stranger to your bathroom cabinet, either. With bespoke options and farm-to-bottle formulations as the latest arbiter of luxury, it’s no surprise that the final steps in making skin-care magic are now quite literally in your own hands. From powdered activators to customized booster serums, playing beauty chemist doesn’t simply add a fun, experiential element; it all but ensures maximum freshness, ingredient potency, and serious results — lab coat optional.
TikTok Truth (Megan Decker, Frances Solá Santiago)
What people love about TikTok is that it’s not Instagram. The pace is faster, the content is useful or funny, the people (though relatable) are complete strangers — and they’re honest. Since the beginning, the most successful creators have made it a point to record their life, raw, unedited, and sometimes uncomfortable. Tinx talks openly about her Botox, making a hush-hush topic feel refreshingly relatable to her followers. From a fashion perspective, plus-size creator Remi Bader shows her “realistic” try-ons from popular brands (Zara, Free People, Abercrombie) to an audience of four million. On TikTok, it seems, there’s nothing to hide or dance around. On the contrary, the truth may set you free — or go viral.
Celeb Beauty Entrepreneurs
Are *Actually* Legit (Karina Hoshikawa)
>What do Alicia Keys, Jennifer Aniston, Tyler the Creator, and Lady Gaga have in common? Besides legions of fans and the ability to procure any coveted dinner reservation in town, they’ve all added “beauty entrepreneur” to their CVs. From objet d’art nail polishes (Styles’ Pleasing) to a $25 multitasking hair potion (Aniston’s LolaVie), the new guard of celebrity-founded brands has far less to do with a famous face shilling shampoo and more with real-deal innovation within the industry. After all, in an oversaturated beauty landscape, nothing makes more of an impact — not to mention, shuts down the haters — than letting the products do all the talking.
MAN-icures (Megan Decker)
For male celebs in 2022, nail polish is the gateway to a brand deal. Men painting their fingernails is not new. However, the fact that they’re getting into the creative — formulating and getting hyped about nail polish — feels fresh. Harry Styles has Pleasing, pearlescent polishes with rounded marble caps. Machine Gun Kelly came out with the graphic and painterly UN/DN LAQR — its tagline, “Don’t huff the paint.” Lil Yachty backed a brand called Crete that makes both nail paint and nail stickers. And Tyler the Creator launched polishes as part of his new lifestyle and beauty brand Golf Le Fleur. While the manicure has always been a non-gendered concept, the shift is in the glorious visibility.
From Farm To Fashion (Emily Ruane)
Local, seasonable, and sustainably grown food has been prized in the culinary world for decades — why shouldn’t fashion consumers expect the same from their clothes? Certain brands are already leading the charge when it comes to fabrics of fine-dining-level origins: Eco-conscious pioneer Eileen Fisher has a collection of traceable organic cotton that follows the fluffy fiber “from field to factory,” while Swedish brand Asket offers a transparency rating for its minimalist garments. New York-based label Another Tomorrow pulls the veil back even further — each of its offerings is equipped with a “digital ID” that tracks the garment’s provenance, starting with the farm where the material was sourced. While these practices are still in their early stages, if the farm-to-table restaurant movement is any indication, single-origin fashion is here to stay.
Glueless Lacefronts (Amanda Mitchell)
Remember when you would try to blend your baby hairs and make sure your lace wasn’t lifting and the 90,000 other things you have to do just to keep your wig… on your head? Yeah, that’s over now! Glueless lace-front wigs are 100% that girl, and their ease of use is why people find them so appealing. You can take them on and off, and the elastic band in the back, along with the clips in the front, will keep your wig safe and secure, even on the windiest of days. It’s a great way to protect your edges and your hair, and people will be asking, “What lace? Where?”
Techification Of Beauty (Megan Decker)
The days when the only beauty tool in your bathroom was a Clarisonic (RIP) are long gone. Shiny new beauty toys have come to hold spots in our medicine cabinets, vanities, freezers, and Sephora carts. There are LED face masks that emit wavelengths of light to target different skin concerns, from acne to hyperpigmentation; face rollers that stimulate blood flow and promote drainage; muscle-stimulating massagers; a $300 device that delivers collagen into your skin via a super-fine micro mist. And that’s just skin care. Don’t forget, you can scan the QR code on your curling wand to get a full how-to tutorial and then outsource your manicure to a robot. Welcome to the year 2022 — we hope you brought your blue-light glasses and a USB cord.
Sweet, Skin-Care Dreams (Sara Tan)
Beauty sleep gains a whole new meaning in 2022. Pajamas aren’t just for snoozing — they can be part of your skin-care routine, too. New York City-based PH5 pieces are made of a type of hyaluronic acid-infused yarn that releases its hydrating and plumping properties into your skin as you sleep. Swedish-born “wearable wellness” brand Graffenberg creates beautiful sleep sets made with antioxidant-rich fabric that contains both copper and coenzyme Q10 meant to improve the look of tired, stressed skin. Whether you can skip your body lotions and rely solely on your clothing for healthy, glowy skin has yet to be approved by dermatologists, but whatever the verdict, we think skin-care-infused sleepwear is a nice complement to our evening regimens.
Diamonds Are A Tooth’s BFF (Amanda Mitchell)
When it comes to gems, we’re gonna wear it — even on our teeth. Tooth gems and jewelry are on the rise, with consumers bonding tiny gems to their teeth for some extra shine and twinkle. It’s a non-invasive, painless, and temporary way to change up your look and add a surprise in the form of a rhinestone, crystal, or even a diamond. Less commitment than a gold tooth, and less expensive than a grill, teeth jewelry is the latest Y2K trend to dominate the beauty space. Diamonds are a tooth’s best friend, apparently.
Barbie Dream Closet (Irina Grechko)
From Bratz to Barbie, the toys of our youth are becoming 2022’s biggest style muses. For proof, see the popularity of Versace’s jewel-toned, triple-stacked Versace Medusa Aevitas pumps that look like they were pulled from the shoe closets of Jade and Sasha. Then there is the 50-piece apparel collaboration between Barbie and French house Balmain that includes a range of saccharine-sweet apparel from a bubblegum pink swimsuit to a fuchsia monogram print dress. Amidst new variants and curveballs thrown our way, it makes sense that we are looking for reminders of a simpler, more joyful time. Good thing the fashion still fits. Come on, Barbie, let’s go party.
Fandom Fashion (Alexandra Polk)
If you followed at least one Harry Styles stan, BTS Army member, or Bad Bunny lover on Instagram last summer, you probably got a glimpse at some totally campy concert looks. From groovy #LoveOnTour fits to vibrant Bangtancore ensembles, everyone showed up and showed out, even if their seats touched the ceiling. It makes sense. After a year with no live music shows, we are officially doubling down on our respective fandoms in 2022 with fashion that reflects our unabashed love for these idols and cherishing all uncanceled gigs from here on out.
Make It Modest (Nadia Ebrahim)
In response to the Great Fashion Shrinkage of 2022, the modest girlies are making the trend their own, finding power and creativity in coverage. Just look at the #ModestFashion hashtag on TikTok, which has over 909.4M views. We’ve seen tips on how to style mini dresses over pants to hijabi modesty hacks, but, this season, we’ll see layering like never before. Whether it’s wearing a mini skirt over a maxi skirt or deconstructing garments into new interpretations, anything goes. And they’re bringing the heat.
Welcome To The Meta Verse (Amanda Mitchell)
The crossover between tech and the beauty space has always been imminent, and the rise and development of the Metaverse has made that all the more possible. Apps that allow the user to experiment with various lipstick shades, or those frighteningly realistic TikTok filters that transport us to another dimension were the first step in the gamification of the beauty space. Now, we’re seeing more virtual storefronts, crossovers with gaming companies (OPI x XBox or ColourPop’s collaboration with Animal Crossing), and brands like Clinique holding contests to win NFTs inspired by their most noteworthy products. There’s also Phygital NFTs, or physical items sold with accompanying Digital Piece of art in the Metaverse — like Valdé’ Beauty’s collection of hand-carved lipstick cases called Divine Crystal Lipstick Armors — which are looking to become collectors’ items in the beauty arena. It’s just the beginning for the future of beauty in the Metaverse.
Clean Is The New Luxury (Sara Tan)
Going “green” is no longer a conversation just being had by small indie brands with words like “bio” or “leaf” in their names. Over the past few years, bigger beauty corporations have made pledges to reduce their carbon footprint and now, our favorite luxury brands are joining in. Chanel recently launched No. 1 de Chanel, the brand’s first sustainably made beauty line focused on using more naturally sourced ingredients and less single-use plastic. Dior’s new “Forever Foundation” is formulated with botanical ingredients and its bottle is 40% recycled glass with a cap made entirely from recycled plastic. Hermès set the bar with its Pierre Hardy-designed Rouge bullet — arguably the most chic lipstick in our vanity, while also being the most sustainable, thanks to its plastic-free, refillable packaging. While these designer houses (and the fashion and beauty industries as a whole) have a lot more work to do, this move towards “clean” luxury is a hopeful sign that soon sustainability in the industry won’t make headlines and will instead just be the norm.
Temporarily Permanent Tattoos (Sara Tan)
The reason most people get tattoos is the same reason that so many people don’t: the permanency of the ink etched into your skin for eternity. Good news for those who fall into the latter category — semipermanent tattoos are about to be everywhere. And no, this is not the same as what you used to get in those kiddie vending machines: Ephemeral tattoo is an innovative type of ink that is made to fade from the skin in nine to 15 months. Make no mistake — it’s real tattoo ink using the same machines and equipment applied by real tattoo artists, but the ingenious temporary ink technology developed with the founders’ chemical engineering backgrounds (which took more than six years to perfect) makes it look as good as the real thing. So if you’re looking to test out a design or just want to get something on your body for a year, you’re in luck.
Accessible Beauty (Megan Decker)
The most straightforward packaging design of beauty products often excludes a population of people, specifically people with disabilities. Now, the conversation around accessibility is finally expanding. Dove recently created the world’s first “adaptive deodorant,” with an ergonomic hook design that makes it easier to use for people with limited visual and motor capabilities. With makeup, brands like The Vamp Stamp are thinking outside of the traditional confines of pencil eyeliner, creating tools, like eyeliner stamps, making it easier for everyone to achieve a perfect wing. Some labels are considering magnetized clip-and-close caps for lipsticks, and pump dispensers that make a necessary beauty product, like soap or body wash, accessible to all people — which, in 2022, should really be a given.
Purple Hair (Megan)
In the hair equivalent to dopamine dressing, we’re seeing bright colors, like copper reds, ocean-y blues, and purple highlights blowing in the wind and popping up in Zoom galleries. Pantone’s color of the year ‘Very Peri’ — a warm shade of lavender blue, meant to symbolize transition and new possibilities — seems to be a shade du jour, likely because it has that Y2K frosty vibe and looks really cool as a face-framing highlight or a rogue streak. Add some butterfly clips, and you’re golden. Well, you’re happy periwinkle.
Sartorial Shrinkage (Irina Grechko)
After two years of hiding under nap dresses, tie-dye sweatpants, and double masks, we are ready to tear through our clothing Hulk-style and show major skin. No need for any clothes to be harmed in the process, because this season’s fabric use is so small, there is little to rip off. On the runways, Miu Miu showed a preppy collection of micro-mini skirts and midriff-exposing blazers so tiny they wouldn’t make it past the doors of even the most liberal schools. Meanwhile, the Brandon Maxwell runway saw Precious Lee in a teeny-tiny “pin cardigan” that defied all knitwear function and featured Gigi Hadid in a suit styled over a string bikini top. Next time you shrink your favorite shirt in the dryer or run out of one to wear with your go-to blazer, just file it under “Fashion.”
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