Besides Barbiecore, three other themes are getting a lot of attention in the makeup world. A guide to help you achieve these looks
Gone are the days when makeup trends came from movies and runway shows. Today, inspirations come from sources like OTT programs, TikTok, and Instagram. This also means that new trends emerge every month, and makeup isn’t just limited to what’s on the runway.
While Barbiecore is making a big comeback due to the release of the movie, three other themes are getting a lot of attention in makeup right now: the soft girl, flirtycore, and mermaidcore aesthetic.
Here’s the roundup of these inclusive makeup trends:
The soft girl aesthetic
Celebrities who often flaunt this look include singer Arianna Grande, actor Sydney Sweeney, and female K-pop stars.
“The soft girl aesthetic in makeup is a celebration of all things cute and girly. Your palette would mostly consist of pinks, peaches, and glitter. The highlight of this look is a strong blush that glides across the bridge of the nose and cheeks; think Japanese anime girls,” says Janhvi Kapoor’s makeup artist Riviera Lynn. Heavy-handed bronzer or contouring are a big no for this look.
Singer Taylor Swift is another poster girl for this look and has been putting out many 2023 versions of this aesthetic as part of her new album tour. The return of Y2K fashion has played a big part in the popularity of this look.
To get the look, prep your skin well with plenty of highlighter after your moisturizer, Lynn says.
Another alternative is to mix a highlighter with the foundation. “I like to use MAC Strobe Cream or Charlotte Tilbury Wonder Glow,” says the celebrated artist. Next, she applies blush. Plenty on the apples of your cheeks, Lynn suggests. “Take it higher on her cheekbones and also on the bridge of her nose. Use a peach or pink lip stain and try using a darker tint in the center of the lip, creating almost like an ombré,” says Lynn.
Straighter cat eyeliners are also a strong attribute of this look. Lynn recommends ditching the winged-up liner and drawing your wing directly from the lash line to give the illusion of an elongated eye. To finish, she “applies a good amount of mascara. If you feel like playing around, create fake freckles and you’re done,” says Lynn.
The fashion and makeup for this look is all flirty, doll-like, lacey, and ruffled.
(Courtesy Bridget Westendorf/Instagram)
The fashion and makeup for this look is all flirty, doll-like, lacey, and ruffled. It is inspired by other recent trends such as regencycore (corsets and ruffles) and balletcore. “Soft girl and coquettecore are very similar when it comes to makeup. The only difference for me would be the highlighter. Use a regular non-shimmery highlighter; I love Becca’s highlighter in opal. And the lips will be soft and fuzzy instead of big and juicy,” says makeup artist Annalia Zhimomi, who is also the founder of Annalia Beauty. Think soft, feminine doll look, she says.
Use soft, light pinks or taupes for the eyeshadow. “The most important thing is to wear glitter on the love bands around the eyes like the Koreans. This trick is used to look young and like Lolita, a very big character inspiration for this look. Line your eyes well to make the lashes look fuller, but avoid eyeliner, as you want a soft, feminine look, and bold eyeliners can give an edgy look,” says Zhimomi.
Use lots of soft blush on the apples of the cheeks and pull it towards the middle of the cheekbone as well. “I outlined his nose to make him look like a doll. Highlight the bridge of the nose to make it look sharp and small, and add a bit of highlighter to the cheeks,” says Zhimomi, who also recommends Too Faced’s canary diamond highlighter.
While butterfly clips in hair work for the soft girl, the flirty girl may end up with ribbons.
Megan Fox with the wet mermaid look
(Courtesy of Andrew Fitzsimons/Instagram)
This is one of the biggest fashion and beauty trends of 2023. Scalloped hems, shell and pearl embellishments and motifs, and shimmering sequins in all sizes and colors of the sea, these elements form the core of this look and have been seen across runway collections. The launch of the new The little Mermaid The film is one of the main reasons for its popularity.
The wet hair look often seen on fashion runways is also part of the mermaidcore off-sea look. If you add extra long wavy hair extensions, you have the perfect island girl hair, as seen on everyone from Khloe Kardashian to Megan Fox.
“Think like you just came out of the water, looking glam, wet and shiny,” says Zhimomi. “Open hair, pulled back with a wet look created with strong hair gel, dewy skin, gel-filled brows, glossy lips, cream blush and cream highlighter (like MAC Strobe Cream) will give you this look. For the eyeshadow, use a mix of teal, sea greens, and turquoise,” Zhimomi suggests. You can also add pearl sticker accents around the eyes or even on the cheekbones to be a stylish mermaid 2023.
Dhara Vora Sabhnani is a Mumbai-based writer.