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The Year in Beauty

Industry experts share the best and worst beauty trends of 2019

Published

By Kim Reyes-Palanca

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As we look forward to the beginning of a new decade, we see how technology, social media, diversity, and modern approaches have shaped the beauty landscape. Many of these innovations emerged from the way we examine ideas as well as how we think and rethink what works and what doesn’t.

In the spirit of spring cleaning, or “konmari” as we have learned this year, we start anew with a beauty rundown.

The truth is, it doesn’t really matter if it was good or bad. Like all trends—big hair in the ’80s, over-tweezed brows and frosty lids and lips in the ’90s—what’s more important is that, at some point, they all sparked joy!

OWEN SARMIENTO

Owen Sarmiento

It’s very nice to see that more and more people are trying the dewy-to-satin skin finish textures as their makeup base. Whether with foundation or none, it’s refreshing to see that we are starting to embrace this makeup trend, which I am sure, even decades from now, will never go out of style. I can definitely think one of the worst trends right now: highlighters! While it is one of the essential tools that can give a face the dimension it needs, it can very much ruin it too. I believe people should know the kind of highlighter to use, the color and undertone, what it is for, and the amount to apply. For highlighters, one size does not fit all! —OWEN SARMIENTO, makeup artist

DEWY SKIN

BEST: Dewy skin (image by MAC cosemtics)

BOBBY CARLOS

Bobby Carlos

The best beauty trend for me is the brave use of glitters during the last quarter of the year (fall/ winter). You see celebs donning glittery eyes on and off cam as well as glitters doubling as liners and eye highlighters. I hope this trend continues in 2020 in a much subtler version. The worst beauty trend for me would be over-highlighting and overcontouring at the same time. We have to choose just one, in order for the other to shine. Using both typically changes the facial topography in a very unnatural way. This has to stop. —BOBBY CARLOS, celebrity makeup artist and SOFA faculty member

GLITTER EYE

BEST: Glitter eyes

MARK QUA

Mark Qua

Best trend is fresh and glowing skin because I know this trend will be forever. And who wouldn’t want to be fresh and glowing, right? Worst trend would be silver color for the inner corner of the eyes. For me, it’s just too much. I would rather choose a more subtle shade like pearl or rose gold—it would look brighter and softer. —MARK QUA, celebrity makeup artist

LOUISE KEE

Louis Kee

In my experience, the worst hair trend would be the Christmas tree-inspired hairstyle. I think it’s ridiculous and outrageous. Personally, I think the best thing that ever happened in 2019 is the gold hair liquid known as Olaplex. An absolutely fantastic bond protector for pre-lightening hair to achieve that platinum blonde or any ombré or balayage techniques without breakage. It comes in a liquid gold color and it’s very precious. To me, it is the best. —LOUIS KEE, hairstylist and owner of Lifestyle Salon by Louis Phillip Kee

CHRISTMAS TREE HAIR

WORST: Christmas tree hair

ALBERT KURNIAWAN

The best beauty trend must be glowing skin (not oily or not dewy), meaning healthy-looking skin. I am so happy with more cosmetic brands coming out with products that have skincare benefits. The worst for me would be semi-permanent lash extensions. It only looks nice for a while, and only makes your eyes look sleepy and droopy. Better to just put false eyelashes on and apply a good mascara. —ALBERT KURNIAWAN, celebrity makeup artist and founder of Teviant

RICCI CHAN

Best 2019 beauty trend for me is truthful skincare. Thanks to Deciem/The Ordinary, it is now possible to get great skin for a fraction of the price. There were other great choices in the beauty counters and stores such as Good Molecules and Honest Beauty because of this. Aside from providing the market with ample choices, the rise of cheaper skincare alternatives has also educated the public on the type of products they should be getting. People now understand the value of ingredients and their importance to one’s personal regimen.

The worst beauty trend for 2019 for me is full-coverage foundation. Though I understand the need for complete coverage from time to time, the trend in “caking” it up was just too much. Why do we invest in great skincare and prep when we end up covering the entire face with foundation? I hope 2020 proves to be a year when we see the skin breathe a little more. —RICCI CHAN, actor, host, celebrity makeup artist

MICKEY SEE

The worst beauty trend would be the super matte, super drying liquid lipstick. Aside from dehydrating the lips, it’s so hard to take off! Which brings me to the best beauty product to address that—Maybelline Superstay Eraser Lip Color Remover. I’ve used this many times on my clients when I need a quick change, and it works on all the different lipstick brands. —MICKEY SEE, celebrity makeup artist

MATTE LIPSTICK

WORST: Matte lipstick

RENZ PANGILINAN

The best trend of 2019 is loving your own hair, whatever cut or color it is. I love how you can now do whatever you want to stay on-trend. You can go as sleek or as big and as volumized as you please! The worst is the rainbow hair. I don’t like going too crazy with hair color and regret it a few years after. Let’s stick to beautiful, natural, soft, and pretty hair. —RENZ PANGILINAN, celebrity hairstylist

RAINBOW HAIR

WORST: Rainbow hair

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