The 7 best make-up trends to try in 2023

Industry experts call these the hottest looks of the year ✨


by Emma Hawkins |
Posted on

When it comes to what’s trending in beauty, it can be hard to follow. Are we still amping up the sparkle, with glitter and eye gems – or shipping dewy, natural make-up looks that leave us with woke-up-like-this skin?

Luckily, we’ve had our eyes peeled looking for what’s hot in 2023, with some of our personal faves being bold, bright liner, out-of-bounds blush and grunge-inspired smoky eyes. The best part? They’re actually quite easy to copy, so to help you get ahead on this year's trends, we’ve chatted to industry experts, who have shared their personal tips and tricks.

1) Soft goth

Call it the Wednesday Addams-effect but ever since the Netflix show hit our screens, gothic eye looks have been frightfully popular. “Gothic smudged-out eyes were breezing down the runways for SS23, standing out against the natural lips to give the look some real oomph,” reveals Charlotte Knight, Founder and CEO of Lottie London.

“It’s all about looking like your make-up has been on for hours,” she adds. “All you need is a black eyeliner, a lot of it, alongside a good smudge brush – this will be your best friend.” To take on the trend, try Charlotte’s hack: After applying eyeliner, use dark shadows to blend out your lower lash line and to further smudge your liner. “This is key to making it look like you’ve been out partying all night.”

2) Balletcore blush

“Flushed and blushed pinks were seen across all of the awards shows, with blush that’s sitting high on the cheeks and is carried across the eye – with the same tone on the lip too,” shares Charlotte, adding: “Whilst pink is already a major trend this year, it’s Ballet-Core pink that’s stealing our heart – a cool-toned, softer shade that will give you a cute, ‘just-kissed’ blush.”

To incorporate this look into your make-up “select a pale pink liquid blush and pop it high on the cheekbones, pushing it into the skin and bouncing it across the cheekbones and across the nose,” says Charlotte. “Pick a matching lip gloss and eyeshadow, run it across the eye – and the result? Pink Princess realness!”

3) Loud liner

If you’re sick of playing it safe with your make-up, add a pop of colour to your look by experimenting with brightly-coloured eyeliner. “This trend was the centre of attention at Rixo’s AW23 show,” says Rachel Hardie, NARS National Lead Artist UK & ROI, who adds that her tip for pulling this off is to “pair all of the other elements back and opt for a natural, fresh approach to skin, giving a modern vibe to the make-up”.

These days, there are plenty of pencils and pens out there to help you achieve a vibrant eye look, but if you’re looking to save money “make your own,” says Charlotte. “Wet a small brush and dip it into your favourite bright eyeshadow before dragging it along the eye.”

4) Tonal lips

In a nostalgic nod to the 90s “tonal lips are set to be a big hit for 2023,” notes makeup artist Aimee Connolly, founder of Sculpted by Aimee. “Brown lip liners are having a revival and whether you pair them with a matching lipstick, layers of gloss or just diffuse them into the lips, they need to be on your radar.” Her personal faves? “MAC Stripdown, Chestnut or a deep brown eyeliner will also work, just vary the colour depending on your skin tone.”

Make-up artist to the stars, Hannah Martin (who is known for beautifying Kate Middleton for her wedding day) is also a fan of the trend, adding that she likes to over-line the lips using a soft, long-wearing pencil. “It’s not a new trick – Audrey Hepburn loved to overline her lips to make her pout wider, and Pamela Anderson used to overline her cupid's bow to make it look higher. If you’d like a softer finish though, gently buff the liner out using a brush.” Noted.

5) Under-painting

A TikTok make-up favourite, with over 112 million views on the app, under-painting is the latest base buzzword making the rounds, thanks to make-up artist Mary Phillips, who uses the technique on her celebrity clients Hailey Bieber and Kendall Jenner. So, what is it, you ask? “The technique consists of applying contour, concealer, highlight and blush before blending it all together with a bit of foundation,” Hannah explains. “The idea being, that you actually end up using far less product and create a lighter, more skin-like base, which is really refreshing after years of a focus on full-coverage make-up.”

6) Popping pout

“Statement lips are said to be bigger than ever,” predicts Aimee. “They may even carry the whole look alone,” she adds. And if you want to know how to take on the trend, Aimee suggests keeping the rest of the make-up clean and fresh with a groomed brow. “Then pair with your favourite statement lip liner and lipstick. I always reach for Sculpted by Aimee Ruby Rouge Lip Duo.”

7. Coquette make-up

With over 1 million Instagram followers, make-up artist Dafine Neziri is always ahead of the trends and one look she’s sure will take off this year is coquette make-up. Inspired by the 'coquette aesthetic' that channels the old-school femininity of the 18th and 19th centuries, (think pearls, lace and bows) the make-up version is just as cute.

“Soft pastel eyeshadow colours, such as lilac, pink and mint green are popular choices for this year and give a doll-like, feminine feel” Dafine explains, adding: “In 2023 pastel lips are also breaking through – think dusky pinks, dreamy blue hues and lilac. For ultimate creativity, try ombre pastels in clashing shades.”

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