1. Sheet Masks
Hitting celebs’ faces everywhere way back in December 2015, the arrival of sheet masks marked the beginning of the infamous (and totally instagrammable) #sheetmaskselfie.
Winging their way West from South Korea, they’re the simplest way to add an instant hit of moisture to your skin without mashing an avocado with some left over honey.
Ok, they might look a little like Hannibal meets Kim K post-surgery, but darn it they do the trick. Now in their second generation transforming from papery cut outs to bio-cellulose gel like creations, sheet masks have become our latest skincare staple.
Check out our edit of the best sheet masks, and if you’re feeling fancy indulge in Givenchy’s black lace version. Yup, sheet masks just got sexy.
2. Mental Nail Trends
You name it, we made a mani out of it. First it was oh-so cosy sweater nails, perfect for a seasonal Jan mani to kick off the year. Next up, pom pom nails had us creating a brand new Pinterest board (and avoiding typing as much as possible) before furry nails took things to a whole new extreme. Like tiny beards for your nails, this might have been the Gucci furry loafer effect taken one step too far. But our favourite mental nail trend of 2016? Drum roll please… SUCCULENT NAILS!
Thought up by Australian artist Roz Borg, succulent nails are literally tiny succulent plants stuck to your nails with oasis glue so they actually grow while attached to your fingertips. Our mani is alive?! We’re not sure about the health and safety on this one.
3. Vampire Inspired Beauty
In a weird (and kind of creepy) turn of events 2016 became the year when beauty became obsessed with blood.
Whether it was Kim K’s gory Vampire Facial (where your own blood is re-injected back into your face for a ‘plumping’ effect), Rodial’s Dragon’s Blood night cream or niche perfume brand Blood Concept’s innovative scents designed to match your blood type, we couldn’t get enough of the red stuff.
4. Metallic Makeup
If you’ve been anywhere near Instagram this year, you’ll know we all went a bit crazy for metallic makeup. Previously allocated purely for our sexy robot costume and Christmas, gold, glitter and everything shiny hit our day to day makeup routine.
From extreme strobing and glitter lips to our Insta-obsession with Sigma’s iridescent Lip Switch and Pat McGrath’s crazy shiny MetalMorphosis005 kit, lips, eyes, ears… everything, got a molten metallic overhaul and the woman from Goldfinger became our new #beautyinspo.
The comfiest sounding beauty trend of 2016, cushions became our number one beauty tool du jour.
Creating a whole new category of foundation for us to get obsessed with, cushion compacts became the latest Korean import to provide perfect skin AND total convenience. Trust, if you’ve ever done your makeup in the back of a cab, a cushion compact is a lifesaver. From BB creams and blushers to multi-coloured colour correctors, cushions became the new creams.
And you can forget trad makeup brushes, this year we went crazy for the BeautyBlender. Take one egg shaped sponge, make it pink and put it on Instagram and you’ve got a worldwide beauty phenomenon.
The latest update? The Silisponge. A silicon pad not unlike the one we popped in our bras in Year 10, the Silisponge is the latest way to nail that flawless, Insta-perfect complexion.
6. Hidden Rainbow Hair
First there was pastel hair, then there was opal hair, but this year we discovered hidden rainbow hair and our brains actually exploded. We die.
Pioneered by super cool East London hair kids Not Another Salon, hidden rainbow hair does what it says on the tin – it hides a unicorn-worthy rainbow inside the centre of your normal hair colour. Which means you can embrace your inner My Little Pony whilst keeping your new ‘do SFW. The. Dream. We’ve genuinely never gotten over it.
7. Face Flowers
When makeup legend Val Garland sent models down Preen’s SS17 runway with real-life pressed flowers stuck all over their faces, our inner girly girl immediately lost it.
Taking the phrase English Rose super literally, Val pressed dried daisies, cornflowers and forget-me-nots onto model’s collarbones, foreheads and lips. A rosebud pout anyone?
8. Snail Slime
Yup, you heard us, snail slime, or secretion, if you will, was 2016’s skincare ingredient gaining a whole load of industry hype. Added to sheet masks, moisturisers and serums everywhere, snail slime actually has major skincare cred.
Known for it’s regenerative properties (did you ever see a snail slither it’s way over the bare ground with a cut or bruise? Think about it.), snail slime promotes skin repair which means your skin produces new skin cells at a way faster rate whiiiiich to you and me means fresher, plumper, baby soft skin.
So it’s hooray for the snails!
9. Ear Makeup
It’s totally a thing. An area of our faces previously unpopular with makeup artists, ears have made a high fashion comeback for 2016 with Louis Vuitton and Anthony Vaccarello both painting models’ ears for their SS17 shows.
Graphic, inky black lobes took to the runway at Vaccarello where makeup pro Tom Pecheux used black liquid liner to create a second-skin ear cuff vibe. At Louis Vuitton, queen of metallic makeup Pat McGrath painted the odd ear sci-fi silver whilst makeup artist Violette adorned lobes with gold paint for a CR Fashion Book shoot and somehow made classic gold hoops even better.
Could this be the new statement brow? Watch this space.