Rise of Dewy Makeup


Within the past few years, matte makeup and powder have been replaced with glowing skin and dewy makeup. What formulations cater to this, and why the sudden change?

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Out with matte makeup and in with dewy makeup

There’s been a huge lean toward natural-looking, dewy makeup. These days, many people are incorporating at least one item in their beauty routine to achieve a glowing, radiant look. Even those with oily skin are joining in. Only a few years ago, matte makeup and heavy contouring were deemed “in,” so why the sudden change? Dewy makeup is not a new concept. It is thought that Cleopatra in 332 BC used olive oil to achieve a shiny, glowing finish to her skin. In the 1900s, added shine and highlight were essential for actors and actresses to accentuate natural facial definition. In many Asian countries, especially Korea, dewy skin indicates beauty and good health. 


Perhaps the current interest in skincare and desire for healthy, blemish-free skin also made an impact. Amid a pandemic, consumers were tired of “mask-ne.” Face masks would induce acne around the mouth and jaw, prompting people to switch to lighter bases or natural bases. It was thought that the mask amplified clogged pores from heavy matte makeup. The increasing interest in skincare led to many skincare-makeup hybrid products as consumers continue to learn about different ingredients. For example, foundations that include hyaluronic acid have become exponentially popular. Many brands have at least created a hydrating or dewy counterpart to their best-selling products. Others have focused solely on glowy makeup. Take, for example, Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez. The celebrity-founded brand has a big focus on natural makeup meant to empower the consumer. Or Glossier, a brand that has been favouring dewy makeup since 2012. As more advanced formulations come out, dewy makeup is possible for everyone. 


Read more about the timeline of dewy makeup here: https://intothegloss.com/2019/10/history-of-dewy-skin/

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Trends that prove dewy makeup is in

In 2017, a video of a girl showing their “glass skin” routine went viral. Korean “glass skin”, along with “honey skin” paved the way for newer dewy makeup trends. The “glass” or “honey” part alluded to the light reflecting look as the focus was on skincare. Oils and creams provided a glowing base before sheer face makeup and highlight were put on. The goal was to achieve radiant, blemish-free, perfect-looking skin. More current trends include the no-makeup makeup look. The no-makeup makeup look involves glowing skin and attention to natural-looking makeup. Liquid and cream products are essential for this. “Clean girl” makeup is the latest social media beauty trend that works adjacent to the no-makeup makeup look. Once again, dewy skin is the goal with minimal eye and lip makeup. Instead, think lip glosses, face glosses, and a natural flushed look.


Read about the clean beauty look here: https://www.preview.ph/beauty/clean-girl-look-tiktok-trend-a2141-20211027

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Formulations and ingredients for glowing finishes

Dewy skin usually starts with skincare. If your brand exclusively sells skincare or has both skincare and cosmetic products, these are the ingredients to look out for to help your customers attain glowy skin. The first is exfoliating acids. Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs) are popular for a reason. These chemical exfoliants are known to slough off dead skin cells to reveal softer, smoother skin– the perfect base for dewy makeup. They're usually seen formulated as cleansers, toners, or serums and should not be used every day. The next ingredients, niacinamide, vitamin C, humectants, and emollients, can also be used in makeup formulations. Niacinamide and vitamin C are known for their brightening properties, while humectants draw water to the skin. Emollients provide shine and also soften skin. (Read more about these skincare ingredients here: https://tejo.ca/tejo-blog/ingredient-led-skin-care-cew). In makeup, popular humectants include propylene glycol and hyaluronic acid. It is extremely popular in foundations and is often highlighted as a star ingredient. Emollients add shine to makeup and are used in lipsticks, cream blushes, and more. Oils are also used in makeup, but they are less common to find. However, in certain products like lip oils, oils give an amazing shine. Many formulations also tend to use mica and pearl pigments to provide luminosity. Mica and pearl pigments are usually fine powders that reflect light, giving a shimmery finish. Be warned, however, as face makeup such primers or foundations should contain extremely fine pearl pigments or mica. Most people want a glow, not chunks of shimmer. Face makeup formulations should also be water-based instead of silicon-based. This is because silicon tends to mattify. It is also wise to stay away from powders, as consumers tend to associate powders with mattifying or drying properties. Instead, opt for liquids, creams, and balms. 

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Marketing dewy makeup

Emphasize that your products will not cause oiliness or greasiness. Dewy makeup should be highlighted to give radiant/glowing/moisturized/hydrated skin instead. Decide whether you wish to use the term “youthful.” While dewy skin can look after younger-looking skin, some consumers believe the term can imply that aging is a bad thing. There is a fine line when it comes to this topic, so give some thought to this idea and identify your target market. Use skincare ingredients to your advantage. Many consumers now know common ingredients in skincare like niacinamide or hyaluronic acid which improve moisture and hydration. Including these ingredients in the name of the product can help consumers immediately identify that it will give a dewy finish. Otherwise, use terms as mentioned before: radiant, glowing, luminous, etc. in the name. Lastly, go for lines that empower the consumer. Dewy makeup is meant to enhance natural beauty. It is mostly intended for a look that is simple, effortless, and gives a your-skin-but-better feel. You can also utilize software that will help your consumer get their perfect match. Tejo assesses their skin type to recommend their best product and aids in finding the correct foundation match. Consumers will appreciate accurate, tailored picks to suit their needs and have expert advice on your products.

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Will dewy makeup stick around?

It is impossible to predict trends, but it seems like dewy makeup will stay for a long time. However, as more products come out that provide a dewy finish, may turn back to matte makeup to balance the finishes. It is not reasonable to have every step of a makeup routine be glowy. Typically, there is a pairing of a dewy finish with a matte one. For instance, luminous primers to pair with matte foundations. Or, conversely, luminous foundations with a matte primer. As well, matte makeup is still popular for some people with oilier skin. Similarly, dewy makeup is a holy grail for dry-skin makeup lovers. So, dewy makeup always has a market, regardless of what becomes popular. 


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