The 90s Beauty Trends to Embrace

We’ve sung our praises about the 90s and here are some 90s-inspired beauty trends you don’t need to hesitate when embracing.

Matte Lipstick

We hemmed, we hawed, we hesitated, but after seasons of gloss and anti-matte movements, the flatter, stained look of the mid-to-late 90s has taken 2011 by the hand and led it to a glorious age dictated by the likes of Reality Bites. True, there are a few techniques to avoid when investing in an old-fashioned lipstick, so while you may be keen to plaster it on, avoid the over-saturated look of the worst part of the decade and apply it with a brush instead of directly. Also, discard the liner: while the late 90s saw the two-toned aesthetic come into its own, 2011 wants nothing to do with it.

Brush on Sephora’s Maniac Mat Long Wearing Matte Lipstick in Matte Mauve Plum 04, $15. Available at Sephora.

B - Sephora Matte Lipstick


Now before we continue, let the record state that streaky blush should never return, and that despite our affinity for bold cheeks and matte skin, the over-processed aesthetic of the early 90s is a great, big giant no. However, now’s the time to take some risks; while you may not otherwise opt for bright pink blush, it’s one of the building blocks of the English rose look that defined the palettes of Winona Ryder and Liv Tyler circa ’94 to ˜98. Just make sure to blend: if not, your cheeks won’t come across natural, and you’ll only look like the makings of a Saved By the Bell theme party.

Blend NARS’ Sheer Pressed Powder Blush in Desire into your 90s look, $29. Available at Sephora.

B - NARS Blush

Dark Eyes

Like Drew Barrymore in Poison Ivy, the rebellious look of the smoky-eyed queen bee has become a day and night go-to, as the industry’s infatuation with bold colours and shade experiments has given way to acceptance of the dramatic eye in the morning, night and afternoon. Channeling Neve Campbell or Janine Garofalo, the combination of dark liner, dark lashes and daring eye shadow is defining 2011 as much as it did the mid-90s “ only this time, we’ve learned the art of avoiding the raccoon eye so perfected by the cast of The Craft.

Perfect your smoky eye with Stila’s Smoky Eye Talking Palette, $52. Available at Sephora.

B - Stila Smoky Eye 300x400


True, it’s a stark contrast from our championing of lipstick, blush and smokey eyes, but if you think back to the most memorable cinematic gems, the fresh-faced looks of Alicia Silverstone, young Renee Zellweger and Rachel Leigh Cook (what would She’s All That be without Laney Boggs’ natural aesthetic?) ruled the beauty regimens of countless teens, and it’s since returned to make 2011 its own. By using a natural palette (ex. pink lip tones, beige and brown eye shadow and a perfectly blended blush), you’re not only channeling 20th century darlings, but you’re boasting a face perfect for springtime and its themes of rejuvenation. 

Get the minimalist look with Joe Fresh’s Five Minute Face Palette in Classic Collection 2, $20. Available at your local Real Canadian Superstore.

B - Joe Fresh Five Minute Face 300x400

Sympatico Image


Tags: 90s makeup, Beauty, beauty trends for spring 2011, blush, comebacks, cosmetics, Lipstick, the smokey eye, wearing eye shadow

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