It might sound peculiar to some that beauty pros look to the past to help shape the trends of tomorrow. Why look backward when we’re moving forward, right? But it turns out that digging through the hair and makeup archives can unearth so-called “old” techniques that can be revamped to create thoroughly modern looks. If contouring has taught us anything it’s that classic doesn’t necessarily mean outdated. That’s why we’re not at all surprised that 2018’s hottest styles can all trace their origins back to techniques that ruled the ‘80s beauty scene. From shredding to draping, here are the hair and makeup moves you need to master this year.
It seems as if the second 1989 was over, the beauty world launched a vendetta against obviously gelled curls. “We had a couple of decades making fun of crunchy curls, but defined texture is very strong right now; specifically moussed-out and gelled-out curls with volume on the top,” says Jon Reyman, hairstylist and owner of Spoke & Weal salons. Good news for those of you bored to tears with beachy waves.
The trick for this modern iteration, he says, is to use medium-hold mousse and gel instead of smoothing oil or creams. Apply the product to your hair and either air-dry or use a diffuser. “Pull your fingers through your hair and fringe to add some lift and shape. The mousse or gel creates definition for the curls as well as structure to play with.”
No doubt you’ve heard the term draping in the past few months, and for good reason — it’s slowly becoming an alternative to somewhat overused highlighters. Originated in the ‘80s by makeup artist Way Bandy and a favorite of ‘90s makeup master Kevyn Aucoin, it consists of sculpting by using blush on the cheeks in addition to the temples, bridge of your nose, earlobes, and sides of the neck, explains makeup artist and YouTube star Wayne Goss. “The reason the technique works so well is that it mimics a cold morning — fresh faced. It’s a pretty way to harmonize your entire look.”
If applying blush anywhere other than your cheeks sounds scary, Goss assures us that as long as you aren’t too heavy-handed, it will have an overall subtle effect. As far as your blush choice, it’s really up to you says Goss, but he personally leans toward shimmer. “In the ‘80s it was matte, matte, matte but using a blusher with shimmer is ever-so-pretty and you get to skip the highlighter.”
If you like colorful hair, then you’re in luck because Crayola hues aren’t going anywhere this year. They are, however, getting a little edgier — think of it as a unicorn going through its insolent teenage phase. Instead of pastel shades, Reyman says you can expect to see vivid reds, pinks, greens, blues, and purples. And, rather than multi-colored and blended, these edgy hues will be applied all-over.
“What is cool right now, which links to the early days of hair color development, is full bleach and single-process color,” says Reyman. That means a double round of bleaching followed by an application of color throughout. He notes that your hair will still have some dimension because the saturation and absorption of the color will vary throughout your strands. The bleaching will also create a lot of texture due to the trauma you are putting it through, but that’s not a bad thing in this case — it just gives your style more of that cool, rebellious attitude.
“This trend looks great as the color transitions into less vivid versions after several washes,” says Reyman. “It also works well as the roots grow in revealing a natural and darker color at the base.”
No, we’re not talking about a makeout session — although this technique can definitely help keep your lip look in place through the most passionate of kisses. According to Goss, this method (also called sandbagging) had been around for almost half a century before the ‘80s rolled around, but it was integral in perfecting the precise definition of the lip line for all those technicolor lipstick hues that were the hallmark of the Decade of Excess.
To “lock” in your color, Goss says to draw on your lipliner as usual and then take a traditional triangle foundation sponge (no Beautyblenders, please, they’ll be too big for this) and dip the tip lightly in powder. Tap the sponge to get rid of any excess powder, then press it all around the perimeter of the lip, as close to the liner as you can get. Apply your lipstick — Goss says he likes a moist lip texture but you can also use matte or satin finishes — blot, then repeat the powder application. Put one more coat of lipstick on and boom: You’ve got a bold pout that will last through whatever the day (or night) brings your way.
What, you thought you’d get away without some mention of the ubiquitous style? Don’t worry, we promise this is not another wavy lob situation. No, in 2018 it’s all about the shred. “The bob itself is all one length and the [bangs] are one length but both the perimeter of the bob and the fringe is broken up — shredded, textured — as opposed to a blunt line or a softly texturized line,” explains Reyman. (Think Charlize Theron in Atomic Blonde).
He notes that this bob benefits from a more natural approach, as opposed to overworked or super-finished. “It’s not clean — it’s got character,” says Reyman. “Depending on how broken up it is, [the shredded bob] nods to punk-inspired hacked shapes or customized with a pair of scissors in your kitchen. The look could be described as haphazard, but no look in fashion is unintentional.”
More on 80’s beauty:
- How the ’80s Staged a Serious Comeback
- ’80s Hair Scrunchies Are Back
- Alexander Wang Brings Back the Banana Clip at His Fall 2018 Show