It’s amazing what you can learn when you spy on a gathering of professional makeup artists. Five times a year, the Makeup Show hosts giant product showcases around the country in cities like New York, Miami, Chicago, Dallas, and L.A. Product launches are announced, the most influential makeup artists attend, and thousands of makeup artists go nuts. But your average makeup fanatic (raise your hand, everyone) can’t attend—only the credentialed pros. Starting this year, however, the Makeup Show kicked everything off with the Makeup Show Trend Report, a smaller forecasting and product event that was streamed online for anyone to see (you can watch some of it here on the event’s Facebook page). The inaugural presentation happened Tuesday night in New York City, where makeup artists James Vincent and Danessa Myricks took to the stage to crystal-ball the top makeup trends for 2017, and select brands showcased top pro favorites and a few new launches. Think of it as a mini makeup convention. Allure attended and gathered all the crucial intel.
1. Bold lips are now about the color, not the texture. Last year, matte textures dominated, and we couldn’t get enough versions of nude. This year, give the neutrals a rest and choose color, no matter the texture or application. “With a nude lip, there’s nowhere for the eye to rest when someone is looking at your face,” explains Vincent. “Whether it’s just a kiss of color, a stain, or big bold lip, it should feel special.” Even blue lips have started to become commonplace. “We’re seeing these bright peaches and bright purples and blues,” says Myricks. “People are embracing a spectrum of color like never before.” Her new favorite: Make Up For Ever Artist Acrylip Lip Paints.
2. Try doing your blush before your foundation. In response to the harsh “Instagram contour,” blush is having a comeback. To keep it soft and natural looking, Vincent applies blush before foundation so that it really looks like the color is radiating from within the skin. “I add more on top afterward only if I need it,” he says.
3. Also, use more than one blush shade. Just like the classic eye-shadow map, different blush shades look best on different parts of the face. “Pinks and reds that look like blood rushing to the skin, I use on the apples of the cheeks,” says Vincent. “Peaches and corals, I bring up to the high points.” Thank goodness more and more brands are launching blush palettes in 2017.
4. The best glow is a layered glow. “I’m obsessed with creating a multidimensional glowing effect on the face,” says Myricks. “It’s very two-dimensional right now: foundation, powder everything, and then some highlight. But imagine using three different shades of highlighter and three different finishes and particle sizes. It really brings the skin to life and directs the eye where you want the light and lift to be.” One example: “Use a deeper bronze tone over the entire cheek and then a highlighter a few shades lighter at the tops of the cheekbones. It maintains the shape, but it also softens the contour effect,” she explains. This is where Anastasia Beverly Hills’s famous Ultimate Glow Kit would come in very handy.
5. Cream foundation is your best friend. “Cream foundation helps me manipulate coverage so I can apply it where I need it and sheer it out where I don’t,” says Vincent. “Cream foundations melt into the skin, so they really look like skin whether it’s editorial or on real people,” says Myricks. Two of their top picks: Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Stick Foundation and Mehron Celebré Pro HD Cream Foundation, which, says Myricks, “takes 12 years off your age.” If you’re into that sort of thing.
6. But makeup artists also love these new cheap foundation drops. Concentrated foundation drops that can be used alone, added to any skin care product, or used to bump up a foundation’s coverage have been superpopular in recent years, but pricey as well. Luckily, Vincent was raving about new NYX Total Control Drop Foundation. The easiest way to use them as a first timer? “Add a drop to your moisturizer or place it in your fingers, apply, and build slowly in the areas you need move coverage,” suggests Vincent.
7. BTW, you don’t need to plow through your foundation. Myricks and Vincent agree that one of their biggest beauty pet peeves of the moment is too much foundation. “Most makeup wearers only need the coverage in the center of their face, and then they need to sheer it out toward the sides,” says Vincent. “When we see these hard lines and layers of foundation on Instagram, it ages someone, it changes the texture of the skin, and it’s not photogenic.” The best way to get by with less coverage, says Myricks, is to take full care of your skin before you even start putting on your makeup.
8. Don’t drag your contour, “hit it.” While makeup artists are keen to move on from the dramatic contouring made popular on Instagram, some of us still love to add a little shadow beneath the cheekbones. Here’s Vincent’s trick to make the shadow really lift without looking like a stripe: “I like to use an oversize fan brush, and instead of pulling or dragging the contour powder down [from the upper cheek toward the inner cheek], I ‘hit it’ up into the cheekbone a time or two, so I really see that curve,” he says.
9. You’ll want every single one of these little color capsules. Myricks’s own brand, Danessa Myricks Beauty, was on display, and her show-stealing innovations included her ColorFix Cream Colors and Metallic Cream Colors. A tiny pump of the creamy liquid is packed with pigment that can be used anywhere on your face, whether you want to make a bold statement on the eyes or lips, add to your foundation to color-correct, or mix it in with your skin-care product for a pretty wash of color.
10. Eye gloss is getting even more popular. “Eye gloss is probably my favorite look right now, because it’s a great way to play with texture and dimension and open up the eye,” says Vincent. “Take a finger and pop it on from crease to lash and you’re good to go. You don’t have to worry about maintaining it, because people expect it to be smudgy and effortless.” Some eye gloss favorites include the new NYX Lid Lacquers in clear and black, Milk Makeup Eye Vinyl, and Kevyn Aucoin The Exotique Diamond Eye Gloss, which Myricks and Vincent both rave about.
11. Seasons are dead. Just like the current “See Now, Buy Now” runway shows that offer the clothes for sale immediately, makeup is free from seasons as well. In many ways, we can thank the Interwebs for that. “When my mom wore makeup, there were two distinct seasons on the runway so you could plan ahead for what was to come months down the road,” says Vincent. “Now, information is moving so quickly that something happens backstage and it’s on the red carpet the next day.”
12. Makeup artist shows are like a pep rally. Or church. Sitting in the back of the crowded room full of makeup artists and brand representatives, we can tell you the people get involved at these Makeup Show events. When a brand gets a call-out onstage or a speaker preaches something that other artists in the audience agree with, they make it vocally clear. It’s spirited, funny, and, most of all, supportive. It’s enough to make you want to become a pro, get your own credentials, and hit up all five shows. Or just Snapchat the whole thing.
Watch beauty blogger James Charles reveal his secret to glowy skin: