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Weird Beauty Trends We're Seeing in 2021

Marker Eyeliner

Marker Eyeliner

Remember what we said about the colorful eyeliner trend? Well, it’s gotten to the point that people are trying to DIY it by traversing into the questionable territory of “beauty hacks.”

Sure, we’re not scientists over here, but putting a hot pink Sharpie anywhere close to your cornea is a no go. Wet N’ Wild is quality while remaining affordable, so put away that marker, please. A shining blue waterline really is not worth the pain of ink irritation.

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Zig-Zag Part

Zig-Zag Part

Long gone are the days when women were hyper aware if their part wasn’t straight at any given moment. Of course, the mantra of straight-and-narrow professionalism exacerbates the “norm,” but the zig-zag trend is throwing everything we thought we knew about parting for a loop.

Side parts were once the only way to go, and now middle parts are having a big moment. Want a way to spice it up? The zig-zag shape is meticulous and definitely a little weird, but what else do we have to do? 

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Halo Dyed Hair

Halo Dyed Hair

The newest and easiest way to add color to your hair is the halo method. Parting your hair into the right shape can look pretty silly, because the technique only requires the outermost layer around your head’s crown.

This trend can lead to radiant, face-framing highlights or a splotchy disaster, so make sure to watch more than just one YouTube video before trying it out.

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Faux Bleached Eyebrows

Faux Bleached Eyebrows

Remember when Miley Cyrus bleached her eyebrows all those years ago? We thought that trend would barely last the year. But, as with anything that the singer seems to do, it became an instant trend and is seeing a revitalization for the new year.

Taking bleach to your eyebrows, with its dangerous proximity to sensitive eyeballs, is not something you do on a whim unless you have absolutely no cares in the world. Good thing we can fake pretty much about anything these days! All it takes is some full-coverage concealer, white luminizer, or brow gel if your eyebrows are particularly high-maintenance.

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Root Clash

Root Clash

Thank alt-pop artist Billie Eilish for this next weird hair trend: the root clash! Her neon green roots against dark brown hair is nothing short of iconic as it flips the script for the typical dark-to-light ombre.

Just thinking of the upkeep for this style is already giving us a headache, and trying to doing it ourselves while salons are closed? Spare your bathroom tile!

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Stained Lips

Stained Lips

Stained lip color is contrary to the decade-long obsession with lip liners and matte lipsticks.

Long-lasting lip stains are for those with the itch for natural-looking cosmetics that still hold up through the night. For casual folks, lip tints come in versions that are remain low-key yet light.

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Dramatic '60s Flip

Dramatic '60s Flip

The ‘60s hair flip is seeing a new life in 2021, with many people falling back on the style for a quick-glam look. When you’re working from home, there somehow seems to be less time to get ready—definitely less of an appeal to.

The main difference between the OG flip and it’s modern rendition is the focus. While the ‘60s called for volume on the top and a flip for balance, the 2020s focus on the ends of the hair to allow for more creative freedom for the top half of the look.

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Facial Cupping

 Facial Cupping

Facial cupping is where things start getting really odd. Fine lines and puffiness are two big problems that women try to diminish in their faces. In comes facial cupping!

Facial cupping is the same as body cupping—just on the face (obviously). The suction movements are supposed to stimulate bloodflow, release tension, and encourage skin-cell regeneration.

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Mask Chains

Mask Chains

Masks are such a normal part of life after last year that the industry is already looking for ways to make them high-fashion. And if you find that your mask just isn’t cute enough, try adding a shiny chain.

Mask chains range from girly to flashy while also serving as a very practical means of transporting your mask when its not on your face.

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Stick-on Accessories

Stick-on Accessories

Glitter was a big cosmetics trend a couple of years ago, and the appeal has only evolved. Rhinestones and pom-pom constellations are replacing henna freckles in a bigger and shinier fashion.

There are plenty of skin-adhesives safe to use on the face, but those are usually expensive or reserved for professional use. Lash glue is a practical and inexpensive alternative!

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Cryo Freeze Tools

Cryo Freeze Tools

Cryo balls are riding the wave of face-roller hype in a very obvious fashion, and these contraptions aren’t exactly easy to ignore, resembling alien capsules from The Host more than a cryotherapy tool.

The appeal, with its promises to reduce puffiness and relax your muscles, is part of a new movement to take care of the skin first before resorting to thick layers of cosmetics.

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Laminated Brows

Laminated Brows

From squiggly brows to shaving them off completely, every month seems to introduce an eyebrow tuturial that’ll attract the curious gaze of Instagram randoms. Laminated brows are the most editorial of these weird trends.

The brow lamination process is similar to getting your hair permed, using a chemical solution to manipulate particularly unruly brow hairs into a semi-permanent, perfectly-combed position.

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Colorful Lashes

Colorful Lashes

Colorful mascara is nothing new and not exactly “weird,” but it’s typically reserved for costume parties and pre-pandemic music venues.

But in these days of missing dressing up in more than baggy pullovers, colorful lashes are a fun way to spice up those endless video calls. If the pandemic has allowed any sort of joy, it’s less judgment on self-expression, even if just through screens!

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Batwing Eyeliner

Batwing Eyeliner

Batwing eyeliner is a branch taken from the longstanding winged eyeliner trend that’s now become a staple of most women’s makeup looks. This special style appears intimidating, with it’s very angular points and boldness, but it actually is more practical than it appears.

For people with hooded eyelids, the typical cateye is nearly impossible to do right because of how their eyelids transform the placement of any eyeshadow while the eye is open. Luckily, the bat wing is the easiest way to make your eyeliner appear like a regular cateye when every other technique fails you!

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Bubble Nails

Bubble Nails

Bubble nails are not for the faint of heart because the overpacking of nail polish onto the nail completely changes your nail shape. The bulbous appearance isn’t exactly pleasing to the eye, but we can see how it can serve as additional detail to a colorful outfit or perky photoshoot.

If you’re itching for the “bubbly” look without the weird shape, try out the “water bubble nails,” which resemble raindrops more than ill-shaped balloons on your fingers.

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Bubble Ponytail

Bubble Ponytail
Apparently influencers nowadays can’t get enough bubbles! Albeit the bubble ponytail is actually pretty cute and easy to achieve, unlike the controversial bubble nails.

All you need is have enough hair (extensions count) for multiple hair ties to scrunch up each section into a bubble and plenty of hairspray. Use excess hair in each section to wrap around the hair tie for added class.

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Baby Bangs

Baby Bangs

Baby bangs are nothing new, but the infectiousness of the trend is reaching new heights. When Emma Watson debut her own version of the look in 2018, people were divided at first. Now? Try going anywhere without seeing some version of the bangs.

The style is a little intimidating, but baby bangs don’t have to skim the hairline to qualify. We classify any bangs that stop above the eyebrow as part of the edgy look.

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Clear Acrylics

Clear Acrylics

Ultra-long acrylic nails are is a modern beauty staple, yet anyone keeping up with trends know that they're often accompanied by bright colors and blingy designs.

Not so for clear acrylics. It might be a “what’s the point?” look for some people, but see-through nails are a surprisingly cool way to complement your outfit in an understated way. However, we might have to draw the line at all-clear clothing.

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Modern Mullets

Modern Mullets

Mullets haven’t completely died out in the South, but their popularity tapered when the hype for Billy Ray Cyrus dissipated. Ironically, his daughter's take on the look has revitalized fans' interest. 

Now introducing the modern mullet. It unifies business and party without outdated feathering. Instead, this mullet, with roots in the punk subgenre, prioritizes face-framing pieces and complementary colors over yee-yee carelessness.

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Air-dried Styles

Air-dried Styles

Air-dried hair became high-fashion in 2018 when celebs and influencers swapped curling irons and blow dryers for quick-and-easy “hack” hairstyles. While washing your hair and letting it air dry isn't particularly notable, fashionistas bump the process up a notch.

But don’t worry, low-maintenance gals! Heatless waves are achieved by simple braids on wet hair, and every other style usually requires only some bobby pins or hair gel.

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Flower Beards

Flower Beards

Men’s beauty is far too often left out of the conversation. Sure, it’s implied that women’s skincare and cosmetics can be used by anyone, but what are the trends that men specifically claim?

That’s right. Trade out your glitter for some fresh flowers to create the ultimate hipster flower beard. The style, with its avant-garde eclecticism, may appear a little to Instagram-y for the average man, but we’re hoping that it reaches past the bounds of photoshoots and becomes a common accessory. Plus, imagine how good your beard would smell!

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Pom-Pom Nails

Pom-Pom Nails

Like its bubble-nails kin, pom-pom nails are the go-to nail accessory for 2021. We’ve seen spikes, hoops, water, and live insects before, yet pom-pom nails are only now having it’s shining moment.

We can credit this newfound fascination with the round and fluffy to Japanese culture, especially the fascination with “kawaii” and other cutesy subgenres. Pom-poms are an easy (and inexpensive) way to quickly soften up your look. Not everyone wants to be edgy all the time, and sometimes branching into new fashion styles is healthy! 

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Tapestry Hair

Tapestry Hair

Weaving external materials into hair has seen many variations over the years. Of course, there will always be beads and feathers, but actually sewing strands of hair together to create a tapestry is definitely odd.

This boho-inspired trend arose around the promotion of indie music festivals by big-time influencers. As for the practicality of the syle, we'd rather not think about brushing our hair.

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Giant Accessories

Giant Accessories

Bobbi pins and clear hair elastics function under the notion of being barely noticeable and, consequently, as natural as possible. However, society has created a countermovement to this idea with giant accessories.

We’re talking everything from scrunchies to barrettes to claw clips. It’s weird enough that the '90s claws are coming out again in the modern '20s, not to mention their newly gargantuan size!

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Ear Makeup

Ear Makeup

We’re honestly surprised that it took so long for ear makeup to become a trend. Yes, it’s weird. But how weird can it really be?

We decorate our ears with metal and hoops all the time, even covering the area with foundation to match the rest of the skin. So why not add a cutesy flower (or twelve)? Once everyone can go outside once more, we know this trend will be rampant at concerts and festivals.

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Overgrown Brows

Overgrown Brows

Bushy brows are the antithesis laminated brows and any other Instagram trend pushing for “the perfect” eyebrow. Let those babies breathe for once!

It seems like everyone, at least in the younger generations, is tired of plucking their brows and buying oodles of products to only fail at mimicking social media beauty. In fact, allowing your brows to take their natural shape is a natural form of beauty that no cosmetics can mimic. 

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Skinimalism

Skinimalism

2021 beauty is basically one giant contradiction. Skinimalism is the minimalism of beauty, promoting cutting down on the amount of products you use and own for both skincare and cosmetics.

If we’ve learned a thing or two about Korean skincare, it’s that a healthy base makes for less cosmetics. By focusing on select skincare products that target specific needs, you can save on money on products and help the environment because you won’t rely on a full face of concealer to feel beautiful.

Digibeauty

Digibeauty

The weirdest trend on the list is digibeauty because it requires no products to make alterations to your appearance.

Take Snapchat or the new Zoom beauty filter, which both use digital programs to mask a person’s face with fake makeup. Filters are fun when it’s swapping my face with a cat or adding a dancing hotdog, but the beauty functionality is just a little too Black Mirror.

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Permanent Cosmetics

Permanent Cosmetics

Permanent cosmetics are the real-life digibeauty, and most permanent procedures are done due to social media filters and unachievable expectations.

Most of these procedures are done with techniques from tattooing to create an overall fuller look. Microblading your eyebrows allows you to ditch the brow pencils, and injecting ink above the lashes makes cat eyeliner as easy as can be.

Personalized Products

Personalized Products

The “one-size fits all” model in any context is a bunch of bologna and we all know it. The same applies to cosmetics and skincare. Full-coverage foundation does not work for everyone, and your camera flash will make that very clear.

Enter companies dedicated to producing products that target your specific problem areas, ranging between hair, skin, nails, and overall health. Just be wary of “miracle pills” or vitamins that claim to fix everything in one go. Better to stick to an array of products dedicated to specifc areas.

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