Subcultures, like any trends with articulated aesthetics, always influenced fashion "from below", "from the people" - their ideas were picked up by stylists and designers with a tenacious look and bold thinking, and only then polished the fashionable mainstream at shows and in filming. No wonder: subcultural trends, if not outstripping, then certainly reflect the spirit of the times so clearly that it is impossible to ignore them. You don't have to look far for examples: Vivienne Westwood remains the grandmother of punk in high fashion, and Rick Owens' fans look like adherents of a futuristic sect.
The art of make-up, which in recent years has developed freely and almost unpredictably, also reflects the trends that were born in communities very far from the world of the rich and famous. Modern catwalk makeup artists do not hesitate to be inspired by trends that are relevant to very young Internet inhabitants, and in general, the influence of social movements spreads much wider than ideas from fashion weeks. Styles from a variety of subcultures influence the understanding and aesthetics of makeup, and today it is noticeably better than ever.
Tumblr aesthetics, colored hair and sequins
There are not too many eternal values on the Internet, new communities form and disintegrate instantly, but their traces often remain in vogue, especially among those in their early 20s. Individual movements develop into whole subcultures, which are also marked in the appearance of the participants. Before our eyes, a whole generation of tumblr girls has grown up with the obligatory multi-colored hair and glitter makeup. The most striking ascent happened in 2010–2013 at the Sipank: then Lady Gaga and Azilia Banks mastered mermaid hair colors and nautical themes, and in the fashion world these motifs appeared in the collections of Alexander McQueen and Proenza Schouler.
The mainstream is changing rapidly, and the birth of the next trend in the global network can provoke anything: Asian fashion, nostalgic aesthetics of the 90s, the emergence of new musical styles and other topical things. In addition, the youth of consumers decides a lot: they are prone to experiments and collective madness, they are ready to try and support something new and instantly react to the slightest changes around. In general, for cosmetics manufacturers, with a skillful approach, the Internet is a paradise. Decorative cosmetics of non-standard colors are welcome if they are also interestingly packaged - this is a victory: jars and tubes should make you want to be photographed with them.
On the one hand, weird and funny experiments are usually only suitable for photography. The same unicorn hair and bubble nails are absolutely beautiful, stupid and not very entertainments liberate, assert a variety of tastes and develop imagination. On the other hand, there is still a single ideal type of appearance for girls from the Internet. Now this is understandable extreme thinness, baby-face, general infantilism and balancing between grunge attributes and what is called a cutester. Welcome to Neverland.
K-wave, plastic and pseudo-naturalness
Interest in South Korea first swept over Asia, and then, in the 2000s, the rest of the world. Korean television and film production, K-pop, and most importantly, the active dissemination of information about the country's cultural life via the Internet, have borne fruit. Today, it is South Korea that is the forefront of cosmetic production, many European brands do not hesitate to adopt ideas born in Asia: the same Lancôme and Estée Lauder release new products inspired by Asian examples. The popularity of original Asian cosmetics in the European and American markets is also not going to fall somehow. Explanations for this phenomenon are quite practical.
Korea has a huge demand for cosmetics among users of both genders and a rapidly growing cosmetic market. The largest brands have a long history, in which national traditions of personal care were actively intertwined with European inventions. All production is geared towards responding to consumer needs, and they are very specific and do not need to be nudged by fashion. We have already written about the South Korean boom in plastic surgery and, in particular, that this country has clearly defined standards in the field of appearance. In the cosmetics industry, this is taken into account, so there you can find less variety in the care systems and goals that the products pursue, but much more attention is paid to the formulas of products and their effectiveness. Peeling, whitening, restoration, anti-aging care and, most importantly, proper storage of cosmetics - Korean manufacturers are absolute experts in all this.
Due to the high quality standards, the availability of Korean cosmetics and the general interest in the vibrant Asian culture, their trends have been assimilated in our territory. Natural radiance of the skin, an understanding of the need for care and a love for instantly transforming skin products - all this is now part of the European concept of relationships with the exterior.
Drag, Instagram and redundancy
The drag queen image involves tons of makeup on the face in the name of grotesque and dramatic femininity, and makeup means to them as much as clothes, because they practically paint a different face for themselves. Together with Instagram trends focused on the Photoshop effect, drag aesthetics demonstrate redundancy in everything: dense tone, active contouring, a lot of shine and artificiality from nails to eyelashes. In general, drag uses everything (and at once), which in the "ordinary" world is often considered signs of bad taste.
Drag is a rebirth of the idea of a perfect-looking woman with all the standard paraphernalia, but the main difference is that she is deliberately artificial, which means that we have less dangerous seriousness and more healthy irony. In general, drag could exist calmly and apart from the general public: the tradition of entertaining the public by transforming artists into representatives of the opposite sex is, admittedly, a bit old. The most popular drag show of our time, Ru Paul’s Drag Race, has been running since 2009, but last year the contribution of its participants to the beauty industry has become much more noticeable. This was facilitated by discussions around the situation of representatives of the LGBT community, and an honest conversation about make-up shaming, which Nikki de Jager, Geoffrey Star's girlfriend and a well-known lover of throwing arrows on her face and generously sprinkling highlighter on her cheekbones, started on her channel. Her video "The Power of Makeup" has been watched by thirty million people.
The very idea of a drag make-up is opposed to the beloved "natural" make-up in Europe, desperately disguising itself as its complete absence - it is not known here what is a big deception. This is the exact opposite of the idea of "improving": for drag, makeup becomes a way to relax, dream up and play, they assert its magical power. The fashion for freedom to be whoever you want, no matter what basic set you have by nature - but less aggressive and radical than the one that remained to us after the 2000s - with a rigid framework of ideas about the "ideal" appearance and other fear of cellulite and aging. Typical "female" instantes still sin with the same unrealism, but most of them advocate transformation with the help of make-up, and not the use of radical methods such as plastic surgery.
Another result of the increased interest in drag aesthetics is that beauty queens are now happy to provide advice from their professional life.With all our desire, we cannot recommend such cruel methods as fixing makeup with hairspray, but in the drag queen instagram there is still a lot of interesting and applicable in everyday life.
Cholo, hip-hop and aggressive sexuality
A couple more examples of a style mixed with national identity, with its own history and traditions. Both cholo and hip-hop are ethnic minority subcultures, both about the working class and gangsta-life. They developed hand in hand in the 90s and in the accepted interpretations of the position of women in society are also very similar, and hence the regulation of a certain appearance. Chola girls and hip-hop divas are both sexy and provocative, but the typical European women in trouble and Cinderella are unpopular in their native cultures. Women are openly fighting for their own place. They work, make music, do what they see fit, and are capable of self-reliance. All their decoration is a demonstration of strength and independence.
The cholas style, of course, is based on the striking appearance of Hispanic women, who are trying to make it even brighter: the classic make-up will be a combination of “cat's eyes” and a dark lip contour. There are a lot of interpretations in celebrity makeup. Gwen Stefani, Rihanna, FKA twigs add elements that hint at the cholo style to the make-up: dark lipstick, eyeliner and lush hair, loose or tied with a bandana. Fashion houses were also inspired by the assertive beauty of cholas: motives were present in the makeup for the Rodarte and Givenchy shows.
In hip-hop, women have many roles: you can be a performer, a hip-hop model, the wife of a cool guy, and you can combine. There are also a million options for appearance: from elegant Beyoncé to reckless Amber Rose. The main features in any case are luxury and brightness. A lot of gold, a lot of wigs and hairstyles that can be changed at least every day, rich colors that set off the skin. The looks, in general, correlate with the European fashion of the 1990s and 2000s. Traditionally, in the lyrics and videos of rap artists, women are objectified to the limit, but now women in hip-hop are actively trying to defend the right to sexuality for themselves, raise feminist questions and sharply answer men.
Another important cultural tweak that hip-hop divas have given us is a completely different body type. The representatives of this community hold splendor in high esteem. While European fashion puts “plus-size” markings on non-standard volumes and gives them a special place, it is the hip-hop stars that show the most effective results in supporting and glorifying sisters wearing jeans over size 25.
Health goths and futurism
Gothic as a whole is experiencing a new round of relevance and has appeared in different guises in street fashion, in couture, and in the darkest corners of the Internet. Health is an attempt to look into the future and the product of still relatively fresh futuristic trends. The meaning of clothes is in its convenience: the obligatory black color, high-tech fabrics, sports styles - most likely, you already know all this and have hardly forgotten.
There is no typical make-up for health-goths, since the rules are simple and logically proceed from the general style: its adherents choose minimalism, dark colors and clear lines. But the fact is that futuristic makeup trends are still emerging, especially after the release of Mad Max, for which make-up artist Leslie Vanderwalt did his best. The film has inspired many bloggers and makeup artists to create post-apocalyptic images. Although fantasies about people of the future with eerily painted faces and rough, sunburned skin is, of course, a picture of a not entirely bright future.
The futuristic line is continued, first of all, by a surge of interest in metallic shades and textures.Reflections on a given theme were also shown on the catwalk this year: Rihanna's models at Fenty x Puma were thrilled with thick white hair dye and black lips, and Opening Ceremony showed cyborgs created with the participation of ubiquitous glitter. A lot of interesting looks appeared at the Met Gala - 2016; we are waiting for what all this will result in by the new season.