The approaching new year brings with it the anticipation of new beginnings, and as we all know, certain routines become second nature.
As we actively search for new skincare products, we also take the time to thoroughly investigate their features and effectiveness before sharing our findings with you. This includes staying up-to-date on skincare trends, some of which have gained immense popularity or have been completely disregarded in the beauty community.
While trends may sometimes deter certain individuals (as we are well aware not all viral products live up to their claims), when combined with research, expert opinions, and statistical data, they can provide valuable insights.
Moreover, being knowledgeable about skincare trends proves to be incredibly useful when it comes to decluttering our vanity tables during spring cleaning or when we conduct our personal reviews to determine which products are worth repurchasing.
To gain insight into the skincare trends in 2024, we have sought the expertise of four esteemed skin and beauty professionals. Continue reading to discover what you should embrace and what you should leave behind in the coming year!
- Skincare Trends 2024: Yes, Less Is Still More
- Skincare Trends 2024: Pre-juvenation and Barrier Repair
- Skincare Trends 2024: Brands Entering the Tech Space
- Skincare Trends 2024: Personalised Skincare
- Skincare Trends 2024: AI-Powered Ingredients
- Skincare Trends 2024: At-Home Skincare Devices Galore
- Skincare Trends 2024: Overlap of Skincare and Aesthetic Clinics
- Skincare Trends 2024: Connections Between Mind, Body, and Beauty
- Skincare Trends 2024: Intimate Care Is Blooming
- Skincare Trends 2024: Clean and Sustainable Beauty
- Ingredients That Will Still Be Sought-After in 2024
- Skincare Trends to Leave Behind in 2023
Skincare Trends 2024: Yes, Less Is Still More
The concept of skinimalism, or skin minimalism, has gained significant traction worldwide since 2022 and shows no signs of slowing down. The driving force behind this trend lies in the belief that less is indeed more.
Why is that so? Dermatologist Dr Ker Khor Jia of Dermatology & Co explained that “there may be consumer fatigue where people have realised that applying a variety of products may not be the best for [the] skin, it all boils down to what skin issue or concern one has and [what] targeted treatment is necessary.”.
Moreover, Dr Ker highlights the potential risks associated with using too many products simultaneously, such as an increased likelihood of developing contact allergies. In such cases, it becomes challenging to identify the specific product responsible for the allergic reaction.
Additionally, the fast-paced nature of modern lifestyles leaves individuals with limited time for elaborate skincare routines.
Meanwhile, according to IDS Clinic‘s aesthetic doctor Dr Vivian Yong, skinimalism arose from the demand for products to be safe, effective, and necessary.
“This translates to a decrease in the long list of ingredients/ chemicals of a product, using ingredients with multiple functions, as well as using ingredients backed by clinical research with proven efficacy. Ingredients such as emulsifiers, parabens, sulfates and fragrances are increasingly phased out.”
Alongside personalisation, customers will discover that they can streamline their product needs to just a few essentials while prioritising a meticulously chosen assortment of items.
“Even with the trend of skinimalism taking off, it doesn’t mean that everyone should use only the very basic skincare products. Skin issues, such as the commonly encountered acne or pigmentation, should still be treated with active ingredients appropriately to have healthy and good skin,” Dr Yong concluded.
Skincare Trends 2024: Pre-juvenation and Barrier Repair
According to Google Trends, the search interest in “self-care” has skyrocketed, almost quadrupling since 2018. This concept has become so ingrained in society that if you haven’t embraced it yet, you might face criticism and feel like you’re out of touch.
That’s where pre-juvenation and barrier repair come into play. Pre-juvenation involves taking proactive measures to prevent issues rather than simply fixing them. This approach can be applied to skincare products, injectables, and skin boosters.
“Among the younger demographics, taking action even before the signs of ageing are visible, is becoming increasingly popular. This growing interest in preventative treatments starts from a healthy skincare regimen and sometimes progresses to aesthetic treatments,” shared Dr Yong.
Dr Yong adds that “the larger emphasis on mental and physical wellbeing, rather than material possessions may be fueling this trend”. Certain skincare active ingredients that are in line with pre-juvenation include vitamin C, vitamin A, retinol, or retinoids.
Additionally, the idea of rejuvenation includes the growing emphasis on barrier repair, which aims to effectively support a robust and nourished skin barrier. It is crucial to ensure that the products you use do not have any negative impacts if you truly want to practice self-care!
M.D. Sigrún Dögg Guðjónsdóttir, Chief Research and Development Officer at BIOEFFECT, agreed that the barrier repair trend is likely to continue in 2024 as more people become educated about the benefits of these practices.
“This trend encourages people to prioritise long-term results over quick fixes and promotes the use of gentle and nourishing ingredients. These products often contain ingredients like ceramides, hyaluronic acid, and fatty acids to help strengthen and protect the skin barrier,” M.D. Sigrún Dögg added.
What’s the big deal with barrier repair, you might ask? Take your skin like the fort or castle walls — you can’t protect your kingdom from its enemies if there are gaps or weakened bricks. Additionally, with a strong skin barrier, your skin will also be able to better absorb the topical products you apply!
Other ingredients that could help in the grand scheme of barrier repair are minerals like zinc (anti-inflammatory properties), copper (aids in collagen production), and magnesium (calming and soothing effects).
“The science behind using minerals in skincare is that they are essential elements for proper cellular functioning and repairing damage to the skin. By incorporating them into skincare products, we can effectively deliver these vital nutrients directly to the skin,” said M.D. Sigrún Dögg.
Skincare Trends 2024: Brands Entering the Tech Space
With AI at the heart of every operation, it has become customary for brands to delve into various technological avenues to enhance sales and perfectly cater to consumer needs.
“As shopping behaviours have shifted substantially to online channels, we expect to see more skincare brands entering further into the tech space by offering interactive and virtual experiences thanks to AI and VR-enabled tools and services,” said Eleonora Mazzilli, Trend Localization & Business Development Director at BEAUTYSTREAMS (a one-stop trend insights source for strategy, marketing, and product development teams worldwide)
This shift means we will no longer need to physically visit a beauty counter or dermatologist’s office for virtual skin assessments! Think innovative new apps, skin diagnosis tools, dermatologist avatars, and virtual skincare clinics.
M.D. Sigrún Dögg agreed on technology taking centre stage in 2024 and noted the rise of data-driven beauty offering a more precise and individualised approach to beauty: “This will not only make the shopping experience more efficient but also lead to better results as products are tailored specifically to one’s unique skin needs.”.
However, AR and VR aren’t competing with offline experiences but rather adding new dimensions to consumer-based interactions, so it’s really about what you prefer.
Skincare Trends 2024: Personalised Skincare
M.D. Sigrún Dögg also noted, “The rise of personalised skincare is expected to continue where brands will cater to specific skin concerns and needs of individual consumers”.
Touché! It has become so notable that we’ve even seen brands that only offer personalised skincare as well as pioneering brands jumping onto the bandwagon.
Typically, what we select for our skin is largely based on marketing or from friends and family recommendations. Oftentimes, we get hooked in by “blanket terms like “brightening”, “rejuvenation”, and “acne control”, but we may not be sure of the exact active ingredients necessary to target our concerns.
“Personalisation of skincare is a trend that I strongly endorse and believe in. An individual’s skin is unique. Social media trends on certain products should not be followed blindly.
Apart from varying from person to person, skincare needs also vary according to age, and climate among other factors. Therein comes the trend of personalised skincare that tackles an individual’s skin then.
Instead, consult a professional or even harness technology to analyse the skin, and use products that are suited to address the various concerns of one’s skin,” Dr Yong elaborated.
Closely linked to the advent and widespread of technology in skincare, like AI and machine learning, you’d start by first analysing your skin condition to receive recommendations on appropriate active ingredients, formulation, and routines.
“A typical routine starts with [a] basic regimen of cleansing, moisturising and sun protection. The exact formulation with then depend on the skin type. Particular skin concerns, such as acne or pigmentation, will require additional active ingredients to tackle those issues,” recommended Dr Yong.
Skincare Trends 2024: AI-Powered Ingredients
We’ve seen how fast artificial intelligence (AI) has dominated the world and every single industry, and the beauty sphere is no exception. As the next frontier for product innovation in beauty, this creates a myriad of opportunities in the ingredient and formulation space.
“Pairing science and biology with powerful artificial intelligence and machine-learning algorithms could unlock the next generation of skincare and nutrition ingredients”, BEAUTYSTREAMS pointed out.
“The discovery of new ingredients is now made possible by employing artificial intelligence computer vision and deep learning applications, which can investigate the potential ingredients that exist in nature, to then reverse-engineer such ingredients.
In addition, artificial intelligence within the nutraceutical industry will allow for the development of next-generation supplements and the discovery of bioactives hidden in plants,” BEAUTYSTREAMS remarked.
With that said, bioengineered ingredients potentially hold the key to the future of sustainable, safe, and efficient skincare as we witness tech advances in biology and the growing scarcity of resources.
Unbeknownst to many, this technology is already used in many fragrances (like tomato perfumes) where natural ingredients are replaced by chemical compounds birthed in labs.
However, just because it isn’t the “real thing”, doesn’t mean it doesn’t work the same way or is just as effective! Sigrún Dögg shared that “biotechnology offers a promising solution for creating safe and sustainable products without compromising on efficacy”.
Some are even designed to reach and treat your skin at the cellular levels! So the next time you’re on a skincare shopping spree, don’t be surprised to see bio-engineered actives in the ingredients list.
Skincare Trends 2024: At-Home Skincare Devices Galore
As tech-driven and digital skincare solutions become more readily available, the prominence of skincare devices will also become increasingly evident.
“Technology will also advance the use of smart devices for home use. Such tools already exist, for example, facial massage devices, and LED light therapy.
Further advancement can result in more aesthetic procedures to be done by users themselves at home, to complement the results of more intensive treatments in clinics,” said Dr Yong.
M.D. Sigrún Dögg also shared how “we may see more AI-powered skincare devices that use data and algorithms to track changes in the skin and provide personalised treatment plans.”.
Skincare Trends 2024: Overlap of Skincare and Aesthetic Clinics
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And as skincare devices are still making waves in the beauty sphere, highly because of convenience, effectiveness, and how we’re able to do it ourselves, the same goes for at-home treatments that are on par with those you find in aesthetic clinics.
“While they were once distinct, the world of skincare and aesthetic clinics is now overlapping. A greater awareness of the effects of ageing, such as sagging, wrinkling, and textural irregularities on the face and body, is pushing consumers to seek aesthetic-like remedies,” BEAUTYSTREAMS shared.
If you’re on social media, you’ve probably noticed and got enamoured by terms like “filler in a bottle” or “botox in a bottle”. Nowadays, clinical and dermatological expertise is much valued by skin-savvy consumers as they look for more results-based approaches.
BEAUTYSTREAMS noted that brands are venturing into the “procedure-alternative” territory with products that target consumers who can’t afford pricey, in-office dermatological procedures.
“New products are popping up promising effective, derma-grade results in the comfort of one’s own home with elevated topical skin care performance.
Thanks to advances in technology, formulations, and ingredients, we think the next generation of skin care products could rival professional cosmetic treatments by offering visible, long-term results for skin issues including lines, wrinkles, pores, and dark spots,” said BEAUTYSTREAMS.
This also means that brands are becoming more and more creative with their formulations and application methods, inventing new products that differ from the usual ones based on consumer research.
For instance, when it comes to acne care, spot treatments and acne patches are the norm. However, now there are LED acne patches that are comparable to acne treatments in clinics and patch-free solutions like invisible liquid acne patches.
Skincare Trends 2024: Connections Between Mind, Body, and Beauty
In the upcoming years, there will be a convergence between health, wellness, and skincare. The increasing concerns about anxiety and other mental health issues have made consumers realise the profound influence of the psychological state on the body and skin.
Consequently, there will be a surge in new products and services that not only offer functional benefits but also emotional advantages, as self-care routines encompass holistic well-being, including physical, mental, and spiritual aspects.
BEAUTYSTREAMS asserts: “We are observing the rising development of mood-boosting ingredients that rely on biometrics and neuroscience, such as ingredients that mimic the feel-good effects of yoga and meditation.
These target the skin’s local stress response allowing meditation benefits to the skin or stimulating the release of feel-good hormones like oxytocin, serotonin, or dopamine. Interest in well-being-supportive ingredients that relieve chronic stress, improve sleep, and manage cognitive health are gaining traction.”.
Brands will be exploring new territories to offer solutions that span holistic devices, relaxation services, and oral beauty supplements.
According to BEAUTYSTREAMS, these could include Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) ingredients making their way into mainstream skincare and haircare: “ayurvedic ingredients that bring a holistic and well-being approach; adaptogenic herbs and mushrooms rooted in East Asian cultures; and natural extracts sourced from Latin America that reclaim indigenous practices”.
The importance of lymphatic health is rapidly gaining recognition. As the body’s innate cleansing and drainage mechanism, the well-being of the lymphatic system plays a crucial role in enhancing immune and gut health, eliminating harmful toxins, promoting skin health, and preventing premature ageing.
“With today’s stressful lifestyles and lack of physical activity, the lymphatic system needs additional help in the form of a healthy diet, exercise, and massages, alongside drainage-enhancing beauty products and wellness tools to maintain lymphatic health.
The growing popularity of lymphatic system wellness has additionally been given a boost by social media,” BEAUTYSTREAMS explained.
In tandem, lymphatic drainage massages have never been more popular and brands recognised that by crafting massage tools, wellness supplements, and face and body care products to mimic a practitioner’s lymphatic drainage results at home.
Skincare Trends 2024: Intimate Care Is Blooming
BEAUTYSTREAMS also noted that “the conversation around intimate care and sexual wellness in recent years is expanding into the mainstream and converging with beauty and health”.
“Products tailored for intimate use no longer concentrate solely on cleansing and shaving but are increasingly drawing inspiration from skincare practices.
Beauty-centric ingredients like pre- and probiotics, lactic acid, fruit enzymes, or panthenol are examples of active components that have transitioned from skincare routines to intimate care regimens.
New products claim to protect the intimate microbiome, preserve the skin barrier, revitalize the skin, enhance the appearance of the intimate area, and diminish issues like hyperpigmentation, dark spots, and shaving-induced irritation in those areas,” added BEAUTYSTREAMS.
Skincare Trends 2024: Clean and Sustainable Beauty
As the demand for healthier and more sustainable options continues to rise, natural and organic ingredients will continue to be favoured by consumers. Brands are now prioritising clean products, eco-friendly formulations, and sustainable packaging choices to meet these preferences.
With the advancements in technology, research labs have successfully developed plant-based ingredients that are equally as effective as synthetic ones. This breakthrough further fuels the growing trend towards natural and sustainable alternatives.
“Skincare brands will likely continue to incorporate plant-based ingredients into their formulas to cater to this growing demand.
So, whether it’s using botanical extracts, essential oils, or even plant stem cells, we can expect to see more of these natural alternatives in skincare products,” M.D. Sigrún Dögg remarked.
Ingredients That Will Still Be Sought-After in 2024
Whether you’re on a shopping spree, stocking up on beauty necessities, or searching for targeted skincare solutions, these are the ingredients that are a “green flag” on product labels, according to experts!
- Hyaluronic acid: This humectant can absorb and retain water many times its weight, keeping the skin moisturised for a longer period. It’s naturally present in our skin so it can be used by everyone as part of their skincare regimen.
- Niacinamide: This ingredient has a gentle nature that makes it suitable for all skin types. It can reduce inflammation, lighten pigmentation, improve skin texture, and strengthen the skin barrier.
- Pre-, pro-, and postbiotics: Probiotics restore the good bacteria of the skin’s microbiome; prebiotics fuel the growth of probiotics to enhance their activity; and postbiotics, as by-products of the interaction between probiotics and the skin’s microbiome, also help contribute to a healthy skin microbiome. The fermented ingredients in many probiotics and prebiotics can also enhance of potency of certain active ingredients such as antioxidants, vitamins, and peptides.
- Vitamin A: This proven anti-ageing product thickens the skin, helps reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and minimises the destruction of existing collagen and elastin.
- Ceramides: These lipid molecules, produced in our skin naturally, help to retain and seal the skin’s moisture. Thus, strengthening the skin’s barrier and amping up hydration levels.
- Retinol: Retinol slows the breakdown of collagen and increases elasticity for firmer, plumper skin. It can also grant a smooth texture and even skin tone but can cause skin irritation.
- Bakuchiol: A plant-based retinol alternative has similar anti-ageing effects without the potential side effects. When paired with retinol, bakuchiol can help stabilise it and keep it effective for longer.
- NAD+ (Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide): This “longevity molecule” can influence many important cellular functions to promote healthy ageing and make the skin appear younger.
- Exosomes: Exosomes are tiny vesicles secreted by stem cells and contain a plethora of growth factors that promote tissue repair and regeneration. Treating scars with exosomes can be effective, especially when used in combination with lasers of radiofrequency microneedling.
- Growth factors: These proteins stimulate cell growth and division and are used to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by promoting collagen production. They can also target specific skin concerns like scarring and age-related changes.
- Phylobioma: Purified microbial extract to target specific skin microbiome dysbiosis and balance the skin barrier.
Skincare Trends to Leave Behind in 2023
Lastly, just because it’s one of the frontrunners for beauty trends, it doesn’t mean that some should stay. After all, some trends do have an expiry date on them!
On this aspect, Dr Ker affirmed that PCL (polycaprolactone) collagen biostimulator is not recommended. “This has been marketed to stimulate collagen but there have been unpredictable and unforeseen side effects arising from its use, such as skin discolouration,” she said.
Meanwhile, Dr Yong voiced out that social media or unverified sources online can sometimes have misleading information that results in undesirable consequences if followed without professional guidance.
One such example is the use of DIY skincare formulations at home. “Although purported to be ‘natural’ as one will know the exact ingredients that go into the product, it is not without risks. Mixing of ingredients at home may result in some combinations or concentrations that are unsafe or unsuitable for the skin. This can cause irritation and allergies,” added Dr Yong.
Additionally, it’s crucial to be mindful of how often we exfoliate and if we’re using gentle products. “I do not recommend following excessive exfoliation trends, such as using harsh physical exfoliants or overusing chemical exfoliants. While exfoliation can be beneficial for the skin, overdoing it can lead to irritation, inflammation, and damage to the skin barrier,” M.D. Sigrún Dögg noted.
Feature image credit: @martharochin/TikTok, IT Cosmetics, @sparklesandskin/TikTok