Makeup trends have always had a huge impact on their respective eras, and 2023 is no exception. Soft shimmers, statement lips, barely-there brows, and bold layers of blush are probably already taking over your Instagram Explore Page, as they’re some of the biggest beauty and makeup trends of the year.


Contrastingly, 2023 has been the year of the ism; minimalism and maximalism – no in-between. You are either simplifying and going for an effortless make-up aesthetic or leaning into bright colours, metallic shifting pigments, and glitter in unexpected ways for an instant dopamine hit.

The extremes are taking shape in a wide range of looks. On one hand, we are embracing skin and products that enhance our skin and leave a skin-like finish versus aiming to have a more full-coverage finish. On the other end of the spectrum comes intense lips and eyes—and the bolder the better. There’s a hint of grunge going on, lip liner is being raved about and shimmer has a spot on the stage.

We have compiled six make-up trends that will dominate the rest of 2023, as well as beauty products that you can use to pull them off.


Bold, Blurred Blush

Beauty entrepreneur Jackie Aina


The trick to this trend is to keep the rest of your face simple to avoid your makeup looking too busy. Bold blush can be matte, dewy, outlandish, or natural, we love how customizable this look is, you can even combine two shades for a more pigmented, unique look. Making your cheeks the focus of your face is also an easy way to experiment with bolder makeup looks without fear of going overboard. Furthermore, this trend can be adapted for any skin type, making it a super accessible look.

Lancôme Blush Subtil
670, 00 ZAR

Barely-There Brows

Award-winning musician Doja Cat


While the return of the skinny brow is certainly polarising, it also opens up a whole new world of beauty experimentation for the bold and the brave. Gen Z stars such as Bella Hadid and Doja Cat have dipped their toes into the thin-brow world. Even those who once made full, fluffy brows their signature-like model such as Julia Fox have opted for thin, arched brows, inspiring trend watchers to do the same.

Maybelline Brow Ultra Slim Defining Eyebrow Pencil
134, 95 ZAR


Soft Shimmers

Digital entrepreneur Mihlali Ndamase


Whether it’s chrome, metallic, or a sheer wash of shimmer, sparkle is a big trend in 2023. The best part about this trend is that it can be worn in so many different ways. Do a soft wash of sparkle across your eyelid or up the ante with a straight-up metallic liquid (we love the MAC Dazzle Shadow Liquid Eyeshadow). Essentially, have fun and party on.

MAC DazzleShadow Liquid Eyeshadow
505, 00 ZAR


The Resurgence of the Cat Eye

Social media personality ZeeXOnline


The eyes are your canvas for self-expression this year and you don’t have to be an artist to get creative,” says Reneau. Using a liquid liner that has a super sharp tip, lets you easily create a double-winged liner, faux lower lashes, and feline inner corners that will draw attention. In short: Eyeliner is back to being beginner-friendly. Impossible-to-do graphic eyeliner is taking a backseat in favour of kitten flicks and classic cat eye wings.

Revlon ColorStay Liquid Eye Pen – Wing Line
209, 95 ZAR


Statement Lips

Miss South Africa 2023 Natasha Joubert


Lips have been bolder than before this year – so bold, in fact, that they may be ready to work alone. This trend is a model-off-duty look that can look amazing from day to night. Centering the lip by keeping skin clean and lightly grooming brows and lashes is recommended. She also notes that a resurgence of lip liners that are deeper than lipstick hues are on the rise, which works better to keep the focus on your natural pout.

MAC Retro Matte Lipstick
R 385,00


Glam Grunge

Doja Cat


The glam grunge aesthetic combines glamorous going-out looks with an edgy sultry aesthetic, with smoky eyes, shimmering lids, and dark lip shades. Peaking in the 90s, grunge make-up is defined by smudged eyeliner, matte skin, heavy mascara, and dark lips – with modern formulas, these trends are easier to recreate than ever. It is the complete opposite of the clean girl aesthetic. This maximalist beauty trend focuses on full makeup looks that pack a big statement.

Revlon ColorStay Day To Night Eyeshadow Quad – Gorgeous
269,95 ZAR

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