When The Guardian beauty editor Sali Hughes writes about a beloved find, a U.K.-wide sellout often follows. Her product knowledge is insane, and it’s now dispensed in her second book, Pretty Iconic, a guide to the most game-changing cosmetics in history. We chatted with the guru during her recent touchdown in Toronto, and asked her for her crystal-ball beauty predictions for the year to come. Hello 2017, we’re ready for you!
We’ve been slathering our faces in oils for the past few years (pssst… peep our faves here)—and Hughes doesn’t foresee that stopping. Instead, she expects the formulas will get an anti-aging boost. “In the past, we’ve had active serums then also gorgeous luxurious oils,” says Hughes. “But I think we will see more and more active ingredients like retinol and vitamin C in oils, so, combining the two.”
“It’s such an old ingredient, but I think we will continue to see more retinol going into mainstream products,” says Hughes. The vitamin-A derivative is considered by many derms to be the gold standard in anti-aging, but can be irritating. Increasingly, scientists are finding new ways to encapsulate it so that it can do its work without freaking out your skin.
All caught up in the double-cleansing trend? “If you cleanse properly, you can do it once,” says Hughes. Feel icky without a scrub from your electronic face brush? “You don’t need a mechanical device to cleanse your skin; you don’t need anything fancy.” Instead, Hughes predicts (or, at least, would like to see) easier wash routines all around. “I hope that people will just switch to a face cloth and a proper balm, oil or cream cleanser.”
One of the launches that Hughes was most excited this year was the innovative dry masks from Montreal’s Nannette de Gaspé. That’s right. Dry. Her goop-free cloth creations (they have ear slots and neck ties to hold them in place) are made without water or glycerin, so there’s no need for preservatives—leaving way more room for active ingredients, which make up 87 percent of the formula. Her line is pricey and only carried at select luxe department stores (you can nab them at Holt Renfrew), but Hughes expects a wider roll-out to come soon. “The technology she is using is going to be hugely influential, and my guess is that she will license it, because it’s such interesting and innovative product. It’s going to be big.”
Haven’t entirely got on board with the conditioner washing trend, in which you skip shampoo entirely? Hughes has good news: “I think co-washing is going to get more refined with better products, so that more people can engage in it.” Until a wave of new and improved cleansing conditioners land, try Ojon’s, which is one of Hughes’ faves.
MICRO-RING HAIR EXTENSIONS
“Hair extensions have gotten so much better in the past year,” says Hughes. The main innovation? Micro-rings, which allow stylists to secure the wefts without glue. Instead, a teeny metal loop is used to attach the extension to natural hair near the roots. Hughes expects the technique to spread in 2017. “Extensions now look a hundred times better than they did and they don’t damage your hair like they used to, so I think more and more people will get them.”
“Hair dryers have been no good for so long, and I think they are going to get much better next year—in fact, I know they are,” reveals Hughes. She points to Dyson’s recent blowdryer launch for raising the game, and now the traditional players have to catch up. Get excited for lighter and more powerful devices, without the half-a-grand price tag.
OK, try not to squirm. After eyebrow tats got hugely popular this year, permanent tightlining—that’s ink injected right along your waterline—is next. “I’m not saying you need to go do it, however, I have seen some really, really good work, where it’s like totally invisible,” says Hughes. (Curious? Her assistant got it done at The Treatment Rooms in Brighton, England. Read her story here.)
Cushion compacts changed the game for foundation, with the makeup-soaked sponges delivering dewy coverage in a purse-friendly format. Next, cushion concealers are taking hold. They come in a wand format with a sponge tip. A click of the base fills the cushy applicator with concealer so you can blend a thin layer on without a mess. While more will surely launch next year, Hughes is already loving Burberry’s version.
THE RETURN OF LIP GLOSS
Welcome back, grade 8 staple: “I think lip glosses are coming back,” declared Hughes. “There is so much saturated matte pigment, with the very filled-in lipliner and liquid lipstick right now; it’s getting to the point where we’ll be tired, and ready for something fun, light and clear.”
“I think we will see more shine coming back to the face,” says Hughes, citing Milk Makeup’s glow-boosting cosmetics (good news: the New York photo studio’s line, with its famed Holographic Stick highlighter, will hit Canadian Sephoras next year). “I’m quite interested in gloss on the face, which we haven’t seen for a few years, it’s been all about matte and baking and all that jazz.”
After her hugely hyped, sell-out makeup collab with Estée Lauder this year, the designer is perfectly poised to launch her own line. “I think that Victoria Beckham will become a full brand,” says Hughes. As for what a VB beauty brand might look like? “I think Victoria will have to remain super high-end, and she will have to do perfumes.”