9 Beauty ‘Rules’ to Break In 2021

The days of buying into prescriptive beauty rules, for me, are over. After 10 months (!) spent at home,  I’ve gained a new perspective on things I so firmly believed before the world changed. Namely: a handful of live-by hair, makeup, and skin-care mantras that now feel as outdated as they are dull. I’ll admit, it took some time before I began rebelling against these customs that have been drilled into me over time, but with the weirdness 2020 unwillingly brought, I’m resolving to do things my way in 2021. Keep reading to find the nine beauty rules I’m happily breaking in the new year.

“A bold lip is for a night out.”

My makeup went unused for the first few months of quarantine since throwing on a lip had been a key part of my getting-ready routine. “Completing the look,” some might say. I managed to remain lipstick free for months before the urge to delve back into my makeup stash hit. 

I kept it simple at first. Sitting on my couch face-deep in my computer screen, Milk’s Kush Lip Tint created a flush of color, tricking myself into thinking I was work-ready. But here we are, after months of working from home, and I’m sitting in the same spot with fuzzy socks on and a deep maroon lip liner topped with cherry red lipstick to finish the look. I’m not going anywhere but to the other room and I’m fine with that. 

Kevyn Aucoin Unforgettable Lip Definer

Victoria Beckham Bitten Lip Tint

Uoma Beauty Badass Icon Matte Lipstick

“Perfume is for leaving the house.”

Can’t say I’ve done much house leaving this year. As for most of us, my weekends involve relaxing at home with a good series to watch and another recipe to try. Still, with my location staying so stagnant, it’s hard for me to escape—even mentally. In the past, out of habit I’d spray Aerin Wild Geranium or Ariana Grande Cloud on before rushing to make the train each morning. Well, since I’m not leaving my apartment, the power of fragrance and its many ways of telling stories, evoking memories, and recalling loved ones’ scents brings a comforting feeling of connection and joy as I make my way into 2021. Take Dedcool’s No. 2 Juniper/Sandalwood, for example. It satisfies my ongoing craving for some sand between my toes and a walk on the ocean shore. For date night in, you can never go wrong with Tom Ford’s deep, sexy Lost Cherry.   

Ariana Grande Cloud Eau de Parfum

DedCool Fragrance 02: Juniper/Sandalwood

“Hair masks are to be washed out after the allocated 15 minutes.”

If you’re like me, you’re using this surplus of spare time to treat your hair to some type of hydrating or repairing treatment regularly. One thing I’ve come to realize: grabbing a huge scoop of mask and leaving it in longer than the allocated 15 minutes (or whatever the instructions advises) is not a bad thing. I obviously don’t recommend ignoring directions for other hair-care treatments—bleaching, for example—but I find sleeping with a treatment in or using a conditioning mask for styling works for me. My curls have never looked so bouncy as they do with prolonged usage of Briogeo’s Avocado Kiwi Hair Mask

Briogeo Be Gentle, Be Kind Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture Superfoods Hair Mask

NatureLab Tokyo Perfect Repair Treatment Masque

Olaplex No. 3 Hair Perfector

Maui Moisture Heal & Hydrate + Shea Butter Hair Mask

Sol de Janeiro Triple Brazilian Butter Hair Repair Treatment

Amika Soulfood Nourishing Hair Mask

“Don’t go overboard with bronzer.”

For me, the limit does not exist when it comes to applying bronzer. You may start with outlining the natural curvature of your cheekbones and the bridge of your nose, but its potential is infinite. My top tip is placing a light dust of bronzer above your eyes, as your eye shadow base, along with your forehead and jawline. Not only does this trick compliment the warmth along your cheeks, but it brings a cohesive color palette to your complexion. For a more structured, contoured look, I’ll use a cream to start and set with a powdered bronzer like Glamour’s 2020 Beauty Award–winning Endless Summer Bronzer from BareMinerals. It’s all about finding the correct shade to match your skin tone; other than that, go ham.

Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Contour Wand

Fenty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Bronzer

BareMinerals Endless Summer Bronzer

Anastasia Beverly Hills Powder Bronzer


Anastasia Beverly Hills

“Glitter is only for the holidays.”

So often we see glittery nails and bold eye looks backed with shimmering holiday colors as if this was the only time these products stocked the shelves. Texture to nails (and eyes, while we’re at it) can bring personality to a look and disguise any imperfections or splotchy base applications. Our senior beauty editor Lindsay Schallon even covered up her not-quite-dried manicure that she quickly painted after her fiancé popped the question with a light coat of sparkly black polish before snapping the Instagram announcement pic. I’m of the mind that glitter can and should be worn all year long.

OPI All A’twitter in Glitter

Stila Double Dip Suede Shade and Glitter & Glow Liquid Eyeshadow

China Glaze On the Nice List

Urban Decay Stoned Vibes Eyeshadow Palette

“Concealer only goes under your eyes.”

Concealer is key for covering dark spots, tired undereyes, and unwanted blemishes, but what if I told you that you could achieve the illusion of a canthoplasty (a glorified eye lift) just by rearranging the way you apply it? This is known as the fox eye method, and I will never apply my concealer the same way again. By drawing a straight line from the outer corner of your eye up to your temple, you can easily achieve a brightened, lifted look. Here are some of my favorites to create a snatched Bella Hadid cat eye.

Dior Forever Skin Correct Concealer

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Multi-Use Concealer

Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Brightening Concealer

Kevin Aucoin The Sensual Skin Enhancer Concealer

RMS Beauty “Un” Cover-Up Concealer

E.L.F. Cosmetics 16HR Camo Concealer

“Blush is for your cheeks, and cheeks only.”

Instead of taking a big, fluffy brush and patting blush across the apples of my cheeks, I’m applying it even higher as my contour. You may have heard the phrase blush draping—same thing. Since not everyone has Chrissy Tiegen cheekbones, this method provides me the illusion of more-defined bone structure. 

Once I adapted this into my routine, I got somewhat obsessed with blush and started experimenting—smearing and patting deep pinks and sunset reds everywhere on my face. It started with a creamy blush from NudeStix in the shade Sunset Strip outlining my hairline, then down the bridge of my nose and topping it off with my eyelids. But I didn’t stop there; I repeated the process with Hourglass’s Ambient Lighting Blush for an illuminating shimmer that finished (and sealed in) the look. I don’t see my blush as a simple cheek amplifier anymore but consider it a vibrant dose of color meant for all over.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Collection

Maybelline Cheek Heat Blush

Nudestix Nudies Matte Blush & Bronze

“Pluck the stray eyebrow hair.”

Remember when brows were thought to look undone or unkept with a few stray hairs? Yeah, we’re not bringing that energy or beauty rule into 2021. It’s all about brow shaping with a good spoolie and nonflaky brow gel (or even dollar store soap—thanks beauty TikTok). Add a few strokes of Benefit’s Microfilling Pen, and shape your fluffy, wandering eyebrow hairs any way you’d like.

Patrick Ta Major Brow Shaping Wax

Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel


Anastasia Beverly Hills

West Barn Co. Soap Brows Essentials

Benefit Cosmetics Brow Microfilling Eyebrow Pen

Talia Gutierrez is the beauty assistant at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @taliamichelee.

Source link