Beauty trends: Gen Z shoppers look to skincare before makeup

·2-min read
Skincare is now more important than makeup for Gen Z.

While they regularly share makeup trends and tutorials on social media, particularly on Instagram and TikTok, for young people -- aka Gen Z -- makeup isn't, or is no longer, the top priority when it comes to beauty. In fact, the skincare segment now seems to be the focus of attention for this generation, reflecting a need for authenticity and naturalness.

Forget masking imperfections under layers of foundation, concealer, highlighter and the likes; these days it's all about looking for ways to keep skin in radiant health long term. While contouring techniques counted millions of followers not so long ago -- especially among the young -- the pandemic has come along and shaken up the beauty habits of men and women alike. These days, the watchwords of cosmetics are authentic, natural, essential, reflecting a wider desire to embrace minimalist routines.

As a result, Gen Z, has got more in mind than (just) makeup. In fact, young people of approximately 13 to 26 years old see skincare as the Holy Grail of beauty routines. It's now about nurturing and caring for skin, as the notion of health takes a growing place in the world of cosmetics. In fact, more than four in 10 Gen Zers (41%) polled put skincare as their top beauty category, according to a study carried out by the Sweden-based payment company Klarna , reported by Women's Wear Daily .

After surveying 15,000 shoppers, the poll also revealed that Gen Z spends more on skincare than the previous generation, Millennials, as well as Gen X and Baby Boomers. That should give brands some serious food for thought, given how much the phenomenon has been growing in recent months, forming part of wider clean beauty and skip-care trends, shifting the focus to minimalism and the overall health of skin.

Still, according to the poll, Gen Z hasn't totally turned its back on makeup. Products of particular interest to younger shoppers include bright makeup palettes, especially for eyes. And this may seem understandable, given that eyes are often the only visible part of the face when face masks are mandatory. But as the weather improves and the summer vacation season approaches, beauty looks could be set to take a bolder turn, ushering in bright colors and motifs of all kinds in a bid to shake off a long period of doom and gloom.

Christelle Pellissier