TODAY -

Less lipstick, more eyeliner
- COVID-19 is changing the world of beauty -

Shahnaz Husain *



The ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has changed the face of beauty with people using this as a time to really care for their skin by experimenting with new products and at-home treatments. By making masks, sanitisers and gloves an indispensable accessory in day-to-day life, Kajals, eyeliners and mascaras are new upcoming beauty trends due to Covid 19 safety precautions.

Skin is weakened by repeating hand wash, mandatory use of masks and so people are becoming more skin-care conscious. Skin health has been a major trend during the year 2020 resulting in healthier, more radiant skin. While the makeup habits of the majority of women have still not changed, women are simply wearing less makeup in comparison to pre Covid times.

Makeup is known not only to enhance our external features but also give us a lot of confidence and positivity from within. For women, makeup is art. It is a therapy and allows women to express themselves freely. Since face masks cover a significant portion of face features, makeup enthusiasts are learning to adapt their beauty routines.

As a result, those with more sensitive/oily skin have been facing the skin related complications like acne breakouts, flare-ups of eczema or rosacea, or general skin irritation. With masks on, our basic skincare and makeup regime have also changed.

Women now rely on their eyes to communicate. Colourful lashes and graphic liner can match or complement the natural eye colour–and even coordinate with facial coverings You can still apply light cosmetic products above the mask line, but any skin that is covered by the mask should be left free from any makeup or at least the lower face—as much as possible.

Since our skin needs a little breathing space too, therefore, try to switch to a cloth mask with cotton, bamboo, or natural silk ear loops which won’t cause skin burns or irritation. Make sure to wash your cloth mask regularly and sanitize it appropriately. Face coverings properly fashioned out of these materials might be an effective barrier to aerosol particles and other harmful pollutants in the environment.

Many multinational companies are selling fashionable, attractive synthetic fibres like polyester/spandex as well as wool. Most of these synthetic fabric blends are treated with chemicals and regular use of such masks can lead to excess oil, dirt, and sweat, leading to breakouts around the chin, jaw, cheeks, or mouth area especially during monsoon hot humid temperature which can further lead to difficulty in breathing.

Mask wearers may experience chapped or dry skin, along with areas where the masks put extra pressure; under chin and beneath eyes and hence maintaining a good CTM (cleansing, toning and moisturising) day & night time is vital.

I will suggest taking mask breaks and spray some moisture mist onto your face before putting the mask back on again. Make sure to wash your cloth mask regularly and sanitize it appropriately as per Govt guidelines . You need to practice good hygiene, cleanliness especially if you frequently wear a mask.

Apply gentle moisturizer, serums and creams rich in hyaluronic acid that is effective enough to combat skin flaking on areas covered by masks. Hydrate your skin by drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water, juice, soup, coconut water, lassi, water-rich foods etc in 24 hours times as hydrated skin doesn’t produce much oil which helps keep your skin clean, healthy and fresh looking.

While the pandemic is worsening day by day with new corona variants spreading fastly and the situation is again turning grim so naturally, make-up and the way we look have also changed. The changes are reflected in the beauty industry itself, where supply chains of several make-up items are disrupted. Lipstick sales are supposed to be showing a downward trend.

With half the face covered by a mask, the use of lipstick and also foundations has become less. With a mask on, a foundation can make matters worse, by making it feel heavy under the mask, and making it more difficult to breathe. Many have stopped using foundation and use a powder compact or a highlighter on certain areas of the face, like the cheekbones.

If you must use foundation, make it a light, water-based one. Oil-free formulations would be preferable to the usual creamy products so that it is not too heavy under the mask. Waterproof and smudge-proof products would be more suitable to wear under a mask.

Another major change is that there is less emphasis on lipstick and more emphasis on eye make-up. The trend is now to accentuate eye make-up. Now that all the focus is on eye makeup pay extra heed to your eyebrows. Well-groomed eyebrows can change the look.

Kajal, eyeliner and eye shadows are becoming more popular. In fact, the prediction is that various shades of eye shadow will become the trend. Since the emphasis is on eyes, one must pay more attention to grooming the eyebrows on one’s own, by plucking and shaping them.

According to an expert, “Smoky eyes, glitter and pastel hues are 2021's best picks for eye shadows. Be playful and experiment. Coloured mascaras and eyeliners should make a comeback.” Many are also predicting that transparent masks will become the trend so that women can wear bright lipstick, which will be visible under the mask.

With lips mostly hidden behind face masks that means no one can even see your lips, let alone what colour they are. Most of the women are opting for smudge-and transfer-proof matte variants, as opposed to the glossy ones.

You may not be wearing your lipstick, but continue taking care of the skin on the lips, so that the skin of the lips does not suffer under sweltering heat and suffocation inside the mask, make sure you give good care to your lips. Invest in hydrating lip balm and lip masks to keep them supple and plum. Or, apply almond oil on the lips at night and leave it on overnight.

Wearing a mask for long hours, while being outdoors in the sun can lead to partial tanning of the skin, with the area outside the mask becoming tanned. So, carry out treatments that help to produce an even colour tone. Apply a sunblock cream on the exposed area before going out in the sun. If your skin is oily, use a sunscreen gel. Anti-tan sunscreens are available.

All said and done, make-up will never go out of fashion. Make-up not only makes one look good but also feel good. It is said that wearing lipstick actually lifts the look immediately and also lifts the mood. Therefore, we are all looking forward to this year 2021 when the pandemic will end and make-up will be popular again.


* Shahnaz Husain wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The author is international fame beauty expert and is called herbal queen of India
This article was webcasted on March 07 2021.



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