Generation Z is influencing the beauty industry not only by creating unique trends, but also demanding companies increase their social responsibility, create products that are inclusive, sustainable and innovative.
Where We Came From
About 10 years ago, beauty standards focused on one ideal image of beauty. This image left millions of individuals feeling insecure because they didn’t fit the ideal. Representation of different ethnicities and cultures was at an all-time low. What was trendy at the time was a face of full-coverage matte foundation followed by a thick layer of powder, making sure every imperfection was masked. Makeup brands offered products with minimal ranges of complexion shades leaving women of color with little to no options to match themselves correctly. It was nearly impossible to find an indie brand that was creating high quality products, advocating inclusivity, and supporting women and minority-owned businesses.
Redefining the Beauty World
We all remember the Tarte Cosmetics backlash of 2018, after Rihanna released her cosmetic line Fenty Beauty in 2017. She created complexion products, like her Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation, that catered to 50 shades for all skin tones. It was a milestone that the beauty industry was evolving faster than ever. Following her successful launch, Tarte Cosmetics released the infamous Shape Tape Foundation, that offered 20 shades, mainly for fair complexions. It was the most impactful moment in time when younger generations released their strong opinions and called out Tarte Cosmetics for turning a blind eye to women of color.
Gen Z grew up with the internet and social media. Now with social platforms like Instagram, Gen Z is holding companies accountable for the actions and beliefs. Their voices are the loudest to be heard, their influence is unmatched, and they have set the new standard of beauty, that every individual carries their own beauty.
We have implemented becoming perfectly imperfect. We are seeing brands blowing up online that are serious competition for large corporations like L’Oréal. These amazing brands are being founded by women of color, minorities, all genders, as well as being socially active, environmentally sustainable and giving back to their communities
What's Happening Now
Influencers on Instagram like @skincarebyhyram are encouraging individuals to check the ingredients of cosmetic products they are using to ensure that no harm or toxic chemicals come in contact with their skin or environment. He advocates for companies like The Ordinary and Krave Beauty. Both brands offer clean formulas, simplified packaging, and are educating their consumers on the proper use of their products.
Within the past few years, the industry has normalized the use of CBD in beauty products. Not Pot, a company from the USA, works with local companies to farm sustainably, and to fight mass incarceration. They have set up “The Not Pot Bail Fund” to pay an individual’s bail for non-violent drug offenses. You can shop from a small range of products like their Sleep CBD Gummies, CBD Glow Oil, and Pet CBD Oil for your furry friends.
The Beauty Bakerie is a black owned business founded by women who create cute and innovative products. The Beauty Bakerie has a sweet aesthetic, that inspires you to indulge in delicious desserts. Their Flour Setting Powder and Proof Is in The Pudding Eyeshadow Palette are among their best-sellers that pay an homage to baking.
You are encouraged to be yourself. Cosmetics are not a one size fits all. They are for all genders, races, cultures, and ethnicities. While there is still much to be done, to increase representation and have all voices be heard, we are in the most diverse time of the beauty industry. We can tell that with new trends and products releasing, we are encouraged to show our imperfections and take care of our well-being. Healthy, bold, and creative looks are trends that will stick around longer than a few seasons.
Showing who you really are and fighting to be heard in what you believe in is what Gen Z is influencing millions of other consumers to do, you don’t have to settle for what the beauty industry gives you.
Gen Z Approved Products:
Krave Beauty Great Barrier Relief Serum : This serum is formulated to repair the skin barrier and can be used to treat and soothe the skin or even replace your moisturizer. It targets major concerns such as dryness, dehydration, acne, inflammation, and uneven skin tone. Krave Beauty is helping popularize Korean beauty in the western world and has created a major emphasis on how they advocate for sustainability.
The Great Barrier Relief is formulated with beneficial ingredients such as Tamanu Oil, Ceramides, Niacinamide, and free of toxic ingredients such as colorants, and fragrance.
Each bottle contributes to the conservation efforts of the Great Barrier Reef, as well as other environmental causes. Krave is also working to stop cosmetic brands that continue to hurt our natural resources.
Ilia Beauty Super Serum Skin Tint: Your foundation but better. A serum SPF that gives you protection and coverage. Formulated with Squalene, Niacinamide, and Hyaluronic Acid, it’s the perfect product to top off your skincare routine and have a clean base for your makeup. Ilia’s focus is to provide Clean Makeup with the benefits of skincare products.
Colourpop Cosmetics Jelly Mulch Shadow: Gel and Liquid shadows have been taking over the market since they provide intense pigmentation that lasts with minimal product use. Jelly Mulch comes in a range of fun bright colors and is easy to apply with a brush and your fingers. Colourpop has strived to stop animal cruelty and animal testing. They have been able to develop budget friendly products without harming cute bunnies.
Kosas Wet Lip Oil Gloss: A lip treatment that also provides impeccable color and shine is a need in every makeup bag. Formulated with Avocado Oil, Peptides, and Konjac Root, it is made to replenish your lips without sacrificing comfortability. Kosas’s focus is providing professional quality makeup without harsh ingredients. They make sure you are receiving the maximum benefits you can that are comfortable for your skin.