The skincare game-changers you need in 2017
From techno-savvy face masks to probiotics, Victoria Hall outlines the skincare trends to have on your radar next year
The beauty industry thrives on innovation and buzzwords, and 2016 was the year that 'anti-pollution' stole the show, as a flurry of lotions and potions promised to protect against skin-damaging micro-sized particles.
Meanwhile, we saw a growing interest in natural and organic beauty, thanks to increased curiosity among women of all ages about what exactly goes into our beauty products as we looked for cleaner, greener options. It's no surprise that Pantone's colour for 2017 is a tangy yellow-green called 'greenery'.
Advances in skin technology were also huge in 2016: Panasonic unveiled a prototype for a 'smart mirror', which diagnoses skin concerns and prints out 3D slivers of colour-matched make-up to mask your imperfections. Google filed patents outlining designs for electricity- and pressure-sensing mats and colour recognition mirrors: these could track changes in weight, blood pressure and organ health.
But, while these are exciting in terms of technology, neither is likely to make it into your bathroom in the next couple of years. So what are the products that will be filling our cabinets and shelves in 2017? Here is everything you need to know about for the New Year…
High tech masks
Face masks were a defining beauty product for 2016, whether as panda-faced sheets or colourful L'Oréal Paris clays.
And the experts predict that their success will continue long into next year.
Buy it now: For instant gratification, grab Lancer Skincare Lift and Plump Sheet Masks (€122 for four, lancerskincare.co.uk). January Labs Glow and Go Power Peel (€66, cultbeauty.co.uk, pictured above left) also offers pore perfection.
Look out for: Nannette de Gaspé, which brought us the first dry-textured sheet mask, will unveil a lift-and-plump version for boobs and bums early next year. Incredible coconut-gel sheet masks from cult US brand Farmacy will also cross the Atlantic in 2017.
Rumour has it that Charlotte Tilbury will be venturing into this genre of skincare, too.
There was a smattering of probiotic-based skincare launches this year and, with more research suggesting that bacteria - including lactobacillus and bifidobacterium - are beneficial to the skin, you can expect this genre to grow.
"Brands already have us rethinking traditional cleansing and skincare regimes and we expect this category to snowball in 2017 as product innovation continues," says Chrissy Hilton-Gee, senior beauty researcher at trend forecaster trendstop.com.
Buy it now: Gallinée was one of the frontrunners of probiotic skincare: La Culture Foaming Facial Cleanser (€18, Harvey Nichols, pictured right), is great if you fear dry, stripped skin. If you're new to probiotics and battle with breakouts, use Éminence Clear Skin Probiotic Masque, (€62, amazon.co.uk).
Look out for: We know April is a long way away, but Vichy Slow Age (€32), will be worth the wait. Targeting ageing concerns and strengthening your skin's barrier function, the light lotion is packed with antioxidants and probiotics. It has SPF25, too.
Given how concerned we are about what we're putting into our bodies, it was only a matter of time before the beauty industry started to align our bathroom cabinets with those in our kitchens. Expect to see skincare ingredients including algae, moringa and kale.
Buy it now: Votary Super Seed Facial Oil (€85, votary.co.uk, pictured right) is reportedly the secret to Kate Middleton's (pictured far left) glowing skin, and was developed by her favoured make-up artist, Arabella Preston. Massage the oil into your skin in the evening and you'll see the difference. Meanwhile, Elemis Superfood Oil (€57, millies.ie) includes broccoli and flax seed, and can be used alone or mixed into your face cream.
Look out for: This spring sees the launch of the Bobbi Brown Remedies line: Skin Reviver, (€41.50, launching Thursday in Arnotts), is especially good. Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster with Pure Vitamin C 10% (approx. €30, launches in March), gives a seven-day dose of the vitamin.
Dry body brushing has long been championed for helping to gently exfoliate skin, boost circulation and reduce the appearance of cellulite. In Asia, the technique is also widely used to improve the tone and texture of your face.
Theresa Yee, senior beauty editor at trend forecaster WGSN, predicts that we'll follow them. "It gives you an incredible, fresh-faced glow," she says. "In Asia they follow with facial soap rather than cleanser, so I wouldn't be surprised if the traditional bar makes a comeback here, too."
Buy it now: Aveda Tulasara Facial Dry Brush (€37, Debenhams, pictured below) is softer than a body brush, but you employ the same circular motions.
Look out for: Rather let a gadget do the hard work? The good news is that Clarisonic launches a toning device next autumn. And if it's anything like its facial and body-cleansing brushes, it'll be a game changer.
Water tends to be a key ingredient in most products, of course, but next year the focus will be more fully on hydration. "Products will utilise water-based ingredients and jelly textures to provide ultra-light, breathable finishes," says Hilton-Gee. After all, the more hydrated your skin is, the plumper, firmer and more radiant it looks.
Buy it now: If your skin is tight and parched, it needs La Roche Posay Hydraphase Intense Serum, (€25.99, Boots, pictured below left). You can even mix it into your foundation if your skin is particularly dry.
Look out for: La Mer Revitalising Hydrating Serum, (approx. €175), and Elemis Hydra-Boost Serum, (approx. €55). Both launch early next year and promise to leave your skin intensely hydrated. In March, Clarins will unveil its revamped Hydra Quench range. The new formulas use water-retaining wonder ingredient 'leaf of life'.
The term 'K-beauty' (Korean-inspired beauty) has been around for a couple of years and Asia will continue to influence global beauty trends.
Next year, it will all be about products that change texture as you use them: increasingly, we're after skincare that surprises our senses. "You can expect materials that build intrigue," explains Hilton-Gee. "It's not just about the product itself, but the whole experience."
Buy it now: Sunday Riley Martian Mattifying Water-Gel Toner, (approx. €60, SpaceNK, pictured below right), transforms from gel to a water, while Darphin 8-Flower Nectar Oil Cream, (approx. €70, darphin.com), goes from balm to oil - and smells amazing.
Want something more playful? Try Peter Thomas Roth Brightening Bubbling Mask, (€38, lookfantastic.com).
Look out for: "In Korea, the latest texture change is cleansing balls that melt into liquid when they come into contact with your skin," says Yee. "They're colour-coordinated by skincare concerns."