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Major innovations will define beauty in the 2020s

Text Kamara Hakeem-Oyawoye

Cover image Marina Dean-Francis

As we step into the 2020s, there’s a shift into a whole new mindset that leaves consumers longing for more. With technological advancements and growing human curiosity, it seems like every day we’re stepping closer into the Uncanny Valley.

For some, that may be scary. For the rest of us, it means that at some point during this decade, our skin is going to be nothing short of iconic. With these pending innovations detailed below, we’re heading into a whole new era of beauty.

1/ Beauty Bots

As we slowly move into a utopian world where beauty works perfectly, we’ll see advancements in the efficiency of cosmetics as we know it. This will include shifting to non-invasive treatments where injectables are already a favourite.

Originally designed as a counterpart for invasive medical procedures, this reimagined beauty technique delivers ingredients and nutrients to areas where traditional supplements fall short. Creating a better pathway for the likes of collagen and hyaluronic acids with steadily growing fanbases.

2/ Digital Fragrances

By the end of this decade, the way we use fragrance will be completely altered. The introduction of machine-learning algorithms that analyse scent molecules and predict their smell will make them transmittable – and tweakable – online.

This will inevitably boost their use in wellness, which will be implemented into homes, offices and even, cars. Fragrances traditionally used in aromatherapy to promote healthier sleeping patterns will be enhanced to elevate psychological responses i.e. cognitive alertness.

3/ Made in Nature

As we continue to grow in environmental consciousness, “made in nature” will be the new best-selling tagline. Special collaborations with nature bring the growth of mushrooms carved into packaging and trees that grow directly into furniture.

These environmentally crafted products will have a unique value point that beats out countries likened to high quality or luxury. Bringing about a whole new system, capsule collections will be designed regionally with local materials or native ingredients making nature the new luxury.

4/ Psychodermatology

We’ve already seen the insurgence of information linking skin health to the gut. The growing popularity of probiotics has made everyone more aware of what their cheat day decisions really mean for their skin, and how to make healthier decisions.

Taking that up a notch, psychodermatology uses the link between the gut, brain and skin to address skin conditions. This evolution will additionally see dermatology morph into a 360 landscape that includes emotional wellness along with the nutritional and physical.

5/ Niksen

It’s long been established that millennials and Gen Zers are one of the most stressed-out generations ever. Taking on the pressures of social media, work and capitalism, stress and burnout have officially become medical conditions that we’re exposed to one too many times.

The fix? Niksen: the Dutch wellness trend of doing absolutely nothing. A skill that I perfected during my younger years before bills and adulthood reared their ugly head. Contrary to popular belief that it makes you lazy, research has found it drives creativity and problem-solving abilities while slowing ageing and reducing anxiety.

6/ Adaptogens

Adaptogens are plants that help the body resist physical, chemical and biological stresses without exuding any toxic properties. Originally used in Ayurveda, products containing the likes of turmeric, CBD and lavender simultaneously combat inflammation and stress.

These age-old ingredients are set to be a key player in the next few years due to their ability to combine skincare properties with that of psychotherapy. As they deliver rejuvenating properties to your skin, they can lower blood pressure and cortisol levels.

While scientists are doing their best to up our beauty game, it’s a fantastic time to look into how these innovations could change your game. These changes will not only deliver better services for us but improve our relationships with both the environment and our health overall.