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A Beauty Editor’s 2024 ‘Ins’ (and ‘Outs’)

January 1 | 3 minute read

Memo This Is It Liquid Blush Hero 16x9

Words by Brennan Kilbane

Originally published on | January 16

Welcome to ‘This Is It’ by New York-based Beauty Editor Brennan Kilbane, a regular dispatch tracking trends that are in and out of the greater beauty and wellness industry. It’s only a little bit serious.

It’s difficult to be a beauty consumer in 2024 (happy new year!). Not as difficult as, say, being a pearl diver or air traffic controller, but those with an interest in – or genetic predisposition toward – shopping for new skincare, makeup, haircare, nail stuff, body oil, jade rollers, microcurrent devices or cosmetic injectables must be exhausted by the pace at which the market moves.

Algorithms trained every second to better optimise for our preferences, constantly shuffling and redirecting the flow of content, means that trend cycles have now collapsed into blink-and-you’ll-miss-them super events. Doesn’t ‘buccal fat removal’ feel like it happened three decades ago?

Memo This Is It 16x9

It would be grueling, boring, impossible and misguided to acknowledge every beauty and wellness trend as it passes through the mainstream – but it would also be a little bit fun, wouldn’t it?

This Is It will attempt to track major movements in cosmetic culture with a brief digest. These are not official judgements, but merely observations. You are welcome to take them as gospel; we wouldn’t recommend it.

This is it...

The Term ‘Longevity’

This word is increasingly used to refer to all sorts of efforts to keep us alive longer – medicines, food, epigenetic testing – as well as looking younger. In the blink of an eye and the flip of a page, a moisturiser becomes a ‘longevity supplement’. (See also: ‘vitality’.)

A Subtle Flush

‘Longevity makeup’, which is the term I just invented for layering your liquid blush (I like MECCA MAX Off Duty Liquid Blush in ‘Peachy’ and ‘Rosy’ because they paint like pastels) beneath your foundation (I like NARS Light Reflecting Foundation because it’s supremely buildable) and then buffing it all together with a stubby brush or a sponge. It gives a finish akin to a low-set Touch Up My Appearance filter; in person, it simply offers the look of a healthy metabolism.

A Cult Fragrance in the Making

This fragrance by Le Labo, Thé Noir 29. Translating, literally, to ‘black tea’ in French and, evocatively, ‘The Noir’ in un-French, it’s a captivating scent from the half-French brand. Thrice in two days this past December I asked a gorgeous stranger which fragrance they were wearing; two out of three times, I already knew the answer. A new Le Labo cult fragrance has emerged.

Simple Moisturisers

Among friends, colleagues, and one famous person you would be shocked to know both gave this advice and had occasion to speak to me at all, people are moving away from high-science face cream. Many chic and even smart people are switching to more simpler moisturisers and loving the results — at least for now. Don’t shoot the messenger!

Bedside Hand Cream

Earlier this (northern hemisphere) winter, I went with a friend to try bouldering at a nearby gym – and I won’t make that mistake again. After a single hour, which itself contained maybe 20 minutes of actual vertical bouldering, my hands were stinging, chapped and blistered.

So, it was true need, not mere want, that drove me back into the grasp of Lanolips Rose Hand Cream Intense – the best hand cream in the world, in my opinion.

My only New Year's Resolution is to add Tatcha’s The Kissu Lip Mask to the proceedings, but if I had a second, it would be to avoid bouldering ever again.

True Minimalism

Not, like, ‘quiet luxury The Row sweater with drop shoulders and no visible branding’ minimalism, but an actual, practical, undeniably fashionable life lived with less. Le Labo’s Co-Founder told The New York Times that his Brooklyn brownstone had a “mattress on the floor” kind of vibe – in an interior design feature about his home.

The other Co-Founder, a true citizen of the world, recently invited T Magazine to photograph the Kebony wood walls of his Portuguese vacation manse – every one of which is bare. “The art is the view,” he said, probably gesturing to one of the nearby windows, framing an expanse of wildflowers and swaying grasses.

It’s enough to suggest that the things we need are the things we already have: moisturiser, mattress, Le Labo fragrance, lip balm, hand cream, feeling happy and vital!

Credit: The Row

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