Cloud Skin Is TikTok’s Newest Obsession & We Have Déjà Vu

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Like baggy jeans and whale tails, everything that goes out of style trends again eventually. This time, matte foundation is back thanks to the new cloud skin trend taking over TikTok — but there’s a twist.

First, let’s take a quick trip down memory lane. When matte foundation was last trending in the late 2010s, TikTok wasn’t even around yet. Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube were the go-to platforms for beauty inspiration. Phone cameras were not what they are now, so looks tended to be more intense — harsher contour lines, super-arched eyebrows, and thicker eyeliner, all layered over a thick layer of full-coverage matte foundation. Even lip products were mostly matte at the time as the trend was to only shine on the cheekbones and under the eyebrow arch where highlight was applied.

Jason Merritt/Getty Images

As the 2020s began, people naturally started to drift towards the opposite style (just like how we switched from side parts to middle parts, but now side parts are coming back again, for example). Coupled with measures to stay home and mask mandates due to the pandemic, the demand for thick and full-coverage foundations slowed down. Around this time, K-beauty started to trend in the west, so there was more of an emphasis on skin care and not just makeup. From this, the shiny, poreless glass skin trend became popular, influencing people to swap their full-coverage foundation for a light coat of sheer tint and a solid skin care routine. The Korean makeup spatula even trended because it gave people an easy way to apply a super thin layer of foundation. We really embraced the less is more mindset in this era.

Han Myung-Gu/WireImage

Now, we have a cloud skin — a makeup style that’s a combination of both the late 2010s and early 2020s. While it is still trendy to have a blurred effect and light coverage, cloud skin just reintroduces the matte look. The goal is to still have a subtle natural look but with less of a glean. It’s said to be more about glowing from within, further emphasizing the importance of taking care of your skin. It may sound difficult to achieve, especially for those with super dry skin and in the winter, but it wouldn’t be TikTok without hacks.

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