Trends in skincare don’t always have the same longevity as the basics, but we’re still excited to see what trends will fly this year. From a possible pivotal moment in cruelty-free to new ingredient spotlights, here’s what we’re looking forward to in 2020.

Clean Beauty

When the first few days of the new year headlined Australia’s bushfire problem and the flooding in Indonesia, you know climate change is going to remain a pressing subject in 2020 — and beauty brands that value sustainability and the environment are going to get the spotlight. 

Not all “organic” or “natural” skincare is good for you, though, so don’t toss the science of cosmeceuticals out of the window! You can practice sustainability with your skincare in other ways. We see the clean beauty trend wrapping up anything from environmentally-friendly packaging to ethically sourced ingredients, so keep your eyes peeled!

A Leap for Cruelty-Free?

In 2015, beauty conglomerate L’Oréal partnered with a bio-printing startup to begin research in replicating human skin. Three years later, they started developing reconstructed skin from Chinese donors to develop cosmetics targeting the fastest and largest market. This budding innovation could make the case for stopping animal testing altogether and become pivotal in making a leap for the cruelty-free movement.

Will this be the year we’ll see it happen? Perhaps. We certainly hope it will — it’s 2020, after all, and it would be fantastic if we can start the decade with good news for our furry friends!

Less is More Skincare

Within the last decade we’ve seen the industry go nuts with prolific multi-step routines, but this year we’ll likely see brands dialing back to multi-functional skincare and emphasizing the benefits of simpler routines. We might see some cult skincare favorites shift to new and improved reformulations, and perhaps some new innovations that would make our routines much easier.

“Less is more” can also mean a rise in encapsulated skincare, particularly those containing actives — think retinol capsules, salicylic acid patches, glycolic acid swabs. Most actives aren’t meant for everyday use, and encapsulating them to the ‘dose’ you need for one application can help prevent you from risking your skin to over-exfoliation and more damage. 

Soothing Skincare

More and more brands are developing skin-soothing, reparative skincare as the practice of nourishing the skin barrier is becoming more prominent. If the last decade saw centella asiatica and ceramides becoming a hot item in skincare, this year we foresee more brands featuring colloidal oats, which research shows to have very good soothing properties.

It also contains mugwort extract, the recently trending ingredient in Korean beauty, and azulene, a soothing active derived from chamomile that makes for a gorgeous blue color in skincare.

Improved Sun Protection

As the climate becomes more unpredictable, we foresee brands upping their sun protection game with stronger, more seamless sunscreen formulations that’ll encourage consumers to apply sunscreen more religiously. This year we might see more chemical-based sunscreens with less alcohol and essential oils, physical sun protection that doesn’t leave a white coat, or sunscreens formulated with a blend of chemical-physical filters that leaves a luxurious, moisturizing finish.

Anything can happen under the sun, and new sunscreen technology is definitely one thing we’re looking forward to this year.

What skincare trend are you looking forward to this year? Share it with us in the comments!