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Fall Makeup, Hair, and Nail Trends for 2018, According to Local Industry Experts

BY: Colleen Loggins Loster | Sep 25, 2018

If you're anything like me, on the morning of September 1, your look immediately morphs from glowy fresh-faced unicorn into Sarah Sanderson with a hint of Lydia Deetz thrown in. Fall makeup, hair, and nails typically have a moodier vibe that perfectly complements a world slowly spinning toward darkness. But are the fall 2018 trends as angsty as they have been in the past?

I spoke to some industry experts, pored over Instagram images, and scoured the fall runways to discover the most popular beauty trends for this season, including some that seem a bit incongruous with the typical glum vibe.

Fall Makeup

These fall makeup trends took over the runways during the fall fashion shows earlier this year.

Bold Colors on the Lips and Eyes

We all know you're supposed to play up your lips OR your eyes, not both. But if you always played by the rules, you would miss out on some truly stunning combos.

One such combo is black lips, laquered to a high shine, paired with bright ocean-inspired eye shadow. It's a great summer-to-fall transitional look, and the vivid aqua shadow and glossy lipstick keeps the look from feeling too goth.

Lash Lifts

Sure, eyelash extensions are still popular, but the latest beauty game-changer is the eyelash lift. Like lash extensions, lash lifts give your lashes some lift and curl, but unlike lash extensions, they don't cost hundreds of dollars. Lash lifts can also last up to eight weeks. Pair them with a lash serum to get the length that extensions give you.

Glitter Everywhere

Is it insane to wear glitter on your eyelids, brows, and lips? You would think so until you saw Rihanna do it for Allure's fall Best of Beauty issue. She wore Fenty Diamond Bomb Veil on her eyes and Gloss Bomb in Diamond Milk on her lips. And she looked like an alien queen. Just maybe skip the (hopefully edible) glitter she had on her tongue.

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Fall Hair

Hairstylist Melle Claybough, the owner of Tip Top Knot at Flourish Hair and Beauty in Chicago, breaks down fall's biggest hair trends.

Not Your Mother's Perm

Perms are slowly starting to come back, and Melle thinks that soon, they'll be back in a big way. "I think people are tired of wanding or curling their hair, yet they want texture and movement."

And while texture sprays will always be around, she thinks that modern perms will give people that dreamy texture they're looking for.

"The modern perm is light years away from the perms our moms wore!" Melle exclaims, adding that the waves created by modern perms are "different, more touchable."

Plus, she adds, the curls soften over time so retouches aren't really necessary. "And that gnarly perm smell is gone now. Thank god!"

Face-Framing Fringe and Center-Parted Bangs

Hair shapes are evolving. "I have more people asking for face-framing fringe and soft center-parted bangs—and less lobs," Melle says. "Think '70s Linda Ronstadt. It's a softer look and it grows out beautifully. Also people are more likely to wear bangs because it's not so hot outside."

She's personally very into one particular look she's seen coming out of the West Coast: a soft split-center bang with a fringe around the face.

"It is going to look so good with scarves and sweaters," Melle says, plus, "it's chic, feminine, but still so tough. The girl with this cut looks so cool and effortless." Wear it at the shoulders or longer.

Deep, Rich Colors

"Your colorist isn't just PSL obsessed," Melle says, explaining that there's a reason warm brunette hues are so popular during the fall. "Delicious tones like caramel, toffee, and even copper are like a prescription to help add depth to color that was lightened in the hot summer sun."

She adds that because warmer colors reflect light differently than their ash-based counterparts, "hair that's been kissed with warmth looks happy and healthy."

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Fall Nails

Nail technician Ailey Ly, the owner of Ailey and T Nails in Chicago, walks us through the most-wanted fall 2018 nail trends.

Short Ovals

In her salon, Ailey has been filing nail after nail into short oval shapes. So it's lucky that a natural short oval is her favorite nail look for fall 2018. Though it's such a popular look, that "I've been doing a lot of them and am getting tired!" she jokes.

Gold Foils, Ombre, and Rhinestones

Ailey has also been pressing a lot of gold foil pieces onto crystal-clear nails, as well as crafting a lot of ombre looks, specifically pink-and-white ombres that feel like a more modern version of a French manicure.

For her more adventurous clients, Ailey pulls out the crystals. "Rhinestone Swarovski crystals, we've been doing a lot of those," Ailey says.

And at her salon, she specifically uses Hotfix rhinestones—trendy crystal nail decorations that feature glue on the back that gets melted onto the nail with a hot tool. These cling to nails for about two weeks.

Dip-Powder Nails

"Dipping powder is really hot," Ailey says, adding that "90% of my clients have switched over to dipped nails."

This newer type of manicure requires clients to dip their nails one-by-one into a colored powder after a primer and base are applied to the nails. The excess dipping powder is then brushed away before a top coat is applied.

Ailey's clients really love a dipped manicure because "it lasts longer. A lot of them won't come back for three weeks!"

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