this halloween, be inspired by the year’s most bizarre viral trends

Good news: 2016 has been great for high impact, low effort beauty moments.

by Wendy Syfret
28 October 2016, 4:24am

Screengrabs via YouTube.

Halloween is almost here, and as the infamous night creeps closer so does costume anxiety. Where we once harboured big dreams of complex looks — like, in June — ambition lessens as the months roll on. By the time we make it to October many of us are too exhausted to try interpret Rose McGowan's Scream death scene or even mix up a bucket of faux pig's blood for our Carrie prom outfit.

Luckily, 2016 has been generous with its high impact, low effort, legitimately bonkers viral style offerings. It feels like barely a week has gone by without our feeds blowing up with some new makeup challenge, ill advised trend or selfie-worthy micro-movement. So this Halloween, make like the meta millennial you are and make a statement about the ephemeral nature of online trends and the hysteria that surrounds them. Or, like, just have a nice time with make up.

Clowning Around

Clowns have been such a contentious topic this year that many schools have banned kids dressing up as them out of fear it would traumatise their classmates. But while there will no doubt be waves of creepy wannabes on October 31st, we'd recommend being inspired by a less freaky incarnation. If you're feeling fancy, look to Margiela's take on the sad clown from fall/winter 2015; or Dior's Parisian influenced version — they dipped into the stage makeup for their fall/winter 2011 couture collection. If you'd still like to include a twist of menace, Alexander McQueen's autumn/winter 2001 offering is for you.

Alternatively, use the opportunity to reflect on our fluctuating relationship with contouring by recreating Bella DeLune's clown contour look. The make-up artist created the viral trend as a response to trolls calling her traditional contour videos "clownish".

Image via @katierosebrook

Shoelace Necklaces

Even for a list dedicated to low-key costumes, this option is so relaxed it's barely conscious. Earlier this year Katie Rosebrook decided to try out 2016's favourite accessory — the choker — but was hesitant to spend any actual cash on the venture. So she improvised, pulling out the shoelace from a sneaker and tying it around her neck. It looked pretty good, no one appeared to notice the difference, and later that night she Tweeted about it. Up until then it was a pretty normal fashion experiment, that was until her post was retweeted over 48k times momentarily becoming an internet obsession. So if you're really stuck, consider looking down to your shoes for help. Hey, it worked for Katie. 

Image via Vevo

No Makeup MakeUp

It's hard to imagine a look less demanding than pulling out a shoelace, but 2016 has been a big year for minimal effort. Alicia Keys and Shailene Woodley sparked a wave of think pieces by declaring they were over doing their face every morning; while Beyonce, Kim Kardashian, Gwyneth Paltrow, Lupita Nyong'o, Lorde and the Hadid sisters all began heading out make up free.

If anyone asks where your costume is, tell them your total lack of adornment is a comment on the changing way women see themselves and a wider shift away from prescribed beauty norms. Trust us, they won't ask any follow up questions. 

Image via @diane.kendal

Ear Makeup

We're going to move back towards actually putting in some effort here, and ear make up feels like a good compromise. Not only is it a surprisingly striking look you may want to adopt into your non-Halloween style, it also comes recommended by Willow Smith. The style prodigy repped the look when she was only 11. A few years later Proenza Schouler and Louis Vuitton caught up — sending their models down the runway with mottled ears for their spring/summer 17 and spring/summer 16 shows.

How you wear it is up to you, will you stick with a runway dip-dye, or go full Grace Neutral pixie princess?

Temporary Tattoos

While rub-on tattoos admittedly never went out of style in primary schools, more recently they've well and truly found a niche in the adult world. Rihanna has been rocking foil and henna tattoos for a while now, but in 2016 she was joined by everyone in your Instagram feed. Maybe they were inspired by Gigi Hadid's faux anchor at the Tommy Pier presentation or Selena Gomez's genius idea of offering temporary versions of her tattoos among her Revival tour merch. Although there is little doubt the crowning temporary tattoo moment came during Gucci's spring/summer 17 show when model Lorens walked covered in hand-painted neo-romantic script. If you want to replicate this look for Halloween, we recommend roping in a friend with excellent handwriting.


Text Wendy Syfret