These Iconic ‘90s Inspired Lip Trends Are Back

OLD is the new NEW. From the ‘90s inspired clothing, vintage looking décor, to the classic ’90s makeup trends - the latest beauty trend dominating TikTok. However, nowhere is the ‘90s influence stronger than in lips, popping up under new names like Gym Lips and The Lip Lift. Whether you are into low-key, natural makeup or statement-making color, there are enough '90s lip trends that you’re bound to find a ‘90s lip look that you'll love. Here are five trends that are worth looking into:

Burgundy-brown lips

You can spot this 90s lip trend when you see it. During the early 90's, every major celebrity loved wearing sultry brown lipstick, so naturally it is exciting to see it making a comeback. Back then, the lip color was usually heavily lined and pigmented with a velvety finish that smacked of edgy glam.

Now, burgundy-brown lips are having a renaissance, the updated version appears with either a gloss finish or a stain finish, rather than the traditional ’90s matte look. One shortcut is to outline your lips with a dark lip liner, then fill them in with a classic red lip color and blend the two together to create your own custom merlot shade. Or just try Wonderskin lip kit Wonder Blading Peel & Reveal Lip Color in Divine to achieve this easy 90s lip trend.

You can also try this trend with flawless foundation using Ere Perez Oat Milk Foundation, light brown shadow from Sigma Beauty, and lashings of black mascara from Pacifica Beauty, for a sultry, modern take on this classic.

Gym lips

With billions of views on TikTok, #gymlips is the viral makeup sensation of the summer. While the name suggest some sort of workout, we are here to tell you that this new trend does not involve any new type of plastic surgery or a plumping effect that your lips might get after running on the treadmill. It’s actually almost a zero-effort look. Coined by New York City makeup artist Kelli Anne Sewell, “gym lips” refers to overlining your lips with a natural pencil that’s close to your own lip color - this helps them appear naturally fuller - then just patting on a moisturizing lip treatment or balm. That’s it! The name stems from this being such a casual, ultra-low-key look you could even wear it to the gym.

The last time nude lip liner caused this much sensation was in the mid ‘90s when M.A.C. Spice lip liner changed the way we use lip pencil forever. Before Spice, lip liner was designed to match your lipstick, not your lips, and served mainly as a border to protect lipstick from bleeding. M.A.C's Spice's rosy-nude hue introduced the concept of using only pencil to fill up and play up the shape of your natural lips. 

Give Ere Perez Açaí Lip Pencil in Pout a try, its velvety matte finish formula is boosted with lip-loving oils to nourish while also adding beauty pro definition.

Gradient lips

Gradient, popsicle, reverse ombré - there are numerous names for this painterly-looking pout where the color is bolder and more saturated in the center of the mouth and fades out as it reaches the lip lines. The most recent iteration of this look began in South Korea using Korean lip tints, a product that Korean beauty experts describe as similar to lip stains, only richer in color with a lightweight finish and long-lasting wear. Now the multi-tonal lip look has over 100s of million views on TikTok.

Two-toned lips first became a thing back in the ‘90s. A nude or shimmery gloss was often mixed with dark brown lip liner for a ombré effect. The newer Korean version uses more fresh colors like cherry red or peony pink for a bright finish. Hence, this upgraded lip trend version softer and more sophisticated compared the ‘90s version. 

Glittery-frosted lip gloss

For a period in the late 90s, it seemed like color cosmetics were dipped in fairy dust. Eyeshadows were sparkly and frosted, and lip colors came in all sorts of glittery variations from fine shimmer to iridescent to mega metallic. And the lip glosses, were do we start with that ultra-wet finish and hefty dose of glitter that made your positivity radiant from far.

This high-fashion look can be done by layering a glittery gloss over your favorite lipstick. The color isn't really what matters — the gloss is. Make sure to use a lip gloss that offers massive glow and shine, and you'll be good to go — or "glow." Try Sigma Beauty Hydrating Lip Gloss for the ultimate glossy topper.

It is worth mentioning that the gleaming lips of the moment are a bit more muted or toned-down than in the 90s, with chunky flecks of glitter replaced by finely milled shimmer that create a sleek gunmetal finish. This is brings us to the next 90s lip trend, the Gunmetal lips.

Gunmetal lips

Just like in the glittery gloss lip trend, the '90s gunmetal lip trend was more silver-toned than it is today, as now, the metallic grays tend to have blue undertones for a cooler effect. 

Lip liner

Lip liner without a doubt, is one '90s beauty staple that everyone from your close friends and family to your favorite celebrities are still loving today. Just be sure to select a slightly natural shade of liner to get that perfectly plump look as described earlier.

Dark brown lip liner matched by a lipstick or a lighter lip color, made quite the splash in the ‘90s. Now the look is having a resurgence, but this time with a shiny gloss to give the style a multidimensional finish.

Sources:

6 ‘90s-Inspired Makeup Trends To Try Right Now. (2021, January 11). L’Oreal Paris. Retrieved August 27, 2022, from https://www.lorealparisusa.com/beauty-magazine/makeup/makeup-trends/90s-makeup-ideas

BREWER, T. (n.d.). HOW TO MASTER THE 90S MAKEUP TREND. TheTrendSpotter. Retrieved August 27, 2022, from https://www.thetrendspotter.net/how-to-master-the-90s-makeup-trend/

HARRINGTON, J. (2022, May 27). These Are the Iconic ’90s Makeup Trends Making a Comeback. Popsugar. Retrieved August 28, 2022, from https://www.popsugar.com/beauty/1990s-makeup-trends-47867904

Kirby, V. (2022, July 26). The 5 Best ‘90s Inspired Lip Trends. Wonderskin. Retrieved August 27, 2022, from https://wonderskin.com/blogs/articles/the-5-best-90s-inspired-lip-trends
LA POMPE-MOORE, G. (2022, June 19). These 16 Beauty Looks Were Massive in the ’90s. Byrdie. Retrieved August 28, 2022, from https://www.byrdie.com/90s-beauty-looks

Leiva, C., & Pia Velasco, P. (2021, February 11). From Frosted Lips to Obvious Liner, Here Are the ’90s Lip Trends Making a Comeback. HelloGiggles. Retrieved August 27, 2022, from https://hellogiggles.com/beauty/makeup/lips/90s-lip-trends/