There’s no denying that the 2000s are back in full force. It’s why low-rise jeans, hair clips, and heeled flip flops are everywhere you look. Even Ed Hardy has made its return. With the hashtag #y2k having over 2.5 Billion videos on TikTok, the revival is not going anywhere soon.
The timing is little surprise in our almost post-pandemic culture, with a study last year finding that nostalgia can help to combat feelings of loneliness. With this in mind, the recent throwback of some of the most polarizing ’00s beauty trends seems excusable. Maybe we all seek the warmth and comfort of a simpler time when growing back your eyebrows was our biggest issue. However, as with the cyclical nature of trends, each trend has reemerged with a new 2021 twist.
Read on as we look back on where the most popular Y2K beauty trends began, how they’re cropping up on social media today, and how you can bring them back into your life this season.
Stretch Comb Headbands Then
The comb-headband was a staple of the early aughts. It was an easy, if headache-inducing way to keep every strand of hair off your face.
Stretch Comb Hairbands Now
Bella Hadid was recently spotted bringing this trend back, styled with some retro sunglasses and pearls.
Thin Eyebrows Then
Arguably one of the worst Y2K trends was pencil-thin eyebrows, plucked into almost non-existence. One of the biggest culprits was pop icon Christina Aguilera, who used to draw hers on.
Thin Eyebrows Now
In 2021, we’ve learned lessons from our over-plucked predecessors not to remove our natural eyebrow shape for good. Instead, there’s currently a trend on TikTok that uses concealer or a filter to achieve the same look (or people are just bleaching them away completely).
Visible Lip Liner Then
A trend started by Black women, in the ’90s and ’00s, visible lip liner was a perfect addition to super glossy lips.
Visible Lip Liner Now
Today, the lip-liner and gloss combo is just as iconic as ever, with darker lip liner used and blended for a more dramatic look.
Blue Eyeshadow Then
If nothing else, early '00s makeup trends were colorful, playful and not overly precise. Bright blue eyeshadow, in particular, had its moment.
Blue Eyeshadow Now
This year, blue eyeshadow is back in pastels. Luckily our blending skills have all improved in the past 20 years.
Two-Tone Hair Then
Starkly contrasted two-tone hair was everywhere you turned, from Nicole Richie and Hilary Duff’s black and blonde combo to Fergie's chunky highlights to Eve’s blonde and brunette layered look.
Two-Tone Hair Now
Recently, we’ve seen an uptake in colorful face-framing strands (although chunky highlights are also making a reappearance).
Heavy Blush Then
In the 2000s, our favorite celebrities had an extremely heavy hand with their blush. The brighter the better.
Heavy Blush Now
This year, it’s equally trendy to have the same heavy hand with blush, but the focus is on creating a more dewy look using cream and gel formulas.
Baby Braids Then
There’s maybe nothing more 2000s than small braids, randomly throughout the hair, or face-framing with crimped ends.
Baby Braids Now
This year, face-framing braids are once again all the rage, with Ariana herself swapping her signature high ponytail for the look.
Smudgy Black Eyeliner Then
She was our skater girl and her punk eyeliner was everything to every 2000s teen that felt “Complicated”.
Smudgy Black Eyeliner Now
Love it or hate it, smudgy black eyeliner has made a full return, with Dior’s Fall/Winter 2021-22 Haute Couture collection adding a twist with an under-eye look.
Flipped Out Ends Then
Remember this haircut that only looked good with this very particular flipped out blowout?
Flipped Out Ends Now
Today, flipped ends are back, with celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Ashley Graham adding them as flourish to high ponytails and half-up styles.
French Tips Then
This was the manicure you begged your mom to take you to the salon for. And it usually had a square tip.
French Tips Now
This year, the hottest french manicures come in every color of the rainbow and have a more almond shape.
Hair Clips Then
From butterfly clips and claw clips to colorful hairpins, there’s no doubt that this era was chock full of hair accessories.
Hair Clips Now
Butterfly clips are back in a big way, after blowing up on TikTok. Today, they’re more face-framing (for the camera, of course).
Body Shimmer Then
There was no such thing as too much glitter. Thank goodness glitter came in roll-on sticks that could be used all over your body.
Body Shimmer Now
Surprisingly, body shimmer is making a comeback this year. This time it’s new and improved with products that double as skincare and contain of subtle sparkles rather than chunky glitters.