TikTok beauty influencers like Zoe Kim Kenealy are currently pumping out seasonal micro-aesthetics like never before. These hyperspecific styles encompass signature makeup looks, clothing items, accessories and even particular moods. While the barrage of social media aesthetics might seem silly (how many words will they tack “core” onto?) these trends can serve as fun ways to push your style boundaries and discover new favs. With this spirit of experimentation in mind, HC at UCLA investigated TikTok’s top styles and curated custom mood boards for you to draw upon for inspo. So, if you’re sick of the same old red and green color palette that rolls around each December, here are five winter micro-aesthetics to try out:
- Cold (But Chic)
The cold girl look is all about romanticizing wintertime. It’s sweet, easy to recreate and has a unique tongue-in-cheek whimsy. Your goal with this aesthetic is to emulate an off-duty model who grows chilly when she’s out making snow angels. Cute, right? The trend’s cornerstone is a dramatically flushed face, exaggerating the natural rosy effects brought about by cold weather. To get the look, you can drape a heavy pink blush across your nose bridge, up your temples and even under your eyes. Pair this rouge with a silver highlighter and clear lip gloss to evoke melting snow, and you’re set! Other common elements of the micro-aesthetic include white fluffy earmuffs, mittens and boots to drive home the simulation of frigid temperatures.
Netflix’s newest hit show, Wednesday, has not only impacted the dancing side of TikTok but the style side too. Expect to see echoes of Wednesday Addam’s iconic goth aesthetic reverberate through lots of imminent makeup, hair and fashion trends. Nailing the classic Wednesday look is quite simple—go ham with a cool-toned contour shade and throw your hair in some braided pigtails. But, if you want a wearable look opposed to a full on cosplay, there are many more subtle approaches to Wednesdaycore. You can dress in black and white, favoring stripes and large checkered prints. Then layer collared shirts under your dresses and sweaters or experiment with frilly ankle socks to add some extra flair to your fits. These details will help you capture this micro-aesthetic’s dark-retro-youthfulness!
- Y2K Frosty Vibes
While Cold (But Chic) leans into a real-life chill, this aesthetic is all about creating a gaudy and artificial frostiness. The 2000s pastiche hinges upon glitter, rhinestones and pale blue eyeshadow. Accessories should be piled on from head to toe, adding to an overall sense of dripping in an icy glow. If you feel a bit tacky, you’re doing everything right! Don’t worry; I promise that you look so fetch! To fully personify this micro-aesthetic feel free to blast some Britney and practice your best Paris impersonation. This look is particularly great for the L.A. girlies who can rock crop tops and low-rise pants without risking frostbite. If you live in a colder region, maybe stick to the quintessential pastel makeup.
- Post-Party Aesthetic
This micro-aesthetic goes by some more racy names like the One-Night Stand Look, but it always boils down to the same core traits: smudged eye makeup, black (preferably leather) clothes and an unbothered attitude. The archetypal post-party aesthetic girl lives in NYC and stays out so late that she just rewears her clubbing makeup to class the next morning. She brims with laid-back confidence, not needing to look perfect because she knows she stuns no matter what. To achieve this look, focus on layered black garments, clumpy mascara and touches of faux fur. Keep in mind that you don’t need to embrace your wild side to pull off this aesthetic. Go ahead and purposefully smudge your eyeliner with a q-tip before taking selfies for IG!
- Champagne Problems
On the opposite side of the party girl spectrum, we find the Champagne Problems it-girls. They are sleepy and disinterested, arriving late to their parties and then leaving early for their beauty sleep. These ladies live in luxurious cream and rose gold tones and play with whispers of Old Hollywood glamour. Their makeup is always flawlessly diffused and of course, they only drink bougie champagne. Have no fear, this aesthetic doesn’t actually require a trust fund or a dedication to apathy. Dressing in soft pinks and neutrals then accessorizing with costume pearls will help you look the part. I also think that a sweet, warm perfume scent would seal the deal. If you’re looking to close off 2022 with low effort elegance, the Champagne Problems look is the way to go.
With holiday parties on the horizon, now’s the perfect time to comb through your closet and decide which micro-aesthetic works for you. Are you going to be a cold girl up at your family’s cabin? A Wednesdaycore trendsetter at your work’s end-of-year party? A frosty Y2K babe when meeting up with hometown friends? A post-party girl or champagne problems diva taking selfies at a New Year’s Eve event? If you’re struggling to decide, feel free to check out HC at UCLA’s Pinterest boards or design a mood board of your own!