The 2016 vs. 2021 Makeup Challenge Is Taking Over TikTok

In between the complex dance routines, drool-worthy food recipes, and hilarious pranks on TikTok, there's also makeup TikTok. In this corner of the app, you'll find beauty products going viral or users participating in fun challenges. Speaking of the latter, the latest to reach our feeds is the 2016 vs. 2021 Makeup Comparison challenge, which is making us a bit nostalgic.

For this trend, TikTokers are creating side-by-side comparisons of makeup looks from both 2016 and 2021 — and you can definitely see the differences. Trends we know all too well, like the infamous blocky Instagram eyebrow and super-stark contour, make their appearances in some videos. Others showcase beauty enthusiasts' personal makeup preferences that may not have been trendy at the time but are still cute, regardless. 

That being said, of course, we had to round up our favorite looks. Below, enjoy some of the best 2016 vs. 2021 makeup challenge looks to come across our For You page. You might even recognize a few techniques you love today — or some that have already retired.

Though side-by-side comparisons of trends from different years aren't new, TikToker Klaudia Sydor was one of the first to kick off this challenge back in February of this year. In fact, many of the subsequent videos actually replicate her routine. You'll notice Sydor traded in matte lipstick for lip liner and gloss, harsh contour for softer bronzer, and went from no blush to packing it on heavily. 

Gary Thompson's cheekbones alone will have you mesmerized in this tutorial. Like a few others, he abandoned full-coverage foundation for a lighter, dewier finish. His 2016 makeup was categorized by baking, blinding powder highlighter, and colorful eye makeup, while 2021 has a more subtle approach with soft-glam eye makeup and liquid highlighter. 

But, Thompson admits on his Instagram that he enjoys both and likes to mix the techniques from the two years. 

Ling.KT's 2016 makeup routine begins with her blending a few hefty drops of shimmery liquid bronzer before applying foundation, lots of concealer, and contour. She finishes off with a neutral cut crease and flesh-toned matte lipstick. 

Her 2021 routine is more on the natural and dewy side with a nice wash of blush, smaller falsies, and a peachy-tan nude lipstick. 

Both sides of Sasha Durant's face look absolutely flawless. On the left sits popular 2016 techniques like baking, arched eyebrows, and a gold half-cut crease, while her 2021 side features wispy lashes, glossy lips, and simple smoked-out brown eyeliner. 

Eilidh Dickson may have one of the biggest evolutions between her 2016 and 2021 everyday makeup routines. She completely covers her freckles with a full coverage foundation, a triangle of concealer, and matte powder in the 2016 look. 

In 2021, she mainly applies concealer and bronzer with a bit of blush and highlighter to her base. She finishes off 2016 with a fiery red matte lipstick and brown liner, but opts for gloss in 2021.

@Namglam, aka Naiomi, makes use of vibrant pink eye shadow, dramatic lashes, and shimmery highlighter for her 2016 look. The year 2021, on the other hand, has a dewier base with a creamy red blush and drawn-on freckles. 

Frishta's 2021 everyday routine actually requires a bit more makeup than her 2016 look. Her base in '16 is pretty much just concealer. But in 2021, she uses primer, a tinted moisturizer, concealer, and a setting powder. She also packs on bronzer and pink blush for a warm and flushed face. She ditches the thick cat-eye and matte lipstick for just mascara, nude lip liner, and gloss in 2021. 

We don't know about you, but these videos are inspiring us to do our own version of the challenge — albeit, our 2016 routines were much simpler (and, dare we say, boring) than it is now. Can't wait to see what you all come up with, too.  

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