15 Alt-beauty accounts to follow on Instagram right now
The rise of social media has proved to be a double-edged sword for makeup. Allow us to explain: While platforms like Instagram have served as an invaluable tool for the beauty community, there's no denying that the space has reached a point of oversaturation.
So-called 'Instagram makeup' is ubiquitous throughout the platform, spearheaded by figures like the Kardashian-Jenners and influencers like Nikki Tutorials and James Charles. Since the term was coined in 2014, it's been all about blinding highlights, heavy contour, and a full face. Granted, in the six or so years since its inception, the details have changed and evolved, but overall the aesthetic has remained pretty consistent.
Really, many trends have cropped up as the antithesis to Instagram's mainstream, only to be swept up by the current entirely—for every trend that has cropped up to challenge the throne of the 'Instagram Baddie', the reigning queen has simply assimilated it and moved on as normal. From K-beauty to, ironically, the no-makeup makeup movement, Instagram beauty gurus find a way. Plus, when you throw in the fact that facial fillers and filters have become commonplace across the platform, it's clear that the online beauty scene has devolved into a mass of overwhelming homogeneity.
However, this isn't to say that Instagram's maximalist glam is bad by any means; makeup is subjective as an art, and even the most basic glam getup takes a certain level of artistry. In fact, it's common knowledge that many of the key techniques behind Instagram glam are
appropriated from rooted in drag. From baking to contouring and more, the drag community will tell you exactly where your 'Huda Kattan's and your 'Patrick Starr's got their signature styles from.
With all that said, it's no surprise that we've got content fatigue—while the trend's characteristic 'polished glam' is perfectly fine, it's exhausting looking at the same techniques and concepts over and over again.
That's why the alt-beauty community is such a breath of fresh air. From breathtaking, avant-garde takes on classical glam to the deconstruction of the art form and more, these artists are treating the platform as a playground for their creative concepts, pushing the boundaries of beauty.
For intricate face painting (and great hair), follow @kickiyangz
For makeup that is equal parts ethereal and conceptual, follow @beasweetbeauty
For futuristic makeup sculptures, follow @arnaldo.jpeg
For surreal, 3D makeup looks, follow @ines.alpha
For next-level hyperrealistic face paintings, follow @designdain
For drag looks that are out of this world, follow @junobirch
For your fix of experimental, avant-garde makeup, follow @sugaronyoursouls
For positively fabulous looks that transcend the gender binary, follow @alokvmenon
For wonderful, goth-drag makeup looks, follow @beatbymarcus
For more playful, avant-garde looks, follow @heralbeauty_
For the ultimate cool-girl graphic aesthetic, follow @ruthiebarone
For Euphoria makeup tips straight from the source, follow @donni.davy
Find more makeup inspo here.