"Dolphin Skin" Is Trending Again — Here's What It Means and How to Get the Look
- “Dolphin skin” is a term coined by celebrity makeup artist Mary Phillips.
- It refers to dewy, glassy-looking skin.
- The look can be achieved by incorporating hydrating products into your skin-care routine and/or wearing dewy makeup.
I can’t say that I’ve ever looked at dolphins as beauty icons, but if the last two years have taught me anything, it’s that the craziest things can happen when you least expect them to. Most of the viral beauty trends that are taking the beauty world by storm today are those that glorify dewy, glowy complexions like “glass skin” and “cream skin,” though now there’s a new trend that puts the spotlight on dolphins.
“Dolphin skin,” as it’s called, has been all over Instagram and TikTok since last summer, and it’s a term that was first coined by makeup artist Mary Phillips, who’s worked with celebrities like Hailey Bieber, Jennifer Lopez, and Kendall Jenner. Much like its K-beauty-inspired predecessors, dolphin skin is a term used to describe glazed and luminous skin.
“Dolphin skin is the new ‘slugging’ concept, which refers to having glowing, glass-like radiance or, in effect, the wet, dewy look,” dermatologist Azza Halim, MD, told POPSUGAR. “There are two ways to accomplish this look. One is with consistent skin care, and the more immediate way is how you apply your makeup.”
According to Dr. Halim, you can achieve dolphin skin by incorporating a handful of specific products into your skin-care routine to give yourself a glow-from-within look.
“Always use a hydrating cleanser daily followed by a hyaluronic-acid serum and a rich moisturizer,” she said. “I also recommend adding rose oil into the routine as it absorbs quickly and does not feel greasy and can be used even under makeup.” As always, you should be following your moisturizer with a sunscreen, which, per Dr. Halim’s recommendation, should be a non-matte formula in order for you to get the best results. “Exfoliating skin at least once a week to reveal healthy skin is also a must.”
For more of an instant effect, Dr. Halim recommended using a dewy primer on the skin before applying your makeup. You should follow it with a dewy foundation and lots of highlighter.
“Highlight high areas of the face and avoid using powders or mattifiers since the goal is to glow,” she said. “Even blush should be cream-based. If one wants to powder, then use a glistening hydrating shimmer face powder to maintain the glow.”
Of course, healthy skin is more important than any beauty trend, and the starting point for that is a healthy diet rich in healthy fats and omega-3s along with a proper sleep regimen. “Healthy skin starts from within, and in order to get the no-filter filter look, makeup is only the icing on the cake,” Dr. Halim said.
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