While scrolling TikTok recently, I came across a slew of videos featuring girls with fully done faces and outlandish makeup choices with simple captions like “pre-shower makeup.” I had no clue what this meant, so I had to ask the experts.
What is pre-shower makeup?
“Pre-shower makeup is when you do a fun or bold look right before you shower so you can experiment in a stress-free environment with no pressure,” explains celebrity makeup artist Natalie Dresher. If you’ve ever been 40 minutes late to plans because you tried a makeup look that was a bit too bold and had to start over, then this trend is perfect for you.
“There’s no better time to experiment with makeup, especially messy products like glitters or not so easy to wipe off products like a liquid eyeliner,” says celebrity makeup artist Allison Kaye. If the look comes out amazing, you can recreate it for a night out, and if it fails, simply wash away the evidence and carry on with your day.
Even the professionals need stress-free time to fail and find their rhythm. Kaye says she used to do this all the time—she can’t believe it’s now a TikTok trend. “I actually taught myself winged eyeliner 10 years ago by always trying it on myself right before I showered,” she says. Dresher also dabbles with pre-shower makeup. “I myself am guilty of trying out new trends and products right before I shower because why would I risk it on a night I’m going out?” says Dresher.
While some people do pre-shower makeup for practical reasons, others do it just for fun. “Some pre-shower makeup videos that are trending are more extreme and show girls covering their whole face in liquid blush,” says Dresher. “It can be extremely therapeutic.” It’s like painting for art therapy, but make it your whole face.
Dresher feels that part of why pre-shower makeup is trending is the shock value of wild looks that garner views, but it’s also just a great way “to try out that makeup trend you’ve been dying to try! Need to practice winged liner? Try it before you shower!”