Biggest beauty trends for 2024, from active ageing to Rejuvology, Ultherapy and more

The National speaks to experts in beauty, aesthetics and skincare to find out which treatments are creating a buzz

Radiofrequency microneedling is a form of controlled skin injury, which in turn rejuvenates the skin and helps with wrinkles and acne marks. Getty Images
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Just as the new year brings with it an array of fashion trends, there are also major innovations in the beauty industry across skincare procedures and treatments.

From ancient techniques to cutting-edge technology, treatments that do double duty – focusing on emotional and overall well-being as well as skincare – are set to be a major trend.

“The skincare industry will significantly evolve to focus on self-awareness and self-care, emphasising the holistic nature of beauty and wellness,” says Dr Tarek Bayazid at BodySmart in Dubai. “A growing trend shows individuals increasingly prioritising their well-being, investing more time and resources in treatments that enhance physical appearance and positively contribute to mental health.”

Rather than filling and freezing your features to chase youth, treatments that work on a cellular level can reverse signs of ageing
Sharin Shafer, co-founder, Skinfluencer

Anti-ageing is out, replaced by phrases that sound more attainable, like pro-ageing or active ageing. They are about acknowledging that the quest for a more youthful appearance is about working with what you have, rather than trying to hold back the clock.

Here are the treatments, techniques and ingredients to keep an eye out for in 2024.

Skin-tightening treatments

As always, treatments addressing the signs of ageing remain popular for 2024. This time, however, the approach has changed.

“Pro-ageing will be the dominant trend,” says Sharin Shafer, co-founder of the wellness and aesthetics clinic Skinfluencer. “It’s a regenerative approach to skin health and overall well-being. Rather than filling and freezing your features to chase youth, treatments that work on a cellular level to stimulate collagenesis and remodel the skin’s integrity allow you to reverse the signs of ageing.”

The effects of pro-ageing include tighter skin with reduced fine lines and wrinkles. Shafer adds: “Treatments that fall within this category include energy-based treatments such as radiofrequency microneedling; HIFU; biomodelling such as PRP; medical microneedling with stem cells, Profhilo or Nucleofill; or laser genesis and laser energy treatments that stimulate cellular turnover and collagenesis.”

High-intensity focused ultrasound, or HIFU, treatments such as Ultraformer use the principles of natural wound healing to induce collagen production.

Backed by science

Dr Tara Francis, founder of Enhance by Tara in London, believes functional medicine associated with aesthetics and skin in particular, is going to big in 2024. “I'm talking bloodwork, checking your vitamin D, taking fecal samples to test gut health … there are so many components within our bodies that can affect our skin,” says Francis. “Combination approaches – that is, combining traditional approaches with microbiology and lab testing – are the future.”

Francis adds that beauty seekers can undergo a fully functioning “medicine testing pathway or simply request a few blood samples from your GP that your aesthetic doctor can interpret”.

Ancient techniques and holistic approaches

Technology might forever be on the march, but a big trend for 2024 focuses on looking back to how our ancestors used to approach skincare.

“I think the big skincare trend of 2024 will be the prevalence of using ancient techniques to stimulate the skin and enhance its appearance,” says Sandra Zivkovic, spa manager at Chado Beauty and Wellness Centre.

“For example, the Kobido massage combines fast and slow movements to improve deep circulation of the face, neck, shoulders and upper bust and is used in a Kobido facial. Kobido means ‘ancient way of beauty’, and is a Japanese modelling technique that dates back to 1472. These movements destroy dead skin cells, promote the production of collagen and elastin, and activate circulation, giving the face a radiant glow.”

Tackling mental as well as skin health, Rejuvology is another technique to look out for. Coined by British skincare expert Abigail James, it combines a variety of techniques and scientifically backed therapies to work with the muscles, connective tissues and lymphatic systems of the face, neck and head.

“Rejuvology massage taps into several systems of the body to create a positive impact on the skin, fascia, nervous, muscular, circulatory and lymphatic systems, as well as creating balance and flow to the body’s energy,” says aesthetician Sonya Cross, owner of You Clinic in London.

“You will see a noticeable difference in the appearance of your face due to the techniques used to restore skin suppleness, promoting freedom and elasticity in the connective tissues.”

Not just about reviving tired skin, the technique has been developed to soothe the nervous system and support emotional well-being.

“For people who want to age without injectables, but want to look and feel their best, look for a practitioner offering Rejuvology or sculpting face massage and inter oral [buccal] massage techniques,” adds Cross.

Ingredient alert

Retinol remains a key ingredient to look out for in products, along with a continued investment in K beauty.

“Some key ingredients are snail mucin, Ayurvedic mung bean, yuja fruit and tea tree matcha,” says Emer Menton, head of buying at Watsons GCC. “Tea tree and salicylic acids are still key ingredients to treat acne, which is one of the biggest concerns for customers in this region due to the younger age profile.”

Experts are also seeing a continued shift in how young generations research and find out about new products.

“The use of TikTok as a search engine continues to really influence and is a trend in itself for beauty,” says Menton. “It’s where customers are finding top ingredient and product trends across skincare, make-up and haircare.”

Non-invasive procedures

Those looking to refresh without going under the knife will be pleased to hear that non-invasive treatments that result in natural-looking effects will be big in 2024.

“People want to look their best but without the telltale signs of surgery or fillers. Treatments that are based on cutting-edge technologies such as ultrasound, will become the go-to for those who want to look their youthful best and say goodbye to jowls and double chins,” says Dr Fariha Anwar, aesthetic doctor at Euromed Clinic Dubai.

“During such treatments, a micro-focused ultrasound technology delivers energy to different depths in the skin – dermal or even deeper to the connective tissue – and creates microscopic points of thermal injury to stimulate collagen production.”

Treatments such as the chin-contouring Ultherapy takes between 45 and 60 minutes and stimulates collagen production to tighten the skin around the neck and face with results lasting up to two years.

Procedures with minimal downtime remain popular, as do treatments that combine technologies to improve results.

“Treatments that harness different technologies in one procedure creates a dual process that helps to tighten and firm the skin, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and improve overall skin texture and tone,” says Dr Rutsnei Schmitz, cosmetic dermatologist at Dubai Cosmetic Surgery.

“One such treatment is Morpheus8 which has taken microneedling and added FDA-approved radiofrequency technology to encourage a healing response from the skin, which results in an increase in elastin and collagen production.”

Skin tightening remains one of the most sought-after treatments, meaning procedures that use radiofrequency technology to achieve results have evolved to become even more effective.

“The LPG Alliance treatment uses a specialised machine to stimulate the skin mechanically,” says Bayazid. “Its primary goal is to awaken dormant cellular activities, leading to a smoother, more sculpted and slimmer body profile. This treatment excels in facial massages and plays a crucial role in enhancing recovery and outcomes in pre and post-operative care scenarios.”

Not at a loss over hair

Amanda Azzopardi, founder of eponymous aesthetics clinic in London and Liverpool, also believes healthy and holistic is the way to go in 2024, not only for skin, but also hair.

“Non-surgical hair loss, balding and thinning treatments will become more effective and sought after, as both men and women are affected by these, yet no longer need to go under the knife to treat them,” says Azzopardi.

Instead she predicts the use of more holistic approaches to hair restoration by testing for and diagnosing root causes of hair loss – from “hormones, nutrients and growth factors to environmental triggers and genetic predisposition, which can lead to more comprehensive and personalised treatment”, says Azzopardi.

Updated: January 04, 2024, 10:03 AM