Viva’s Fashion & Beauty Ins & Outs For 2024: What’s Hot & What’s Not

From messy handbags to ombré lips, 2024 is a year of redefining authentic, personal style.

What’s hot and what’s not for the year in style? Our fashion and beauty editors jump on the social media trend of sharing their post-summer holiday reflections and predictions. Take note.

For those plugged into the endless stream of personal picks and predictions online, you are likely to be familiar


If you haven’t already read beauty editor Ashleigh Cometti’s exploration of beauty trends to expect in 2024, from the hottest hair hues to try now, to martini makeup, then bookmark this story for later. Ashleigh adds her wider perspective on the ins and outs of the beauty beat from her point of view.


1. Colour!

Everywhere! Bright hair hues! Maximalist makeup! Colourful chrome nails! The return to colour is a swift 180-degree turn on the minimalist looks we became accustomed to over the past three years. Now, it’s time to embrace every shade on the spectrum with reckless abandon — the key here is to have FUN.

2. Looking after your scalp

Scalp care may not be a sexy subject, but in 2024, the region deserves your attention. Enter the flurry of products designed to extend the same respect to your scalp as skincare does your face. In addition, building a weekly scalp care routine can improve the condition of your hair, extend the lifespan of your colour, and fend off any unwanted flakiness or itchiness. Win-win.

3. Niacinamide (yes, still in!)

This multi-tasking skincare hero isn’t going anywhere. I have it on good authority that a handful of brands are releasing products in 2024 that cocktail niacinamide (also known as vitamin B3) with a host of other skin-loving ingredients. It’s known to improve hydration, restore a healthy skin barrier, lighten the appearance of pigmentation and regulate sebum production (making it especially effective for oily or combination skin types).

4. Scandinavian hairlines and baby lights

Erring on the side of subtlety, the former is a highlighting technique that sees baby hairs around the hairline lightened to create a face-framing blonde halo, and the latter is a series of ultra-fine highlights that blend seamlessly with natural hair colour.

5. Nail strengthening serums

In the same way that a solid skincare routine lays a great foundation for makeup application, taking care of your nails creates the perfect blank canvas for polish to be applied. This year, prepare yourself for the second coming of nail serums said to strengthen nails and promote their growth. At the same time, hydrating ingredients promise to keep cuticles healthy, extending the lifespan of your manicure.

6. Bouncy, 90s blowouts

Turns out sky-high volume is hair to stay (get it?). The sought-after style channels icons of the 1990s a la Cindy Crawford and the supermodel set. It’s an excellent way to fake thick, luscious locks, but can take a little while to master. Remember: practice makes perfect.

7. Ombré lips

While not new, ombré lips are another beauty trend that remains firmly on our radar in 2024. For the unfamiliar, ombre lips involve using different lip colours or products to create a deep contour and definition around the border of lips, which fades to a lighter colour in the centre. Should you wish, you can leave the line defined and sharp (Aaliyah would be proud!) or blend it into the lighter hue to create a gradient effect.

8. Mascaras that double as lash growth serums

We’re all for multi-purpose products: cheek tints that sub in as lip stains, moisturisers that moonlight as primers, the list goes on. While there’s already a handful of mascara-come-lash serums in the luxury sector, we predict this will filter through to supermarket and mass brands, too.


1. Overcomplicated skincare routines

We simply don’t have the time, patience or budget for high-maintenance skincare regimes that call for 10+ products to be applied every night before bed. Do yourself a favour and recruit the advice of an in-clinic skin expert to build a simple, maintainable skincare routine that you’ll look forward to, not dread.

2. Thick money pieces and chunky highlights

Leave the mince and cheese in 2023 and try the aforementioned Scandi hairline or baby lights instead.

3. Nicknaming beauty trends after food

Glazed doughnut skin, blueberry milk nails, tomato girl makeup, cherry cola lips ... enough said.

4. Compromised skin barriers

Pushing your skin to its limit with ingredients that strip your skin of its moisture and cause redness, irritation or flaking has never been “in”. Healthy skin is beautiful skin, so if your skin is on the sensitive side, prioritise proper hydration and seek professional advice if you’re tempted to incorporate active ingredients (slowly!) into your routine.

5. Heatless curling hacks

Please for the love of all that’s holy, stop twisting old socks into your hair.

6. Lash extensions

The only lash extensions we want to see are those worn by the Love Island cast. Instead, try a lash growth serum (or a mascara that moonlights as one) to nourish and condition your natural lashes over time.


“Let’s get this straight. I’ve never prescribed to the listing of ins and outs, hot and not, when it comes to discussing fashion,” says Viva’s fashion director Dan Ahwa. “People should be able to enjoy fashion, explore, experiment, and feel comfortable without judgment. But for the sake of this exercise, let’s say there are several things that I’ve been able to quietly observe that will phase out in 2024 or dominate our wardrobes this year.” Let’s get into it.


1. True personal style

Having a personality that doesn’t rely on a microtrend will be popular this year, one not fed from an algorithm and that has been explored through countless trials and errors.

We’re seeing a handful of luxury brands morphing into one lately, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to differentiate one boring oversized blazer from the next. We hope that these brands sink deep into their respective archives and deliver collections this year that aren’t solely reliant on designing clothes dictated by marketing data.

Let’s also hope for some better styling on the runway both locally and internationally. Designers showcasing at New Zealand Fashion Week later this year should consider working with a stylist who can help take their collections and prepare them so that they are ready to be shown on a runway.

Jacob Elordi wearing a vintage Abercrombie & Fitch rugby jersey in Saltburn.
Jacob Elordi wearing a vintage Abercrombie & Fitch rugby jersey in Saltburn.

2. Vintage rugby jerseys

Not a trend but a way of life for most New Zealanders, wearing an old rugby jersey is the kind of perfect wardrobe renaissance well-timed in an era when New Zealand rugby in general is having something of an identity crisis. Looking through the archives of old Canterbury New Zealand jerseys recently, I was struck by how familiar the garment is for many New Zealanders.

Expect to see sportswear heritage brands get the kudos they deserve this year, and local fashion brands create their elevated iterations on the humble top. On-screen we’ve seen the preppy rugby appear in everything from The Crown to Jacob Elordi’s 2007-specific wardrobe on Saltburn, which makes this particular trend even more curious when worn by anyone born in this millennium.

3. Unquiet, punch-in-the-face, clashing prints

A concept that had its peak during the mid to late 2000s, we’ve been besieged by the onslaught of quiet, beige clothes in recent years, and clashing prints worn as neutrals would offer the perfect tonic to quiet luxury.

Former Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele’s unique penchant for combining a multitude of trends into one look is now being repurposed as individual oddities like “eclectic grandpa”, so let’s embrace loud, punch-in-the-face dressing again.

But be warned, there’s a method in the madness, so consider complementary prints as showcased in our playful 25th-anniversary cover shoot with model Ashleigh Good. A good way to dip your feet into clashing prints is to start with ubiquitous florals. Mix and match artful, abstract prints or retro-inspired florals into one surprisingly cohesive ensemble. Or you could take your cue from one of my favourite experts in the field of clashing prints, stylist and contributing fashion editor Chloe Hill.

4. Giant (messy) bags

Maybe it’s an ode to the late and great Jane Birkin, but a cluttered, unprecious bag is a flex. As you’ll see here in our selection of work bags, these are all generously sized. We’re thinking about practicality again, and a big bag to carry all of your daily items is perfect for people on the move. Even better, these are the sorts of enormous sacks you can accumulate whatever clutter you need to help you get through the day, unafraid of getting a little grubby.

5. Wearing whatever colour you like

Barbie pink is out, they said. Pantone’s colour for the year is Peach Fuzz. When a colour forecaster was asked recently what colours will be big for the year, they responded with an assortment of hues as if plucked from the rainbow and thin air with names like “thermal” and “cracked pepper”. The moral of the story is while every year is defined by some type of colour palette or mood, wear your favourite colour with unapologetic, wild abandon — even if it’s poo brown.

Left to right: Influencer Natalia Verza, creative director Richard Biedul and Vogue China editor-in-chief Margaret Zhang all wearing ballet flats. Photos / Getty Images
Left to right: Influencer Natalia Verza, creative director Richard Biedul and Vogue China editor-in-chief Margaret Zhang all wearing ballet flats. Photos / Getty Images

6. Ballet flats

A trend that had its peak moment when Kate Moss wore hers, with other complementary early-to-mid-noughties staples also returning off the back of an “indie sleaze” revival — skinny jeans, Breton stripe tops, Alexander McQueen’s silk skull print scarf. The ballet flat is an easy addition for anyone looking for a simple flat shoe to wear with everything from workwear to special occasions.

Even men have cottoned on to the appeal of a simple flat shoe that’s not a dress shoe or loafer, with recent sightings of Bode’s popular Opera pump worn by Donald Glover to the Emmys, and creative director Richard Biedul at Paris Menswear Fashion Week earlier this month.

7. Embracing chaos

We’ve said it here before and we’ll say it again: chaos is cool. Cluttered mess is, of course, something that’s made a look of unsurprising defiance when it comes to the antithesis of minimalist interiors, and the concept has been brewing in fashion for a while now. However, this year the haphazard way of wearing clothes is an integral part of making a look feel highly personal and original.

When I think about our local industry, some of my favourite people who I consider to be the most stylish and unapologetically skew-whiff in the way they seamlessly pull a look together include the likes of fashion designer Kristine Crabb, makeup artist Katie Melody Rogers and rising stylist Franca Chase.

Sculptural statement earrings from Gestuz at Copenhagen Fashion Week spring/summer 2024. Photo / Getty Images.
Sculptural statement earrings from Gestuz at Copenhagen Fashion Week spring/summer 2024. Photo / Getty Images.

8. Mixing metals

The adage that you should never mix your gold jewellery with your silver is the sort of fashion advice someone from the 1950s would have dished out in the etiquette section of a magazine. The mixing of metals is an easy way to add a point of interest to any look, so go to town. Where this can work well is on the ear, with multiple huggie hoops and ear cuffs resonating with any gender.

Take it a step further and experiment with large, oversized jewels both sculptural and sleek to the touch. For context and inspiration, you want to start with Tiffany & Co.’s enduring Elsa Peretti or Paloma Picasso collections, then work backwards.

9. Quality vintage fashion

It’s a concept that will never go out of style, really, and with our historical national love of op-shopping and exploring vintage treasures, what’s more pertinent in 2024 is considering the kind of vintage we’re buying.

Just because it’s thrifted doesn’t mean it’s necessarily good. Avoid major polluters like faux fur, and think hard about textile waste when it comes to buying secondhand. In fact, you’ll find plenty of sage advice and creative ideas for responsible dressing with local organisations such as Mindful Fashion NZ, which this year will be running its sophomore Circular Fashion Design Awards.

10. New romanticism

That specific sweet-spot era of the early 80s ushered in a unique style sensibility that has eternally inspired designers over the decades but feels particularly relevant for now. Prairie tops and pie-crust collars were worn with leather skirts and trousers; mutton sleeves (reinforced by one of this year’s most stylish releases Poor Things, and costume designer Holly Waddington’s expert attention to Victoriana volume).

Young Princess Diana was one of the poster models of this mix of Sloane Ranger and street, along with Agnetha and Frida right before Abba disbanded in 1982. Their looks at the time were a little hard-edged but tempered with softer pieces, the kind of formula beloved by designers like Nicholas Ghesquire at Louis Vuitton. A slightly strange combination of romance and retrofuturism — like steampunk. Yes, our curious national obsession with the subgenre of science fiction is having a moment.


1. Nothing-new micro-internet trends

Barbie core (fun), coastal grandmother (relevant to New Zealand), granola girl (cringe), quiet luxury (timeless), eccentric grandpa (fun), trad wife (questionable), mob wife (problematic), clean girls (dull rage), coquette aesthetic (cute) ... blah blah blah. That’s not to say hot pink is out, or bows, or quirky sweaters, etc., but the terminology used to describe a look or item of clothing online is getting tired.

Much to the chagrin of those who live and breathe certain aesthetics, how each of these niche trends is parlayed on social media has a direct influence on money-hungry brands looking for a quick trend to jump on, and ultimately commodifying the things some people have genuinely loved and developed and invested in their style through years of experimentation and personal research.

2. Clunky dad sneakers

I mean, sure, wear them if you must, but clomping around in chunky sneakers isn’t the vibe this year. Consider low-profile kicks that feel light and easy. For some of our recommendations, try the ubiquitous Adidas Samba or Spezial styles rendered in an interesting texture (nubuck) or bold colour, or another retro-sneaker of the moment, the Puma Palermo.

Dua Lipa makes a convincing case for retro-inspired low-profile kicks in place of chunky dad sneakers, appearing in Puma's first campaign for its Palermo style.
Dua Lipa makes a convincing case for retro-inspired low-profile kicks in place of chunky dad sneakers, appearing in Puma's first campaign for its Palermo style.

3. Gaudy (unironic) designer belts

Monogram buckles and monogram-printed belts can make an otherwise perfectly fine outfit look a little cheap. Oh, the irony (unless you are actually being ironic in a Y2K, Posh ‘n’ Becks throwback kind of way. Then, as you were).

4. Underwear as everyday wear

Things like leggings as trousers and knickers over tights might be the sort of thing Miu Miu can get away with parading down the runway at Paris Fashion Week, but in real life there’s a fine line. Sure, a lace-trimmed camisole top or a bra worn under a blazer can be a fun and acceptable nod to the 90s, but anything beyond that can feel slightly confusing. (Again, you do you.)

5. Tight clothes on gym bros

Along with doing a button-up on a shirt with no tie, why would you put yourself through that level of discomfort?

6. Corsets

While the eternal wardrobe garment had an irreverent comeback over the past couple of years thanks to a newfound obsession with vintage Vivienne Westwood, the concept of a corset in 2024 isn’t quite aligned with this year’s general preference for unrestrictive clothes.

7. Gimmicky clothes

We love it when fashion isn’t so serious and has a sense of humour, but surely we can improve on the clickbait of Balenciaga’s $1000 towel wrap skirt and Diesel’s pointless velcro belt/mini skirt.

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