Beauty trends for 2018

We spoke to Conny Oberrauter, author of The Cosmetics Chef, about her top 10 beauty trends for the year.  As a Cosmetic Chemist who has been involved in Cosmetics Research and Development for over 20 years, it’s Conny’s job to keep her finger on the pulse of what’s new and trending in the global beauty industry.  Inspired by Conny’s beauty trend forecast, we’ve chosen some of Equilibrio’s favourite products that we’d recommend you try.  Conny has also shared recipe suggestions from her book, The Cosmetics Chef, in which she has provided incredibly useful skincare insights and easy natural skincare recipes that you can make at home largely using everyday ingredients. A highly recommended read, and a book you can win by answering two simple questions (see details below).

Here are Conny’s Top 10 beauty trends for 2018 and some products we suggest you look out for and try this year:



“Yes, you read that right. Dirt is big! I’m talking about natural clay and charcoal,” says Conny.  Charcoal has been trending in health and beauty for some time now and judging by Conny’s comments, it looks like it’s here to stay.  We can recommend you try Conny’s fabulous homemade Volcanic Detox Mask using charcoal and Disprin! You can find the recipe for this very simple but effective mask recipe here.

Below are some products we recommend you try to enjoy the detoxifying benefits of charcoal and clay, inside and out.


Beauty from the inside

1. Nature’s Choice Detoxinol Activated Charcoal, 100g. R29 BUY  Fans of this product claim you can use this for just about anything from drinking it to cure a hangover, cleaning your teeth or using it in a face mask like Conny’s Volcanic Detox Mask above.

2. The Oaklands Whey Activated Charcoal, 50g. R71 BUY

3. Naturmade Activated Charcoal Caps, 60 capsules. R199 BUY


For the face and body

Beauty trends for 2018

1. Caolion Hot and Cool Pore Pack Duo, R630. BUY One of my favourite new products that I decided to try out this year, brought to our shores by the ladies at K-Beauty Africa. Watch out for a full review on this and other K-Beauty products we have in the works.

2. ESSE Clay Mask, 50ml. R295 BUY

3. Homespun Apothecary Himalayan & Activated Charcoal Mud Mask, 82g. R105 BUY

4. Rose en Bos Charcoal Bath Salts – Flowers of the Cape, 500g. R35 BUY

5. Daily Concepts Konjac Sponge Charcoal Pebble Shape, R219 BUY

6. Angelfactory Black Active Detox Soap, 100g. R44 BUY



As in, “just add water kind of instant”.  According to Conny, we should “Expect to see powder based products where you just need to add some water to make it work.” There is an amazing Gentle Face Polish powder recipe in Conny’s book (page 48). The Homespun Apothecary Himalayan & Activated Charcoal Mud Mask pictured above is a product like this. It comes in a powder form and you add water, green tea or even yoghurt or honey to make a mask.



“Beauty oils are getting more popular as people start to understand the benefits of oils. Facial oils, body oils, cleansing oils are all growing. More brands are expanding their product range with oils…”  The evidence of this is clear when you see all the new oil-based serums and body oils hitting the market. There is a wonderful Anti-Ageing Skin Serum in Conny’s book, (page 54) which we’ve made and used. It has an almond and sesame oil base with powerful anti-ageing essential oils, rosehip and frankincense. The perfect night-time treatment. If you don’t have the time to make your own, we suggest you try one of these locally produced, natural oil-based serums.

Beauty trends for 2018

From left to right:

Kudu Cosmetica Squalane Oil, 30ml. R369 BUY Squalane helps prevent and combat fine lines and wrinkles, softens and smooths the skin. Kudu Cosmetica has a number of skin loving cold-pressed natural oils and is currently having a 15% off New Year’s sale.

SKOON. Rosehip C+ Concentrate, 5ml for R205 or 15ml for R565. BUY Everyone is talking about this local skincare brand. We’ve reviewed a number of their products including the Rosehip C+ Concentrate. They have smaller sample sizes that are great for testing their products.

SKOON. Glow Drops Concentrate, 5ml for R185 or 15ml. R525. BUY



Conny says, “If you only use one beauty product, make sure it’s sunscreen. The Sunscreen Song from the 90’s was spot on.” We couldn’t agree more! This is a message we’re constantly trying to convey. We even shared The Sunscreen Song with you these past summer holidays. (It’s really worthwhile having a listen. Check it out here.) As far as sunscreen is concerned, Connie also confirmed that the industry is seeing a greater shift towards natural SPF products that offer the same protection as more traditional “chemical” sunscreens.

Not limited to sunscreen, the skin protection universe is expanding as products with anti-pollutant properties and after-sun care are increasing in popularity too. This has led to the introduction of multi-functional products that offer SPF with anti-pollutant or other caring benefits. We’ve shared some of our favourite natural sunscreens, including CC creams and tinted moisturisers with SPF, with you in a previous post. Below are some additional products we’ve since tested and really like!

Left: Suntique I’m Clear CICA Sunstick, R300. BUY A multi-functional 50+ SPF product with anti-oxidant and anti-wrinkle properties courtesy a 4-herb complex of lavender, rosemary, oregano leaf and thymus vulgaris (which smells delicious). 

Right: Suntique I’m Cover BB Sunstick, R300. BUY Another multi-tasking product. This is a BB cream, primer and sunscreen that moisturises and soothes your skin. This product unfortunately only comes in one colour which is very fair, since it is made in Korea, so it’s not suitable for everyone.

P.S. A really nice touch of the Suntique Sunsticks is that there is a little mirror in the lid so you can apply on the go!



Beauty bloggers are gushing about it globally and Conny has reiterated that “Asia is leading the market with their mask offerings”. “They started the multi-masking trend of using different types of masks for different areas of your face. Now there is a focus on the different textures and applications like sheet masks and what they can offer.”

“Different textures are really easy when you start playing with food, like pineapples,” says Conny. Her simple but amazingly effective Pineapple Oatmeal Enzyme Mask is a firm favourite of Equilibrio! See the recipe here. (Also page 44 of her book).



“I remember naturals being touted as the new trend about 15 years ago, it is still here and it is still a trend.” Conny tells us to expect to see established beauty brands expand their product ranges to include natural ranges to offer consumers the option of going natural with a brand they are familiar with.



Beauty trends for 2018

“Possibly a cross over from the multi-masking trend but more focused on using patches or sheet masks for specific concerns.” The focus here seems to be on using new technologies to create biodegradable patches and sheet masks with different textures that can treat different skin concerns with a single application. Think for e.g. under-eye masks or lip masks we’ve seen so many celebs and models using. Then there are “mix and match” multi-masking sheet masks that have recently hit the market as well. Definitely something we’re eager to try this year.



“David Beckham has just announced his new range House 99 in collaboration with L’Oreal, need I say more?”



“This refers to the different microbes that live on the surface of our skin.”  The food industry has been focusing on the gut microbiome for some time as evidenced by the supplements and products with pre-and probiotics that promote gut health, that have swamped the market.

Beauty trends for 2018According to Conny, the beauty industry is now also focused on creating products that keep the skin healthy by protecting its natural microbiome. Several probiotic-based serums and creams have already entered the market.  Undoubtedly, our current favourite is the ESSE Probiotic Serum. Read more about probiotics in skincare and our review of this amazing, transformative product. If there is only one new item you try this year, this would be one of my top recommendations.


Esse Probiotic Serum, 30ml. R1250 BUY



As the demand for natural products has grown, so too has the demand for knowledge and clarity about the ingredients used in beauty products. “Consumers want more transparency about ingredients and through this are exploring making their own.” Enter Conny and her book, The Cosmetics Chef with 50 fabulous salon quality recipes, click here to visit her website and buy her book so you can try the recipes we’ve mentioned in this article.



Stand a chance to win with The Cosmetics Chef.

Conny is giving away a copy of her book, The Cosmetics Chef, and an ingredient Starter Kit to the value of R550 to three lucky Equlibrio readers. The Starter Kit contains everything you need to make and store at least 2 or 3 of the recipes in the book, or a 1 year supply of the night lotion.

To enter, go to the comments section below this post. Enter your name and email address (you can ignore the “website block” if you wish). And answer these two simple questions in the comments section:

1. Name one of the Top 10 Beauty Trends for 2018 mentioned by Conny in this article.

2. Name one of the homemade beauty recipes you can find in Conny’s book, The Cosmetics Chef. We’ve mentioned 4 in this article.

Winners will be announced on our website and Facebook page on Tuesday, 6 February and will be informed by email shortly thereafter.


Thank-you to Conny Oberrauter, Cosmetic Chemist and author of The Cosmetics Chef.

Visit The Cosmetics Chef website

Follow the Cosmetics Chef on Facebook and Instagram


(RELATED POSTS: The Cosmetics Chef – Make your own cosmetics and How to make a Detox Mustard Bath Soak)



Comments (31)

  1. Zonika Steenkamp

    1. Dirt, Instant, Oil, Masks
    2. Volcanic Detox mask, anti-aging skin serum, pineapple oatmeal enzyme madk

    • Michelle Doyle

      Excellent! Good luck!

  2. Charlene Rebelo

    Anti ageing serum and volcanic detox mask

  3. Sarah Lord

    1 Dirt … clay and charcoal
    2 anti aging serum

    • Michelle Doyle

      Perfect! Good luck Sarah

  4. Rumbarani Naidoo

    2. Detox Mustard Bath Soak

    • Michelle Doyle


  5. Janeline

    1. Dirt: natural clay & charcoal.
    2. Volcanic Detox Mask using Charcoal & Disprin.

    • Michelle Doyle

      Spot on!

  6. Janet Perry

    1. Masks is one of the top trends
    2. Homemade Volcanic Detox Mask using charcoal and Disprin

    • Michelle Doyle

      Correct! Well done Janet

  7. Anusha Naidoo

    Dirt – natural clay & charcoal
    Detox Mustard Bath Soak

    • Michelle Doyle

      That’s right Anusha!

  8. Almarie Smith

    1. Masks are one of the top trends.
    2. Homemade volcanic detox mask using charcoal and disprin.

    • Michelle Doyle

      Great, yes!

  9. Cathy Badenhorst

    1) “dirt” – natural clay and charcoal
    2) Pineapple Oatmeal Enzyme Mask

    • Michelle Doyle


    • Lucille Ridings

      1) “Dirt
      2) Oatmeal Enzyme Mask

  10. Reetha

    Dirt one of the biggest
    Home made recipe
    Olive oil
    I love this mask?❤?

    • Michelle Doyle

      Well done Reetha

  11. Louise Muller

    Dirt is big! I’m talking about natural clay and charcoal,
    Homemade volcanic detox mask using charcoal and disprin
    Pineapple Oatmeal Enzyme Mask
    Would love to try this

    • Michelle Doyle

      well done! good luck Louise! The Pineapple Oatmeal Enzyme Mask is absolutely amazing. It works beautifully!

  12. Pushpa Rijhumal

    1 Esse clay mask

    2. Volcanic detox mask made of charcoal and dispirin

  13. Ginna

    1. Dirt (natural clay and charcoal)
    2. Conny’s fabulous homemade Volcanic Detox Mask ❤️

    • Michelle Doyle

      Yes, that’s right Ginna. Thanks for entering

  14. Kirsty Robinson

    1. Oil
    2. Volcanic Detox Mask

  15. Nadia Hall

    2-Pineapple ? Oatmeal Enzyme Mask


    • Michelle Doyle

      All of the best Nadia!

  16. Tessa Ehlers

    1) “dirt” – natural clay and charcoal
    2) Pineapple Oatmeal Enzyme Mask

  17. Tessa Ehlers

    1. Natural SPF products
    2. The Homespun Apothecary Himalayan & Activated Charcoal Mud Mask

  18. Daniela Cardoso

    1) DIRT ie natural clay and charcoal
    2) Pineapple Oatmeal Enzyme Mask

Comments are closed.

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