15 Iconic Beauty Looks From ’90s-Era New York Fashion Week Shows
Where today’s TikTok trends came from.
Maybe I’m biased since I grew up in the era, but I’m of the opinion that the 1990s was when the beauty world really peaked. It had all of the coolest, edgiest trends: goth glam makeup, fearlessly frosted lids, boldly lined lips, purposefully smudged eyeliner, heavily layered haircuts, messy updos... I’ll stop, but just know that I could keep going.
While you can find these lewks on the runway in recent years, there’s nothing quite like the original. And so, in light of 2023’s Fall/Winter New York Fashion Week — which officially starts today, Feb. 9 — I’m taking a trip down memory lane (Getty Images) to see what the catwalk actually looked like in the ’90s.
If you want to enjoy a visual feast that serves major hair and makeup inspo, I’ve rounded up some standout ’90s beauty looks from New York Fashion Week — straight from the decade itself. Sure, they may look like styles you see on TikTok today, but this is where those beauty trends originated from. Keep scrolling for a peek at ‘90s hair and makeup in all its glory.
Glossy Red Lip, Marc Jacobs, 1994
Behold: Naomi Campbell on the Marc Jacobs runway sporting the ultimate red lip (complete with an extra glossy finish). The rest of her glam was fully matte because, well, it’s the ’90s.
Retro Bob, Isaac Mizrahi, 1991
Bob haircuts were cool way before Hailey Bieber got one. While they were trendy before the 1990s, this ‘do from Isaac Mizrahi’s fall 1991 New York Fashion Week show has a particularly chic retro flair with its playfully flipped-out ends.
Piece-y Updo, Oscar De La Renta, 1996
If you saw this hairstyle from behind, you might think you were looking at Bella Hadid. But nope, the supermodel’s favorite piece-y updo was the style models wore on the runway at Oscar de la Renta.
Frosted Eyeshadow, Anna Sui, 1995
This look (courtesy of Anna Sui’s 1995 runway show) is the epitome of ’90s-era beauty: It’s got the Rachel haircut, the ultra-thin brows, and the matte, powder-blue eyeshadow. Perfection.
’90s Blowout, Calvin Klein, 1991
I suppose you wouldn’t even call this a ’90s blowout — it’s just a blowout. Because it’s from 1991, Cindy Crawford’s ‘do has got that perfectly bouncy volume that everyone’s trying to achieve at home today.
Volume On Volume, Todd Oldham, 1996
The big messy hair, the bronzed cheekbones, the gold makeup underneath the eyes... *chef’s kiss*.
Half-Up Hair, Michael Kors, 1992
Looking at this photo of Tyra Banks rocking a half-up, half-down hairstyle gives me all the nostalgic feels.
Golden Glam, Nicole Miller, 1997
This gold metallic eyeshadow moment from Nicole Miller’s 1997 show looks even cooler with the thin brows and slicked-back low ponytail.
Fuchsia Eyeshadow, Betsey Johnson, 1995
Betsey Johnson’s NYFW show from 1995 did not hold back in the beauty department. Models strutted the runway wearing dramatic fuchsia eye makeup and a bright red lip.
Fauxhawk, Michael Kors, 1996
This grunge fauxhawk updo from Michael Kors’ 1996 New York Fashion Week show is bold, edgy, and effortlessly cool.
Bright Blue Lids, Tommy Hilfiger, 1999
Gisele Bundchen’s electric-blue eyeshadow and red pout prove that you absolutely can wear primary colors together.
Power Bob, Michael Kors, 1990
The power bob may be spring’s hottest hair trend, but Campbell wore it first on Michael Kors’ runway in 1990.
Heavy Eyeliner, Badgley Mischka, 1997
Another grunge beauty trend from the era was, of course, heavy black eyeliner. It was the makeup look of choice at Badgley Mischka’s 1997 New York Fashion Week show.
Colorful Cat Eye, Versus, 1999
Versus did Euphoria makeup before the stars of Euphoria even knew what eyeshadow was.
Goth Lips, Isaac Mizrahi, 1995
You can’t talk ’90s beauty without bringing up the goth lip. Supermodel Linda Evangelista sported the vampy look with a hot pink sequined suit. Faints.