Trends Corner by WGSN

WGSN is the world’s leading trend forecaster, founded in 1998 in London, WGSN disrupted the market with a pioneering online trend library. We were the first to combine high—end technology with human ingenuity to meet the unique needs of the global creative industry. Insights and inspiration from around the globe could now be accessed at the click of a mouse.

WGSN is the world’s leading trend forecaster, founded in 1998 in London, WGSN disrupted the market with a pioneering online trend library. We were the first to combine high—end technology with human ingenuity to meet the unique needs of the global creative industry. Insights and inspiration from around the globe could now be accessed at the click of a mouse.

WGSN delivers trend and color forecasts more than 2 years ahead, consumer behaviors more than 5 years ahead. WGSN forecasts across design, consumer and retail, which helps businesses stay relevant and find their next growth opportunities.

WGSN delivers trend and color forecasts more than 2 years ahead, consumer behaviors more than 5 years ahead. WGSN forecasts across design, consumer and retail, which helps businesses stay relevant and find their next growth opportunities.

Theme 1: Full Spectrum

Embracing life with full colour, full styling, full creativity and full fun.
Full Spectrum acts like a collective exhale following a unique period of global constraint and turmoil. It’s an almost-anything-goes, anti-conformist direction that champions diverse and divergent perspectives and radical self-acceptance. Contrasting elements are a recurring theme in this trend and they are combined in fun and spontaneous ways. Looks are joyful and frivolous (more playful and expressive, less Insta-perfect); products fuse high performance with high fashion; and transhuman and digitally enhanced looks are admired as a new aesthetic in the physical world. Community is key, so brands and products that enable people to connect around authentic and respectful local and global stories, shared aesthetics and values will haveastronger impact. Colour is used in unambiguous, unapologetic and unexpected ways (pink palmtrees, purple lipgloss and synthetic sunsets are at home here). Packaging fuses functionality with fun. Shapes range from fluid, mercurial forms to theatrical designs. Pack aesthetics are maximalist and meme-friendly, encompassing clashing patterns, paint daubs and subversive slogans. Textures of beauty products will be smooth, gloopy and gummy, designed for sensorial escapism and touch.
In 2023, consumers will be hungry for products and experiences that bring extravagance to the everyday and expect them in unfiltered forms.

1. Be fearlessly inclusive
Inclusivity is no longer optional. Ensure narratives, language and products offer full representation and normalise bold or alternative beauty
2. Join the sexual wellness revolution
Sex as self-care will see consumers prioritise fulfilling intimate relationships with themselves and others. Create products that are designed to be on display and enable guilt-free exploration and hedonistic pleasure
3. Make pleasure an active ingredient
Whether it’s childlike nostalgia, multisensorial formats or glamour, beauty products and self-care experiences that spark joy will appeal to all cohorts
4. Enable conscious maximalism
Offset the desire for maximalist looks and hedonistic styling with sustainable design. Refillable keepsakes and bio-engineered ingredients have a natural place here, along with authentic and respectful products from local and global craftspeople

Theme 2: Soul Space

Supporting the quest for contentment, connection and inner calm.
As the dust settles from the upheaval of the past few years, Soul Space explores how we find balance and happiness, both individually and collectively. Here, self-examination and fulfilment are part of the same path. A broad range of inspirations link to a yearning for meaning and solace through the romance of rural lifestyles, the comfort of home, the appeal of faraway places or hunger for past, more contented times. Products that support wellness, self-care and healing rituals will be especially relevant, as will natural ingredients and processes – think wild foraged pigments, excavated textures and regeneratively sourced materials and packaging. Nature will be beauty’s muse, with rare and raw ingredients the new markers of luxury. Science and tech will be important as bio-innovations become more scalable, resulting in petrochemical-free products that work with the environment, not against it. Colour is used emotively in this trend, from tranquil blues to reassuring ochres and uplifting pinks and oranges. Influences encompass big botanicals, organic textures and  handcrafting. As we settle into change and pursue our individual routes to happiness in 2023, beauty products and experiences that feed the soul and nourish the spirit will feel moreappealing and necessary.

1. Make stress the next frontier in skincare
Products that combat the damaging effects of stress or promote inner calm will bein-demand. Use psychodermatology and treat mental health and skin health as one and the same
2. Embody the three Es
Brands must be equal, ethical and ecological. Ensure product development protocols protect people and the planet, honouring everyone involved in the creation to resonate with consumers in the post-Covid-19 era
3. Aim to be petrochemical-free
People will avoid products containing harmful ‘forever chemicals’ such as PFAS. Be transparent about ingredients, including colour pigments, and aim to cleanup
problematic formulations
4. Create home beautopias
Products and beauty rituals that transform spaces into at-home spas will have strong appeal. Invest in experiential or healing products for the mind, body and soul

Theme 3: Design-Wise

Rigorous processes create refined outcomes for a better future.
Design-Wise is driven by a growing expectation and demand for products, experiences and systems that are smarter, simpler and more sustainable, as organisations and individuals explore how to build a more equitable world. It champions democratic and inclusive designs that work harder, last longer and can be used in multiple ways, and calls on creators to conceive how a product will be used in the present, but also its purpose in the future.
Innovative materials and ingredients (think no-trace packaging and molecular scents) are at home here, as are architectural forms that map the body or highlight functional details. Colour is used with confidence and clarity, either all over or as accents. Packaging and graphics are underpinned by a sense of meaning, where patterns are derived from datamaps, mathematical sequences or arcane symbols. Craft is also relevant, but it is viewed through a technological filter that prizes the iterative work of digital design on par with the painstaking skill of hand-made items. For beauty, Design Wise presents a clear-eyed and responsibly minded vision of what
good design can be and do, where products and processes are intelligent, thoughtful
and full of optimism.

1. Be good ancestors
Create future-worthy products that work harder, last longer and can be used in multiple ways. Think about the impact and usage of a product in the present, plus its legacy in the future
2. Avoid ‘claim washing’
Consumer demand for facts and transparency will see product claims and results scrutinised and questioned. Brands will be held to account, so invest in evidencing results and tech to support transparency
3. Shift from neutral to negative
Brands and products will need to shift from carbon-neutral to carbon-negative. It will not
be enough for products to have zero environmental impact, they will have to do good and preserve the planet for future generations
4. Embed universal design
All products and services will need to be democratic and inclusive designs. Embed universal design principles throughout development and create products people with impairments can use without needing adaptation

 

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