Forget About Keeping All Things Neat And Embrace The Messy Girl Aesthetic

It wasn't long ago that the clean-girl beauty trend was all over social media, with videos related to the clean-girl aesthetic garnering billions of views on TikTok. The viral trend embraced neutral colors, slicked-back hair, natural makeup, dewy skin, eating clean, and workouts like yoga and pilates. The aesthetic was inspired by an elegant but minimalist style that looked simple and effortlessly clean. Hailey Bieber became one of the icons of the trend, with her trendsetting glazed donut skincare routine, slicked-back buns, and natural makeup looks.


Now, a new, more laid-back trend that's making waves is embracing the other side of the clean-girl look. The messy girl aesthetic is the opposite of the clean-girl trend — rather than having a neat, natural style, the new aesthetic embraces a tousled, cool-girl style. Videos under "messy girl aesthetic" on TikTok already have over 100 million views, showing that this is a trend that you'll definitely want to keep on your radar, especially if you love a relaxed and easygoing style.

What is the messy girl aesthetic?

The messy girl aesthetic emphasizes living your best life by embracing late nights out, tousled hair from the night before, smudged eyeliner, and dark eyeshadow. The aesthetic is heavily influenced by the '90s grunge style and girly goth look that will give you a moody edge to your style. Think of '90s Drew Barrymore, Winona Ryder, and Courtney Love who were icons of the 90's trendy grunge aesthetic


Celebrity makeup artist Molly R. Stern tells Byrdie, "I think we have been seeing these 'perfect' looking makeup looks, with so much contour and highlighter that there is something refreshing about blurring the lines a little bit and keeping it feeling a little more real." With this style, you don't have to worry about looking put together and achieving glowy, radiant skin. The messy girl look lets you have a lot more fun and freedom with your hair and makeup. 

How to achieve the messy girl look

Achieving the messy girl look is easy and can be done in a few simple steps. For your hair, you'll want to go for a tousled, untamed style. We recommend running a curling wand or waver through your hair and adding a textured spray for extra volume. If you're going for a more creative look, put your hair into a loose ponytail or braids for a bedhead, cool-girl vibe.


For the makeup look, TikToker Elise adds an orange and tan-infused eyeshadow to her eyelids and then applies black eyeshadow to create a winged eyeliner effect, followed by a coat or two of black mascara. You can also opt to use a liquid eyeliner and then subtly apply black eyeshadow around it. The winged eyeliner will give you that grunge-style smudged makeup look that captures the essence of this aesthetic. Finish off with blush and pink or red lipstick to complete the look.