There was a time long, long ago when Instagram was full of boring static photos with rubbish borders and grainy quality. But fast-forward to 2017 and Instagram supports video, galleries and great-looking photos to boot (as well as stories and stickers and all kinds of other great things we don’t have time to talk about right now).
What that means is if you’re an aspiring photographer, a blogger or any other kind of wannabe creative type, Instagram is the best place ever to show off your work.
But it’s also great news for the beauty industry. From brands showing off their products and giving you how-tos about the best ways to use them, through to beauty bloggers and make-up artists using Instagram to share their creations and make great tutorials.
To celebrate what Instagram has done for beauty, we’ve collected together some of our favourite beauty Instagram accounts to follow. If you’re looking for long and detailed how-tos and reviews, head to YouTube, but if you like quick video tutorials and handy beauty tips delivered straight to your Insta-feed look no further.
The best for all things make-up: Charlotte Tilbury (@ctilburymakeup)
Charlotte Tilbury is one of the most famous makeup artists on the planet and counts celebs like Cara Delevingne and Sienna Miller as her superstar clients – as well as so many others, we’ve lost count.
Although Charlotte shares all kinds of stuff to Instagram, like photos of her favourite products and snaps of her star-studded lifestyle, she also likes to show us how she’s creating some of her most iconic looks.
She rarely shows you tutorials from beginning to end with voiceovers on Instagram (you’ll have to head to her YouTube channel for that), but she does share handy snippets, like applying lipstick with ease or creating a perfect metallic eye look.
The best for quick and easy hair tutorials: Kirstin Ess (@kristin_ess)
Kristin Ess is a big deal in the world of hair, she’s got a huge following on Instagram, styles the hair of celebs and has a few of her own businesses, including her own hair product line.
So it’s no surprise her Instagram is packed full of photos of her hair creations that’ll make you swoon. But what she does really well that few others do is dead simple, but really awesome, hair tutorials.
Each one is easy enough to do at home, comes with a title screen, so you know what you’re looking at before you click, and the steps make it impossible to mess up – even for complete hair styling beginners.
The best for those who love the Naked eye palette: Urban Decay (@urbandecaycosmetics)
If you love make-up, you know that Urban Decay’s Naked eye palettes are the holy grail of eyeshadows. They might be pricey, but they’ve got such a good rep because they’re highly pigmented, silky smooth and come in the most delicious colours.
So where best to find great Naked eye palette tutorials then heading straight to the Urban Decay Instagram account! Here you’ll find how-to videos, inspiration and photos of the brand’s best-selling products. The best bit is that Urban Decay often features other beauty Instagrammers and YouTubers who use their products, which means it’s a great way to discover new looks and new faces to follow.
The best for arty photos and simple make-up looks: Violette (@violette_fr)
Make-up artist Violette isn’t just inspiring because she’s a really talented beauty influencer, she’s also got a dream job, she’s the Global Beauty Director at Estee Lauder. Wow, talk about career goals!
We love Violette’s Instagram feed because it’s really beautiful. She has such a great eye for arty shots and good design, and also puts up make-up tutorials every few weeks, which tend to focus on how to use one product really well – or in a totally unexpected way.
The best for make-up inspiration: Beauty is Boring (@beautyisboring_)
It can be really difficult to find make-up inspiration online you can actually copy yourself that isn’t really OTT or hard to get your head around. That’s why we love Beauty is Boring. It’s jam-packed full of on-trend looks, from the simple to the bold. But it’s great because they’re all easy to replicate and presented on plain white backgrounds so you can focus on what’s important – the make-up.
We love it when the Beauty is Boring account shares a tutorial because they’re speeded up yet simple, like the one above, which shows you how to get to grips with the basics of contouring.
The best for dramatic make-up looks: Nikkie Tutorials (@nikkietutorials)
Playing with the NEW @urbandecaycosmetics Naked HEAT Collection in my new video 🔥 NOW up on my channel ➡️ link in bio! I'm wearing: ___ Foundation: @armanibeauty Luminous Silk Brows: @benefitcosmetics Precisely, My Brow + KaBrow! Glow: @bhcosmetics Spotlight Highlight Palette Eyes: @urbandecaycosmetics Naked Heat Eyeshadow Palette Lashes: @illamasqua x @michellevisage "Visage" Lashes Lips: #urbandecaycosmetics "Fuel" Lipstick + @jouercosmetics "St. Tropez" Lip Topper ↠ use code: NIKKIE to save money at checkout! ___ #nikkietutorials
If you like your make-up to look bright, bold and suuuper glittery, then you’re going to love Nikkie. She posts lots of tutorials on Instagram, which teach you how to recreate her amazing looks.
The best bit is her videos are pretty detailed yet easy to follow because she shares all of the products (with handy links) in the caption. So you don’t need to watch it five times just to catch a glimpse of what she’s using!
The best for those serious about their make-up collection: Mac (@maccosmetics)
It’s summer! Go for a juicy, just-bitten look. Bold colour looks gorgeously natural when applied as a lip stain. For a delicious effect, try The Sherbet Stain seen here! 🍊 Inspired by Shawn Xu; created by #MACSeniorArtist @melissagibsonmua using Lipstick in Morange applied to the centre of the lips with 231 Brush, diffused outwards with 217 Brush, Lip Pencil in Cherry applied to the centre of the lips, diffused out with 228 Brush. Use 231 Brush to gently blend the two colours together. Shop link in bio! Try a lip trend, then make it your own! Your choice. Your creation. Your trend. #MACShio #MACStain #MACLipsLipsLips
Mac is one of the top make-up brands in the world and lots of those working in the beauty business swear by it. So you really need to follow this Instagram account if you’re not already, it’s packed full of top trends as well as easy looks you can create at home.
The downside? You’ll want all of the Mac products in your make-up bag. But remember, although Mac products are great you can just use the Instagram account to find inspiration then head on over to Boots or Superdrug and find cheaper alternatives that look similar, but won’t cost you a bomb.