What’s next for the year ahead? The experts weigh in on everything from beauty to comedy
Luminaries from the worlds of comedy, beauty, and more share their predictions for the future
Roxane Gay on Feminism
I hope to see more nuanced discussions about the biggest issues facing women today, like equal pay, universal health care, and subsidized childcare. I also want to see our first female president. America is ready for a competent president, and women are just as capable as men. I hope we get to a place where we’re really just looking at the best candidate and recognizing that women are part of the pack of people who are the best candidates. I am deeply encouraged by Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris. I don’t have to agree with someone entirely to think they’re awesome. I’m also excited by all the women running for Congress and other public offices who historically might not have run. I’m inspired by the way that young women like Greta Thunberg are fighting for climate issues with climate strikes. And I admire the students from Parkland who rallied against gun violence after experiencing tragedy. Young people are challenging the status quo. And I think that’s a model for all of us going forward.
Gay is the author of Bad Feminist, Difficult
Women, and Hunger. She’s currently working on her next book, How to Be Heard.
Karla Welch on Fashion
I’d love designers to share technologies and collaborate on collective responsibility and sustainability. Let’s make this a noncompetitive environment and open the plan of action to everyone. I’d actually love to see less fashion!
Welch is a stylist, designer, creative director, and co-founder of the styling app Wishi.
Jodi Kantor & Megan Twohey on Reporting
Over the past few years new technologies have been helpful to us here and there, such as encrypted phone apps to make sure our messages with secret sources stay private. But overall our work is so old-fashioned. In our book, She Said, we describe how we broke the Harvey Weinstein story using time-honored techniques: building trust with sources from Ashley Judd and Gwyneth Paltrow to former [Weinstein] assistants who had been written out of film history, persuading a Deep Throat figure to talk, showing up on the doorsteps of people who did not want to be found. We’ll be using similar techniques of careful listening and close observation come January 6, when Weinstein’s trial takes place in Manhattan.
Kantor and Twohey are Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative reporters for The New York Times.
She Said is out now.
Shani Darden on Skin Care
Long routines are becoming less of a focus. It’s not about using the most products but about using the right ones: a good antioxidant in the morning, a retinol at night if your skin can tolerate it, an exfoliant at least once a week. At-home devices are huge. You can do micro-infusion to deliver vitamin C or hyaluronic acid serum directly to your skin. You can use an LED, which boosts collagen. Devices that emit low-level electric currents make such a difference too. If you start using them when you’re young, they will keep your skin really tight and prevent sagging. We’re beginning to see people get fewer fillers and even having them removed. I am excited that people are going more natural; overdoing it is not going to give you good skin.
Darden is an aesthetician with her own line of skin-care products and a studio in Beverly Hills. Her clientele includes celebrities like Jessica Alba and Chrissy Teigen.
Christina Tosi on Food
There is a lot of innovation happening in the vegan space. But more than anything, we will continue to see bright, bold, bodacious flavors. For desserts I think grapefruit is going to take hold. We will find a lot more of those big, zesty flavors, which is a step forward in the evolution of our palates. We will continue to see a mix of savory and sweet, whether it’s sage and brown butter or a lot more salt in desserts to balance out the sweetness and acidity. Salt and grapefruit would pair well. Technology will afford us access to more exotic varieties of standard ingredients, like chocolate, and our palates are going to continue to evolve and be super-curious.
Tosi is an award-winning chef and the founder of Milk Bar, a popular chain of bakeries. Milk Bar’s N.Y.C. flagship is now open.
Aidy Bryant on Comedy
We’re seeing the rise of true, unique individuals. Julio Torres, for example, is someone who’s making work that fits only him. Other greats performing in New York now include Jo Firestone, Aparna Nancherla, Gary Richardson, Carmen Christopher, and Megan Stalter. Jacqueline Novak’s show, Get on Your Knees, was one of the best I’ve ever seen—we are all about to bask in her brainy glory. I’m biased, but I also think the best thing happening is the rise of the writer-creator-star getting to make a fully formed piece. So many people are getting up and doing the damn work to make a place for themselves (see: Broad City, Insecure, Russian Doll, Fleabag).
Bryant is a writer, an actress, and a comedian. The second season of her show, Shrill, débuts January 24 on Hulu.
Eva Chen on Social Media
When you like someone’s style, you want to be able to tap an image of what they’re wearing and not only be able to see where it’s from but buy it—ideally, with just one more tap of your finger. That’s going to be more of a reality in the future with tools like Instagram Checkout, which allows users to shop for products in a whole new way. Another thing that’s going to be big next year is augmented reality, especially face filters. Dior has launched face filters in its Instagram Stories, like a trippy tie-dye thing that matched the brand’s campaign and a bucket hat with a veil built into it. Virgil Abloh did something similar when he introduced Off-white’s sunglasses filter in 2018. Gucci has done a few wacky and wild ones. And it’s not just brands. People like Donté Colley are going viral for
Audrey Gelman on Community
The Wing is a physical space where women can create communities and, in some ways, suit up to do battle in the outside world, build confidence, expand their network, and find opportunities to collaborate with other women. Members have organized themselves into groups so they can meet and talk about more personal situations: being a single mom, experiencing depression or anxiety, balancing work and family life, and navigating the workforce as a new mom. We have said before, “We don’t want to break the glass ceiling; we want to build a whole new house.” It’s about rewriting the rules and forming our own companies in our own spaces. There’s something profoundly liberating and empowering about the idea that we can do this ourselves. Gelman is the CEO and co-founder of the Wing, a co-working space and social club for women.
Jane West on Weed
I think cannabis is going to play a big role in terms of voting power. More Americans than ever agree that it should be legalized in some form—and with 33 states now having laws on the books, we believe people’s desire for access is going to drive voters to the polls and shape the incoming class of 2021. Voters care about electing officials who are pro cannabis, and we are seeing politicians talk about it more and more. It is a unifying topic. So much data has come out about using cannabis for specific ailments, like Crohn’s disease and fibromyalgia. It’s used by everyone from moms to veterans—it doesn’t have to be stigmatized anymore.
West is the founder of the cannabis industry’s largest professional-female-networking organization, Women Grow, as well as her own cannabis-lifestyle brand.
Charlotte Tilbury on Beauty
One incredible trend I adore and think will be huge is the return of velvety nude matte lips. A gorgeous, kissable pout will never be out of style. I am obsessed with the tones that the ’90s supermodels used to wear. I also think that heavy foundation and powder will be a thing of the past. It’s all about the glow now.
Tilbury is a makeup artist who’s worked with Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell. She also has her own beauty brand.
Mónica Ramírez on Activism
The year ahead will be all about getting out to vote and encouraging others to do the same, building on the unity we’ve seen and looking forward to progress. I am proud of the fact that we continue to fight against all odds to make bold moves. And I hope that this is the year when people who come forward to talk about their trauma, whatever it is, will be able to find peace, healing, and support.
Ramírez is an activist, a civil rights attorney, and a gender-justice advocate known for penning the “Dear Sisters” letter that fueled the Time’s Up movement.
Fendi sunglasses ($460) and chain ($450); fendi.com.
Clockwise from top left: comedian Jacqueline Novak, an encryption app, dancer Donté Colley, supermodel Kate Moss in the ’90s, a compost cookie from Milk Bar, campaign buttons, Gucci’s augmented-reality app, and climate activist Greta Thunberg.