Gen Z claims this beauty trend improves mental health

Susan Angel, 31, of East Harlem, NY, poses for The Post in dopamine makeup.

Gen Z claims this beauty trend improves mental health

They color themselves happily.

With spring in full bloom and summer on the horizon, makeup lovers in New York City are shaking off their cold weather blues and putting on the color.

Lots and lots of color.

Think bold and bright shades like neon green, hot pink, electric blue and DayGlo orange.

But Gen Zers and millennials say the pumped-up priming isn’t for shock value — it’s for their mental health.

“It’s dopamine makeup,” Susan Angel, 31, a TV production set designer from East Harlem, explained to The Post. “It’s all about boosting your mood, change your negative thoughts and to have fun expressing yourself through makeup.”

Thousands of women are posting the eye-catching trend under the TikTok hashtag #DopamineMakeup, which has garnered more than half a million views. The bold glow is thought to provide a jolt of the “feel good” hormone, which evokes a sense of pleasure and satisfaction in the brain.

New Yorker Susan Angel says the #DopamineMakeup trend has provided her mental and emotional health support as she mourns the recent deaths of her parents, Augustin and Alma.
Helayne Seidman for NY Post

There might be something to it. A June 2020 Quinnipiac University study it looked at YouTube’s beauty influencers and self-esteem found that makeup “has participants who are internally motivated to
use makeup and/or have a strong sense of mastery, bodily agency, and relatedness to their subscribers who view cosmetic use as having a positive effect on self-esteem.

Decorating her face with creepy pizzeria was a creative outlet for Angel, who first tried the dopamine look in December 2022 when her now-deceased mother was battling cancer. And last month, the brunette resumed the polychromatic look for fun, on the three-year anniversary of her father’s death in April 2020 from COVID-19.

She tells The Post that artistic cheer gives her a surge of joy.

Susan Angel, 31, of East Harlem, NY, poses for The Post in dopamine makeup.
Angel tells The Post that she feels the warm embrace of her late mother and father when she experiments with dopamine makeup.
Helayne Seidman for NY Post

Susan Angel, 31, of East Harlem, NY, poses for The Post in dopamine makeup.
After initially being inspired to try the look by celebrity makeup artist Sir John, Angel said that adding dopamine makeup became a playful form of therapy.
Helayne Seidman for NY Post

“The dopamine glow is more than makeup. It’s therapeutic,” said Angel, who uses splashy eyeshadows, eyeliners and lipsticks from brands like NYX, Fenty Beauty and Tarte.

“When I experiment with these bright colors,” she said, “I feel as if my parents, who were really positive and uplifting people, are here with me.”

And similar to the viral #ChromeMakeup mania, which saw daredevil divas adorn their faces with 3D glue gun designs, in the dopamine makeup trend, anything.

The cheerful style was first created in Spring 2022 by celebrity makeup artist Sir John – who has masterfully showcased the likes of Margot Robbie, Zendaya and Beyoncé.

And just like the Fashion-forward #DopamineDressing craze, a post-COVID movement that inspired people to find happiness through vibrant over-the-top outfits, Sir John tells The Post that his cosmetics craze is also meant to igniting a psychological spark of joy and self-expression.

“People have a very strong emotional connection to color. It’s primal,” said John, a Buffalo native. “Dopamine brilliance is about finding yourself in the little pockets and moments and choices you make. [make] as you get ready.

Famous make-up artist Sir John poses with lipstick between his fingers in Instagram photo.
Make-up artist to the stars Sir John advises men and women to start embracing bold colors by trying funky eyeliners and vibrant lipsticks.

“Color can liven things up,” he added. “It can bring a little drama to an otherwise mundane day.”

Incorporating striking hues into everyday looks, he said, can facilitate stress relief and comfort.

“It’s a little bit of adding pops of color, painting your nails neon or using a Kelly green liner [way] to show up for yourself.”

And for apprehensive newbies to the trend, who fear the excessive glamor might take them too far out of their comfort zones, the A-list esthetician recommends starting with the basics.

“Coloured eyeliner is the best way [to begin embracing color]. Buy as many colored pencils as you can,” said John, a creative director of L’Oreal Paris. “Don’t be afraid of a statement lip either – try orange or magenta.”

“Use colors that make you happy.”

Rene Rossman (25) from Kips Bay poses in dopamine make-up.
Rene Rossman, who works in cosmetics, often uses the dopamine makeup trend to “trick” her brain into feeling good.
Stefano Giovannini for NY Post

Rene Rossman (25) from Kips Bay poses in dopamine make-up.
On TikTok, Rossman revealed to followers that the dopamine makeup trend has helped reduce her winter blues.
Stefano Giovannini for NY Post

In February, Manhattan-based beauty tastemaker Rene Rossman dolled herself up to look “happy” rather than “pretty” while struggling with a bout of seasonal depression.

“I can literally trick my brain into feeling good by making myself look good,” Rossman (25), a cosmetic production developer from Kips Bay, told Die Pos.

She shared her first dopamine rush with her 2,000 TikTok followers just before Valentine’s Day.

Rene Rossman (25) from Kips Bay poses in dopamine make-up.
Rossman says neon, iridescent and shimmering colors give her a boost of cheerfulness, confidence and creative energy.
Stefano Giovannini for NY Post

“When I’m feeling down, I can put on cool makeup, and I’m pushed into a creative headspace,” Rossman said, adding that she often gets the job done with duo-chrome eyeshadows, neon pigments, holographic glitters and baby pink blushes.

“Doing my makeup is my favorite part of the day,” she said. “So the brighter and more delicious I can make it, the happier I am.”

Gen Z claims this beauty trend improves mental health

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