What Is Dolphin Skin And How Can We Hop On Board With This New Beauty Trend?

Move over glass skin, there’s a new skin trend in town, and it’s taking social media by storm.

By Simone Sydel3 min read
shutterstock 1753123277 (1)

We've heard of dewy and glass skin, but the latest trend in the department of hyper-glowing skin is "dolphin skin." 

The name of the trend comes from, you guessed it, the smooth, glossy skin of dolphins, and the goal of achieving it is to look like you've just emerged from the ocean and are still glistening with water droplets. Originally coined by celebrity makeup artist Mary Philips who promoted the look on Hailey Bieber, the trick to achieving this look is about creating a healthy, hydrated base topped off with a series of dewy skincare products and highlighters to maximize the glow.

So, let's get into it, shall we? In this article, you'll find our best tips on how to participate in the dolphin skin trend.

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Skincare Tips To Achieve Dolphin Skin

As we already mentioned, the key to achieving dolphin skin is creating a healthy, hydrated base. This means that your skincare routine should be focused on nourishing and hydrating your skin and keeping it clear and blemish-free.

Here are five tips on how to do just that:

Use a Gentle Cleanser

Gentle, cream-based cleansers that don't create much lather or foam are ideal for nourishing the skin without stripping it of its natural oils and leaving it looking textured, dry, and patchy.

Dry skin usually has a more pronounced texture, which is something you want to avoid when trying to create a dolphin skin look; therefore, it's always a good idea to start your preparations with something that won't strip your skin of its natural glowiness right off the bat.

Product To Try: La Roche-Posay Toleriane Hydrating Gentle Face Cleanser, $16

Exfoliate Regularly

Regular exfoliation will reduce the appearance of large pores and keep your skin clear, healthy, and glowy, which is pretty much all you need for the dolphin skin look. However, when choosing an exfoliator, always opt for something that's not too drying or irritating, as you don't want to create a more serious issue by wrecking your skin barrier and triggering redness, irritation, dryness, and even more blemishes down the road.

Product To Try: Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant, $34

Apply Hydrating Toners, Mists, and Serums

Making sure your skin is properly hydrated on all levels is the cornerstone of achieving dolphin skin. Therefore, don't be afraid to add multiple hydrating products to your skincare routine, beginning with toners that will give you an extra layer of moisture, followed by using a hydrating serum packed with ingredients such as glycerin and hyaluronic acid, and then sealing everything in with a hydrating mist. This combination will give your skin an extra dose of hydration, making it look plump, healthy, and most importantly, glowy.

Product To Try: First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Wild Oat Hydrating Toner, $24

Apply a Rich and Nourishing Moisturizer

If your skin is naturally on the dry side, achieving dolphin skin might be a challenge, so using a moisturizer that will keep your skin hydrated and looking glossy all day long is crucial.

Product To Try: Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Omega Rich Botanical Night Cream, $53

Use a Non-Mattifying Sunscreen

When trying to achieve a glowy look, the last thing you need is a mattifying sunscreen. So, choose something that will protect your skin from UV rays without flattening your dewy look. 

Product To Try: Supergoop! Glowscreen Sunscreen SPF 40, $36

Makeup Tips To Achieve Dolphin Skin

Now that we've gone through some essential skincare tips, it's time to move on to the makeup part. Here are a few things to keep in mind when trying to achieve dolphin skin:

Use a Hydrating Primer

Hydrating primers with a glowy finish are perfect for creating a base that will make your skin look smooth, like a dolphin's.

Product To Try: NYX Bare With Me Aloe & Cucumber Jelly Primer, $17

Try Strobing

Strobing is a technique that involves applying a liquid highlighter on bare skin to illuminate strategic spots on your face, such as the top of your cheekbones, the bridge of your nose, and your cupid's bow, and then blending it out for a natural-looking finish. This technique is perfect for achieving a dolphin skin look, as it will make the skin look wet and naturally glowy.

Product To Try: MAC Strobe Cream, $36

Apply a Lightweight Foundation

Once you've prepped your skin with a hydrating primer and applied a liquid highlighter using the strobing technique, it's time to apply your foundation. Go with a lightweight foundation or a tinted moisturizer that will even out your skin tone without looking cakey or heavy. The goal is to have a dewy, healthy-looking finish, not a matte one!

Product To Try: Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Longwear Foundation, $46

Use Cream Contour and Blush

Powder products are a no-go if you're trying to achieve the dolphin skin look, as they can make your skin look dry, dull, and cakey, which is exactly the opposite of what we're going for. Instead, opt for cream products that give your skin a natural-looking glow. A cream contour will help shape and sculpt your face, while a cream blush will give you a healthy flush of color and enhance your natural radiance.

Product To Try: MERIT Bronze Balm Sheer Sculpting Bronzer, $30 | MERIT Flush Balm Cream Blush, $28

Finish with a Liquid Highlighter

Last but not least, finish off your makeup look with a liquid highlighter applied on top of your cheekbones, the bridge of your nose, and your cupid's bow. This will add an extra dose of glow and make your skin look wet – just like a dolphin's!

Product To Try: Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Highlighter Wand, $40

Closing Thoughts

Dolphin skin might sound like an impossible beauty trend to achieve, but with the right skincare products that will keep your skin clear and healthy and a few easy makeup techniques, you can definitely nail this look in no time!

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