"Let's Use What Is Already There!"
Turn Trends into Business: Zeitgeist Influences Trending Colours and Materials for 2023
Niels Holger Wien's "CB IMPULSE" presentations have made him an institution at CosmeticBusiness. The 2022 event marks the third iteration of the trend analyst's two-part lecture series, in which he presents inspirations drawn from the current zeitgeist, translating these into colour and material trends for the coming year. In recent months he has collected numerous impressions from international art, film and literature to impactfully support his findings.
In Wiens' view, the defining influence on the current zeitgeist is the increasingly negative impact that humans are having on our planet. For him, this is reflected in themes such as "Coexistence" and "Frugal Innovation". People have to relearn the fact that we are part of a whole, he says, and that a new balance with the environment will mean we can no longer be the dominating factor that destroys everything. People will have to limit themselves to what is really important, innovate more with less input and most of all – here he touches on the issue of recycling – use what is already there.
Naturalness and Sustainability Define 2023
It follows that naturalness and sustainability dominate the four colour palettes he has derived from this trend. "Cohesive", stands for "The Poetry of Organic Growth". This palette is dominated by mineral colours and shades that are soft, light and warm. Structures and patterns are taken from living organisms such as fungi or sponges. Typical colours here are "Grey Oyster Mushroom" and "Rosy White Marble".
The "Long-Lived" palette represents "The Beauty of Diverse Lifetimes". The hues united here go hand in hand with the ageing process. They stand for the longevity of things and a corresponding acceptance that colours will fade over time thus creating a unique recycling aesthetic, Wien explains. From this he develops colours like "Dried Beetroot" and "Chicory Leaf Yellow", the latter tending slightly towards a brownish tone.
In Limbo and in the Limelight
"Radiant" is meant to represent "The Shine of the Digital Real", another inspiration drawn from the zeitgeist. Even though Wien delivers an emphatic warning against surrendering ourselves to the digital world like Marc Zuckerberg's coming "Metaverse", he admits that the digital universe already has a major influence on culture and fashion. This can be seen in luminous colours that "emerge from fantasies and spiritual places", as Wien puts it. He sees colours like "Deep Space Blue" or "Synthetic Turquoise" as evoking a new elegance and coolness that we associate with artifice.
Wien calls his fourth colour palette "Interfere". For him, it represents "The Patterns of Intense Togetherness". The focus here is on using colours as a way of standing out, of drawing attention to oneself. At the same time, these luminous colours are circumscribed by neutral tones, yielding new harmonies. Examples of these striking colour palettes include "Radiant Green Mamba" and "Activis Pink".
To Be Continued
Wien looks not only to the coming year but also to the time beyond that, so repeat visitors sometimes experience a flash of déjà vu in the big trend statements. But for the trend analyst, that's as it should be. "We don't start from the beginning again every year. We just write the next chapter of the book". It will be exciting to see what next year brings.
The lecture is available to registered users in the media library at https://www.cosmetic-business.com/program/cosmeticbusiness/4772 .