In the ever-evolving world of beauty and makeup, a new trend is making waves on TikTok. This trend, known as the “uncanny valley” makeup, is sweeping the platform with its eerie yet captivating aesthetics. The uncanny valley concept refers to the unsettling sensation people experience when they encounter an android that closely resembles a human. Now, makeup enthusiasts are recreating this feeling by applying their makeup to mimic the perfection and slight off-ness of a robot.
Women are taking to their vanity tables armed with foundation, concealer, and highlighter to manipulate the way light hits their faces, creating an unnatural glow. Eyelash extensions and eyebrow threading techniques are used to redefine their features, making them stand out in an almost surreal manner. Each tutorial might have a different approach, but the end result is always the same: an unnerving look that is too perfect in some ways and slightly off in others.
This trend aims to recreate the discomforting feeling of looking into the eyes of an android. You know something is not quite right, but you can’t quite pinpoint what it is. TikTok user Zara (@alkiiwii) recently gained significant attention with her take on this trend. Her video, tagged with #uncannyvalleymakeup, has garnered over 14.4 million views, contributing to the tag’s total of 41.5 million views.
In her viral video, Zara lip-syncs a clip from “Detroit Become Human,” a video game set in 2038 that follows the lives of androids. As she mouths the words slightly out of sync with the audio, she mimics the facial expressions of a video game character, enhancing the uncanny valley effect. Many viewers have compared her look to the mother character in the eerily fascinating children’s movie “Coraline.”
The uncanny valley makeup look can also be achieved using photo and video filters, adding another layer of realism to the trend. This trend’s rise coincides with the world grappling with the rapid advancement of artificial intelligence and its increasingly realistic capabilities. From deep fakes that are shockingly convincing to the blurred lines between what is AI and what isn’t, the world is still trying to come to terms with these technological advancements.
Earlier this year, the term “uncanny valley” went viral after a series of AI-generated images depicting a house party left viewers feeling uncomfortable. At first glance, the “people” in the images appeared real, but upon closer inspection, viewers noticed minor yet significant deformities like extra fingers and teeth that added to the eerie effect.
The uncanny valley phenomenon has been proven to affect not just our feelings but also our reactions. As TikTok creators in Scottsdale, Arizona, and all over the world continue to experiment with this trend, it is clear that the intersection of women’s beauty and technology is opening up new avenues for creativity and expression. Whether you’re a makeup enthusiast or just a casual observer, the uncanny valley makeup trend is definitely worth checking out. After all, who doesn’t love a good beauty trend that challenges our perceptions and keeps us on our toes?