In the past, we may have come across makeup trends such as the fox-eye look, the Korean style, or even the Japanese kawaii trend. But right now, there’s a new makeup trend taking Japan by storm, and it’s called Suay Make. This trend is greatly influenced by the makeup approaches of Thai women, and as “Suay Make” surges in popularity in Japan, it’s slowly edging out other styles.
What is ‘Suay Make’?
The term “Suay Make” (スワイメイク, pronounced as “su-we-i-me-i-ku”) combines the Thai word “suay” (meaning beautiful) with “make” from the English word “makeup.” This term, along with its variant “Thai Make,” refers the Thai makeup style which has grown into a trend that garnered significant attention following its prominent portrayal in the Thai BL series 2gether: The Series. It surged in popularity in Japan, exerting influence across various domains, including driving up sales of Thai products. Recognizable makeup brands in this context encompass Srichand, 4U2, Beauty Cottage, and notably, Cathy Doll. Particularly, the brand, represented by the renowned Thai actor-singer duo Bright-Win, saw a substantial increase in orders and garnered positive reviews among Japanese women due to its quality and affordable pricing.
It’s not surprising that makeup brands from Thailand, known for their quality, have gained popularity. Due to Thailand’s hot and humid climate, foundation needs to stay put on the skin even after exposure to the sun, and it must withstand sweat and humidity. The diverse skin tones of Thai women also necessitate makeup products that cater to these specific needs. These qualities have become even more desirable during the COVID-19 pandemic when everyone is wearing face masks almost constantly. Makeup that includes long-lasting foundation and lip color that doesn't smudge easily has become highly sought after. With makeup trends from Thailand in the spotlight, it’s no wonder that many are eager to try out the Thai-inspired style.
When you try searching for “スワイメイク” or “タイメイク” (Suay Make / Thai Make) on various social media platforms, you’ll find plenty of posts and tutorials that teach Thai makeup styles and review Thai makeup brands. In fact, in early July 2022, the “Suay Make” look was featured on TBS television's “Love It!” program in Japan. It was mentioned as a trending makeup style, following the Korean and Chinese styles that were previously popular.
Some might be wondering if there’s a distinct Thai makeup style. The answer is a resounding yes! Just take a peek at the makeup choices of Thai female celebrities like Mew Darika, Aum Patchrapa, or Bella Ranee. You’ll notice some common threads among them: well-shaped eyebrows, lush eyelashes, and a preference for warm, orange, or earthy tones. These elements basically define the “Suay Make” style. While the descriptions might have slight differences, the end result consistently embodies the Suay Make signature look.
The renowned Ray magazine has also published articles about Suay Make. However, they’ve condensed it into three essential points to consider when applying this look:
Draw and brush your eyebrows upward into a straight shape, using a brow pencil for assistance.
Enhance the sharpness of your eyes with orange and black tones (using orange eyeshadow and solid black eyeliner).
Create full and seductive lip contours with a matte-textured lipstick.
If you look closely, you’ll notice that Pouch and Ray both discuss similar trends in Suay Make. These trends include brushing eyebrows to create an uplifted appearance, achieving long and thick eyelashes, defining the eyes sharply, and using warm-toned colors. These makeup trends not only enhance one’s beauty but also address and improve certain facial features for Japanese women. This makes us rethink the true purpose of the makeup we apply daily. Are we using it to make others see and appreciate us, or is it about enhancing our self-esteem, expressing our identity, and finding happiness in our own version of beauty?