With Fall and Winter right around the corner (I know, it’s still hot here too, but give it a few weeks!) bold, intense lip colors are going to start cropping up everywhere. Bright lips can be a very intimidating look to even attempt, let alone pull off with panache. I used to always keep my lips neutral because I thought they were too big and might look clownish if I wore red lipstick.
Maybe you think your lips are too thin… or uneven…or your teeth aren’t nice enough… or you’ll mess them up right away…or a bunch of other excuses I’ve heard women use for shying away from trying a bright lip color. But you know what? Pretty much anyone can wear intense shades on their lips, if you know how to do it best for you.
There are a few things to keep in mind:
Choose either a warm or cool shade based on your skin’s undertones. Also, if you have very thin lips, choose a bright, perky shade rather than a very deep one, as dark colors tend to minimize. If your teeth are less-than-white, stay away from orangey shades as they can make the teeth look even less white. (Then brush with baking soda to gradually and gently whiten your teeth!)
Prepare your lips by doing a little bit of exfoliation. I lightly scrub my lips every few days with my toothbrush after I brush my teeth; it takes about 4 seconds longer than usual and keeps the flakey, dry skin away. I also keep lip balm on my lips all the time. This is a comfort thing for me; I don’t like the feeling of dry lips. But it’s a good habit to get into to prevent chapped lips. Right before you apply your bright lip color, use some balm while you do the rest of your makeup, then blot it off. This will ensure your lips have absorbed the pure moisture and are ready to hold the color.
Use the Flat Brush to touch up the skin around your lips with a bit more foundation; since you’re drawing attention to your lips, you’ll want to make sure your foundation is flawless right around your lips. Apply Lip Balm to your lips, then dip your Small All-Over Brush into the color of your choice (you can use any blush or eye color to customize your look). Outline the natural line of your lips with the brush, then fill in your line with more color, making sure to get the color all the way toward the inside of your lips.
To keep your look from being too “made up” and garish, use very minimal eye makeup. I like a dash of Champagne Pearl or Sandstone Cream all over my lids, a very light dusting of a neutral in my crease (I love Lavender Shale or Cinnamon Rose) and Matte Black Eyeliner, applied sparingly.
Mascara is a must! You can still contour and highlight your skin, just be sure to use a light touch of blush in a color that has the same undertone as your lip color.
Bring your color (and a mirror!) with you when you go out. You can go all 1940’s movie-star glam and pull out your shiny makeup mirror from your evening bag and touch up right at the dinner table… or you can do what I do and dab on a refresher in the rearview mirror of my car. 😛
6. Retrain Your Brain
If you are trying something different than your usual look, you will probably have a little freak-out moment (I think mine went something like “OHMYGOSH, huge red lips! Take it off!!”) but if you give yourself some time, you can train your brain to recognize the “new” as “normal”.
You may feel slightly self-conscious when wearing a bold lip for the first time in public, but nothing, and I mean nothing beats self-confidence. Hold your head up high, look people in the eye, and smile… rock what ya got! Chances are, people might not even realize that your makeup is different, but they will notice your boost of confidence. And you definitely don’t need lip color to do that, though it helps sometimes!
Do you incorporate bold lips into your looks on a regular basis? Share any tips we might have missed in the comments or on Facebook!