While anyone can grab a tube of lipstick and swipe, knowing how to apply lipstick like the pros can make all the difference between perfect lips and a pout that doesn’t quite hit the mark. Putting on lipstick that lasts requires a little bit of prep work to ensure all goes smoothly. There are even a few makeup artist tips and tricks you can use that’ll prevent your lipstick from cracking or bleeding while also helping your lips look delightfully defined. Ahead we’re discussing everything from pre-lipstick prep to how to line your lips properly.
How Do You Prepare Your Lips Before Applying Lipstick?
One of the biggest mistakes people make with any type of makeup (lipstick included) is skipping prep. When it comes to how to apply lipstick, the goal is to create a flawless canvas for lip liner and lipstick to glide onto. This not only creates the look of perfect lips once all is said and done, but it also helps your lipstick appear more even, smooth, and vibrant.
Ask any makeup artist and they’ll agree: Every proper lip care routine includes exfoliation. This step helps gently buff away flaky bits of dry skin, which may seem negligible but can really muck up your lipstick. Aim for once-weekly exfoliation.
Pro Tip: You can purchase ready-to-use lip scrubs, or you can make your own by combining equal parts fine sugar and coconut or olive oil. As an alternative, you can use a soft toothbrush or a clean, soft washcloth.
Hydrated lips equal plump, perfect lips. The thing is, lips tend to dry out often and require consistent hydration. One of the best courses of action is to apply a non-irritating, skin-loving lip balm to your pout both morning and evening. You can also apply lip balm at the top of your makeup routine so it has time to work its magic and then apply lip liner and lipstick as the final step.
Je Ne Sais Quoi Hydrating Lip Balm Treatment is one of your best defenses against dry lips. Formulated with essential butters and oils, hyaluronic filling spheres, and antioxidants, this innovative balm smooths the look of lip lines and locks in moisture for your most supple, soft results.
It might sound strange, but moisturizing your entire face—including the area around your pout—can help make for perfect lips. The skin around your mouth is prone to developing fine lines and wrinkles, and lipstick has a tendency to migrate into these lines. Moisturizing helps plump up this area for a more youthful appearance and lipstick that stays put.
After cleansing your face and applying your favorite skincare serum, follow up with a skin-loving moisturizer such as Confidence in a Cream Anti-Aging Hydrating Moisturizer. Suitable for all skin types, this game-changing moisturizer can help visibly improve tone, texture, elasticity, fine lines, and wrinkles.
How Do You Properly Apply Lipstick?
With prep work out of the way, it’s officially time to learn how to apply lipstick like the pros do. Let’s dive right in.
Step One: Line and Fill In Lips With Liner
Consider lip liner a BFF to both your lips and lipstick. When used correctly, lip liner can help:
Better define your lip shape
Make lips appear fuller
Prevent lipstick bleeding
Turn virtually any lipstick into a long-wear formulation
There are a few techniques you can use when learning how to apply lip liner. If you want to simply define your existing lip shape, line the edge of your lips—AKA the vermillion border—with the lip liner. Next, fill in your lips with the liner.
If you want to create fuller-looking lips, you’ll need to check out an “over lining” lip liner tutorial. Starting at the cupid’s bow, lightly trace just beyond the natural shape of your lips. Don’t overline at the corners, which can look unnatural. The goal is to create a realistic fuller pout, so practice as much as necessary and send a selfie to a friend if you want a second opinion.
For either technique, use either a lip liner that matches your skin tone, or choose a lip liner color that closely matches your lipstick.
Step Two: Apply Lipstick From the Center and Outward
Ah, the moment we’ve all been waiting for: putting lipstick on your lips. Focus your application at the center of your lips, which provides more control during application. From there, you can work your way to the outer borders.
Pillow Lips Lipstick comes in 14 cream and matte high-impact colors, and the formula is infused with collagen to help your lips look even fuller.
Step Three: Blot Lipstick & Re-Apply
Blotting is an old-school makeup trick that can help prevent lipstick cracking, creasing, bleeding, and fading. Simply press your lips together over a tissue to remove extra product, then reapply and blot again.
Step Four: Add Gloss If Desired
If you prefer a shiny finish, top your lipstick with a lip-loving gloss like Pillow Lips Solid Serum Lip Gloss. Available in eight pretty hues, this collagen-infused formula keeps lips shiny and moisturized without any sticky or tacky residue.
Whether you’re wearing a bright red lipstick, a girlish pink, or have opted for a more natural hue, knowing how to apply lipstick like a pro will make for perfect lips every time.