Whether you like to use lipsticks, lip stains or liquid lipsticks, here’s how apply them for smudge-proof, long-lasting colour that will take you from day to night…
Exfoliating your lips
A weekly exfoliation will help to prevent lips chapping and keep them smooth. It’s especially important if you’re going to be applying a matte lipstick, which tends to be more drying and is likely to cling to any dry patches on your lips.
To exfoliate lips, use a toothbrush with soft bristles – a child’s one works well – then apply a small amount of petroleum jelly to the bristles and gently rub over your lips using circular motions. The skin on your lips is delicate, so be firm but not too rough. Apply a nourishing vitamin-E enriched balm morning and night to keep lips hydrated.
Priming your lips
To get the best results from your lipstick, prime your lips first. Simply dab a small amount of your normal liquid concealer all over your lips, making sure you blend it right to the outer edges, for a neutral, even base. Not only will this help your lipstick to stay put all day it will also help prevent your lipstick "feathering".
Using lip liner
Applying lip liner will help make your lipstick look neater, create a smooth, precise edge and give your lipstick something to stick to. You can use a liner that’s either a couple of shades lighter than your chosen lipstick, or one that matches the natural colour of your lips.
Start by lining the Cupid’s bow – the curved part in the middle of your top lip –then line the rest of your top and bottom lip. Step back from the mirror and check you’re happy with the shape before filling in your lips with lipstick.
How to apply lipstick
The classic tube lipsticks offer the widest range of colours, so there’s something for everyone. Although hydrating, the wax/oil base can cause the product to disappear, meaning you’ll need to reapply regularly throughout the day, especially after eating and drinking.
For a longer-lasting finish, apply the first coat with a lip brush, which will give you more control and make the application more precise. Blot with a tissue, then use the lip brush again to apply a second coat.
The benefits of liquid lipsticks
Liquid lipsticks are good for dry lips as they combine the pigment of a lipstick with a moisturising, velvety formula that glides on like a gloss. If a high-shine finish isn’t your thing, you can use a liquid lipstick that dries matte.
The benefits of lip stains
Lip stains work by staining lips rather than coating them in colour. They’re designed to enhance the natural colour of your lips, rather than change it, and are usually available only in variations of red, pink and peach colours. The result is a long-lasting smudge-proof colour. Lip stain is removed with petroleum jelly – simply apply it on the stain, leave it for a few minutes, then gently rub it off with a tissue. It’s worth noting that most stains contain alcohol, which can make lips dry, so using them regularly means you may need to exfoliate and condition more often.