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Lipstick Lessons for Luscious Lips

Updated on August 1, 2010

If eyes are the windows to the soul, the lips are the doorway of connecting with others.  Lips smile, they form words, and they kiss.  The lips and eyes are usually the most focused on features of our face.  It seems like a great idea to keep them in tip top condition.

Protect Your Lips

Lips need protection as much as any other part of your skin.  Choose products that have an SPF value in them.  Many chap sticks will contain at least a 15 SPF, for longer outdoor adventures, choose something a bit higher and make sure and apply often enough so that your lips don't get sun burned.

Vaseline is a great night time lip conditioner!  It will protect your lips from getting dried out from heating or air conditioning.  There are other products on the market for this, but petroleum jelly is the only ingredient that will absorb into the most layers of skin.  Plus, it's extremely cost effective and one small jar will last for ages without going bad.

Exfoliate Your Lips

Lips don't need to be exfoliated often, but if they are dry, it helps to smooth them out and create softer lips.  Use the honey sugar scrub found in Fix the Top Six Beauty Problems with Honey.  You can also use a soft toothbrush and "brush" your lips softly, or a damp washcloth.  The honey sugar scrub will work the best though.

Choose Your Product

  • Chapstick is a basic everyone should have on hand for sun protection and general lip conditioning.  There are tinted chap sticks that will give you a bit of color and glossy looking chapstick to give the same effect as lip gloss, only with the protection benefits of a chap stick.
  • Lips stains last the longest and can be worn under gloss for an all day color wash.
  • Lipsticks last, not as long as a stain, but longer than lip gloss.  They also give the most intense color.
  • Lip gloss lasts the least amount of time and needs to be applied more often but will give a sheer wash of color, or just a plain gloss for a shiny pout.  Choose a stain or lipstick and then use gloss over top of that for a great color effect that will last for many hours.
  • Lip Liner is used to shape and define your lip line or can be used all over your lips for a long lasting color.

Any of these products, other than the lip liner will have lip plumping options with them.  If you feel your lips could use a bit more fullness, try a product that offers lip plumping benefits.  Some of them can be irritating though, so use them sparingly.

Choose Your Color

Keep several different colors of lipstick and lip gloss on hand.  The trick to picking out the best one for the day is if you are going very subtle on the eye makeup, then you can play up the lip color.  If you are going with more dramatic eye makeup though, keep the lips subtle.  Otherwise you'll just look too heavily done up and that's not attractive.

Tips for choosing lip colors:

  • The absolutely perfect shade for daytime wear will be one or two shades deeper than your own lip color.
  • Warm colors warm your skin up, cool colors brighten and "wake up" a pale or duller complexion.
  • Bluish undertones will make your teeth look whiter and brighter.  Pinks, berry's, red's, and mauves all have warm and cool colors to pick, so pick a bluer/cooler color if you want whiter looking teeth.
  • Dark colors makes lips looks thinner, stick to lighter shades if you are hoping to accomplish a fuller lipped look.
  • Berry colors are universally appealing.  So if you aren't sure what color is best for you, opt for a berry color!
  • Leave the sparkles and high gloss looks for parties or play time.  They just don't look professional no matter what else you're wearing.

Apply Your Lip Color

  • Stay in the lines, ladies - PLEASE!  I know many tips and tricks articles you read will tell you to line outside your natural lip line for a fuller effect, but honestly, you just end up looking like an aged drag queen.    Use color, plumping lip products and some sheen for fuller lips, and there should be no need to color outside the lines.
  • If you use lip liner, make sure it matches perfectly.  Going with dark liner and light lip color is just tacky and cheap looking.
  • Using a brush is more time consuming than just applying lipstick straight from the tube, but it can be worth it when you want an extra fine look.  Honestly, I just apply from the tube unless I'm taking that extra bit of time for a special occasion, but there is a difference.  Keep a lipstick brush on hand for those times you want to look extra special.  Start from the outside and work your way in.
  • Allow lip stain or lipstick to dry for a minute before you apply lipgloss.
  • Press lips together, don't rub.  Rubbing your lipstick all around your lips just pushes the color around.  Press your lips together instead to even out the application.

Quick Fixes

  • If your lipstick has a tendency to bleed outside the lines, use lip stain.  That doesn't bleed, or apply a lip primer first.
  • To keep lipstick off your teeth, put your index finger in your mouth and pull it out to wipe the extra lip color off from the very inside of your lips.
  • Lick your lips before you take a drink off a glass.  It will keep from leaving lipstick stains on the glass.
  • If your lipstick looks too dark for daytime, and it won't come off easily, apply a lighter color lip gloss over it.


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    • HappyHer profile image

      Tracy Morrow 7 years ago from Cleveland, OH

      Thanks Matt! This hub was a lot of fun to write and I'm happy it can be of service.

    • matt6v33 profile image

      matt6v33 7 years ago from Bangkok, Thailand

      my my my, well well well, hmm hmm hmm, u have taught me oh sooooooooooooooo much young lady... for I just left the ,of my life in South Africa, a South African Beauitful women, who i was blessed to observe daily, her, "Doing The Lips", and u now, have shared this, in which i hope and pray, i can share with her, in so that she can benefit.. thanks for sharing young lady.. remember there alot out here, that and do will learn from your efforts.. i encourage u, to keep going plz!


    • HappyHer profile image

      Tracy Morrow 7 years ago from Cleveland, OH

      Thank you Anamika! I use a lip stain, it will stay put while you eat and not leave marks on your glass either.

      Lady_E, The lipstains work great, I think Cover Girl and Revlon products are both wonderful for that. I still have to apply lip gloss over that occasionally as I have pretty dry lips, but it stays on under that as well.

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 7 years ago from London, UK

      I enjoyed this and learnt some tips. Do you use any of those lipsticks that stay on for at least 12 hours with no retouching? Well, so they advertise. If you do let me know the name please.

      The ones advertised here still come off in a few hours.

      Thanks. :)

    • Anamika S profile image

      Anamika S 7 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

      Wonderful Post! I still have not learned to eat without ruining my lipstick.