ImaxTree.com Image by: ImaxTree.com
Before slicking on a new tube of lipstick or gloss, not matter the shade or texture, the key to luscious lips is to start with soft, supple, smooth lips, free of flakes, cracks and chaps. “Lips need to be conditioned, moisturized, the night before, especially for the matte lip and neon. Lips need to be conditioned, no chaps!” insists Jacquie Hutchinson a National Makeup Artist for Revlon. “The biggest thing people don’t realize is they need to drink water – two liters per day for plump lips. Exfoliate the night before and use a conditioning balm the night before.” Try buffing your lips in the shower with a damp washcloth to remove any dry, or flaky skin. That way you’ll start your look with a smooth and soft base.
How to wear a neon lip
This season’s neon lips are also matte, so you’ll want to skip the gloss to stay completely on trend.
Senior M.A.C Makeup Artist Melissa Gibson recommends using a nude lip liner, or one in the same shade as your lipstick around the lip before applying colour. This will help keep the colour from bleeding, and with such a bright hue, the lines need to be perfect, or it will look clownish and messy. “It’s not a soft look,” she explains. “ A neon lip (like a red lip) is better when it’s symmetrical (those bright colours are unforgiving).”
Hutchinson also suggests using your fingers, or a lip brush to blot the lipstick on your lips for a more wearable look during the day. “Because on the runway they can get away with it being very stark, intense, but for everyday it should be more muted,” she says. “Going out at night, lather it on.”
And remember to keep the rest of your face fairly neutral so your makeup doesn’t compete with the vibrant lip. Just even out your skin tone with a bit of loose mineral powder, keep eyes very simple and a slight contouring of the cheek without a lot of colour. Hutchinson also likes to create a strong brow. “Not competing colour in terms of shadow, but a strong brow balances everything,” she says.
Want to pull of matte lips, or deep, dark colours? It's easy! Check out the tips on the next page ...
How to wear a matte lip
A matte lip screams for well condition lips. Since most matte lipstick are mostly pigment, they have no water or moisturizers in them, so it can sometimes feel a bit dry. “ Matte lipstick looks sharp, but it sometimes can feel a little uncomfortable,” says Gibson. Again apply with a lip brush and using lip liner will help keep this look on track.
Tip: This look works best on fuller lips. Without the shine, thin lips can end up appearing even smaller according to Hutchinson.
“For spring and summer, keep the rest of your makeup creamy/glossy – then the matte really stands out,” suggests Gibson.
How to wear dark, glossy lips
When it comes to dark shades this season, the look isn’t about a thick layer of colour. “Sheer is best. A beautifully bronzed skin, a dark nail polish, slicked back hair and a sheer, dark lip. Grrrr!” says Gibson.
You can try your hand at lipstick or lip gloss for this look, as long as it is sheer and provides a hint of colour. “Opt for beautiful coral, strawberry, papya colours. They look great on any skin tone, anybody can wear them,” says Hutchinson. Lightly apply the colour to the lips and no need for liner. It’s a fresh, less structured approach.
Learn how to pick the right nude for you on the next page ...
How to wear a nude lip
“A nude lip is best applied sheer this season, as in the dark lip trend. Milky pinks and camel tone are hot on trend,” explains Gibson.
“The trick is to find the nude with the right hint of colour (think skin tone),” says Hutchinson. Fair skin should opt for cool tones with a hint of pink, medium toned skin should look for warmer tones with no hint of pink, (think butterscotch), and darker toned skin should go warmer and stick to glossy shades (never matte, or it will look flat). Golden under-toned skin will also look hot in a butterscotch shade. The bottom line for Hutchinson is that it is all about your skin tone and finding the right shade for you.
If you’re sporting a nude lip, you can add some more colour to the rest of the face (more colour on the cheeks and even a smoky eye).
Bad beauty habits you need to break now
How to get flawless foundation
Eye do: Say goodbye to tired eyes
Beauty flash: Double duty foundation
Test run the latest trends and celebrity looks in our Virtual Makeover Tool!