Statement lips can be pretty much any colour, from a brashy bubblegum pink to an opaque matte red to a gothic purple to a sunny orange; as long as they’re bold, bright and bolshy you’re onto a winner. There are only two rules with statement lips – check your teeth every hour, minimum (or enlist a reliable friend to alert you to when you’re working that coloured-teeth look), and don’t overdo your makeup look with statement eyes and/or statement cheeks too. Aside from those two things, statement lips are actually pretty easy to get right. A pop of colour at a 9am tutorial is just as appropriate as a dramatic look on a night out, and although it might not make your 9-5 day of lectures better it definitely makes getting ready for said day of lectures a lot more bearable. So look around and experiment – go as bright as you dare.
This trend is everywhere at the moment – and pretty much always is (I’m not even sure if this look even counts as a trend, given that bright red lips are almost a prerequisite of catwalk or red carpet dress codes). Think Theda Bara, or Marilyn Monroe, or Rihanna, or Rachel Roy’s latest runway look, or Alexis Bledel, or Antonio Berardi’s Fall collection. (or just Google ‘statement lips’, ‘bright lipsticks’ or a variation of that and see what takes your fancy, you can’t expect me to do all the work for you!)
So you’ve picked out your colour and gathered up the courage to actually wear it out. But before you open the lipstick you’re going to want to do a couple of things first…
1. Use a toothbrush on your lips. I’m not kidding. This is actually one of the most effective (and cheapest!) ways of getting rid of dead skin on your lips, which is vital if you don’t want your lips to look flaky. The flaky look isn’t attractive to anyone. Lipstick can exacerbate this problem and also highlight it, so it’s essential that you do this (gently!) a couple of times a week if you want to keep your lips smooth.
2. Slather on some lipbalm or other moisturising product; for example, Elizabeth Arden’s Eight Hour Cream, Carmex, Vaseline or even Chapstick.
3. Wait for this to settle into your lips. The time the product takes to do this can range from a minute to half an hour, so if you’re impatient you may want to pat in the excess and then wipe away any product left. (Or you could just do this right at the beginning of your skincare routine, then you wouldn’t need to waste any time at all.)
4. NOW apply your lipstick. You can use lipliner if you want – I’ve never really seen the appeal but if you find lipstick bleeds out from your lips then it might be a good idea.
Bobbi Brown Lip Color in Hollywood Red, Orange and Black Raspberry
MAC Cremesheen Lipstick in Girl About Town, Hang Up and Up The Amp
L’Oréal Paris Color Riche Made For Me Intense in Punchy Pink, Rock ‘n’ Rose and Cassis Passion
Maybelline ColorSensational Lip Color in Fatal Red, Midnight Plum and Coral Fever
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