So, you've mastered the perfect glowy base, expertly camouflaging spots with concealer, and sculpting your features with the help of bronzer and liquid illuminator - what's left? Applying lipstick like an expert, of course!
While applying your favorite lip color straight from the bullet might work well enough on those days when you're running late, achieving long-lasting, expertly defined lipstick is an artform that we're here to help you master with these five steps...
Just like with foundation, great lipstick starts with a good base: exfoliate your lips to remove any patches of dry skin. Bright lipstick, and especially matte formulas, have a tendency to accentuate dryness and decrease lip color longevity, so use a soft toothbrush to gently scrub the lips (key word: gently!).
Apply a thin coat of hydrating lip balm to replenish moisture. This creates a smooth base for your lip color and also helps your skin to combat any drying effects from your lipstick.
Now it's time to trace your lips with lip liner - either in a nude tint that matches your natural lip color or a shade that matches your lipstick. Start at the center of the top lips - the Cupid's bow - and then follow the natural contours of your mouth on either side, before lining the bottom lip as well. Fill in the shape you've made with your lip pencil to give the lipstick something to grip on to (just like a primer).
For expert precision, you should apply your color with a lip brush. Apply it just like you did the lip liner, first tracing the outline of the lips and then filling them in. Once you've done this, gently blot with a tissue and reapply for an opaque finish.
Finally, you can further protect your lip color by coating it with a slick of clear lip gloss!