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How to Wear Dark Lipstick Without Looking a Hot Mess

Posted by Jess Hall
on Nov 29, 2018

How to Wear Dark Lipstick Without Looking a Hot Mess

How to Wear Dark Lipstick Without Looking a Hot Mess

We’ve all done it: as we sit with one hand scrolling through our Instagram and the other underneath our chin, we think to ourselves, ‘why can’t I get dark lipstick to look that good on me?’ as we double-tap our way through our favourite beauty gurus’ selfies. There is definitely an art to pulling off the dark, vampy lip look (with the help of a little editing work) but by following the steps and tips below, it should be a walk in the park!

1. Prep

Dark lipstick is unforgiving at the best of times so if your lips aren’t in tip-top condition, the cracks will begin to show very quickly – quite literally. So, have a lip scrub on hand and apply a light layer of non-greasy lip balm before application and the whole process will be a lot easier.

How to Apply Dark Lipstick

2. Use an eyeshadow primer

Yes, admittedly, this step sounds bizarre, but hear us out. This genius tip is tried, tested and is an essential step for any dark lip lover. It will help to create a smooth base for your dark lip product to sit on top of and will keep it sticking around for much longer.

3. Choose a pigmented product

Again, this sounds all too obvious, but an intensely pigmented formula is essential for pulling off a dark lip. If a formula is patchy, lacks in pigmentation or doesn’t apply evenly, things will become messy very quickly!

4. Use a lip liner, always

Using a lip liner all over the lips is not only essential for intensifying the opacity of your lip color, but it’s also very much needed for the perimeter of your lips to avoid any bleeding. And if you can’t find the exact match for your lipstick in a lip liner, you can always use a clear lip liner.

How To Make Dark Lipstick Last

5. Use the right tone and shade for what you want

This one sounds like a given but putting a little color theory into practice can make the world of difference to the finished look. For example, because blue and yellow sit on opposite sides of the color wheel, a blue based dark lipstick will make your teeth appear less yellow. Clever, huh? And if you have a warm skin tone with yellow or olive undertones, a yellow based dark shade such as a rich berry or deep terracotta look great.

Have you mastered the art of a dark lip, or are you going to use some of these tips to perfect yours next time? Let us know!

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Jess Hall is a British beauty lover, who can often be found perusing makeup aisles in the search for the perfect peachy pink hues, or perfecting her latest makeup flat lay. When she’s not trialling the latest skincare releases, she enjoys sharing her latest findings, the newest beauty trends and knowledge with you!

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  • Where I grew up, I never saw many women rocking a dark lip, so I was afraid to start . But after playing around with Clinique's Black Honey (a cult favorite, and perfect place to start testing the deeper shades waters), I slowly tried darker and richer colors as I became more and more comfortable with the idea of dark lipstick. And now, my favorite shades to wear are those ones where you can't quite tell if it's still purple because it's so close to being black. So my first tip is to never be afraid when trying out darker hues. You'll never know how flattering black lipstick can be until you try. And if you've already decided to make vampy lips your new thing, just know that they're high maintenance. But it's nothing these tips can't control. If you're a beginner (or even a seasoned pro looking for a refresher course), here's everything you need to know about preparing for, applying, and maintaining a dark lip.

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