Lipstick 101: How to Apply Lipstick Perfectly

5:49 PM

I bet you didn't know you were applying your lipstick wrong!

Well, okay, maybe there's no wrong way to apply lipstick but I didn't realize that there was a technique until I was recently helping my lipstick-novice friend try a dashing new shade of scarlet and she asked "How do I apply it?"

Woah. Lightbulb moment. Bright lips take some serious planning to make application look perfect. After years of experimenting with every lipstick shade under the sun, I took this fact for granted and completely glossed over the fact that there indeed are steps that make the process way easier!

Therefore, my Lipstick 101 tutorial was born. (If you haven't seen the rest of my 101 Basics series, you can check them out on youtube or on the blog here.) Some of you might be like me and usually apply it straight from the tube but then need to amp it up on date night so I shared two different ways to have the perfect (and easy) lipstick application. Check out the video & swatches below!


translucent powder | BareMinerals Mineral Veil


Here you can see my bare lips. The bottom one is slightly uneven and is lower on the right side. 


This is with the MAC VIVA GLAM Miley Cyrus lipstick (review & swatches), applied straight from the tube. I've drawn the lower lip line in so my lips look more balanced.

Here I used the Marc Jacobs Beauty Pop Kiss lipstick in Crush which is a favorite hot orange of mine. I prepped by outlining and then filling in my lips with Urban Decay lip pencil in Streak. I then used my tissue + powder trick to make it extra long-lasting.

You can theoretically also use a clear lip pencil like Urban Decay's 24/7 in Zero which will work on any lip color to keep it from feathering, but using a similar color will give an extra layer of color when the lipstick itself starts to fade.

By the way, pretty weird seeing my lips this close up. I never realized how many baby hairs and lip lines I had until this project! But hey, if you guys seeing the reality of my actual lips is helpful then my job is done. ;)

Readers, do you usually apply lipstick from the tube or with a pencil and lip brush? What's your favorite bright lipstick? Let me know in the comments!

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  1. I usually apply lipstick straight from the tube, especially if it's a sheer or less opaque formula; or rather a color that's a little more forgiving than others. I'll use a lip brush or lip liner if it's a special occasion or if I'm going red. My current favorite lipstick at the moment is Too Faced La Creme lipstick but I only have the shade Nude Beach at the moment, and I have really been loving their Melted lipstick in Melted Strawberry, it's a great punchy, vibrant blood orange/red. Super eye catching! Formula isn't too bad either! :3

  2. This is a great video. I so prefer using the tube just because its so much easier. I love to brush my lips with a toothbrush first as well, to both exfoliate and plump them up

  3. I am not a fan of lipsticks but after seeing this, it makes me want to wear it now lol. I love it! ♥


  4. I love to use the tissue and powder trick for the long lasting effect. Swears by it! Even after eating (carefully) my lipstick is still there.

    ★ ★

  5. I love to use the tissue and powder trick for the long lasting effect. Swears by it! Even after eating (carefully) my lipstick is still there.

    ★ ★

  6. I like applying lipstick with a pencil then the product directly from the tube!

    LIVE . IN .LOVE ✞


  7. Hi Jen! Do you have any tips for dry chapped lips? I've developped a habit of licking my lower lip, and it now has a lot of thick dry skin. I keep removing them but they grow back. I can't apply lipstick because either it makes them stand out, or after the removal the lipstick doesn't take. Thank you for your tips!

  8. mmm your tutorial is really helpful especially for teenagers. can you suggest some solutions for dry lips?????????????????????????

  9. Great post. I loved the video! I am getting ready for bed but I want to try these two techniques before I call it a night. :-)

    ♡ ColorMeLimitlessly by Kaisha ♡ -->

  10. Love that Mac shade it looks amazing on lips! Whenever I am using bright or red lipstick I like to use lip liner first cause it keeps everything in place and last a bit longer

  11. Awesome tricks!!