How To: Make Your Lipstick Last

No one likes to apply their lipstick only to have it wear off in a couple of hours. We spend so much time applying our makeup the last thing we want to do is reapply lipstick every few hours. And, with holiday parties right around the corner, it’s the perfect time to rock those red lip . So getting the most wear from your favorite shade of lipstick is a must. Apart from trying lipsticks that promise to have more staying power, or drying lipstains, there are alternative ways of extending the time your lipstick last. Below are some quick tips and tricks to get the most from your lipsticks all year round.

Exfoliate – This is the most important thing you can do for your lips as this removes all the dead skin from your lips leaving new skin cells to grow in their place. This will help keeps your lips soft and subtle. This can easily be done by combining equal parts of sugar and honey and using a toothbrush to gently scrub your lips. Do this once or twice a week to keep your lips soft and kissable.

Lip Balm – Before beginning to apply your makeup put on a thin coat of lip balm of your choice. This will get your lips moisturized and keep them from looking dry and cracked. When you are ready to apply your lip products make sure to gently wipe off any excess lip balm. (It’s also a good idea to apply a coat of moisturizing lip balm to your lips before bed each night to help keep your lips smooth and hydrated)

Lipliner – Begin by using your favorite lipliner, here I am using NYX’s Deep Red, and begin at the Cupid’s Bow of the upper lip and trace the outer part of your lips. Once the lips are lined you are going to use the same liner pencil to fill them in. This is extremely important as this will lay the foundation for the lipstick you apply on top. Simply turn the liner onto its side and color in the rest of the lip.

Lipstick – Now it’s time to apply your lipstick. One of the things that will help your lipstick look it’s best is to use a lip brush to put on the lipstick instead of applying it directly from the tube. As we age we get small crevasses in our lips, when you use the lipstick from the tube the color lays on the top surface of the lips only. Using a brush allows the color to really get into the lip and helps it stay longer. Dip the lipbrush into the lipstick, here I am using Makeup Geek’s Elegant, and pack the color onto the lips to get a sort of stained effect. Now take a tissue and blot your lips a couple of times to really press the color into your lips. Now go back in with your lipstick and apply a second coat of color.

Concealer – To help clean up around the lips and give them a clean edge, wipe off your lipbrush really well to remove the lipstick and use a concealer like MAC Studio Concealer to clean up the edges.

Having amazing lips with color that will last is easy. Regardless of whether you are wearing the perfect red holiday lip, or just want to get the most wear from your lipstick, these simple steps will make sure your lips stay looking their best all night.

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Profile photo of Marlena

CEO of Makeup Geek and Makeup Educator


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Thank you Marlena, this was a really good tutorial to watch as I am one of those people who needs to reapply my listick about a zillion times a day as it seems to come off so quickly and I have small lips so I really like having something on them… this info is fantastic and so worth doing! Thanks very much

This works perfectly … but I’m blonde and not sure about the deep red on me. I do love the look though!

This was a great tutorial. I did all the steps you suggested and my lipstick stayed on, even after eating! Thank you.

I’m french and my english is bad…
Could you realize a tutorial of your eyes’s Mu, please ? I loooooove.
Thanks, Vero

Here’s something I wouldn’t mind finding out … how do I keep my red lipsticks from bleeding? (>.< ) I seem to have this problem consistantly, not matter what I try. First I use the MAC lip primer (as I find it just makes everything go one smoother), then I use a lip liner (making sure to fill it all in once I've lined the lips), then I typically apply my lipstick over that. Usually I just go with liptick, but on rare occasions I'll put a strawberry lip balm (Body Shop) over top for a bit of shine and pop. However, whether or not I use the balm, I'm finding that my lipstick will bleed down past my lips just a bit. It's extremely frustrating having to apply and re-apply and touch up all day long. (>.<)

I’m actually surprised she didn’t include the step I always use to set my lipstick! I do everything she does here and then i take a small makeup brush and use setting powder (I used MakeupForever’s HD Microfinish Setting powder) and dab it over my lipstick and concealer, reapply lipstick, blot, and put another THIN layer. the powder goes on transculent so its not a problem. the only problem i’ve encountered is it mattes your lips. this isn’t a bad thing in my opinion if im wearing lipstick, i don’t like non-matte finishes anyways.
hope this helps!