Fake It Until You Make It: A Perfectly Traced, Bold Lip

Rachel Adler
Hot pink lip


Through all of our handy beauty products, we enhance and improve upon our features that we were born with, and play up the ones that we wish had a bit more prominence. So that saying “fake it until you make it” can really ring true in the beauty world – if you want fuller lips, make them; bolder brows, create them; and a contoured jawline, contour it! In this column we’ll teach you the tips and tricks to tweaking your features and “faking it” until you “make it.” 

We are suckers for a bold lip. But, as we all know, bold lips are not easy – they bleed, they smear, and at times they just don’t stay in the lines. So why do we always see those gorgeous models with those picture perfect pouts? Well, because they have professional makeup artists hard at work using numerous tools to get them picture perfect, of course. Luckily for you, we’ve learned a few of those tricks as well over the years – so even if you’re still just a “beginner” at applying your bold lip, there are plenty of ways that you can “fake it” until you really “make it” – as a pro at the task, that is.

Start with good prep work: 
Always, always, always exfoliate your lips before applying a bold lip color. No one wants to see any flakes in your gorgeous bright lip – yuck. If you don’t have a lip scrub, simply use a dry toothbrush or wet wash cloth gently against your lips, and then apply a bit of lip balm.

MORE: Lipstick Layering 101: How to Combine Lipsticks Like a Pro

Blot any moisture away:
Now, blot any of that excess moisture off of your lips before you begin your color application. Otherwise, your bold color will slide right off. You want moisturized lips, but you don’t want them to be glossy and slippery!

Use a highlighter to trace your lips: 
This may seem odd, but instead of constantly trying to find a lip liner to match your lipstick (or the natural lip liner trick) try using a brow highlighter (which tends to be a bit more matte) to trace around the outside of your lip. This will help to keep your lipstick from bleeding. Once you’ve traced, blend in the highlighter gently with your finger.

Apply your lipstick: 
Now, apply your lipstick like you usually would, tracing inside your lips. We like to gently layer the color on, blotting once almost as if to give it a stain, and then layer on once more of that to ensure staying power. To finish, powder softly around the outside of your lips for a perfect pout!