Problem With Bleeding Lipstick? Not With These Tips

Janell M. Hickman




Nothing feels worse than having a makeup meltdown — especially when it comes to your lipstick color. The dreaded clown mouth (a.k.a. lipstick bleeds) can quickly downgrade your look. Whether you go for something soft and neutral or bold and bright, say “stay” to your lipstick with a few expert tricks below!

Select the Right Formula
“The formula can sometimes be the cause; for instance, a very waxy or wet lipstick can easily feather or bleed,” shares Laura Mercier Global Makeup Artist, Alexis Comforti. When it doubt, gloss might not be the best choice for all-day wear. “Lip crayons and lipsticks have the most staying power,” she explains. “They tend to be thicker and have more pigment.”

Always Color Inside the Lines
Unfortunately, lip liner has gotten a bad rep in the past, but it’s a makeup artist favorite for locking color into place. “Lip liner is generally made of waxes and powders that act as a barrier stopping lipstick from feathering into lines around the mouth,” shares MAKE UP FOR EVER Vice President of Education and Artistry, Simone Ciafardini. “The purpose of lip liners is to make the lip look seamless, fuller, and on trend,” adds Comforti.

MORE: 15 Things That Happen When You Wear Lipstick Full Time

Keep Color Consistent
“You should try to match your liner to your lipstick, although it can be slightly deeper or brighter,” shares Comforti. “My trick is that I completely line the lips with lip liner, then use that same pencil to fill in the entire lip.” Note to self: Light lipstick and dark liner went out in the ‘90s!

Pass the Tissue
Contrary to popular belief, this old school beauty tip actually does work. “Blotting is one of those makeup tricks handed down from generation to generation,” says Ciafardini. “Just blotting after one application won’t provide any benefit.  If you want longer lasting lipstick with more of a stronger color payoff, apply, blot and then apply again,” she advises.

Tricks of the Trade
How does Comforti keep celebrities looking great on the red carpet? “Prior to applying the lip liner, I define the outer lip line with Laura Mercier’s Secret Camouflage and set with a little Translucent Powder,” she spills. “This little trick is so successful because it helps to define the lips, fill in the fine lines around the mouth area, and stops makeup migration.”

MORE: 10 Fall Lipstick Colors to Try Now

Prep Before You Prime
“A lip primer is fine but lip exfoliant is a better investment,” Ciafardini. “Nothing destroys a beautiful lip look more than dead, flaky skin.”  However, there’s no need to go overboard — once per week is fine. Additionally, a quick swipe lip balm can help banish chapped skin. “Just be sure to blot so the lipstick won’t bleed,” she says.

A Little Goes a Long Way
A light dusting of powder can help set color for a long night. “Be sure the powder is silica powder based, such as MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Microfinish Powder, and not talc powder,” Ciafardini warns. “[You should] go very lightly on the application as well.” If not, the result can look cakey as opposed to matte.

Remember, Makeup is Supposed to Be Fun!
“Lipstick is one of the oldest and most beloved makeup items in the world,” says Ciafardini. “Shake it up! Don’t be married to one shade.” Comforti agrees, “A lipstick is one of the easiest things to reapply–it’s worth using one that feels comfortable.”