Full lips



While I don't begrudge certain young celebrities for their endorsement power, it's frustrating when young, impressionable girls go to great, and sometimes harmful, lengths to look like said starlets.  Such is the case with the #KylieJennerLipChallege, where you use a shot glass and suction to plump your lips.


And, like any trend, full, pouty lips have become the biggest craze since strobing or full brows.  While I've discussed how to make your lips appear larger with makeup, that method takes quite a bit of time and requires several touch-ups.

So I tried a lip-plumping tool, which I Instagrammed (@ElectraLane) several weeks ago:

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Since then, I've tried using this device, which declares that it not only plumps your lips but works out the muscles around your mouth to reduce smile lines.  It did neither.

In fact, the last time I used it, it actually bruised my lips:


The lighting isn't great, but IRL it looked like I had just downed a few glasses of red wine.

So, short of fillers or implants, what's a good solution that doesn't take 38 steps or a PhD in makeup?


Shading is like contouring in that it crates shadows, but it's far less involved.  I've created a quick instructional video, but basically, you line your lips with bronzer.  It takes a little practice and the right product shade, but because it's powder, it stays on and looks far more natural than a lip liner.

Let's be honest - our lips are just fine the way they are.  But, if you do want to give the illusion of fuller lips like I often do, I hope you give shading a chance.  The other options simply are #NOTWorthIt.

Luscious Lippies


In the almost decade that I've painted faces, no client has asked me to make his or her lips look smaller; and while I tend to highlight my eyes instead of lips, I know lips are the main facial feature many focus on. Since there are about 72 million or so videos/tutorials on how create a larger lip line, I'm specifically showing how I fake fuller lips that a) look natural and b) work even if you don't have perfect lips.  If you're a visual learner like me, check out this video (yes, I broke down and started a YouTube channel).

1 - Prep Lips

Apply a little lip balm, then blot with a tissue so your lips are hydrated but not slick.  If they're really dry and flaky, mix a couple drops of olive or coconut oil with 1/2 teaspoon of brown sugar, then gently exfoliate your lips with this paste.  Wipe it off using a damp wash cloth, then apply the lip balm and blot.

2 - Apply Concealer

Using a small dot of concealer, apply to lips and the skin around them.

3 - Fill In

Using a flesh-toned lip liner, fill in your lips making sure to draw just outside the natural lip line.  If you have uneven lips like I do, this would be the time to even them out.

4 - Lipstick

Apply a matte lipstick with a brush over the entire area where you applied lip liner.

5 - Contour

To start adding dimension, line your lips just on the created lip line with a pencil that's slightly darker than the lip color.  Blend gently with the lip brush.

6 - Highlight

In just the center of the lips, apply a matte lipstick lighter than your original lip color and tap with your finger to blend.

7 - Brighten

Unless you like the matte look, top your highlight with a small amount of gloss in a similar color.