Makeup DON’T: Bad Lip Liner

{Neutral lip liner goes with everything image from}

I really shouldn’t quantify, but as far as makeup don’ts and pet peeves go, ring around the mouth lip liner ranks pretty high at the top of the list. I will never understand this bizarre and unattractive look, whether it be done out of ignorance or intentionally. It draws the eye to the lips, but not in a good way. I know a lot of women forego the lip liner, and perhaps it’s due to the dreaded ring around the mouth look. Skipping lip liner altogether does a disservice to you and your makeup routine.

Another reason many of you may be skipping lip liner is you don’t want to add twenty more pieces of product to your makeup bags. Good news! Gone are the days of matching your lip liner to your lipstick. Instead, you want to match your lip liner to your natural lip color. That way, you can wear any shade of lipstick or lipgloss with it. Another pet peeve of mine about lip liner is the look of a too dark lip liner, this is not only unflattering but it makes the lips appear smaller and closed in. One of my favorite neutral lip liners is M.A.C.’s lip pencil in Subculture for fair to medium skin tones and M.A.C.’s lip pencils in Oak or Stripdown for darker skin tones.

When you apply lip liner you don’t want to just outline the lips, you want to line and fill in entirely. This creates a base for your lipstick or lipgloss, allowing it to last that much longer for you. Lip liner can also act as a barrier and prevent your lipstick from bleeding, that’s why lip liners are important for bold lip looks. I also like the matte look that lip liner alone provides. Often times my clients tell me they only wear lipgloss or lip balm, these emollient based products hold up much better with a neutral lip liner layered underneath. For maximum lip longevity, I like to use a lipstain first, layer a neutral lip liner overtop and apply lipstick and lipgloss. Lipgloss is the first thing to disappear with eating and drinking, and layering products ensures your lips always have some color. This is especially helpful for weddings and other special events.

There are many celebrities who continuously demonstrate the ring around the mouth makeup don’t, exhibits, A, B, and C.

Do you use lip liner?

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5 Responses to Makeup DON’T: Bad Lip Liner

  1. So true, I don’t understand why women would do that. It looks so cheap. I recently read about the trick that you’re talking about (to use a natural tone and then use some balm) for a natural look and I actually, try to wear it every now and then, it looks really nice. Also, is good to know that a natural lip liner is key for maximum lip color longevity. Again, thanks for bringing light to our make up doubts :)

  2. Danielle says:

    This post comes at the perfect time, Bre. A colleague of mine was telling me she needed to get to Sephora to pick out a new lipliner. And I squirmed. Because all i could think of is the 90s lip liner look–which she often sports.

    Perhaps I will accompany her to Sephora and throw in some of your tips/language about the true purpose of liners…sigh…i am such a do-good-er. (jk)

  3. Breanna says:

    @Danielle You’re a good coworker to help her out like that! Friends don’t let friends become makeup don’ts. I think accompanying her to Sephora is a great idea, if you have access to her computer leave my lip liner post up for her to read beforehand. I’m not one for subtle! haha Continue to lead by example! :)

  4. Breanna says:

    @ Marta I love the look of M.A.C. Subculture lip liner and Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment, it is such a pretty, flattering nude. It’s the color I wish my lips were naturally *le sigh* Filling in with lip liner, any shade, is a great matte lip look. Have you tried NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils yet? You would love them, as well as the new Velvet Gloss pencils!

  5. […] Line and fill in your lips with NARS Fantasia Lip Pencil. The lip pencil provides a base for the lipgloss and gives it something to adhere to, making it last longer and preventing the dreaded ring around the lip look. […]

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