Do you know what today is? Yes, it’s Saturday and yes it’s July 29, but did you know it’s also National Lipstick Day? Funny right, but fun too!
Lipstick is big business so it should come as no surprise that the industry not only endorses but embraces a national day of its product. Lip color is actually the third most popular cosmetic product, behind foundation and mascara, generating nearly $627 million in revenue in the U.S. alone. That’s a lot of mattes and glosses.
If you have any doubts of its popularity, I present none other than Kylie Jenner. According to Forbes magazine, the 20-year-old of Kardashian family fame is on track to dethrone Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg as the youngest self-made billionaire. Ever. All thanks to a lip kit.
I realize, as does anyone who can live and breathe, that calling Jenner “self-made” is a huge stretch, but considering she launched her Kylie Cosmetics in 2016 and today her net worth is $900 million, credit is due. If she reaches billionaire status in the next two years, and most experts predict that will happen by year’s end, she will indeed wear the “youngest billionaire ever” crown, beating the face of Facebook’s 23 with her 21.
One more interesting tidbit about Kylie: you won’t see any TV or print advertising for her billion dollar brand, which adds even more level of amazing to her amazing meteoric rise. Her products are instead marketed primarily through her and her family’s social media sites…for free. Some industry analysts say the exposure of her products to her 110 million Instagram followers alone is worth $1 million in traditional advertising spending. That’s $1 million she’s keeping right in her pocket.
Okay, but enough about Kylie. Let’s talk lipstick starting with creating a solid and flattering lipstick wardrobe for yourself.
Perhaps most important is matching any lip shade you pick with your skin undertone. Warm skin tones should wear orange-reds, brick reds, peaches, peachy pinks, and corals. Those with cool undertones look best in blue-reds, cranberry, wine, pink reds, and rosy pinks. From there, it’s up to you as to what style of a lip color you prefer.
You might like traditional lipsticks or you may prefer lip glosses. Maybe you like a matte finish and not so much a glossy look. Whatever variety or brand, every woman should have three lip colors in her cosmetics collection: a versatile nude, a classic red, and a nice pink.
My go-to and basic nude lipstick has forever been “Apricot Glaze” Crème Lipstick by Mary Kay but the color was recently discontinued. Can I just say, why do manufacturers do this? Do they enjoy aggravating their loyal customers and see them walk away, which is what I’ve done in search of a nude. Yep, I’ve headed right off my computer and straight into Sephora for the Girl Lip Stylo in “Peacemaker.” Take that MK! Other popular nudes are Tom Ford’s “Sable Smoke,” Mac’s “Love Child,” Chanel’s “Coco,” and Maybelline’s “Almond Rose,” of which more than 25 tubes are sold every hour.
Reds are a whole different ball game. I really don’t like the way I look in a bright red lip and I don’t like the “look at me, look at me” image it evokes. My personal favorite red? Chanel’s shimmery and high-shine Rouge Coco lip gloss in “Amarena” that is shimmery but still subtle. Another fave is Mary Kay’s “Toffee,” which can go red, coral, and even a darker neutral. “Toffee” actually used to be my go-to nude and all-around go-to lip color, but as I’ve gotten older I find it a bit too harsh and not quite as neutral as I’d like…hence the discovery of “Apricot Glaze” and now “Peacemaker.”
Popular reds are Revlon’s “Fire and Ice,” which actually boasts SPF15, and Chanel’s trademark “Allure.” In general, cool undertones are complimented by blue-based red lipsticks like cranberry and wine, while warm undertoned ladies look best in orange-reds and brick reds. Here’s a good example of both:
Both the above lipsticks are considered “reds,” but the one on the left is a “cool” red while the one on the right is a “warm” red.
Have fun with reds and don’t be afraid to add some drama to your look with them, but despite what many women believe, a bold lip is not always the most attractive the older you get. Younger women can rock a red to no end, but with more mature ladies, sometimes it’s best to just play it safe and play it down.
Pinks are a good way to do this while still adding color. I love MK’s “Dusty Rose” and Revlon’s “Soft Shell Pink” is an enduring darling. Chanel also has some pretty pinks in their Rouge Coco line and Marc Jacob’s “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” is not only fun to ask for at the cosmetic counter, it’s a great color! On the more berry end of pinks are Avon’s popular “Cherry Jubilee” and Clinique’s “Black Honey,” one tube of which is sold every three minutes in the U.S. With all pinks, pick a more sheer one if you’re fair-skinned and more opaque if you’re darker skinned.
I almost always wear some type of lip product. For running errands I opt for a cream lipstick, going out I go with a gloss, and I always have a lip balm nearby. I actually have lip balms everywhere: in my purse, in my car, at my desk, at work, in my nightstand…everywhere. I cannot stand a dry or bare lip. And, true confession, I also have a few Kylie Cosmetics lip products. After seeing how fabulous the ones that my daughter has were, I caved. I will say her matte liquid lipstick stays on for-ev-er, although it is a bit sticky and drying, but her gloss is equally as fab and not drying. Maybe the little billionaire is actually on to something!
As I mentioned above, lip products are big business and many brands are expensive. If you’re looking for an affordable lip gloss, check out both the soft matte lip cream and the lip lustre styles by NYX, found everywhere. They last for hours and the lip lustre is super shiny but moist.
But, how do you make a lipstick last longer after applying it? This used to be a bigger dilemma than it is now due to so many new products boasting “long lasting” and “lip stain” formulas. A true test of this is when you take a drink of something. If your lip color doesn’t show up on the rim of the glass or cup, it’s a keeper. If you have a lip product you adore but it isn’t one that stays on, here are some tricks of the trade you can try.
- Makeup artist and Chanel brand ambassador Kate Lee recommends using “velvet” lipsticks, which give you a matte look but also have emollients. She also suggests first applying a lip balm and letting it sit for 10 minutes before applying your color of choice.
- Most experts agree you should apply your lip color straight from the tube or case and only use a brush to blend after application and to define and fill in your lips with a liner in the same shade as your lipstick.
- You can also try prepping your lips by exfoliating them with a sugar scrub of sugar and Vaseline and also blot away excess lip color after applying.
- Another trick comes from none other than singer Celine Dion, who swears by dabbing a hint of foundation on her lips before applying color.
Or, you can just keep reapplying like I do, but whatever you do, don’t stress about full-lips or lack thereof. The pressure seems to be that one must have full-lips and if you don’t, get some. To me, whether you’re Kylie Jenner or Jane Doe, fake lips simply look fake. No one ever thinks, “Wow, her injected lips are great!” They more than likely think, “Wow, she got new fake lips.” Ironically, I’ve read that Kylie is swearing off the over-filled and uber-fake lips that she is so known for. I guess you don’t always have to dance with what brung you.
Interestingly enough, a recent study revealed that lip size is insignificant when it comes to perception of attractiveness. What really seems to matter is pigment. This means if you have natural lips with a pretty rosy pigment, they are considered much more attractive than any lips full of fillers of any color. So, unless you’re born with full lips, just accept your God-given ones and work with them.
Finally, and just for fun, here’s a chart of what your lipstick shape reveals about your personality. Which one are you?