Deven Hopp Sep 17, 2013

The time has come for bold and bright to give way to the deep, dark lip colors of fall. Much like red lipstick, women often think they can’t wear a richly pigmented lip, but as long as you know what you’re doing dark lipstick can look remarkably chic. The far from color shy makeup artist Elyse Reneau is here with the guidance and inspiration you need to embrace the darker side of beauty. Without further ado, here are MDC’s do’s and don’ts of dark lipstick…

dark lipstick how to

Step #1: Exfoliate and Moisturize

  • DO prep your lips properly by exfoliating and moisturizing before application. This make the color go on smoother and last longer. 
  • DON’T apply dark lipstick on dry, chapped lips. The color will crack and flake off–not a good look. 

Step #2: Line Your Lips

DO line your lips with a lip pencil similar in color to your lipstick first. This allows you to establish the boundaries of your lip and the pencil helps hold the color in place. 

Step #3: How to Apply the Lipstick

  • DON’T apply it straight from lipstick bullet. Instead, use a lip brush to give you control over the application and intensity.
  • DO clean up mistakes and perfect the edges of your lip line with concealer for a polished finish. Wine colored smears tend to ruin the drama of a dark lip.

Step #4: Don't Forget Your Eyes and Cheeks

  • DON’T forget about your eyes. Defined brows, clean liner and lots of mascara pair well with dark lips. For eye shadow, choose a light shimmery bronze or taupe to play up the eyes without stealing focus from the lips.
  • DO add a little color to the cheeks to brighten up the face. Reneau used L’Oréal The One Sweep Sculpting Blush Duo in Poppy on set.

Step #5: Final Check!

DON’T forget to do a teeth check! DO pick a shade you love…


Our models are wearing Lancôme Rouge in Love in Rouge Valentine and Lime Crime Opaque Lipstick in Poisonberry. No matter what shade you wear, wear it with confidence.

Will you wear dark lipstick this fall?
If so, tell us your favorite hue below.

Photo: Dan Wolner 

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About the Author:When Deven's not behind the scenes producing our photo shoots, she's behind her computer writing about everything from nail art to new lipstick.

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