A Step-by-Step Guide to Applying Dark Lipstick

February 17, 2021
By: Makeup.com | Makeup.com by L'Oréal
person wearing dark lipstick
Wearing a dark lipstick can instantly elevate your mood and confidence. But achieving a flawless finish with a bold, vampy lipstick can be tricky. It requires a steady hand, precision and the right technique to ensure the pigmented formula doesn’t end up staining the outside of your mouth. To help you nail dark lipstick application, , we put together an easy step-by-step guide.Keep reading for expert tips.

STEP 1: Use a Lip Primer

Swipe on a lip primer like the NYX Professional Makeup Lip Primer in nude or deep nude (depending on your skin tone) to ensure your lips are smooth and even. Lip primer also helps to act as a guide so you don’t stray outside of the lines.

STEP 2: Conceal 

Next, apply a neutral concealer to the lips to create a blank canvas. This helps you get the best color payoff (especially if you have naturally two-toned lips) and a more long-lasting finish.

STEP 3: Line Your Lips

Line your lips with a transparent liner, like the Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Lip Pencil in Ozone, or a shade that matches your lipstick.

STEP 4: Apply Your Lipstick

The key to applying dark lipstick is precision, which is why we recommend applying the color with a lip brush so that you can control placement and the amount of product you use. We like the IT Cosmetics Love Beauty Fully Essential Retractable Lip Brush. If you’re looking for a good vampy lipstick to try, we recommend the cult-favorite Maybelline New York Superstay Liquid Lipstick in Escapist. If you want a dark hue with a bit of shine, the NYX Professional Makeup Shine Loud High Shine Lip Color in Never Basic is a dual-ended lippie that offers a matte and gloss finish.
NYX Professional Makeup Shine Loud High Shine Lip Color in Never Basic

STEP 5: Touch Up

If you do happen to apply product outside your lip line (or want an extra-precise finish), clean up the edges of the lip with a cotton swab and makeup remover. You can also apply a little concealer around the lips to get rid of any rogue color.
Photo: Chaunte Vaughn

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