Pouty lips, big lips, plump lips… there’s just something about luscious, full lips. Not everyone is born with a naturally plump pucker. If you want to know how to get fuller lips, read on. As it turns out, with the right products, you can make your lips appear fuller and more voluptuous.
How Do I Naturally Get Plumper–Looking Lips?
If you’d like to avoid resorting to lip fillers, there are several ways in which you can instantly create the appearance of plumper lips before your next night out.
Here’s the thing about exfoliation. While getting rid of those unsightly dead skin cells (that can make you look older than you are) exfoliation also creates a trick of the light. Smooth skin reflects light and gives off a plumper, smoother, more radiant appearance. Whether it’s the skin on your face, or your lips.
If you’re looking to gently exfoliate your lips, your best tool is an old toothbrush.
Wet the brush and carefully buff your lips in a circular manner for a few seconds. If you can do this right before you’re going out, even better. The buffing process will boost the blood circulation in your lips (just like a massage), giving them a temporary boost in volume and color.
You can also make a homemade honey beauty scrub to use on your lips. Just mix 1 tablespoon of raw honey with an equal amount of brown sugar. Apply the honey scrub with a toothbrush, and brush in gentle circles.
Dry, dehydrated lips look smaller. When there’s no moisture in your lips, they’re like a dried-out sponge. Moisture adds a plumpness that can create kissable lips instantly.
Keep your lips as moisturized as they need throughout the day, and don’t forget to support that with drinking plenty of water.
You can also turn to a lip product containing hyaluronic acid for optimal moisture. More on that in a moment.
3. Makeup Tricks
Top makeup artists employ several effective makeup tricks to help give clients instantly fuller, plumper lips. These are all based around simple tricks of the light and contouring.
Here are some of the tricks of the trade for a perfect pout:
Beauty Trick One:
- Use foundation or concealer to form a base across your lips, and let it spread a little further than your natural lip line. This will help you to fake a larger “canvas.”
- Choose a lip liner that matches your lipstick, and draw a line slightly past the natural edge of your lips.
- Apply lipstick.
- Apply a dab of gloss to the center of your lips only. This gives a 3D illusion of volume. If you really want to take it to another level, use a shimmery gloss.
- Finally, dot a little highlighter right on your cupid’s bow. This will add to the 3D effect, making your lips look instantly bigger (yet another trick of the light).
Beauty Trick Two:
- Choose a natural lip color, and apply it as usual across your lips.
- Have a second natural lip color on hand that’s a few shades lighter than the first. Apply this color just over the middle part of your lips. You can also use a white lip crayon and smudge it in well. The color contrast will make your lips appear fuller.
Tip: You can also boost a thin top lip with the “highlight” shade, leaving a fuller bottom lip as is.
Beauty Trick Three:
- Apply your favorite lip shade as usual.
- Take a thin lip brush and apply some concealer right around your lips, close to the lip line.
- This color contrast gives an effect of instant volume to your lips, while also enhancing the color of your lipstick.
Note: Avoid dark shades of lipstick and matte lipsticks. These tend to make lips look smaller and flatter, and they might make fine lines more noticeable.
4. Ready-Made Lip Plumpers
A quick way to fake plumper lips is to buy a lip gloss whose sole intention is to plump your lips. These “lip plumpers” use known natural irritants to stimulate blood circulation, resulting in a temporary “bee-stung” swelling of your lips.
You may find that these products contain active ingredients like cinnamon, spearmint, wintergreen, cayenne pepper, caffeine, ginger, or menthol. Vitamin B3 (niacin) may also be used, as it can dilate the blood vessels.1
But a word of warning – they may sting or cause excessive irritation on some people.
Are Lip Plumping Glosses Safe?
It depends on what you choose. Most lip plumpers have the sole goal of irritation. Don’t overuse these products. The skin on your lips is delicate, and too much irritation could cause them to dry out or peel.
But, here’s a better option…
Hyaluronic Acid Lip Plumping Products
Instead, look for a lip plumper that contains hyaluronic acid. Unlike some plumpers that irritate your lips to make them appear fuller, hyaluronic acid plumpers works completely differently.
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring, non-irritating, hydrating substance already found in your body. Its greatest claim to fame is that it’s been proven to be able to hold 1,000 times its weight in water.2
This moisture boost can help plump up the lips naturally – and in a much less irritating way.
Hyaluronic acid also provides moisturizing benefits which help your lips look and feel healthier.
Also look out for other soothing, softening ingredients like ceramides and peptides.
5. Last-Minute DIY Ingredients
As you saw with lip plumping glosses, natural spices can act as lip plumpers. This is because they naturally irritate the lips. If you’ve ever eaten really spicy dishes, like Indian or Mexican cuisine, you might’ve experienced this effect.
As with those lip-plumping glosses these ingredients can be irritating for sensitive lips, but if you’re in a pickle and need a last-minute lip boost, here’s how you can use them.
Take a hydrating lip balm or oil (like coconut oil, olive oil, or pure cocoa butter) and add a few drops of menthol, wintergreen, peppermint, or cinnamon essential oil. Mix, then apply to your lips. Dab off any excess with a tissue.
Cayenne pepper is another potential irritant, but the capsaicin in this pepper might burn your lips.3 Steer clear of this and any other ingredients that make your lips overly sensitive. And, NEVER apply them to cracked lips.
Luscious Lips, Here You Come
For plumper lips, there are so many quick tricks at your disposal – from good lip care to makeup illusions to a good hyaluronic plumping product.
But of course, it’s important to be realistic. Understand that nothing will ever plump your lips as effectively, and as long-term, as lip augmentation (injected lip fillers). But if you want to avoid needles, a topical lip plumper containing hyaluronic acid will be your best bet.
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