Do you wish your small lips looked more voluptuous? Follow these tips for changing the appearance of your lip shape and size with the magic of makeup.
How To: Make Small Lips Look Bigger With Makeup
Want fuller lips using makeup alone? It’s possible. Contouring, highlighting, lip color, and lip liner can all work together to give you the appearance of fuller lips. First, you’ll want to determine your natural lip shape. Then play up your lips with makeup. Here’s how:
What Lip Shape Do You Have? Here’s How To Tell
To identify your lip shape, take a look at yourself straight on in the mirror without lip color on. Here are a few popular lip shapes:
- Thin Lips: If both of your lips are thinner than you’d like, this article is for you. You can play up your pout using the makeup tricks below.
- Full Lips: Both your lower and upper lips are voluptuous and pillowy.
- Wide Lips: Your lips stretch out wide to your cheeks
- Heavy Upper Lips: Your upper lip is more prominent than your lower lip. You may want to accentuate your lower lip with makeup.
- Heavy Lower Lips: Your lower lip looks larger than your upper lip. You may choose to play up your upper lip with makeup.
- Round Lips: Your lips are nearly the same width and height and have rounded edges. You may want to use makeup to add width to your lips.
- Heart Shaped Lips: If you have a prominent cupid’s bow, you may have heart-shaped lips. You may choose to accentuate that curve even further.
- Downward-Turned Lips: If your lips turn slightly downward at the corners, as if in a frown, you may have downward-turned lips. You can use lip liner to change the shape of those corners.
- Hollywood Lips: If you have a rounded upper lip with a less noticeable cupid’s bow, you may have Hollywood lips or bow-shaped lips.1,2,3
It’s helpful to keep your lip shape in mind when you apply makeup. This way, you’ll have some direction when it comes to accentuating your pout.
Step 1: Gather Your Tools
The first step to making small lips look bigger is to gather your tools. Here are some product pick recommendations:
- Lip scrub
- Lip balm
- Lip liner that matches your lipstick color
- Concealer that matches your skin tone
- Neutral lipstick
- Lip gloss slightly lighter than the lipstick color
- Highlighting pencil or powder4
Step 2: Prep Your Lips
Before you begin, you’ll want to exfoliate and moisturize your lips. Smooth lips reflect light, making them look fuller and thicker.5
- Exfoliate your lips with a high-quality lip scrub.
- Apply lip balm or a lip primer.6
Step 3: Apply Concealer Over Your Lips
Next, you’ll want to apply foundation or concealer over your lips. This will help blur the line between where your lips naturally start and your skin begins.
- Apply your everyday concealer or foundation to your lips with a clean finger or sponge.7
Step 4: Line Your Lips
Now here’s where the trickery starts to come in. If you want to make your lips look bigger, you’ll want to cheat a larger lip border by tracing just outside your natural lip line.
- With your lip liner, trace slightly above the lip line of your cupid’s bow. This will make your upper lip look bigger.
- If you want to remedy a thin lower lip, trace slightly below your bottom lip line.
- After that, follow your natural lip line on the sides of your mouth.8
Step 5: Fill In Your Lips With Liner
If you’re lining outside of your natural lip line, it helps to fill in your lips with the same color. This trick will fill the space between your “new lip” and your natural one so it looks seamless. This may also help make your lip color last longer.
- Take the same lip liner you used to line your lips and color them in.9
Step 6: Apply Lipstick
With your lips prepped, it’s time to apply the lip color of your choice. Here are some tips for working with small or thin lips.
- Pick a neutral shade close to your natural lip color, this makes it easier to create the appearance of a full lip.
- Stay away from dark shades, as they may make lips look smaller.
- Lighter shades may make your lips look more plump.10,11
- Once you’ve selected your lip color, apply it with a lip brush or straight from the tube. Use your lip liner as a guide as to where to apply color.
Step 7: Highlight And Contour
Highlighter and contour can draw attention and help add depth to certain features. To play up thin lips, use this to your advantage.
- Highlight the area just above your cupid’s bow with a highlighting pencil or powder.
- Add a small amount of contour just below your lower lip. It will add depth to your lips.12
Step 8: Swipe On Some Gloss
If your goal is to create the appearance of fuller lips, you’ll want to embrace lip gloss. A matte lip may end up looking flat, while a shiny lip looks more luscious.
- Add gloss to the center of your lips to add dimension.
- Use a color that’s lighter than your lip color to help make your lips look fuller.
- For an even more dramatic look, use a plumping gloss that contains ingredients like hyaluronic acid and peptides.13,14
Lipstick Colors For Small Lips
Wondering what lip color to try if you want fuller lips? Dark colors flatten the appearance of your pout and light colors play it up.15 For best results, go with a shade that is no more than two shades darker than your natural lip color. Here are some shades to try:
- Peachy pinks
- Warm nudes
- Taupe or brown16
If makeup doesn’t do the trick (or you’re curious about other options) here are some other things you can try.
Moisturizing And Plumping Products
Look for products that contain lip-plumping ingredients, like hyaluronic acid. You can find these in the form of glosses or serums.17
You’ve tried a DIY face mask, but have you tried a lip mask? Lip masks use skin healthy ingredients to plump the skin and create a softer appearance.18,19
Perfecting That Pout
You’re beautiful just the way you are. But it can be fun to play around with makeup to change up your look or play up certain features. Changing the appearance of your lip shape and size has never been easier.
So grab that lip pencil, try these techniques, and get ready for your friends to tell you you look fabulous.
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