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Hello my name is Erica, and I’m addicted to lip products. If there were such a thing as Lipstick-holics Anonymous, I’d be first in line – and wouldn’t even care about anonymity. I’m wholeheartedly hooked on my lippies collection, as anyone who’s visited my bedroom’s beauty station knows well. No shame in that game, folks. I collect lipsticks like I collect shoes – which you know is serious business, if ya caught my recent Instastory revealing my ongoing collection count (hint: it’s upwards of 150, whoops). But in being a big fan of experimenting with color and always needing something there, I’m also super aware of the importance of keeping your actual lips as healthy as can be. Otherwise, your lippy application turns into an actual nightmare of dry, cracked, even bloody pain-in-the-ass-ness. And ain’t nobody got time for that. 😉 SO. In the spirit of the middle of winter, we’re talkin’ how to fix dry lips 101. I’m currently typing this in my hotel room in New York City, where the temp is in the 20’s and wiiiiiiindy. I came up for two days with one of my girlfriends for days of brand meetings, and we had some photoshoots on our to-do list, too. Praying to the sweet Lord baby Jesus that Mother Nature looks kindly upon us today, because yesterday was so friggin’ cold + windy that we might’ve actually froze a finger had we broken out the camera lense. HA. All that to say…it also wreaked havoc on my lips, and I’m totally feelin’ the struggle right about now.
Generally speaking, one of the most IMPORTANT to-do’s when it comes to fixing dry lips is staying hydrated. At this point in my adult life, I’m learning that staying hydrated is tantamount to breathing oxygen or buying Girl Scout cookies every year – it’s just gotta happen. This has never been my strongest suit – drinking water diligently – but I am working on goshdangit! I WILL DO IT. Hydrating for the inside manifests itself in goodness on the outside, so it really does make a big, worthwhile difference across the board in your general health, wellbeing, and overall “beauty,” too.
HOW TO FIX DRY LIPS 101
STEP 1: EXFOLIATE
Sloughing off dry skin is *essential* this time of year. And I’m sure I don’t even need to remind ya – it feels like all of my girlfriends and their moms are having the same struggle right about now. EVERYONE’S lips are like the Sahara. Or a snake molting its skin (ew gross). I know there is NO way I’m the only chica whose lips get totally gross come wintertime. (Or at least I pray to the sweet Lord baby Jesus I’m not alone here – anyone else’s lips revolt when the temp drops below 30??). I find myself exfoliating my lips nightly to keep my pucker in good shape all season long.
Not all exfoliants are created equal. Some are equivalent to rubbing rocks on your face, while others are like smearing on tapioca – neither being totally effective (or at all enjoyable). My personal favorite is hands down MAC’s Lip Scrubtious – it’s gritty enough to do the job, but it’s loaded with hydrating conditioners to immediately add moisture. And it smells/tastes AMAZEBALLS. It’s like Pokemon – you’ll wanna catch ’em all, just to have this entire collection of sweet-smelling lippies on hand.
STEP 2: PRIME
After exfoliating, I like using something to prep n’ prime my pucker before adding any sorta color. MAC’s Prep n’ Prime is my current favorite; it’s not exactly a chapstick – TBH, IDK what exactly it is! – but it’s super soft + feels similar to a good face primer, in that it just creates a nice sorta barrier between your bare skin and product, to maintain health + promote longer wear.
STEP 3: LINE
I used to be the actual worst with lipliner. For years, my mom would say, “Line your lips!” “You should be using lip liner!” “Your lipstick wouldn’t bleed like that if you just lined them already!” THANKS MOM. YOU WERE RIGHT. Now I’m on the lip line train, cos LAWDY does it make a difference. I used to not use lipliner regularly namely because I was afraid of it, pointblankperiod. The fear was always that I’d come out looking more clown than Kardashian. BUT. Lip liner – when used correctly – is such a good way to perfect your pout, in that it primes for color AND helps said color last all day long. #winning
Disclaimer here: I’m no makeup artist or beauty guru (obviously – ha!). So what I do may very well not be “the way” to do it – it’s just what works for me, and by all means might very well work for you, too. I start by lining my lips all the way around; I try to literally follow the natural edge of my lip, staying ON it instead of veering outside at all. Coloring outside the lines is always when I start to feel like Miranda Sings. 😉 Line the edge, drawing in a more emphasize Cupid’s Bow to really define your natural lip. Emphasizing your Cupid’s Bow will also work to make your lips appear bigger! Then, I make sure to actually color my entire lip in with my lip pencil, too. Ideally your lipliner should be similar in shade to the actual lip color you’re wearing for the day, obvi. So coloring them in fully with liner before adding your actual lip color will just further define your color and keep it lasting longer throughout the day!
STEP 4: FILL
Time for COLOR, BABY. I’m obviously unafraid of color over here. The pinker, the redder, the better. 😉 Granted, I still lovelovelove me a good nude from time to time – I just naturally gravitate towards brighter berry hues. Whatever color floats your boat is fine by me – just choose your favorite confidence booster! I start filling in color by applying a swipe across my bottom lip, then one from one side of my upper lip downwards, and another from the opposite side down. Your Cupid’s Bow is a great starting block for this; just make sure you apply your color in all of the nooks n’ crannies of your lips!
Here I’m using one of my all-time FAVE reds – Smashbox’s “BAWSE.” It’s the most gorgeous, blue-toned red (suuuuper similar to Ruby Woo, which I’m equally obsessed with), and the formula is fantastic. It’s one of their “Always On” Liquid Lipsticks – it applies beautifully + easily, and it really does stay always on all day long. 10/10 recommend. (As seen in this post on kiss-proof lip products – perfect with Valentine’s Day right around the corner! 😉 )
How to fix dry lips 101: PROTECT + TREAT overnight! Another biggie is nighttime – I am SUUUUPER picky/obsessive over what products are going on my lips at night. Really, I never truly feel like I have it down pat, because I’m always hearing of/finding a new gem to try that swears it’s better than XYC. BUT, lately I’ve been using the Clarins Light Comfort Oil consistently, and I absolutely lovelovelove it. It’s one that I feel truly makes my lips better while I sleep, and it works for daily wear. ALSO, this Oil comes in a plethora of colors + scents (although they’re all pretty sheer, FYI), so this is something I could rock all winter long just for the feels.
Here are all of the products I mentioned above, as well as a few other personal favorites of mine!
What are your favorite products when it comes to how to fix dry lips in winter?
Pleasepleaseplease leave your own faves below – I know I’m always up for trying the best of the best, and we could all benefit from each other’s recommendations! If you’ve got a favorite lip scrub, moisturizer, lip liner, color – the works! – let us know in a comment down below. Especially if you’ve got a favorite overnight treatment that truly WORKS??? I go through ’em so fast and always need good new recs to give a go!
P.S. Don’t miss this awesome, easy Nordstrom giveaway!
P.P.S. Have a bombdotcom weekend, yo.