We all play favourites with just about everything – whether it’s a particular brand of jeans, a signature scent or a sports team. Lippies are much of the same, with Team Lipstick often waging precision wars against the carefree application of Team Gloss in the bathroom mirror.
While it’s good to know what works for you, it’s a bad thing to be stuck in your ways and to use products incorrectly. We’ve made a summary of various lip products (and their uses) to help you pucker up to perfection!
Lip liner often gets labelled as an older women’s product, and it gets blamed for drying lips out. Sadly, most long-lasting products will have a drying effect on your lips if you don’t take care of them, so don’t point fingers at liner alone.
Lip liner can easily double the life of your colour application – the biggest trick is to colour in your entire lip area, says Tshego Maphatane, professional make-up artist. Be sure to match the liner very closely to your shade of lipstick or gloss – it should, under no circumstances, be darker in colour.
Best for: Prolonging the life of your lip colour application. Try Estée Lauder Double Wear Lip Pencil, R265.
Traditional lipstick is high in both pigment and waxes, so it should feel smooth and creamy when applied and add immediately colour to your lips. The more long-wearing a formula becomes, the less waxes and oils it contains, so you’ll sacrifice some comfort and luxury feel for lasting colour.
Best for: Classic, high-impact looks. Try Lancôme Rouge in Love, R250 and Maybelline Superstay 14 Hour Lipstick, R130.
Gloss comes in various incarnations, from clear to opaque, from creamy to high shimmer. Ideally, a gloss should feel slightly tacky to last a little longer, although personal preference influences the kind of gloss we choose. Plumping glosses usually feel tingly due to their active ingredients – the effects are only temporary though.
Best for: Young, minimalist looks. Try Rimmel Vinyl Max Gloss, R75 and GOSH Light & Shine Lip Glaze, R140.
Stains come in different forms – they can be liquid that resemble food colourant, gels, or felt tip applicators. They’re different because they usually contain no moisturising ingredients, so they should be combined with balms and / or glosses. Stains also provide a different kind of colour – like the name suggests, they stain the lips and you usually can’t detect a ‘painted on’ colour.
Best for: No-make-up make-up. Try: Revlon Just Bitten Lip Stain.
Balm Stains have become firm favourites in recent years – they have the properties of lip stain, the texture of lip balm, and depending on the brand, they look like lipstick or gloss. They’re popular because they replace multiple products, are ridiculously fuss-free, and you can control colour intensity when applying.
Best for: Convenience. Try Clinique Chubby Sticks, R215 and Revlon Kissable Balm Stains, R105.