Not quite ready to go for fillers yet, but dreaming about fuller lips? Trying out these five things won't provide Angelina Jolie-like effects, but they'll certainly help...
Big lips are in. Not great news for Little Lips Linda over here (me) who possibly has the tiniest lips on the planet - okay I may be overstating things a bit here, but it's certainly the way I feel. And lately, I have to say, it's somewhat concerning to me the number of people who suggest I should get fillers.
Not least because it's a bit of a slap in the face (luckily, I've long since realised what I look like and made peace with it) but also because - hold on now - are injectables the very first thing you think of when fuller lips are your goal?
Your lips, your choice
I'm absolutely 100% supportive of a woman's (or anyone's) right to do whatever they like with their bodies, aesthetically or otherwise. If lip fillers are your jam, own it, wear them with pride, you earned them and I'm glad they make you happy. No 'but' on the way, don't worry. In fact, when I see things online saying "...without resorting to fillers" I think, well, that's a strong statement.
At a recent press launch, I learned about fillers and how they can change a person's face and life. The event, called Beauty Decoded Live, was held by Juvederm, one of the UK's leading producers of hyaluronic fillers (more on that next week), and at it I found myself seeing fillers in a completely new light.
Did this new knowledge make me put down my lip liner and discard the easier methods of cheating a fuller lip? No, because at the moment, I'm still having success (relatively speaking!) with my tried and tested methods, which are as follows:
Five ways to cheat a fuller lip:
Get a lip scrub and make sure to slough off all the dead skin regularly. If you don't want to spend any money on this step, mix some sugar and honey into some of your lip balm on a palette and scrub it into your lips, then rinse and wipe with a face cloth.
Soothe and protect
It's really important to keep your lips hydrated at all times. Maybe the exception is when you're wearing a stunning matte lipstick, but this can be forgiven. Apart from that, there are two lip products I always use to keep my lips supple, hydrated and therefore, more plump.
Good neutral liner
When you go to apply lip product, start with an amazing neutral liner. I tend not to overdraw my lips, but I will line them from outer corners inwards, as a make-up artist told me in the past they look fuller that way and I believed her, basically. I love the Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat liner, €22, or else the Code Beautiful Soft Smooth Lip Liner, €22, which is absolutely incredible and self-sharpens in the lid.
Conceal the outline
This part, I consistently mess up massively with. I always get it wrong, I always make a mess, but thankfully, the mess is generally easy to, you know, conceal. Get a really fine concealer brush and your fave concealer (I love a light textured one for this because it's easier to manoeuvre around the place), and trace out the outline of whatever colour lipstick you've gone for. It'll make your lips pop and look fuller in an instant (or in 23 minutes which is how long that process takes me - worth it though).
Gloss in the centre
Whatever lipstick I wear, bar matte ones which I pretty much loathe anyway, I always finish off with a little dab of gloss on the very centre of my lips - cupids bow and the centre of the bottom lip - just to give the illusion of fullness.
The gloss I've relied upon for this for the last while is the Alex Steinherr X Primark Plump and Go Plumping Lip Gloss, €6, which looks like it'll go on kind of copperey, but actually is the perfect accent to any shade, giving the exact right amount of mirror shine while not feeling gloopy or too much like it's gonna cause trouble.