Contouring — the process of using makeup to sculpt the face and create the illusion of more defined features — isn’t just reserved for sculpted cheekbones or faking a slimmer jawline. That's right, it can be used to define your lips and make them look fuller, too.
If you’ve been looking for ways to fake a plumper pout without injections, lip contouring might just be perfect for you. To learn more about how to do it properly, check out our detailed breakdown. Ahead, how to contour your lips to make them appear fuller.
Is Lip Contour the Same As Lip Liner?
Lip contour is not the same as lip liner; one is a technique, while the other is a product used to achieve the technique. Lip liner is a product used to line the lips to prevent feathering. Lip contouring is a technique that uses lip liner to fake the appearance of fuller lips along with with other lip products and strategic application..
How Do You Apply Lip Contour?
Follow this simple guide to mastering lip contour at home.
1. Prep Your Lips
If your lips are dry and flaky, it will be tough to make them appear juicy and plump. Prep them by exfoliating with a lip scrub or a damp washcloth to buff away the flakes and dead skin. Once you’ve done that, apply a nourishing lip balm on top to lock in moisture.
2. Choose a Lip Liner
A major key to faking fuller lips in a way that looks natural is by choosing a lip liner that closely matches the color of your lips, or one that is just a bit deeper than your lip color. We love L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Lip Liner because it has a smooth, creamy formula that comes in a variety of neutral shades that vary in depth and undertone.
You can line the lips with a neutral brow pencil. (Remember when lip lining with brow pencils went viral on TikTok?) Because eyebrow pencils tend to be slightly less pigmented than traditional lip liners, as well as more waxy in formula, they can be built up subtly and will last on the lips for quite some time. Try it out with the L’Oréal Paris Brow Stylist Definer Waterproof Eyebrow Mechanical Pencil — the shade you use for your brows should be a good match.
3. Define Your Lips
To define your lips and make them appear fuller, pay special attention to your Cupid's bow and the center of your bottom lip. Gently dragging the lip liner slightly outside your natural lip line, overdraw the top of your Cupid’s bow and overdraw the center of your bottom lip, below the lip line. Finish by giving yourself a natural curve on the sides of the lips to boost their shape.
By focusing more on the center of your top and bottom lip, you’ll make them appear more plump rather than making them look wide. overlining the sidescan make your lips look unnaturally full.
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4. Create a Shadow Under the Bottom Lip
To give the lips an extra dimensional contour, take a little bit of bronzer and give yourself a little depth underneath your bottom lip. Take a small eyeshadow brush and gently apply a bit of a contour powder or cream underneath the center of your bottom lip to create the illusion that the lip is full and casting a shadow. Be sure to blend the contour so it’s subtle and not overdone.
5. Add a Lighter Color to the Center Of Your Lips
Dark lip colors tend to make the lips appear smaller, while light lip colors do the opposite. Adding a lip color to the center of your lips that’s a few shades lighter than your lip liner is a great way to make the lips appear even fuller. For a long-lasting lippie, apply L’Oréal Paris Infallible Matte Resistance Liquid Lipstick. For something with a satin finish, try L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Satin Lipstick.
6. Finish Off With Lip Gloss
When it comes to making your lips appear fuller, the more shine and light they reflect, the juicier and plumper they will look. Finish off your look with a glassy-looking lip gloss, like L’Oréal Paris Infallible Pro Gloss Plump in Mirror. It’s a clear, plumping gloss formulated with hyaluronic acid to nourish the lips, and it creates a cooling, tingling sensation upon application that adds plumpness.
Photographer: Stephanie Price, Photo Assistant: Thomas Miller, Digi Tech: Sergio Colon, Art Director: Hannah Packer, Creative Producer: Becca Solovay, Content Director: Shalwah Evans, Visual Designer: Sarah Duvivier, Makeup Artist: Kelly Bellevue, Hair Stylist: Akihisa Yamaguchi, Wardrobe Stylist: Rika Watanabe, Wardrobe Assistant: Fausti, Models: Jacky Lee, Anastasia Offutt
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