Four WOC Teach Us How to Rock Bold Lips

by Janell M. Hickman

Four WOC Teach Us How to Rock Bold Lips

The signature SS17 trend is literally for every and anybody. From the glitter lips (seen at Fendi) to the over-the-top ‘80s inspired rogue-lip combo (debuted at Kenzo), when it came to the SS17 runway trends there was no shortage of shock value. The challenge, or rather opportunity, comes with making these look relatable for your everyday life. However, wearing a bold shade—especially if you have a deeper complexion—can feel like a tricky prospect, but it doesn’t have be! “I always cringe when I hear someone advise a woman with a deeper skin tone against wearing a bold lip,” says makeup artist and journalist, Dayna Marie Hood. “We are living canvases, and our lips are the easiest way to make a statement with our lip color.”

Need a little bit more proof before you take the plunge? We rounded up four experts of color to help further debunk the myth. Read on below.

Photo Credit: Image Courtesy Deniz with Kat Wirsing

Who: Lavonne Anthony, Celebrity Makeup Artist, Clients include Kerry Washington, Danai Gurira, Betsey Johnson, Adrienne Bailon, and Jeannie Mai. “Don’t be afraid of makeup, especially a bright lip, it will make you smile more and make your teeth look whiter! When selecting shades, go for what you are drawn to.”

“I personally always use a lip liner when wearing a bright lipstick. Because, when you don’t, I feel the lips look like an emoji just popped on your face!  I like to go a shade darker or a complementary color, then and blend it into the lips. Next, apply the lipstick and press and roll the lips together so it is all merged together”.

“On myself, I apply straight from the tube but on clients I always use a brush or my finger. After applying I like to take a bit of concealer and make the bottom and corners crisp. Prevents bleeding and makes the pout perfect and precise.”

“Liquid lipsticks provide the best all day wear in matte. Right now, my favorite is is M.A.C. Cosmetics Retro Matte Lip Color in Quite The Stand Out—a bright orange—paired with lip liner in Currant.”

Photo Credit: Image Courtesy of Melanie Martin

Who: Melanie Martin, editor of  Beautifully Brown, a beauty blog dedicated to women of color.

“My advice is this…understand that you can wear color, you just have to find the right shade. It’s all about undertones. Also, opacity makes a big difference. I always suggest that first timers wanting to rock bright lips should start with a sheer textured lipstick, then maybe move to a satin. When they’re ready to go bold, try a matte.”

“Honestly, they’re two ways to really find your best shade. One, you can just test and learn by going to the makeup counters and playing around until you find a color that you really like. Or, two, you can ask a makeup counter expert to help you understand your undertone and guide you to see which shades of colors you should look out for when shopping on your own.”

“I’m forever obsessed with OCC Lip Tar in Rollergirl. It’s really my favorite shade I’ve ever bought because it has a soft but bold appeal. Darker girls are usually the ones who are mostly afraid of bright lips. But, I’m here to make it very clear: sometimes the darker your skin, the richer the color will look against it. Don’t be fooled!”

Photo Credit: Image Courtesy TBD

Who: Desiree Verdejo, CEO + founder of Harlem’s first luxury beauty boutique, Vivrant Beauty.

“Brown skin tones look great against bold lipstick colors.The secret is finding the right undertone for your skin. My favorite lippies are the ones that have a useful applicator already built in so that you don’t need to also apply a lip liner. My favorite is Trust Fund by Gold Label Cosmetics. It’s a matte lip pen with an applicator tip that always results in perfect application.”

Nothing lasts longer than a matte lip—if I have a day full of meetings or an evening event, I’ll reach for a matte lipstick that I know will go on and stay on,” she adds. “Prima Donna by The Lip Bar is a bright, eggplant shade that I feels like something unique and new. I always get tons of compliments when I put it on.”

“I’m a girl-on-the-go, so I like to apply lipstick straight from the tube. I’m not into carrying a ton of makeup tools with me on a daily basis. One handy trick when wearing a liquid or matte lipstick, though, is to clean up any areas where your application may have been imperfect with a touch of concealer.”

“How perfect is a dewy face with a bold lip? A fresh face with a touch of blush or bronzer like
Rituel de Fille’s Inner Glow Cream Blush in Spellbound and a few coats of mascara always do the trick when you’re reaching for a bold, bright color.”

Photo Credit: Image Courtesy of Dayna Marie Hood

Who: Dayna Marie Hood, Voile Artistry makeup artist + journalist

“With all of the amazing lip trends, it’s really hard to narrow it down to one, but I have to go with the Lust 004 kit from my makeup ‘Mom’ Pat McGrath. The lip kit in “Bloodwine” is my absolute favorite, because I can multiple looks with just ONE lip kit. The red is my favorite, because it’s as blue red which makes my teeth look whiter (hint, hint!) I also love the glitter that comes with the kit, because I can layer a bit on top for a super sexy glimmer that surprisingly lasts all evening!”   

“When wearing matte lip color, I always use a primer to protect my lips from drying out. My absolute favorite is the Bite Beauty Line and Define Primer because it is shaped like a pencil for easy application, and has a convenient built-in sharpener. Primers prevent any flaking or separation, and also gently hydrates the lips. The smooth, velvety texture of most lip primers also prolong the wear of our lipstick, and who doesn’t love that?”

“I am a bit of a makeup activist, a makeup artivist if you will, so I don’t believe in giving women rules for beauty! However, I do love to highlight one feature at a time when it comes to daytime looks. If you have an amazing lipstick that you love, pair it with clean skin (try NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer, applied with your fingers) and a few coats of your favorite mascara (I love Diorshow Mascara in Black because of the huge lash-loving brush). Don’t forget to highlight the high points of your face for a perfect glow (I use RMS Living Luminizer for all skintones—and is all natural! ) then, let your lips be the all-star of your day.”

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