PSA: These Plumping Lipsticks Actually Make Thin Lips Look Fuller

Updated 05/05/19
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It seems like all anyone ever talks about when it comes to making lips look fuller is injections and fillers. While we're in full support of those procedures, we want to give you an arguably more economical and less permanent option. That's where the magic of makeup comes in. How can one use lipstick to make thin lips fuller?

"It's all about the prep, so make sure to apply a hydrating lip conditioner like Dr. Macrene's 37 Actives High Performance Anti-Aging and Filler Lip Treatment," says Kelli J. Bartlett, Glamsquad's director of artistry. "Allow the product to sink in while doing the rest of your makeup, and then blot away the excess. Next, use the pointed tip of your lipstick to edge out your ideal lip shape, pushing the boundaries of the lips' edge for maximum fullness."

" One thing to remember is everyone has a fuller bottom lip—so you can sort of create the illusion of fuller looking lips but first completely saturating your bottom lip in the full color," says L'Oreal brand ambassador and celebrity makeup artist Sir John. "Then, take your bottom lip and press it into your top lip. Don’t be afraid to let it overlap the top lip just a little bit. That will give you a fuller appearance vs. looking so literal like you would do with a lip liner."

On top of creating that illusion, the shade you chose is also an important factor. Bartlett, Sir John, and other makeup artists agree that tones closest to your natural lip color are the best for making thin lips naturally appear fuller.

As for what shades of lipsticks to avoid if you want fuller-looking lips, most makeup artists agree to stay away from those rich, dark shades. "Dark shades can make lips look smaller if you don't respect the lip shape and apply color shyly,” says Bartlett.

We've rounded up a few nude shades that are perfect for plumping thin lips. Scroll down to see what they are.

Lipsticks for thin lips
Nyx Soft Matte Lip Cream in Berlin $7
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We love this lip cream for its intense color payoff and its incredibly smooth texture. It turns into a beautiful matte finish that we can't get enough of.

K.I.S.S.I.N.G - Lipstick - Bitch Perfect
Charlotte Tilbury K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipstick in Bitch Perfect $34
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"You can either use a lip brush for a more polished- and defined-looking natural lip or use your finger and pat in the color very slightly over the lip line to give a naturally fuller pout," says celebrity makeup artist Robert Sesnek. "This lip color is almost like the natural lip color, which makes it easy to cheat a natural fuller lip and tends to be more pinky beige."

Lip Color
Tom Ford Beauty Lip Color in Indian Rose $52
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Another pick for Sesnek is this lipstick from Tom Ford. He says this has a deeper natural tone. "Neutrals and natural tones will make lips appear larger. Adding an exact matching pencil, you can even add a little more fullness and volume by slightly cheating the lip line," he says. "Try adding a light-toned gloss over the lipstick for even added fullness."

L'Oreal Colour Riche Shine Lipstick $7
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"I am loving Colour Riche Shine Lipstick right now. These lipsticks have an awesome shade range and are hydrating on the lips—they are my jam," says Sir John. "I have especially been using the nude shades in a lot of looks lately. To be honest this collection has some of the best nudes I’ve come across in the industry."

Soap & Glory Lip Pencils $10
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This is contouring for your lips. Soap & Glory's newest double-ended pencil features a thin liner to make an outline and a thicker lip pencil to fill in to create the illusion of fuller lips.

Lipsticks for Thin Lips
Nars Audacious Lipstick Barbara $34
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"Lighter nudes, flesh-tones, and ombre looks will help make lips look bigger, as will gloss textures because they all reflect light," says Bartlett. "For lipstick, I love Nars Audacious because of its silky-smooth texture. I actually use By Terry Baume de Rose on top of lipstick because it's wax-like texture smooths and plumps the lips' surface." For darker skin tones, she loves this shade, Barbara.

Lipsticks for Thin Lips
Smashbox Be Legendary Lipstick Primose $21
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For lighter skin tones, Bartlett likes Nars Audacious in Anita. For a similar shade, we love this one from Smashbox. It's highly pigmented and goes on so smooth with its creamy texture. It contains vitamins C and E and shea butter to keep lips moisturized.

Now you know that injections aren't your only option if you want fuller-looking lips.

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