Whether you're partial to shades of nude, '90s-inspired brown, pretty pinks, moody dark hues, or classic red, lipstick is one of those items that has a place in everyone's makeup kit. But if you're anything like us, finding one that stays put for hours through sips, bites, or a kiss from your partner might seem near impossible. But when your lip color stays put, you're free to go about your day (or night) with as much confidence as when you first swiped it on.
Byrdie Tested & Approved
That's why we researched and tested standout lipsticks that promise not only serious staying power but also ample color and comfortable wear. After trying them in The Lab, our in-house testing facility in Manhattan, we rated each formula on a scale of one to five (five being the best) based on its comfort, pigment, wear time, and overall value.
Scroll down for the best long-lasting lipsticks out there today.
NYX Professional Makeup Shine Loud Vegan High Shine Long-Lasting Liquid Lip Color
Slightly sticky without gloss
Contains synthetic fragrance
Our No. 1 pick is NYX's Shine Loud Lip Color. Not only is it affordable and widely available online and in pretty much any drugstore, but it earned a perfect 5-out-of-5 score across the board for comfort, pigment, wear, and overall value. The two-in-one tube has liquid color with a doe-foot applicator on one side and clear lip gloss with a smooth brush on the other.
Our tester loved the dual-ended applicator. She said the liquid base coat turned matte very quickly and had a slightly sticky feel. However, once she added the gloss, it was a lot softer and had a nice high-shine effect. This long-wear lipstick promises to last for up to 16 hours without transferring, and sure enough, there was almost no smudging or bleeding. Our tester said it felt super comfortable on her lips and lasted forever.
Price at time of publish: $12
Finish: Matte/shiny | Shades: 24 | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
What Our Testers Say
"The gloss feels amazing on my lips and looks incredible on."—Alice Sungurov, Product Tester
Maybelline New York SuperStay Matte Ink Liquid Lipstick
Excellent shade range
Contains synthetic fragrance
Slight dry feeling
Earning a 4.8 overall score, Maybelline Super Stay was a clear winner from the drugstore category. The wallet-friendly formula clocked a 5 for comfort, a 5 for wear, and a 4.5 for pigment, as you need very little product to achieve a full impact.
Our testers wore this liquid lipstick all day without having to reapply it. While it had a slightly dry feeling—which is pretty common with matte lip color—they said it didn't budge one bit. They also loved the flexible arrow-shaped applicator.
Price at time of publish: $8
Finish: Matte | Shades: 59 | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: No
Best for Beginners
Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick
No bold colors
Tricky to remove
New to the long-wear lip color game? Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick has your name on it. Our testers gave it a 4.5 for comfort and wear and a 5 for pigment, noting that one coat is all you need to achieve the full effect.
While applying liquid lipsticks can be intimidating—especially formulas that don't come off easily—this one is notably easy to use. Our testers commented on the user-friendly applicator and the rich color that lasts throughout the day with minimal transfer.
Price at time of publish: $20
Finish: Matte | Shades: 18 | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
What Our Editors Say
"This is a classic liquid lipstick that's easy to apply and lasts throughout the day."—Katherine Louie, Senior Commerce Editor
Pat McGrath Labs MatteTrance Lipstick
Requires two coats
If you're open to splurging on the good stuff, Pat McGrath won't let you down. The brand's MatteTrance Lipstick earned a 4.75 for comfort, thanks to its smooth texture and nourishing feel.
Though you might need two coats for full impact and may experience slight transfer, our testers gave it 5 for pigment and wear and 4.9 for overall value. Beyond the velvety texture and excellent staying power, they also loved the luxurious packaging and pretty bullet-style container.
Price at time of publish: $56
Finish: Matte | Shades: 35 | Byrdie Clean: Unclear | Cruelty-Free: No
What Our Testers Say
"The color was beautiful, and the texture was incredible."—Latifah Miles, Product Tester
Makeup By Mario Ultra Suede Lipstick
Diverse shade range
Requires touch-up after six hours
When you're in the mood for something more subtle, Makeup By Mario's Ultra Suede line is where it's at. Available in 20 colors to match a diverse range of skin tones, this nude lipstick collection earned 5 for comfort and wear, a 4 for pigment, and a 4.5 for overall value.
"The dry-down of a lip product is essentially what makes a lipstick long-wearing. My priority is to create the perfect dry-down formula without making lips look or feel dry. Ultra Suede is not only a super comfortable satin-matte, but it smooths and blurs the look of lips as well," creator Mario Dedivanovic says.
Calling it a "one-swipe wonder," our tester said a single coat is all you need. And while this is a long-lasting formula with a matte finish, it's not drying at all. You might need to touch up after six hours or so, but according to our tester, it stays through a meal of greasy pizza—extra points for the magnetic cap.
Price at time of publish: $26
Finish: Matte | Shades: 20 | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes
BLK/OPL Liquid Matte Lipstick
If it's serious color you're after, go with Black Opal's ColorSplurge. This no-nonsense liquid lipstick earned 4 for comfort and pigment, a 5 for wear, and a 4.3 for overall value.
While the formula is slightly drying and feels a bit tacky when you put it on, our tester said it's an all-around solid product. She noted that the color is cool and bold, lasting all day without any reapplications. The staying power is so good that you can expect your lips to be a bit stained after removing them.
Price at time of publish: $9
Finish: Matte | Shades: 10 | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes
What Our Testers Say
"The color is fire, but be prepared for your lips to be stained."—Alice Sungurov, Product Tester
The best long-lasting lipstick overall is NYX's Shine Loud Lip Color. The budget-friendly formula earned a perfect 5-out-of-5 score from our tester, who liked the dual applicator, impressive pigment, and transfer-free finish. If you're open to splurging on a top-shelf lipstick, go with Pat McGrath Labs' MatteTrance, which clocked a 4.9 overall score from our testers thanks to its bold pigmentation and ultra-smooth consistency.
How We Tested
In our journey to find the crème de la crème of long-lasting lipsticks, we took our time researching different formulas, interviewing experts, and combing through reviews. We then purchased several options to try out in The Lab, where our in-house team rated each one on a scale of 1 to 5 (with 5 being the best and 1 being the worst) based on comfort, pigment, wear time, and overall value.
Other Options We Tested
ColourPop Ultra Matte Liquid Lip
Our testers also tried ColourPop's Ultra Matte Liquid Lip in The Lab. They liked the user-friendly applicator and were impressed with the staying power and transfer resistance. However, they said it was drying and felt more dehydrating the longer they wore it. Additionally, our testers didn't like how it settled into the creases of their lips.
Kylie Cosmetics Matte Lip Kit
After trying out the famous Kylie Cosmetics Lip Kit, our testers said the matte formula was almost too matte, so much so that it was extremely drying. While the pencil is a bit creamier, it didn't help the tight, parched feeling of the liquid lip color. Additionally, it has a cherry smell, which some people might not mind, but not everyone appreciates. In the end, the formula was just too drying.
Meet the Expert
What to Look for in a Long-Lasting Lipstick
When shopping for long-lasting lipstick, Urban Decay Global Makeup Artist Steve Kassajikian first recommends deciding what kind of formula you’d like to use. Generally, long-wear lipsticks tend to come in liquid form, but there are plenty of traditional tubes and lip stains that can also bless your pout with color that’ll last all day. It’s really up to your personal preference.
Creamy, Hydrating Texture
No matter which formula you choose, Kassajikian says a creamy, hydrating texture is best—and this goes for matte finishes, too. Long-wear lipsticks are notoriously drying, so to avoid caking, cracking, and chapping, reach for a lipstick that’s infused with hydrating oils and vitamins and moves with the lips, even when it dries down.
High Pigment Payoff
If you want your lipstick to last, Kassajikian says it's best to opt for pigment-rich formulas that deliver high-impact color. This will prolong how long your pout stays painted, as sheerer shades will fade much faster.
How do you get long-lasting lipstick to stay on all day?
Choosing a long-lasting lipstick is the first step to an all-day lip. You can also apply the lipstick over a thin layer of concealer to help it stay put by giving it a base to cling to. There are lipstick primers available as well that can help seal your look.
Why does my lipstick not stay on?
Lipsticks that are not designed to be long-lasting will often transfer color and smudge or wear off easily. Glossy, silky, and hydrating formulas that are not intended for long wear may not be what you are looking for if you need an all-day look. Instead, choose lipsticks designed for long wear and consider using a lipstick primer.
What Is Byrdie Verified?
Did you notice the Byrdie Verified seal of approval at the top of this story? This seal means that our team has researched and tested every product on this list using a unique methodology that’s designed to focus on what our readers really want to know—and to deliver insights that you can’t find anywhere else. Occasionally, beauty brands and PR agencies will send us samples for coverage consideration, but our thoughts and opinions are fully our own. If you visit links within our content, we may receive commissions from your purchases, but we never receive any compensation or consideration for the content of our recommendations. In short, the Byrdie Verified seal stands for product recommendations you can trust.
Why Trust Byrdie
Theresa Holland is a freelance commerce writer specializing in cosmetics. With expertise from a makeup artist in mind, she compiled our in-house testing insights from The Lab, checked ingredients lists, combed through product specs, and rounded up our top picks. From the above, she is personally a fan of NYX, Maybelline, and Makeup By Mario. Theresa has been contributing to Byrdie since 2020, where she covers makeup, skincare, and hair care.