With the understated makeup trend, lip liner use has gone the way of blue mascara and poufy hair perms. But here's the thing: there's definitely a need to use them, although maybe not in the same way they've been used in the past. Here's a primer on when to wear lip liner.
Your lipstick bleeds. Lipstick and gloss tend to bleed into the fine lines around our mouths as we age. Wearing a lip liner can prevent this common problem and ensure that lipstick stays put.
Your lips are getting smaller. As we age, our lips tend to thin out and then there are some of us who just naturally have thin lips. If you're looking for a more voluminous pucker, Julyne Derrick, About.com's beauty guide, says to apply liner just outside of your natural lip line. Just be sure not to go too far out of the line or you may end up looking more like a clown. For added volume, apply a dab of gloss to the middle of your bottom lip.
You want your color to last longer. User lip liner as a primer underneath lipstick or gloss to ensure that the color stays put. Make sure to match the liner to the color of your lipstick - doing so will prevent a blotchy look as your lipstick fades.
You're wearing red lipstick. According to the experts at SheKnows.com, red lipstick tends to bleed more than other colors. Editors say lip liner is "mandatory" for this bold look and will keep lips looking polished and sophisticated.
Which lip liner is best?
Reviewers at MakeupAlley.com and TotalBeauty.com say you can't go wrong with M.A.C. Lip Pencil (*Est. $14). The creamy pencil comes in 35 shades sure to match all skin tones and most lipstick colors. Users say it's easy to apply and really stays put but, like most lip pencils, it can be a bit drying. Reviewers suggest rubbing in lip balm before lining lips to prevent them from drying out.
At the drugstore, Rimmel London 1000 Kisses Lip Stay On Lip Liner Pencil (*Est. $3.25) gets good reviews. Paula Begoun says it has a smooth and creamy texture but warns that it doesn't last any longer than other lip pencils. Several reviewers at MakeupAlley.com say it performs as well as pricier brands and that the nine shades look natural on lips.