Beauty Fix: How to do the perfect red lip, is it worth the splurge on a $25 mascara and heal your chapped lips for once and for all!
When you ask most women which beauty product they couldn’t live without on desert island it usually comes down to either a great mascara or a favourite lip balm. The choices makes sense: a full, fluttery set of lashes brightens the eyes and draws attention away from under-eye circles or blemishes, and nothing’s worse than the thought of being trapped with chapped lips and not a single drop of lip balm in sight. Regardless of whether or not you’re facing exile to a desert island, you’ll certainly appreciate the tips in this week’s Beauty Fix.
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How often should I replace my mascara? And is it worth splurging on a more expensive brand?
Ideally, you should replace your mascara every few months. This is primarily due to how much bacteria can accumulate in a very short amount of time in mascara. Using an old mascara loaded with bacteria near such a vulnerable and sensitive area such as your eyes is putting yourself at risk of developing an eye infection. If you’ve noticed that the consistency or smell of the mascara has changed since you started using the tube, it’s time for a replacement!
Regarding investing in a high-end brand, mascara is a very subjective beauty product. What may seem like a worthy splurge on highly effective mascara for one person may be an ineffective mess on another. There are many variables to consider when selecting mascara, such as the state of your lashes, the effect you’re looking to achieve, the mascara wand, the mascara formula and the application technique. Ultimately speaking, given that you should replace your mascara relatively frequently, if the idea of paying more than $20 per tube every few months makes you cringe drugstore brands have an array of options that are at extremely palatable price points. Two to consider at either end of the spectrum: Lancôme Hypnôse Star mascara ($33, sephora.com) and Maybelline Volum’ Express One by One mascara ($9, well.ca).
What are some easy steps to create the perfect red lip?
A statement red lip is a timeless look that can be achieved in a few key steps:
Exfoliate and moisturize: Use a bit of olive oil and sugar to make a highly effective scrub for your lips that will remove dead skin and moisturize simultaneously. Wipe away the exfoliating concoction and apply a moisturizing lip balm, allowing it to sink in for a few minutes. Unless you desire a sheer lip colour, remove excess lip balm by blotting your lips—anything left on will affect the staying power of the lipstick.
Use a lip liner: This is especially important if you’re prone to lip products bleeding beyond your lip line. Line your lips with light strokes in a red lip liner, such as Sephora Collection Nano Lip Liner in “Real Red” ($7, sephora.com). Start at the corners of your mouth and work your way towards your cupid’s bow and the middle of your bottom lip. Fill in the entire lip with the lip pencil, as this will add longevity to the wear of your lipstick.
Use a lip brush: Pick up the lipstick on a lip brush and begin tracing your lip line as you did with the lipliner, starting at the corners of your mouth and working your way in, filling in the entire lip with the lipstick. A red I love: Rimmel London Kate Moss Lasting Finish Lipstick in “01” ($6, well.ca).
Blot: Remove excess product by blotting with a tissue, and assess the colour. If you would like more colour payoff, continue building the colour by repeating the application of lipstick with a lip brush, or dab it on directly from the tube.
Tidy up the edges: Prevent colour migration by tracing the mouth with concealer and a concealer brush, which will also sharpen the edges of the lip line and address any redness around the mouth that could detract from the statement lip.
My lips are beyond chapped right now and no matter the lip balm, nothing seems to keep them moisturized. Is there something else I should be doing to help them heal?
Our lips go through a lot every day, and when they’re chapped, it’s difficult to find adequate comfort in your usual lip balm. It’s important to pay attention to daily habits that may be causing lips to become so severely dehydrated. Do you lick your lips? Sometimes it’s something we don’t even realize we’re doing, but it wreaks havoc on the delicate, thin skin. Human saliva contains digestive enzymes (amylase and maltase) that cause skin dryness. If saliva remains on your lips, the enzymes will essentially strip your lips of any moisture they have, leaving lips in a weak position prone to extreme dehydration. It’s best to turn to a product loaded with healthy oils to get your lips back on track to their normal state, such as Suki Lip Repair Butter ($12, ebeauty.ca), which contains jojoba oil and vitamin E.
What are the best lip gloss options that will last for long periods throughout the day without losing colour and shine?
Few things can compare to the gleam gloss gives you, which explains why you’d want that shine to last throughout the day. It used to be the stickiest gloss formulas that would last the longest on the mouth in spite of coffee consumption and lunch meetings. Even still, those gloss formulas would often create a white residue on lips as they wore off, which is frankly worse than no gloss at all! These days, the formulas available have changed the gloss game. Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Pur Couture Vernis À Lèvres glossy stain ($34, sephora.com) imparts a stain of colour, but instead of the usual matte finish that we’ve come to expect from lip stains, the finish is glossy and remains so with no tacky feeling on the lips at all—and anyone who wears their hair down and has had their hair get caught in their glossed lips can rejoice in this!
If I want to try the slick eye look that was done at Marc by Marc Jacobs and Narciso Rodriguez’s Spring 2013 shows, should I just use lip gloss on my eyelids like Dick Page?
Dick Page is a fan of the glossy eye, and eyes with a slick sheen are not uncommon on the runway from season to season, so it was only a matter of time until it started appealing to audiences for their everyday makeup looks. If you want to give this modern eye a try, grab EF Studio Eye Gloss in “Transparent” ($18, ebeauty.ca), which can be used alone or mixed with shadow to mimic the handiwork of Dick Page. Tip: a glossy eye product mixed with shadow or pigments will probably crease or migrate a bit on the eyelid, which isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but a quick dab through the crease and you’re good to go!