Monday, October 23, 2006

Pinup Girl Lips

As much as I love beauty products, I've never been one for lipstick. I think it goes back to my Freshman year of high school when I had my makeup done by my hairdresser in preparation for the Homecoming dance and she put the brightest, most shocking red lipstick on me, to match my floor-length sparkling red dress. I should mention that I have always had large lips and I had braces at the time, so I resembled a gawky teenage Ronald McDonald in drag. It was not pretty.

Since then, I've bought a number of nude and pink lipsticks and glosses, but I don't feel much for any of them. I put on lipstick before I go out, but by the time I've had a drink or finished my first course at dinner, it's gone. And I hate not being able to kiss my boyfriend because I don't want to ruin my lips.

But as of late, I've had a semi-obsession with 1940's and 50's style. As a student at one of the Seven Sisters, I subconsciously (ok, consciously) long for the days when buses full of Ivy League boys pulled up to the dorms every weekend night bearing flowers and gifts and people got dressed up and went on real dates. I've been wearing a lot of shirt dresses and fuller skirts, and my boring nude/pink makeup just doesn't look match the super-feminine look I'm going for.

I knew I needed something dramatic, so I made my way to Sephora last weekend in hopes of finding something that would make my lips pop and and not require re-application every 20 minutes. I tried on a lot of lip stains, but they were runny, the color was uneven and they were very difficult to apply. Eventually I came across this little product,

Stila Lip Rouge in Pucker

As you can see, it looks like a felt-tip marker. I thought this must have been some Freudian marketing strategy to remind women of when they played with makeup as little girls, but then I tried it and realized that it was just some smart packaging. Stains are liquid, and by putting the stain in a felt tip, you can be far more precise in your application. The downside of this is that it takes a little time to cover your lips evenly, as the tip isn't very thick.

It was definitely worth the effort though, because I ended up with pinup girl bright berry red lips. I couldn't stop making faces in the mirror, it was amazed by how different my entire face looked. But because the stain is matte, I needed a gloss to set it. I tried a few and ended up loving Smashbox Lip Gloss in Crystal. The gloss is super-shiny and very moisturizing, which combats the drying effect of the stain.

I had a big event to go to that night and I felt incredibly confident and sexy with my shiny red lips. The color lasted all night (I still had a little on the next morning) and the gloss only needed to be reapplied a couple of times.

A couple things to remember: if you're at the store and want to try this product, put a little on your hand first, because once it hits your lips, it ain't going anywhere for at least 4-6 hours. Also, the brighter colors are very dramatic, so if you wear them, play down the rest of your makeup. I didn't wear blush or eye shadow so that the focus would stay on my lips.

As if I needed another reason to spend money on beauty products, I think I may be hooked on lip stains. Who knew that having a little color on your lips could make you feel this good?

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