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Celebrity Makeup Artists Reveal Their Best Lipstick Hacks

What is the best technique to clean up smudged lipstick?

We’ve all been there, having to deal with lipstick that’s smeared or feathered. But luckily, the cleanup is quite simple. “Dip a Q-Tip in an oil-free makeup remover,” Alexx suggested, “and blot the area where the lipstick smudged.”

If the smudge is much worse and significantly more noticeable, there are two potential fixes. “I always keep a small flat concealer brush on hand and I’ll apply a little concealer to soften out the smudge or crisp up a lip line,” Donni said. As for Sebastien’s method, well, there’s no harm in starting over and re-applying.  

How can you find the right lipstick formula?

With a variety of formulas to choose from—matte, creams, satins, stains, glosses, you name it—it can be daunting to select the type of finish you want. However, there are a few factors to keep in mind, which will make the process less of a headache.

The biggest element to consider, according to Sofia, is to figure out what kind of look you’re going for. “For my everyday look,” the Global Brand Muse and Artistry Director of Charlotte Tilbury described, “I like to apply a small dot of Airbrush Flawless Lip Blur in Pillow Talk to the center of my lips, then press in using my fingertip for a blurred effect.”

For a femme fatale vibe, she added, “I love Charlotte’s Matte Revolution texture because it creates a beautiful luminosity while still looking matte.”

And if you aren’t sure what style you want to rock, Jocelyn reminded us that you can never go wrong with a liquid matte lipstick. Not only is it a long-lasting option, but it’s transfer-proof.

“You’ll need fewer touch-ups during the day,” she explained. “The color payoff is rich and intense. The feathering is minimal compared to other formulas. I also love that the liquid matte formula allows a precise and defined application.”

But if a matte finish isn’t up your alley, Alexx recommends a TikTok-favorite: Clinique’s Almost Lipstick in Black Honey, “because it combines the benefits of both lipstick and a gloss.”

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