How to Make Lipstick Last

No one wants to be constantly mindful of the status of their lipstick and be caught in a never ending cycle of checking and re-applying lip color. So put the mirror and lipstick tube away and enjoy your day (or night) by using these tips to make lipstick last.

Smooth the Surface

Lipstick will last longer on a smooth surface, so before applying lipstick, exfoliate the lips. A simple buffing with a wet wash cloth while bathing will remove dead skin cells and make the lip surface smooth. Pat lips dry then apply a clear lip balm, wait five minutes for the lip balm to soak in then blot with a tissue.

Color Choice

Choose the lip color, then go for the boldest, darkest shade of that color. The darker shades of lipstick last longer than the lighter shades. Chose the desired lip shade in a shiny finish. A satin-finish or pearlescent finish wears longer than a matte finish.

Line and Fill

A line of lip pencil adds a layer of pigment and helps lipstick last. Choose a lip pencil color that matches lip stick, lightly trace the pencil on the inside edges of the lips. Fill in with lipstick and blot with tissue. Don’t use a brush to apply lipstick, the color will be richer when applied directly from the tube. Apply lipstick in light coats, blotting after the first coat only.

Powder Finish

A touch of powder will set the lipstick so the color will stay on and stay strong for hours. Don’t worry about the face powder drying the lips, all that’s needed is a light dusting and if you have prepped the lips correctly, the moisture is already locked into the lips. To add the finishing touch of face powder, close your mouth and smile, dip a fluffy brush into translucent face powder and dust across your lips lightly.

After Eating

Don’t re-apply lipstick after setting with powder (unless powder is removed) it will cause the lipstick to cake up in the lip crevices. If a fresh application of lipstick is needed after eating or drinking, blot lips, apply a light coat of clear lip balm, blot again, then apply a fresh coat of lipstick.


Lipstain is exactly what it sounds like – it’s a product that stains the lips with color and will last for days. However, if you don’t want the same color of lips for more than one day, lipstain is not the product to use.

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