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A fuller pout is about to be yours, no suction cups or injections needed.
Thanks to the Kardashians—the squad that single handedly spurred an entire makeup movement—you've likely been schooled in the art of contouring. Once a skill reserved for beauty pros, the masses quickly latched onto the concept (and carved out previously non-existent cheekbones) after a flurry of face-defining products flooded the market and tutorials took YouTube by storm.
The sculpting trend has even ventured south, with many women employing a similar technique below the neck to define their, ahem, décolletage. One spot you may not have considered on your transformative contour journey, however, is your lips. Here, how to plump your pout to K-sister levels...without taking the Kylie Jenner Challenge.
Reach for a dark liner or Maybelline New York's Color Blur in Plum, Please—a creamy matte crayon that offers the precision of a pencil—and rim the perimeter of your lips, tracing just outside your natural shape. "Using a deeper color around the edges produces a more 3D look by mimicking the effect of a shadow," said makeup artist Andrew Sotomayor. "It also causes the outer corners of the lips to recede, creating more contrast in the center where lips should look fullest."
Fill in the center with a lighter and brighter shade of lipstick (such as Maybelline Color Blur in I'm Blushing!). Other color combos Sotomayor likes on lips? Red liner and plum lipstick or nude liner and dark brown lipstick.
The Maybelline pencil has a blurring tip on one end you can use to soften the line between the two shades. (Or smudge the pigment with your finger or a Q-tip.) To avoid erasing the gradient effect you built in the previous steps, slowly work your way out from the middle—maintaining some distance between the pink center and the plum perimeter as you blend.
Not just for your cheekbones, this high-watt approaching to highlighting can also be used to enhance lips. "The strobing effect catches the light and creates more dimension, which in turn makes the mouth look fuller," explained the pro.
With a metallic powder (like MAC Pigment) and a pointed brush, trace along the top of your Cupid's bow and across the center of your lower lip. While Sotomayor opted for a warm, copper color to flatter our model's bronze skin tone, he says women with fairer complexions could use a pearl pigment for similar results.
While a shot glass and suction is one way to get Kardashian-level lips (please never do the former, never ever), two foolproof crayons and some strategic blurring offer the illusion of a plumped up pout minus the potentially dangerous side effects. We don't think you'll have any trouble deciding which technique is worth trying.