If you’ve learned anything about me from reading this ridiculous blog of mine, it’s that 1. I feel ALL of the feels 2. I love cats (and dogs and horses and everything because inside I’m a 10 year old girl who just loves every animal 4eva) and 3. I LOVE me some lipstick. Not gloss, because I don’t care to revisit my teenage years *shiver*, I hate getting that sticky crap in my hair on a breezy day, and because there’s just something so luxurious and old school and sexy about taking the time to carefully apply a beautiful lipstick as opposed to smearing a few coats of Black Honey on while running to the train and hoping I kept it 75% within my lip line. Not to mention that nothing feels quite as indicative of my mood that day as the color I choose for my (huge) mouth, and I joke that while yes, my moods tend to vary widely between a million shades of crazy, all one has to do is check my pout for the Taraweather forecast. Just lip balm? Forget it, I have no shits left to give. Lipstick? The color will tell you all you need to know.
Before we begin, I want to recommend to anyone ready to jump on the lippie train this invisible lip liner. No matter the quality, the color, or the texture of your chosen pout paint, this baby keeps it in check perfectly and works with every. single. lipstick. Genius! Just channel your best Kylie J and line right outside your lip line, fill in the rest of the lips, and then apply lipstick as normal. No feathering, and your color will last MUCH longer. YAAASSSSS.
Bright Pink – Lady Depressionista
As someone who struggles with depression and all of the whomp whoooooooomp it can bring, there are days when I wake up and just know it’s going to be a bit of a struggle. I’ve come up with many ways to deal, but one of them that seems to consistently work is a SCREAMIN’ pink lip! It brightens up my whole face, brings a smile to the people around me, and somehow ends up bringing me a grin, too. It’s hard not to feel lighter while wearing my absolute favorite neon pink lippie out there – I know, I know, I’ve told you about it before, but you guys, IT’S THE BEST. Really.
Dark Red – Queen Bitch
This kitten says it all with one look. There are days when I have HAD it, and on those days, I need a don’t fuck with me look that keeps other humans at an arm’s length for their safety and for mine. This look usually entails black moto boots, spikes and/or studs, and a truly sinister crimson to darken my scowl. Ideally something between black and blood red, to keep the gawkers, the hawkers, the judgey bitches, and most importantly, the creeps on these city streets OUTTA MY WAY. I’m willing to drop a little extra coin on a color this perfectly badass, and if you have any opinions on that, FEEL FREE TO SAY IT TO MY FACE. Don’t come for me on Queen Bitch days unless I SEND for you, alright?!
Bright Orange – Blah Betty
Some days we wake up late, can’t get to sleep the night before, run out of time getting ready, can’t come up with an outfit we like, or are just plain lazy. On blahhhhhh days like this for me, orange is just the pop of WAKE THE EFF UP my face needs to shake my shit up and get me moving! You can’t nap with this stuff on, it’s THAT bright.
PSST! One of my favorite secret tips when it comes to trying a vibrant lip color that you’re not 100% sure you’ll love is to head to the drugstore (duh). But beyond that, cheaper cosmetics tend to have less pigment, or have a ton of it but not have a good enough formula to wear well. My trick? No matter your skin tone, shop brands that are designed for women of color! Deeper skin tones simply have to have more color in their cosmetics to show, so those companies have to create formulas that work better with more pigment – so for the same price, you get much better color payoff! But shhh… keep this one between us, cool?
Nude Pink – Sassy Sister
Awww yeah. Nudes are for those days when I woke up like this and my hair’s doing it and doing it and doing it well, my clothes just seem to arrange themselves in a fab outfit with little to no effort and minimal skinny jeans wiggledancing (you know what I mean), my shoulders are back, my chin is high, and I’m positively stomping the streets. On days like this I don’t feel like need much more than a rich, creamy color that reads like my lips, only better. The search for the perfect nude is a tough one, full of bumps in the road and impostor colors that look right in the tube but suck ALL LIFE out of your face or end up way too pink in that old lady dusty mauve-y brown way. I’ve kissed a lot of frogs and found my nude prince (other than Joe and Tom, of course) in Francois Nars. The perfect nude lipstick struggle is REAL, people, but it’s worth it.
Oddball Shades – Edgy McWeirdsville
I can’t help myself. Sometimes, I just want to be weird. It’s a throwback to all of those years when I was afraid to truly be myself, and a celebration of living in a borough of misfits in a city that doesn’t look twice at anything – if I can pull a few double takes from a Williamsburg crowd, it brings me a certain kind of joy that I can’t explain, but that I absolutely love (on certain days). From blue to green to black and beyond there are all kinds of out-there looks to try, but the most wearable one IMHO is purple. I’m talking Grape Kool Aid purple. Because once in a while, it’s just as fun to play dress up as an adult!
PSST! My second secret tip is through someone I know that worked on developing the H&M cosmetics line – she clued me in to the fact that their lipsticks are made in the same place as MAC lipsticks. WHAT. Run, don’t walk, to H&M and give their lippies a try, because at this price point with this quality, if one or two are less than perfect on you, WHO CARES?! Affordable fabulosity for all!!!
Bright Red – THE MASTER/MISTRESS (mastress?) OF THE UNIVERSE
BOOM! At the same time vintage pinup-girl sexy and modern-girl strong & confident, a bright red is always in fashion, and there truly is a red for everyone. My teeth look whiter, basically any outfit looks more put together, and there’s something about rocking a red lip that emboldens me like no other. I’m a superhero! Able to pounce on evildoers, epic markdowns on designer goods, and mysoginist douchebags in a single bound! Fearless and full of piss and vinegar and sugar and spice and Cotes du Rhone and chocolate and… RAHR! Seriously though, you need a bright red. If there is no other lipstick in your arsenal, girls (and boys), this is it. Swipe it on and RULE THE WORLD!