Queue & Aye: Plum lips

This heralds the beginning of a new segment on Ampersand.

It’s come to my attention that I get asked a fair few questions on the subject of beauty and I thought that maybe, just maybe these questions and their respective answers might be of use to other people.

Welcome to Queue & Aye (the best title my wine inflicted brain could muster late on a Monday evening, therefore it’s still very much a case of TBC).

The first question comes from ‘T’, who’s curious about one of the biggest trends in AW 10/11: the dark berry/plum/wine lip.

Hi Mel
I was wondering if you could direct me towards some good quality lipstick brands (steals and splurges) that do burgundy/merlot/wine/deep red colours.
Something that is not too perfumed, long lasting, moisturising and won’t settle into the lines on my lips (the worst) would be great.
I was thinking the Revlon Colour Burst range or something from Loreal…???
Many thanks

And my answer, made all the more plausible by the addition of Natasha Poly and some random with ‘to die for’ lips:

Hey T,

So here’s the lowdown on the berry/plum/wine stained lips for you.

First of all I thought it might be worth mentioning (even though you probably already know) as it’s such a dark lip colour, it’s best to go easy on the rest of the make up – especially the eyes. You can get away with mascara, and eyeliner if you want to, but generally nothing more. Or, at least be sure to keep it neutral. Filling in the brows could work too – just to balance the look (but steer clear of anything too heavy).

It’s a good idea to go for a light blush, or some colour on your cheeks, something warm – just to avoid you looking too pale and, for lack of a better word, goth like. A bit of bronzer would work well, which you can just use on cheeks.
You can go matte or dewy with your foundation, but try to keep it light – nothing too heavy and cakey (which I’m sure you’re never guilty of anyway). Also, and here’s a fun fact for you:

Similar to pink and red based lipsticks, plum can also exaggerate red and blue undertones in the skin so it’s a good idea to use concealer on problem areas – like under the eyes and around the nose and chin, just to ensure you’re looking fresh and even.

I’d prefer a matte option for the wine lip, or stain, or at least more of a lipstick but that’s just me. You also have the option of getting a glossy one and just blotting it on your lips with your finger to create a stained effect, or make it a bit more matte. It’s also necessary (well, depending on the type of finish you’re going with – especially if it’s matte or lipstick) to make sure the lips are in tip top condition. Exfoliate them, using a lip exfoliator like Jane Iredale Sugar&Butter Lip Exfoliator/Plumper $54. Make sure to use a hydrating lip balm like Eve Lom Kiss Mix $30, or Blistex lip conditioning balm $3.95, and (another fun fact!) even use a bit of concealer to blot out the lips first, just to keep your natural lip colour from coming through. It helps to stop the pinkish undertones in your lips from coming through and distorting the lip colour.

And now for some options:

Glossy and long lasting: Maybelline Superstay Lip Colour in Violet, $20

For a matte lipstick: Revlon Matte Lipstick in Wine Not, $22.95

For a moistursing lipstick: L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Made For Me Intense in Plum Passion, $25.95.

For a sheer lipstick option, which only has 10% pigment so just a hint of colour: Lipstik Queen in Saint Wine, $33.95

For a more sheer, slightly glossy stain: Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey, $36

Or full glossy: Chanel Lévres Scintillantes Gloss in Mirage, $46

Full colour with a satiny texture: Chanel Rouge Allure in Emotive, Attitude or Fatale, $50

For glossy and hydrating: NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencils in Club Mix, $50

For a creamy, full colour finish: Ellis Faas Creamy Lips in L102 or L104, $52 (check out the colours here)

For a hydrating, creamy finish: Rouge Dior Sérum De Rouge Luminous Lip Colour Treatment in Violet Serum (860), Ruby (870) or Plum (880), $58

For highly pigmented, luxe colour: Tom Ford Private Blend Lip Color in Black Orchid, $65

Hope these are some good options to start T. Let me know if you need more (there are plenty!)

Mel xx


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Categories: Beauty, Queue & Aye

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2 Comments on “Queue & Aye: Plum lips”

  1. March 29, 2011 at 10:39 #

    How I adore Nat Poly and that glove-hat! Berry/wine shades are a staple for me but I find it really hard to do violets and purples…

    Thanks for the suggestions, I really want to check out some Ellis Faas swatches now.

    • March 29, 2011 at 16:33 #

      I’m always jealous of how well you rock a bold lip Jen, so I think you can definitely make violet work. And do check out Ellis Faas, her lip products are amazing. Super sleek bullet design plus full creamy/milky/glazed colour that isn’t sticky = definite win! xx

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