Liquid Lipsticks Are All the Rage and Here’s Why

A young white woman applying liquid lipstick.

Liquid lipsticks are easy to apply and only need one coat. Photo: Eugene Sergeev | Shutterstock.

There’s a new, fabulous face in town: liquid lipsticks, and they’re taking over the cosmetics industry. All of the standard drugstore brands and even most of the high-end lines like Dior and Guerlain have released collections. This year, companies have cashed in on the craze, giving consumers a wide selection of colors, prices, and finishes. For a relative newcomer to the beauty industry, liquid lipsticks seem to be holding their own. So what makes them so popular?

Though they can be trickier to apply to the lips than standard tube lipstick, liquids offer some great benefits. For one thing, their staying power borders on legendary: because many of the formulas dry as a matte finish, they’re committed to staying on the lip, which means they’re less likely to transfer, feather, or crack. A liquid lipstick is more likely to survive a night of eating, drinking, and making out than any regular tube formula. They won’t get all over your sandwich—or your partner’s lips.

Most liquid lipsticks are very highly pigmented and only need one coat, usually applied by doe-foot applicator, to reach full opacity. They’re not like a gloss—while they can be shiny, they’re very rarely tacky or sticky, and once they dry, that’s where they’ll stay.

Liquids glide on easily and their formulas can reach corners and nips in the lip a bit more easily than a tube lipstick, but you will need want to proceed with caution because once the formula dries somewhere you don’t want it, it can be a pain to get off. Try not to purse your lips while the lipstick dries!

Additionally, liquid lipsticks are more buildable than ye olde tube. You can apply a single coat and be good to go on color for the day, or you can apply a coat and blot with tissue paper for a lighter, softer look. You can even layer multiple coats for a color that is dark, full, and rich.

Because so many companies have released liquid lip collections this year, consumers have an incredible range of options to choose from. If you’re on a budget, try NYX’s Soft Matte Lip Cream or Revlon’s ColorStay Ultimate Liquid Lipstick. If you don’t mind spending a few more dollars for great formulas, give Kat von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipstick or Stila’s Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick a whirl.

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