Being the final touch or even the star of the show, lipsticks are essential to any makeup look. With endless combinations of shades, finishes and textures, it’s almost impossible to find two formulas that look the same—and that’s why everyone gets so upset when their favorite is discontinued. Today, we’re digging into all the details that separate each formulation, so you can understand what’s the best fit for your preferences and needs. From the classic lipstick to liquid lipsticks, from lip oil and gloss to lip tint, we’re covering all types of lipsticks and providing you with all the details you need to tell them apart.
A guide to all types of lipstick!
The classic lipstick
The one everyone knows, whether in classic red or versatile pink. A classic texture that is easy to apply as well as to reapply, and the one that’s available in all kinds of finishes—from matte to shiny, from satin to creamy. Appealing to makeup artists and inexperienced makeup users alike, this classic texture is a staple for all kits. Each application coats your lips with equal parts of color, some natural shine (when they’re not matte) and comfort, thanks to the emollients.
You may well ask: what is lipstick made of? Well, like any other cosmetic, there’s not a single answer to this question, as ingredients vary according to brand, range, texture and result. But there’s enough common ground for us to trace a list of ingredients. Pigments are the key ingredient for any type of lipstick—the source of all lipstick shades there is. Equally important, you’ll also find some kind of wax to make it easy to apply, as well as some oils to add comfort and moisturizing properties. Some formulas may also feature some anti-aging ingredients to take the lipstick one step further, or SPF, for example, to protect the lips from external aggressions. Formulas may vary widely, but you can always count on instant lip enhancement powers!
How to use
Alone: You may apply the bullet straight to your lips, using the tip of the lipstick to define the contour of the lip;
With a lip liner: You may apply a lip liner beforehand to define the lips, to enhance the intensity of the shade while improving wear. Alternatively, you may use the lip liner after applying the lipstick only to perfect lip contours.
With lipgloss: You can use lipstick before the lip gloss to add color intensity.
The shiny lip gloss
Lip gloss is fun, lip gloss is cool and it’s fresh! Are you noticing some sort of writer’s personal preference here? Well, maybe you’re right! From flattering shine to a comfortable sensation that lasts on the lips, what’s not to love? You may wear it alone or over any type of lipstick, and the result is also a fresh, healthy-looking lip that elevates any look, from daily makeup to black tie looks. As you apply a lip gloss, your lips will be enhanced with clear shine, possibly with a touch of shimmer, and maybe with some subtle color if you choose to.
If you’re wondering what is lip gloss made of, well, the answer is not that different from the lipstick that we’ve seen above. They share a base of oils and waxes, yet, of course, in lip glosses the pigments are residual—if not absent at all—and the shine is very intense thanks to petroleum jelly. Once again, you’ll be able to find all kinds of variations when it comes to finishes and ingredients, with some formulations having some welcome additional benefits such as hydrating properties and added fragrance, for instance. One thing to keep in mind: this is the go-to formula for fresh, juicy lips!
How to use
Alone: Apply the lipgloss straight from the tube, directly onto your lips.
On top of a lipstick: You may apply a lip gloss over any type of lipstick to add extra dimension and shine. To avoid staining the applicator, you may put the lip gloss on the back of your hand and then use your index finger to add it to the lips.
The comfortable lip balm
The perfect hybrid between makeup and skincare, lip balm provides your lips with a superior level of comfort. Usually featuring a base of wax that perfectly keeps all the nourishing and fragrant ingredients, these formulas deliver the best of both worlds: it deeply moisturizes the lips while delivering a subtle shine (and sometimes a sheer tint too!). In addition, it is not rare that lip balms (also known as chapsticks) also have a flavor, which further elevates the whole application experience!
More than color and shine, often times these formulas also protect the lips with SPF. You may wear it as the main lip product of your look or as a base for any texture of lip makeup, as it provides a nourishing layer that boosts the comfort of any product!
How to use
Apply the lip balm directly on the lips, alone or before your favorite lip product to ass extra comfort and shine. You may reapply as much as you like throughout the day.
The statement liquid lipstick
This is the type of lipstick to go for those who like liquid formulas but won’t give up on lipstick pigmentation. Liquid as a gloss yet pigmented as lipstick, liquid lipsticks come in all finishes, from matte to shimmery and shiny. Resulting from a thoughtful combination of waxes and oils, these formulas coat the lips with a thin layer that feels soft and comfortable for all-day wear.
Ideal for those who want a great lipstick impact without the weight of a dense lipstick, this option offers a unique texture! How it feels on the lips varies depending on the finish (usually matte formulas feel a bit less nourishing, while luminous formulations tend to be more comfortable), so you may love one liquid lipstick and dislike another one. Don’t give up on liquid lipsticks only for having a not-so-great experience, keep trying and we promise you’ll find formulas you love!
How to use
Apply it directly to the lips using the application, starting by defining the contour of the lips and then filling it in. You may also combine it with other formulas to intensify the result and/or change the finish. A good example is to apply a lip gloss on top of your matte liquid lipstick to change the finish.
The practical lip crayon
This is pretty much a slimmer and creamier version of the classic lipstick, shaped to be as easy to apply as it gets. More often than not, lip crayons are very hydrating, providing the lips with color and nourishing benefits at the same time. The precise tip and thin shape just slide on the lips smoothly to deliver the best of the results, with a pinch of shine and color as well as lots of comfort. Featuring wax together with rich pigments, a lip crayon is what you need to get your lips soft, smooth and pretty on busy days!
You should try this lip makeup presentation if you fancy some effortless beauty steps. The lip crayon’s shape makes it very simple to apply, bringing color and comfort to the lips in no time. Another great option to apply even when there are no mirrors around, this product is perfect for everyday wear or to replenish your lips with some comfort throughout the day.
How to use
As you would do with any type of lipstick, apply it directly to the lips, using the precise tip to line the lip contour. Then, fill in the lips with as many layers as you need to make the lips comfortable.
The weightless lip tint
This is the dream formula for those who don’t like to feel any product or texture on the lips as well as for those who refuse to reapply lip makeup. With lip tints, you’ll be getting all the color with none of the weight on the lips. With watery formulas, and lip tints make sure to stain your lips with lasting color that feels completely weightless on lips. Equally important, it wins the prize as the most long-lasting formula as lip tints are usually not only long-wearing but also transfer-proof. Thanks to a combination of colorants and dyes, you’ll have your lips very well tinted for the day with no need for mirror checks!
How to use
When it comes to lip tint application, things get really easy. You’ll only need to apply it directly onto the lips and then pat the product in with your fingers. You may apply any other lip product on top of it for extra comfort or color.
The nourishing lip oil
The comfortable cousin of lip gloss, lip oil looks just as shiny yet with an extra dose of nourishment. As the name anticipates, lip oils are made from a nourishing blend of rich oils that create a layer not only to embellish but also to shield the lips. It feels incredibly hydrating without ever feeling sticky. The lips feel soft and slippery in the most pleasant way. It’s ideal for those who privilege comfort without compromising on shine. In addition to the shine, you may also get a touch of sheer color that further enhances the finish on the lips. Apply it any time you need some glossy and fancy hydration, as it’ll surely improve all of your makeup looks!
How to use
Apply it directly to the lips using the applicator. There’s no need to remove the previous layer before reapplying it throughout the day.
Once you find the perfect type of lipstick for you, you’ll find a friend for life. If you were looking for lip products with SPF, worry not! We have plenty of suggestions as well.
Professional Makeup Artist & Beauty Writer