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Lip Contouring 101

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The Violet Files

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Lessons

LESSONS:

LIP CONTOURING 101

How to serve full lip—a lesson from makeup artist Fara Homidi.

Photography By
Hanna Tveite
Written By
By Patty Tortolani
Lip contouring

Fara Homidi can do hyperreal (see Miu Miu S/S 23 campaign), she’s a master at modern elegance (case in point: Victoria Beckhams F/W 23 runway), and she most definitely gets a lil’ freaky (who could forget Eckhaus Latta’s American Psycho inspired look of a few seasons ago?). So when it came time to unpack Lip Contouring—the latest TikTok beauty trend to pique our interest and simultaneously intimidate us—we tapped into the makeup artist’s multifaceted skills and her new Fara Homidi Beauty collection, which, you guessed it, is all about lips.

01
WHAT EXACTLY IS LIP CONTOURING?

FARA HOMIDI: Lip contouring is the art of using lip pencils, lip color, and sometimes concealer and powder to create dimension and shape and emphasize your pout.

02
ARE THERE DIFFERENT STYLES? SOME EXAMPLES LOOK SEVERE, WHILE OTHERS ARE MORE SUBTLE.

FH: Definitely. Depending on the desired effect, a lip contour can cheat the size of the lips for a fuller, poutier effect. But the technique can also be used for peak definition of the lip shape, with bolder, more crisp lines. It’s also a helpful trick for correcting uneven lip shapes. Lots of styles to pick from. For me, it depends on what mood I’m in and what type of shade I’m wearing.

03
WOULD YOU BE SO KIND AS TO WALK US THROUGH IT STEP-BY-STEP?

FH:

STEP 1. Always exfoliate lips before applying any lip products! One way to do this is by saturating a textured cotton round with Bioderma cleanser and then going over the lips with decent pressure in circular motions.

STEP 2. Once exfoliated, apply a thin layer of lip balm and lip primer to add moisture, fill in fine lines, and help the lip products glide on more easily. The Prime Baume in my Essential Lip Compact was made precisely for this.

STEP 3. Using nude liner shades, create fuller lips by slightly over-lining the cupid’s bow and the fullest part of the bottom lip. For the sides of the bottom and top lip, follow the natural lip line. This focuses the volume in the center and gives the illusion of a fuller, poutier mouth.

STEP 4. Fill in the inner part of the lips with a fleshy pink nude tone which also gives the illusion of volume and health. For an alternative look, an ombré finish can be achieved using a lighter shade for the inner part of the lips, which gives the ultimate illusion of a fuller mouth!

STEP 5. To really emphasize the lip contour and shape, take a flat synthetic brush dipped in concealer and follow right under the lip line all around the mouth, always blending the concealer upwards when near the corners of the mouth. This gives the illusion of the lips tilting up. Dip the brush into a setting powder, and follow the lip shape closely. This locks the color in for a budge-proof lip line and helps with preventing feathering.

04
AMAZING. CAN YOU ALSO CONTOUR WITH RED HUES, OR IS IT MORE OF A NUDE THING?

FH: Generally, for red lips, the color is intense, so stay away from overlining— it’s chicer to keep the shape tighter. I would suggest using a red lip pencil to contour a “happy mouth” by precisely following the line of the cupid’s bow and the center line of the bottom lip. For the sides of the mouth, keep the color on the inside of the natural lip line. Follow by filling in the rest of the lips with a red lip shade that matches nicely with the lip pencil, and make sure the liner and the lip shade are blended seamlessly.

05
ANY LIP LINER TIPS TO CORRECT AN UNEVEN LIP SHAPE?

FH: Swipe a bit of concealer over the lip area that is being corrected. This gives a fresh canvas to create a new shape. Line the rest of the lips first, then match the uneven area to the rest of the lips.

06
WHAT MISTAKES SHOULD BE AVOIDED WHEN LIP CONTOURING?

FH: The biggest mistake to avoid during lip contouring is going too extreme with the lining above the natural lip line. There is a threshold to how to achieve realistic results with over-lining. After a certain point, if it’s very over-lined, the lips look too obvious.

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