Ombré is an effect that’s made its way quite literally from head to toe. Beauty brands boxed the hair color trend, creating DIY kits that let women get the dip-dyed look without stepping foot in a salon. Screen printed nail appliqués made the gradient manicure as simple as putting on a sticker. Now, transitioning the concept to your lips—a creative blending of shades we’ve seen employed in myriad ways from the streets of Tokyo to the couture runways in Paris—is easier than ever.
Makeup artist Nigel Stanislaus suggests running a lipstick over the back of your hand (to warm up the pigment and make it more emollient), then loading the fleshy part of your index finger with color. Using a light, rolling motion, press and blend the pigment into your pout on both top and bottom. Squeeze lips together and clean up the edges with a Q-tip dipped in non-greasy makeup remover to finish. “It’s soft-focus—not feathery,” he explains. “Your lips shouldn’t look like it’s after dinner and you need to retouch.”
For a quick, all-in-one option that doesn’t require a pro’s touch, reach for Maybelline New York’s Lip Studio Color Blur and run this creamy, matte crayon across the center of your mouth. Use the silicone smudger tip on the opposite end to diffuse the color out toward the edges and customize the result. Bonus: Your fingertips stay stain free.