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5 Reasons Why Your Lipstick is All Wrong

How to choose the right lipstick
Image Credit: JulieAnH

In my youth, there was a brand of cosmetics in the UK called No17.  It was the baby sister to No7, Boots (the big pharmacy brand) own line of make-up.  It still exists today, but it doesn't sell the lipstick that I spent my formative years wearing.

The colour was called "Twilight Teaser" and I defy anyone that lived through the 1980's as as a teenager to not remember it.  Twilight Teaser was a deathly shade of purple sheer metallic, shot through with what can only be described as "Embalmer's Blue".  It was not flattering on anyone but we all wore it, usually teamed with electric blue mascara to up the "I've just come back from the dead" look.

Nowadays, I choose my lipsticks a little more carefully, but it got me to thinking that lots of women wear the same (or similar) colour every day.  And it's not always the right one.

Here are 5 reasons why you might've been wearing the wrong colour lipstick all of your life.


If you've always been a pink-lip girl, then the chances are, you usually use a pinky blush - am I right?  Well, I hope I am because nothing looks odder than a pink lip and a tawny blush.  Or a brown toned lippy and a lollipop pink blush.

If you're going to have a signature shade of lipstick, it has to work with the rest of your make-up. It doesn't have to exactly match, but it has to come from the same colour family.  The following tips will help you choose the right shade of blush to go with your lipstick:

Red Lipstick - this calls for a classic rose blush, or for a standout lip, ditch the blusher completely

Cool Pink Lipstick - a sheer wash of candy floss pink, or a classic pink

Warm Pink Lipstick - a cream blush in a nude-pink would look fabulous, as would a warm pink/peach blush

Nude Lipstick - reach for a peachy, warm tone blush to keep the look natural.  Or use a warm toned bronzer whilst the weather is still hot.

How to choose the right lipstick


Texture matters more than you can imagine in a lipstick.

Do you remember those highly frosted, full impact glitter lipsticks of the 1990s?  I'm assuming that you're not still wearing those!  Too much sparkle looks cheap, particularly during the day.

If you're lips tend to be on the dry side, then you're making more work for yourself by always choosing a matte product.  Go for something sheer, or at least highly moisturising to avoid flaky-looking lips. Just because it's sheer doesn't mean it won't still be highly pigmented.  Lipstick formulas nowadays are extremely sophisticated so even the lightest of textures can have a great depth of colour.

Tip: I always exfoliate my lips with my toothbrush after brushing my teeth then slap on some vaseline.

How to choose the right lipstick


Hanging onto the same shade of lipstick that you wore as a teenager is like saying "I never grew up".  You don't still wear the same hairstyle, do you?

It might've looked great back then (unlike my Twilight Teaser nightmares) but the chances are your skin tone will have changed somewhat over the years, making it possibly a little unflattering.

Here are some tips to choosing one that will work for you.

Thin Lips?  Avoid darker, matte shades as it makes your lips look thinner.

Generous mouth?  Dark or light is fabulous on you - you can never have natural lips that look too big!

Match your lipstick to the colour of your lips, not your skin tone.  If your lips are pale, try natural pinks, cherry reds or peachy corals.  If they're naturally dark, then try deep reds, burgundy or bright orange.

Like to go nude?  If you're over 25, then a creamy pale nude will look at best like you're wearing concealer on your lips, or at worst, like you're stuck in the 1960s.  Nudes work better when the texture is sheerer, and generally with a hint of pink rather than yellow.

As someone who has quite a selection of lipsticks, I find this difficult to imagine, but I believe there are women out there that wear the same lipstick day and night.

If you've found your ideal colour, then vary the intensity of it for an evening.  You could layer your favourite shade with a lipgloss to lighten it, or over a deeper colour to given it more punch.

How to choose the right lipstick

I will put up my hands and admit that I did this.  For a long time.  And thought it looked good.  Maybe it did but it certainly doesn't any longer.

If you have to wear a lipliner, then choose one that matches the lipstick perfectly and do not go wildly outside your lip-line.  You're not fooling anyone.  I like the idea of a liner to stop lipstick bleeding but it's difficult to get a good finish that blends well with your lipstick.  If in doubt, leave it out.

How do you choose your lipstick?  Share your teenage lipstick fails with me!

If you liked this, check out my favourite beauty buys from December here.


  1. Thank god I'm doing it right ;) Great post! x

  2. I wore the same shade for years but have so many now I can do your 30 Lippies challenge without repeating and have learned to move a shade on if it does nothing for me.

  3. Loving the lip tips. Especially the blush issue. I rarely think about matching the blush to the lip but it really does make a difference. Bron x

  4. Great tips lady. I stick to a few favourites and sometimes I wear them day and night, but I add a little more drama with the rest of my fave for evenings. That 80s shade sounds scary ha!

  5. Loving these tips! My lippie collection just keeps and growing but I think now I have a better idea of which shades suit me and which ones don't!

  6. My teenage lipstick fail was frosted pink lippie! LOL. Love the tips. I still have difficulty finding a flattering nude lipstick sometimes!

    Di from Max The Unicorn

  7. Lol in my teens I used to wear the palest palest nude - my Grandmother always commented that it looked like a "salve", but I thought I looked totally hot ha ha! I'm lucky I have cool toned skin and warm freckles, so I can get away with quite a range of hues and colour intensities - plus I love purple lipstick! Great tips ♥♥♥

  8. Loving these tips! Especially when it comes to red lipstick - me being fair & cool-toned, I sort of struggle to get the blush aspect right, but I'm glad to know that I do get it right in that instance! The whole nude lipstick thing doesn't suit me, I look dead with it on + my lips are highly pigmented anyway, so I stick to wearing a rosy hue as my "nude".

  9. I confess! I loved frosted icy pink lippie in the 90s!

  10. Ack I had a similar mauve lipstick - and the matching blush - not a good look!

  11. Lol I remember owning Twilight Teaser - a violet like no other!


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