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The Lipstick Rule—Is It True?

Watch any makeup artist at work and no matter how fancy the lipstick brands in their kit, you’ll see them mixing and mixing and blending and blending. “I very rarely use only one lipstick, whether I’m working on someone, or even on myself,” says New York makeup artist Alice Lane. “Lipstick is like foundation: It’s just better when you mix it to suit your skin, your look. It’s the reason women are so loyal once they find the perfect lipstick shade, and then they go crazy if it gets discontinued! I like to put a darker shade at the very center—it makes the lip look fuller—also sometimes at the cupid’s bow. There’s a new dark red with lots of brown from NARS called VIP Red, and that mix, with the brown, is why it’s so flattering. It’s all about the mix!” Can you really mix any two lipstick shades to create a shade you love? The answer is generally yes, particularly if they’re two shades you already like to some degree. You can mix literally—take two well-­loved ends­-of­-a­-lipstick and mix together in a small jar or pot; paint on with a brush—or simply layer one color over another. There are no rules, just imagination. Below, a few combinations from the goop clean beauty shop that are especially nice:



Super-Wearable Red

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