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Tales from the Dressing Table – Blending Lipsticks

Tales from the Dressing Table – Blending Lipsticks

Hello and welcome to Gloriously Vintage, today dear Reader, I am sharing with you one of my pleasures in wearing makeup – Blending Lipsticks.

 

 

What do I mean by Blending Lipsticks?

There are a number of ways to blend lipsticks.  Here are three ways; some are more successful than others!

You can actually mix lipsticks together, thus creating a new colour, in a small pot.  I have tried this with the last bit of a couple of lipsticks, in the past.  It is hard to get a good colour because the outcome is practically unknown.  There is a risk you will end up with a sludgy mess!  It was not successful.  I do not do this now.

You can actually mix colours on the lips using a lip brush.  This can be very successful and allows for very interesting effects.  Using darker shades at the outer edges and outline, blending to lighter shades on the centre on the bottom and top lip, it is possible to make lips look fuller and really gorgeous.  It takes time and practice and is often referred to as advanced lipstick application in beauty books.  I do this for very special evening events.

 

 

In this post, I am sharing with you dear Reader, blending lipsticks by layering lip colour from lip pencil and lipsticks to create new colours that come very close to matching elements of your outfit.

 

I love to do this to find a match with a scarf, handbag or a piece of jewellery.

 

The principles work with all shades of lipstick.

 

I will be illustrating them here with shades of red and coral.

 

 

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In the photograph above I am wearing a lipstick blend.  It is made up of:

Lip Pencil + Base Colour +Additional Colours =  NEW (Desired) SHADE

Bobbi Brown Sangria lip pencil + Revlon Red + Max Factor Chilli + Revlon Candy Apple =

A colour that matches the colours in the scarf very well.

 

 

Why Blend Lipsticks?

Well my answer to that question is twofold.  Firstly it is fun to blend two or more lipstick colours together to create new shades that are unique.  Blending lipsticks together extends the range of the single colours and the results are extremely satisfying because of how they look and wear.  Secondly, dear Reader, if you have a colour or tone in a scarf, handbag or outfit it is fun to blend lipsticks together to get as near a match as you possibly can.  This gives a level of elegance that is not difficult to achieve.  You can then get the blusher, nail varnish and the rest of your makeup to be perfectly in tune with the total look you are creating.

Matching lip colour to tones in accessories is something we see sometimes on the Red carpet at the BAFTA Awards, Golden Globe Awards or the Oscars.  I particularly remember Angelina Jolie Pitt wearing an elegant full length gown that was very simple, carrying a red clutch bag matched perfectly to her lipstick.  This was very striking and memorable.

 

My husband often says to me, “Your lipstick looks amazing”.  I usually reply, “It’s a blend!”

 

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 In this photograph you saw on my last post I am wearing a lipstick blend.  It is made up of:

Bobbi Brown sangria lip pencil + Revlon Red +Max Factor Mulberry =

A lipstick that complimented my party dress and would be unique at the event

Shriener earings and brooch

Looking very happy on my 60th Birthday, wearing a blend to match the Schreiner Demi Parure!

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil Red + Revlon Red +Dior 999 =  A very bright, warm red that tones well with the jewellery and the scarf I am wearing.

 

 

If you are wearing vintage style clothes why not go a step further and really work on the lipstick to complete your look?

Sometimes it is possible to blend a red lipstick that is just the right shade, texture and finish so that your finished look is simply incredible.  The blending principles I am discussing here can be used with all colours to get the tone required.  I am illustrating this post with shades of red because love lipstick, especially red tones.  Blending is what I do most days. In A/W my reds are a warm red/wine base colour and moving to berry and purple, mauve tones.  I also love to blend russet, chilli tones into my red in the A/W.  At the time of writing it is May and S/S is here!  So dear Reader, let’s take a look at reds and corals to be ready for S/S!

 

 

What do you need to get started?

You need:

  1. Two or more lipsticks that you like and really know the colour. Think – is it bright, flat, pinky, bluey, does it suit me?  Does it make me happy to wear it?

  2. Lip pencils in a number of tones. When you are young lip pencils just sort out the outline of your lips, over 40 years old I think it is important to outline and full in the lips to give an excellent base to then fill in with lipstick.

  3. Good Quality quilted toilet paper for blotting. I have tried tissues, cotton handkerchiefs, blotting papers; you name it and have found this to be the best.  The quilted toilet paper sheets will take 3 or 4 blots and do not separate on the lips.

  4. A good moisturizing routine to keep your lips and the skin around your mouth well moisturized.

  5. A face flannel for exfoliating the lips regularly. I use a clean face flannel everyday to wash my face in the morning.  Then I like to use cleanser, toner and moisturiser at night with cotton makeup remover pads.  If your lips are kept well moisturised and you are following a good routine, they will look great.

 

It is worth following a disciplined skin care routine for life.  If you do not do this – start now.  I have cared for my skin religiously over my life and am keeping deep wrinkles at bay, for the moment!

 

How to get a great result

Here is my step by step guide to a great blend:

  1. Preparation of the lips is vital. Moisturise lips and then wipe away the moisturiser.

  2. I like to put a thin layer of foundation onto my lips to start.

  3. Follow this with a little powder to create a matte surface

  4. Outline lips with your chosen coloured lip pencil

  5. Fill in the outline with lip pencil.

  6. Apply the base colour.

  7. Blot on quilted toilet paper, 3 times. You will see the strong colour in the first blotting.

  8. Apply again and blot 3 times

  9. Apply another colour that will take the base colour up or down in brightness or toward coral or red. Blot again at least twice.

  10. Go on layering colours until the desired match is achieved. Blot each application at least once or twice.  Four layers, each blotted should stay on well.

  11. Use the blotting on the sheet to match with the outfit , scarf or even jewellery.

  12. Try on the finished outfit with your blend; enjoy the result – a truly individual look that is specific to that outfit. The perfect finishing touch!

Your new shades

When you practice the above is possible to create formulas or codes to enable you to collect blends that really work for you.

 

Lip Pencil + Base Colour+ Additional Colour(s) =

NEW SHADE

When blending it is very important choose a base colour.  This is the colour you apply first.

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It can be a favourite you know looks great on its own, mine is Revlon Red.  It is a staple colour and has been available for many years.  It is a red with warm tones.

Find out if you suit reds with a blue tone or a more tomato tone.  I suit the warmer reds.  Bluey ones do nothing for me at all.  Search and try out testers in shops – go outside and look at the colours in natural light.

 

Texture and Finish

It interests me greatly how the texture of lipstick goes in and out of fashion.  Now I am older I follow the beauty pages of both Vogue and Harpers Bazaar.  I love to see how the lipstick textures are going to play out each season.  Sometimes it is matte or satin finish and of course glossy lips dip in and out of fashion.  These fashions can determine what colours and types of lipstick are available to buy.  Dita Von Teese advocates stocking up on your favourites.  The most annoying thing is when marvellous colours are discontinued and are unavailable.

Last year I bought 2 Revlon HD lipsticks in Poppy and Gladiolus.  I wore them in blends all summer and had great fun with them.  Thankfully they and still available and I am just now buying them again for this year!

 

Season by Season

Once you master this blending principle, there is nothing to stop you making many, many tones from your lipstick collection.  Why should you restrict yourself?  Blotting and layering the colour makes lipstick stay on to eat and drink and to just last well through the day.

I wear a uniform to work.  So every day I practice my blends when I do not have to match anything in particular.  I try out blends and assess how they have stayed on during the morning or afternoon.  I am using that work time to prepare great lipstick looks for the outfits I am planning to wear at the weekend or to attend a special party or event.

Some Lipsticks stay on better than others due to the amount of pigment in them.  Max Factor are excellent, L’Oreal Reds are lovely , I like Blake’s and Eva’s.

This summer I am also using Dior 999 and Bobbi Brown Parisian Red.  I will enjoy them on their own but will also be experimenting with some amazing blends!

 

Here are some examples of my favourite blends:

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If I want a good warm coral I turn to:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil in Red + Revlon Red + Bourjois 10 Rouge Buzz

 

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This is one of my absolute favourite summer blends!  I wear this many times because it is bright, strong and a warm summer red that stands out well with a lot of my clothes.

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil Red + Revlon Red + Revlon  HD Gladiolus

 

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For a bright summer blend that comes out slightly more red than the one above I use:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil Red + Revlon Red + Bourjois 13 Jet Set

 

 

Inspiration

You can find inspiration for your look in many places. Dear Reader, please talk to me and share some of your inspiration in the comments.  As I love lipstick and wearing it, mine starts with the classic Hollywood film stars.  I look at Marilyn Monroe, Jane Russell, June Alyson, Rita Hayworth, Doris Day, Cyd Charrise and Lauren Bacall to name a few.  They all looked so glamorous and beautiful.  On Facebook there are groups who share wonderful photos of these film stars.

Images in magazines are helpful as you can find looks you like.  It is possible to emulate this style and put your own personal twist on it.  When I was in my early 20’s I read the beauty pages of Vogue magazine avidly and copied some of the makeup looks, learning all the time what worked and certainly what definitely did not!.

I also find inspiration now in my jewellery and scarf collections.  Can I blend a lipstick to match or to tone really well?  I am also inspired by the colour of handbags.  I have a bright tomato red modern handbag that I always wear with a specific blend.  I have to say I feel marvellous when I wear it!

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Here I have used:

Bobbi Brown lip pencil in red + Revlon Red +MAC Lady Danger +Revlon HD Poppy = A good match to this handbag

 

 

Matching tones to a scarf will always produce a very “finished” and polished look.  If the scarf is near your face, it makes perfect sense to blend a lipstick to go with it.

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Here I have used:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil in Red + MAC Lady Danger + Revlon HD lipstick Poppy = A lovely bright colour to wear with my scarf!

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To go with this lovely silk scarf I blend:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil in Sangria + Revlon Red + Max Factor Mulberry =

A more purple tone that works for S/S because the Revlon Red base colour stops the Mulberry coming out too dark.  The Mulberry shade has little gold sparkles in it which adds an interesting finish.

 

 

A big thank you to Glenn for taking these photographs.

I hope you are thinking now about having a go at blending and creating your own blends to match your outfits.  Summer is ahead of us with plenty of opportunities to be out and about looking very glamourous. 

 

It’s been great to get together on Gloriously Vintage – drop by again soon!

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About Gloriously Vintage

My name is Elizabeth. I am so thrilled to be learning how to write a blog about my adventures collecting vintage treasures. This new adventure is to mark my 60th Birthday this February in 2016 and to start this decade with something new. I have been collecting Powder compacts, 1950's costume jewellery, vintage handbags, silk scarves, vintage umbrellas and hats for over five years now. I try to wear and use as much of my collections as possible. This has added great enjoyment to my life! As a child my "best game " was always dressing up. I kept all my dressing up clothes in a large wooden banded trunk in the spare bedroom -the third bedroom. Creating outfits and characters, wearing jewellery always with a handbag and a powder compact I would play on my own for hours. Most of my treasures then came from jumble sales and bric a brac shops browsed with my parents on holiday. Life has a way of coming round full circle. In my fifties I found increasing joy in being able to just be myself and adopt the hairstyle I wanted and the vintage look that suited me. I source all my "top clothes" from Oxfam on line and charity shops Mixing new tops, shoes and sometimes handbags with my vintage accessories has given me a signature style that is unique. I have always tried to be an individual and not follow the crowd. I find most of my collections at vintage fairs, charity shops and going to Antiques for Everyone at the NEC has been a marvellous time for hunting out treasures and learning more about the things that have sparked real passion for me.

8 responses »

  1. Pingback: Summer Styling – Coral, Cream and Turquoise | Gloriously Vintage

  2. Pingback: Rock that Signature Scarf | Gloriously Vintage

  3. really great tips! I usually wear besame lipsticks and I really havent thought of blending but its a good idea. Im turning 40 in 2 years and I do see my lips thinning out a bit, they where never full to begin with. I may try your foundation trick

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    • Dear Kate, what colour Besame lipstcks do you like? I have seen lovely adverts for them but have not tried them yet. I think their packaging is attractive too. It all adds to the enjoyment of a lipstick. Do let me know how you get on with any of the tips. Best wishes, Elizabeth xx

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  4. You have such an engaging, wonderfully lovely way of writing and explaining your fashion/beauty processes to us, dear Elizabeth. I joyfully lap up each new post and always love learning more about what goes into your stellar looks – makeup very much included, my fellow lipstick blending fan.

    Big hugs & joyful start of June wishes,
    ♥ Jessica

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    • Dear Jessica, thank you for your encouraging comment about this post. I thought you would share my love of blending lipsticks. You make so many lovely outfits, blending works well to get just the right colour. Here in the UK our weather is perking up and that always makes me blend slightly brighter colours. Big hugs back, and best wishes to you, Elizabeth xx

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  5. Hi Elizabeth!
    I really enjoyed this post about “blending” lipsticks. I thought I was the only one doing this. Not even my mother blends lipstick.
    I have been using red lipsticks since I was 5.
    At that time my brother and siter were sick and to my delight, I was sent to live with my grandparents (my father´s parents).
    They patiently looked after me and I filled their days with adventures and “little problems”.
    One of those little problems was my grandmother´s very bright red lipsticks (she had 2).
    She used them in a daily basis and never left the house without her pearls and red lipstick on (even to go shopping).
    One day I convinced her I wanted to stay in with my grandfather while she went on her own to do some grocery shopping.
    My grandfather used to smoke always outside the house. He left the house to have his cigarette and in less time you need to blink your eyes I took a chair, reached one of my grandma´s lipsticks, went to the toilette, took the small chair that was placed there (for me to reach the sink and the mirror), and “applied” the lipstick to my lips.
    I was so happy looking at my self in the mirror that I did not heard my grandmother opening the main door of the house.
    When I realized she was in, I tried to clean my lips with the pristine white towels, closed the lipstick and went to the kitchen.
    She came to the kitchen, looked at me with big open eyes and politely asked me if I could help her with the groceries. After the groceries were placed in the right place she went to the toilette and took the towels and asked me again to help her with the laundry.
    At that time I was already pretty scared because she had said nothing and it was like seeing the storm slowly coming on my way.
    After helping with the laundry, she looked at me again and very seriously said I needed to properly clean my face. We went back to the toilette and she helped me to clean my face. I almost began to cry and said I was really sorry that I only had used her lipstick because I wanted to be pretty as she was…
    She smiled and said, “well my dear, you need to learn how to use lipstick”.
    And well… my love for red lipstick was born.
    She taught me how to blend lipsticks, how to apply a lipstick without using pencils and other beauty tricks that she learned when she was young (the late 20´s and early 30´s).
    I also love pearls thanks to her, she always used a necklace of pearls.
    Now I do have 14 lipsticks, some of them are 20 years old!
    I know you will probably say to me that I need to throw them out but I use them in a daily basis. It happens that when you blend lipsticks they last longer. Of course, the older ones are 1 very bright red (Chrystell) and a white one (that was given to me as present to go to ski). The red ones do not last that long 😉
    By the way, I also follow your tips that were taught to me by my grandmother (apart from the pencils that I do not use).
    Thanks very much for this post. It has been a delight to read it 🙂
    Eva (from Luxembourg/Germany)

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    • Dear Eva, What a lovely story! I am very interested that you are a fellow lipstick blender, and I so enjoyed reading your story. No wonder that you enjoy lipstick after being shown by your grandmother. You are right lipsticks do last longer when used as part of a blend. Your very bright red can be changed by layering over it or adding it on top of darker tones. the other thing that works for me is that if I have a lipstick I love the colour of but the texture is more sheer or it just does not stay on well layering it over one with more pigment makes it stay on better.
      I was thrilled to find your comment and read your very kind thoughts about this post.
      Have a great weekend as we start June, with best wishes,Elizabeth xx

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