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The Art of the Smudged Lip

Preen by Thornton Bregazzi Fall 2017 Ready-to-Wear.
Photo: James Cochrane

You may want to stash your lip liners away for good come fall because this spring beauty trend has style mileage. The smudgy, poppy red lip popped up at numerous shows on the Spring 2017 runways (Mother of Pearl, Kenzo, and Giambattista Valli) and made its way onto the Fall 2017 ready-to-wear runways too (Topshop Unique, Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, and Temperley London). What’s more, it has proved to be surprisingly wearable. An added bonus: it’s one of the easiest lipstick looks to apply in the back of an Uber without the help of a mirror.

Backstage at Topshop Unique, makeup artist Lynsey Alexander blotted, smudged and wiped until lip contours were flawlessly blurred. The result? Perfectly imperfect lipstick that is effortlessly chic. Fresh, dewy skin and separated, clumped lashes completed the rule-breaking look.

At Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, models took to the runway sporting messy red lipstick that deliberately diffused way past their lip lines, courtesy of Val Garland. The makeup artist, who sought inspiration from a Dawn Mellor painting, used a highly pigmented, bordeaux lip cream and buffed it out using a large brush. For dimension, she applied a clear gloss on top, staying within the lip lines. Garland was also responsible for the dreamy berry lipstick that faded out into a soft rose color at Temperley London.

To recreate the look, all that is required is your fingertips for dabbing. Remember: The more imprecise the better.

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