Woman applying red lipstick

Once upon a time, I wouldn’t have been caught dead in lipstick unless it was for a special occasion. The high-maintenance nature of sipping solely through straws, opting only for foods that can be eaten in dainty bites, and constantly having to touch up and reapply seemed out of the question. However, that all changed the day I discovered Too Faced’s Melted Liquified Long Wear Lipstick in Melted Fuchsia ($21).

Two days post breakup, I found myself on a mini road trip with my parents in an attempt to distract myself from all the feels. One thing led to another, and we made a pitstop at a military base that had one of the best beauty counters I’ve ever seen. In a very Carrie Bradshaw turn of events, I decided to buy the brightest lipstick available — bolder than anything I had ever worn — and get over it. While a hot pink pout didn’t heal my heart on the spot, it did start a love affair that’s still going strong to this day, albeit in a different shade. (Photo via Stephen Smit/ Getty)

There’s just something about lipstick — particularly of the blue-red variety — that not only ties a look together but also makes you feel put together. As a result, it’s rare that you’ll see me walk out of the house without a statement lip acting as the cherry on top of an otherwise vanilla #MOTD. Since lipstick made its way into my daily makeup application, you best believe some quality lip care products have as well.

Why You should pamper your pout

Take a moment to think about your complexion. Without a proper cleansing, exfoliating, and hydrating routine in place, skin can become dry and uncomfortable. The same is true of your lips, especially when long-lasting lipsticks are part of the equation. I have found that the more I wear a color — especially of the matte liquid sort — the more chapped my lips get, and the more the lacquer pills throughout the day if I don’t take the time to prep. “If you wear these types of lipsticks every day without exfoliating and conditioning your lips, they can peel, chap, bleed, or get irritated,” Papri Sarkar, a Boston-based dermatologist, says. “They can also become more reactive to ingredients that you’re not usually sensitive to if the skin is broken down.” To avoid these adverse effects, extend the love you give your forehead, cheeks, and chin to your pout as well. “Ideally you should exfoliate (a simple brown sugar scrub, washcloth, or toothbrush will do) followed by a moisturizing and occlusive lip balm to seal in the [hydration],” Sarkar says. “If your lips are especially inflamed you can try an over-the-counter hydrocortisone ointment followed by a lip balm.”

It’s because of this little nugget of knowledge, not to mention the fact that I’m already well aware how sensitive the rest of my skin is, that I’ve become totally and completely obsessed with not just lipstick, but all the products designed to prime and protect for the prettiest pucker. I’ve sampled more lip balms, oils, serums, scrubs, and masks than I can count. Ahead, you’ll find the products I’ve kept in constant rotation since discovering lipstick.

the best products for a healthy pout

Fresh Sugar Lip Polish on white background.

Fresh Sugar Lip Scrub ($24): Made with brown sugar crystals and natural humectants (AKA ingredients renowned for preventing moisture loss), this gentle buffing scrub sloughs away the buildup of dead skin cells, as well as any residual layers of lipstick, for a silky-soft smooch every time.

Tatcha Kissu Lip Mask

Tatcha Kissu Lip Mask ($30): Japanese peach seed jelly is the unsung hero in this must-try lip product designed to smooth, plump, hydrate, and restore lips while you sleep.

Sol de Janeiro Lip Butter

Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Kiss Cupuaçu Lip Butter ($18): Formulated with cupuaçu, açaí, and coconut oil, you will never find a lip balm that smells more delicious than this jumbo-sized Brazilian caramel smooch savior.

Amorepacific Dual Nourishing Lip Serum

Amorepacific Dual Nourishing Lip Serum ($42): Fantastic for days when lips feel especially parched, this deeply hydrating formula, jam-packed with fermented vintage green tea and green tea oil to both revitalize and calm chapped lips, will help perk up your pout in a pinch.

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask ($20): Take beauty sleep to the next level with this bubblegum-scented leave-on lip mask that hydrates and plumps your pout while you drift off to dreamland.

Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy

Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy Lip Treatment ($26): Available in two shades — clear and a rosy pink — this lip treatment works to lock in moisture for up to 24 hours while minimizing the look of fine lines and wrinkles surrounding the mouth.

Do you wear lipstick every day? Tell us @BritandCo!

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