The right lipstick can completely change not only your appearance but your whole mood. You can find a shade for every skin tone, occasion and season but with that you’re going to need the perfect lipliner (and application!) because without the finishing touches life is just a bit bland, isn’t it?

Here are my top 5 tips for how to get your liner to work for you with minimal effort (because I’m an enthusiast, not an MUA and I like life to be nice and simple)!

1. Switch things up!

First up is my absolute go to, holy grail of all liner tips. Apply your lipstick first and finish with a liner. I know it seems quite contradictory to what you’re trying to achieve but trust me! It’s fool proof and will make the world of difference to your perfect pout. You’ll have already done the work with your initial application which will leave you with the fun part of defining your best features (so all of them basically because YOU ARE A SNACK!) as well as simultaneously cleaning up the edges. You’re also onto a winner when your lipstick starts fading because you won’t be left with any unflattering rings or lines around your lips.

2. Prep.

Exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate! Flaky lips? We don’t know her!

The last thing you’ll want is for your liner to cling to dry patches and dead skin. Firstly it’s not going to feel very nice and secondly they’re just going to be so much harder to work with. A sugar scrub is a quick and easy way to maintain soft, smooth lips with minimal effort and really will make all the difference.

I’m sure it goes without saying that dry lips should not be a feature here! However, as much as a slick of balm is going to help you achieve a much more kissable pout and help to prevent a liner dehydrating your lips it can also make things a little more complicated when trying to control your liner. I like to prep with a balm during my skincare routine so that by the time you’re ready to apply your lipstick everything has dried down enough to be able to retain some control.

3. Contrast can be key!

The power of a good lipstick and liner duo is that the possibilities are endless and it really is so easy to completely change the appearance/shape of your lips with a few little switches. By using contrasting shades (a darker liner against a lighter lippy) you’ll easily be able to fake bigger, plumper lips and I’m all about that life.

4. Out with the new and in with the well, nearly new…

As silly as this is going to sound a brand new liner can be your worst enemy if you’re a novice (or messy like me!). I’m not saying we want a blunt tip but a little bit of wear and tear makes a huge difference. You can also flatten the tip of your liner by warming it in between your hands before squeezing gently. This will be so much easier to work with. Trust me!

Whilst we’re on the subject of what makes a good liner application I also wanted to mention angles. The way you hold your liner is going to make such a huge difference to the finish. The most commonly recommended method would be to hold your line at a 45-degree angle (now I can only speak for myself when I said ‘erm, what?’ then again I was always rubbish at maths.) but to be honest I think really it’s something that just needs a bit of tweaking. Trial and error, you know!

5. Slay all day.

If staying power is what you’re after then this is one for you. Fill in the entire lip with the liner to create a base for your lipstick or gloss. It can be drying but with the correct prep you’ll achieve the kind of longevity that seems suspiciously close to magic.

…and that’s it! I hope you’ve been able to pick up a few tips and tricks or at least feel a bit more confident when tackling a statement lip now!