For nearly 18 months now, face masks have taken over every coat pocket and purse lining — real estate we used to reserve for the 83 lipstick tubes we seemed to keep on our person at all times. But now, as Canada’s vaccination rates rise and our social lives resturn, we’re finally ready to slick on lipstick again. (And tote around way too many options because, options, baby!)
The freshest finish to wear right now is a powdery matte, which makes a lot of sense given our semi-masked near-future. “A lot of companies have been put to the test,” says Toronto makeup artist Franceline Graham. “Can your lipstick stay on with masks and still look fresh at the end of the day?” No one wants to waste two dollars' worth of that perfect coral gloss on the inside of a mask. As a result, we’re seeing a rise in soft-focus formulas that go on thinner than the OG mattes, with ultrafine pigments for a comfortable feel. “One thing you don’t want to see with matte lipstick is a cracked look,” says Graham.
And in the same way that the new formulas are easy to wear, summer’s trending lipstick colours are here to keep things breezy for you, too. “We’re seeing a lot of neutrals in our clothing, and that’s why we’re seeing a lot of neutrals in lipstick,” says Graham. But that doesn’t mean ho-hum hues. Instead, it’s about building off that toned-down palette for a no-fuss, but mega-flattering look, Here, our 10 picks for a perfect lip-colour reunion. For bonus points, pick a matching mask to round off the look. Safety first!
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