There are a handful of advancements that have changed the beauty industry so profoundly, we'd liken their creation to the invention of the wheel — and one of 'em is long-wear makeup. If all this sounds a bit dramatic, we hear you, but anyone who's carefully applied a face of makeup only to have it smudge, fade, or totally disappear in a matter of hours knows the struggle.
We've made strides in almost every category of long-wear makeup, but lipstick remains the most interesting to test — namely, because a good one must be comfortable, pigmented, kiss-proof, and food-proof. And what better time to whip out a reliable bullet than Valentine's Day? Whether you plan on dancing with your squad, doing date night with your S.O., or anything else, a budge-proof lipstick is a welcome addition.
We asked our editors to share the drugstore lipsticks they fall back on when it really counts — check 'em out in the slides ahead.
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"I love lipstick, but the feeling isn’t always mutual. There are few formulas that last all day without a pencil or primer, but I’ve yet to find ‘the one.’ I knew I was close when I tried L’Oreal’s Infallible Paint — right before I ripped into a big, messy cheeseburger. The lipstick applies smoothly and isn’t drying at all. After a few hours, it does fade a little, but I dig how my go-to (Cinna-Bomb) morphs into a flattering rusty brown after I've been wearing it for a while. It’s an easy lip to throw in my purse and apply while I’m on the train. Plus, it requires minimal touch-ups throughout the day." — Khalea Underwood, Beauty Writer
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"Every once in awhile, I'll remember the beauty of a really good lip stain. Unlike liquid stains or lipsticks, this marker looks surprisingly natural on your lips and isn't messy at all. Bonus: It's foolproof for subway application and lasts through even the oiliest salad for lunch." — Sam Sasso, Beauty News Writer
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"This lipstick won't last through a heavy makeout session (you'll have to sacrifice your ethics for results like that), but it does stay vibrant through the more PG activities like meeting the parents or dancing — with plenty of space — at the conservative family wedding." — Cat Quinn, Beauty Director
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"Wet n Wild's liquid lipstick was one of the first I've tried, drugstore or luxe. The formula is smooth, comfortable, and it stays on well throughout the day without sucking the hydration out of my lips. My shade of choice is Rebel Rose, a beautiful dusty rose that goes with any makeup or outfit. Also, the doe-foot applicator has a slight dip in the center, which helps it hold the perfect amount of product, while the tip of the applicator is narrow and more precise." — Michaela Rollings, Associate Marketing Manager
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"I have to admit that I, like many people, don't love the feeling of a matte liquid lipstick. Of course, I also hate when my lipstick fades or transfers onto my Champagne flute while trying to live my best life. This is my red lip compromise: The color is vibrant, and the formula is comfy and lightweight. Plus, it lasts all night — as long as you don't makeout with anyone or throw back three slices of pizza. For that, you'll need a quick touch-up." — Lexy Lebsack, Senior Beauty Editor
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