If you’ve ever been interested in knowing what you’d look like with fuller lips — even just for a few hours — a lip-plumping gloss is an easy-to-try first step. When applying one of these formulas, ingredients like capsaicin and cinnamon work to gently irritate your pucker, causing them to swell and look more plush.
That said, with more and more people interested in fuller lips, a multitude of brands are launching these types of products, to the point that lip plumpers are an entire subcategory within “lips” at Sephora®. To help you sift through all the options, we consulted with a handful of celebrity makeup artists who revealed their go-to glosses. From so-called “magical” formulas to ones that deliver a pleasant cooling effect, keep reading to discover the products they love.
The hero ingredient in Dior Addict® Lip Maximizer® ($34) is hyaluronic acid, which hydrates as it volumizes. “Its effects are immediate, with results lasting over time,” says Natalia Thomas, a celebrity makeup artist in New York, who uses this product as her daily lip gloss. “I can say with absolute certainty that my lips are truly a bit fuller than before I started using it,” she notes, adding, “I also like how it’s minty without any stinging.” It’s not just a personal favorite — the gloss currently has over 100,000 likes from Sephora consumers. You can choose from a wide range of shades and finishes, from standard neutral beige to holographic lilac. Read a review of Dior Addict Lip Maximizer here.
As artistic director at Glamsquad®, Kelli J. Bartlett has had access to seemingly endless lip products, but the Macrene ActivesTM High Performance Anti-Aging and Filler Lip Treatment ($95), which she claims is “magical,” has made a lasting impression. “It works by hydrating lips from the inside out with a luscious combination of hyaluronic acid and oils,” gushes Bartlett. “It creates the most lush and pillowy lips.” Fans of the product also point out that the fragrance- and paraben-free formula helps minimize the appearance of fine lines.
Andrew Sotomayor, a celebrity makeup artist in New York, is a fan of Lipstick Queen® Lip SurgeTM Plumper ($20) for its non-sticky formula and varying effects. “[The color] mirrors has peppermint oil for a cooling effect, Smoke has cinnamon oil for a warming plump, and they both have vitamin E and peptides for smoother, firmer, plumper-looking lips,” he explains. The pro recommends using the product on its own or to amplify your favorite lip color. “Don’t be afraid of the Smoke color,” he urges. “The sheer black deepens your favorite daytime look, helping you make the easy transition to evening.”
When Mary Irwin, a celebrity makeup artist in New York, wants to make a grand entrance, she looks to GrandeLips® Hydrating Lip Plumper Gloss ($27). It delivers a truly dramatic plump, leaving you with noticeably bigger lips within 15 minutes. “It has a smooth, non-sticky finish and comes in a range of hues,” she says. This formula also feels exceptionally moisturizing — a bonus in this category, as the irritants in some plumpers can leave lips parched.
Though it’s not quite a gloss, we’re fans of the unique Buxom® PowerPlump® Lip Balm ($18) formula, which is formulated with peptides to help stimulate the skin’s natural collagen. Thomas adores it, too. “It’s a lovely product that intensifies as it adapts to your pH levels, giving you a gorgeous custom flush and a slightly-fuller mouth,” she says. “It feels hydrating and is a wonderful alternative to all the sticky glosses on the market.”
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