How To Get Bigger Lips Without Injections

Just follow this five-step tutorial—no needles necessary!
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Natacha Medeiros
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Just follow this five-step tutorial—no needles necessary!

Big lips are ALL the rage right now, but you don't have to follow in the footsteps of Kylie Jenner to get them. (I mean, that girl's channeling a puffer fish. But hey, at least she owned up to injections. No shame!)

Personally, my lips have never been my favourite feature, either. I have a tiny mouth and tiny lips to match, and I’ve always wanted them to be poutier, à la Daphne Groeneveld or Lindsey Wixson. Talk about lip envy!

But since sticking tiny, sharp needles in my mouth is not something I'd like to pursue, I’ve found a few other ways to plump up my pout, sans medi-spa appointment. 

Here are my tried and tested tricks to fake the plumper lips you hate to love. Admit it.

How to get bigger lips with makeup

My mini arsenal for a plumper pout.

First, these are the tools you'll need:

Step 1: Scrub and Moisturize

After using a lip scrub

Post-scrub and looking fresh!

I try to incorporate some lip-smoothing action in my nighttime routine. There’s no doubt that scrubbing your lips with an exfoliant is going to puff them up a little bit, and eliminate all that dead skin. 

I exfoliate with Lush Bubble Gum Lip Scrub; buffing slightly with a clean toothbrush really helps get your lips nice and smooth, too. Then, I slather on some Vaseline or ChapStick. I go to bed, let all that moisture sink in, and when I wake up, I swear, it’s like I had a mini lip injection. 

The effect doesn’t last all day, but if I apply some gloss or more balm while I'm getting ready in the morning, it keeps things nice and plump. Pictured above are my lips just after scrubbing. Baby smooth and a little plumper due to the (mild) irritation. 

Step 2: Pick A Colour

Pick a colour

This hot pink packs a lot of punch!

Next, you want to pop on some colour. For today's photos, I'm wearing Revlon Super Lustrous Matte Lipstick in Sultry Samba. Lips are looking not bad so far! 

By the way, these tips will also work with a nude or some sheer gloss, so if you're not a brights person, don't worry! 

Step 3: Contour

Lip contouring

Shadows are a small-lipped girl's best friend.

We all know about contouring our faces (something that’s way too advanced for me), but did you ever think about contouring your lips? You see, it’s all about shadows, which help create the illusion of more fullness.

Once your face makeup is done, take whatever matte bronzer you have (I'm using Rimmel's Sunshimmer Shimmering Maxi Bronzer in 002 Sun Love) and the smallest eyeshadow brush you own (mine is Sonia Kashuk). Pick up some bronzer and place that directly under the center of your bottom lip, like I've done above. You can fan it out a little to the sides if you’d like, just be sure to blend well, so it’s not a blob of brown bronzer on your face. 

Lip contouring

A bit of bronzer makes your bottom lip look instantly fuller.

You’ll notice that the bronzer is creating a more prominent shadow underneath your lower lip, making it appear bigger. We're getting closer!

Step 4: Highlight

Highlight Cupid's bow

Let there be light! My pout is shaping up into something sweet.

Want to take it one step further? On your top lip, dab some highlighter on the Cupid's bow and in the centre of your lips (but subtly, please!). The added light will give the illusion that your lips are protruding outwards. 

I used NARS Illuminator Copacabana for this effect; plus the "contouring" is still in place. I'm liking this!

Step 5: Over-line (Slightly!)

Over-lined lips

Subtlety is key when faking larger lips!

Kylie Jenner claimed her lips were the result of makeup tricks, and even though we know that's not 100 percent true, you can still do some smart over-lining. I’m not the biggest fan of it when it looks unnatural, but if you do it super-subtly, you can actually get a nice effect. 

For me, I find what works best is over-lining at the Cupid's bow area and just slightly outside it, and then joining that with your natural lip line. That way, you’re not over-lining your entire mouth, making the effect much more natural. That's what I did here, using Revlon ColorStay Lip Liner in Fuchsia. Not bad, right? I also went a little over my bottom lip line, too. Is it just me or do they look kind of good? 

Over-lined lips

My lips after my over-lining handiwork.

For another method, Michelle swears by over-lining at the corners of the mouth only. Check out her post about that here.

The Final Effect

Bigger lips with makeup (final)

All the products working their magic!

"Damn, girl, where'd you come from?" is what I just said to my lips. Because I did not wake up like this! Thanks to contouring, highlighting and (slightly) over-lining, the transformation is pretty dramatic. I kind of love how they turned out! I would never do this for an everyday look, but for a girl's night out or a special event, why not amp up your kisser? 

How to get bigger lips with makeup

My lip transformation.

Still not on Kylie's level, but I'll take it! I think I achieved a much plumper-looking mouth with minimal effort (or pain and money wasted) and the look isn't over-dramatic nor too obvious. Success! 

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Have Your Say

Do you wish your lips looked bigger? Have you tried any of these tricks? What else do you swear by for faking fuller lips?