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How to Create That Ombre Lip Look

Keeping up with the latest beauty trends is a great way to find inspiration for a new style or ideas to spice up your everyday look. And while the fashion world moves quickly, iconic trends never stay dead for long—which is why it should be no surprise that ombre lips, nails, and hairstyles are coming back.



Popularized in the late 90s and early aughts by runway models and Hollywood stars, the ombre style blends two colors to create a new monochromatic shade. If you’ve been looking for a way to revamp your lip makeup routine, then the ombre lips look right up your alley.


Achieving the perfect lip look can be tricky even for seasoned makeup gurus, so there’s no shame in getting a little guidance. Keep reading for a breakdown of creating the perfect ombre lip look.

What Is the Ombre Lip Look?


Ombre lips blend two lipstick shades to create a new, distinctive color. For the best results, pick a primary lip color and pair it with a second color that is at least a couple of shades lighter or darker but also similar in hue. For example, you can create a two-tone effect by applying the lighter color (e.g., pink) on one lip and the darker color (e.g., purple) on the other lip and then mixing both shades on the inner side of your lips.

A Step by Step Ombre Lips Guide


Color Selection: Brown ombre lips were the look de-jour in the 90s, so why not start there? If you want to pull off the perfect ombre lip look, then it’s essential to pick two complementary colors. For brown ombre lips, that means using a brown lip liner with a nude shade.

  • Prep: Starting with smooth lips is necessary to ensure your lip makeup products evenly coat the skin. Use an exfoliating scrub to gently scrape off any dead skin and smooth out the surface of your lips. Follow up with a light dose of lip balm for moisture—but don’t use too much since that will make it harder to apply your lipstick.

  • Apply Lip Liner: For perfect brown ombre lips, lightly coat the corners and sides of your lips with brown lip liner, then apply the nude shade across the center of your lips. Afterward, carefully blend the shades starting from the center and moving out to the corners of the lips so that the brown liner barely overlaps with the nude shade.

  • The Finishing Touches: Feel free to get creative with your ombre lip style: Add on some lip gloss for that classic 90s pout, or finish with a glitter coat for an eye-catching sparkle effect. And don’t neglect to use concealer to cover any smudges!

Experiment With Different Ombre Lip Looks


We know that routines quickly become stale, so there’s no need to limit yourself to brown ombre lips. Here are some more ombre lip ideas.


  • Nude Ombre Lips: Thickly coat your lips with a dark nude lip liner and smudge the liner towards the center of your lips. Finish by painting the center of your lips with a lighter nude shade.


  • Horizontal Ombre Lips: For a clever twist on the ombre lip look, apply your primary color to the center of the lips from the cupid’s bow downwards, and a different (non-nude) shade for your lips’ sides and corners


  • Fuller-Looking Lips: Forget lip fillers—all you need is ombre. Apply your preferred darker shade to the inside of the lips while switching to a lighter shade for the outside of the lips. Keep your lip liner thinner in the center and thicker towards the edges. It’s this contrast that creates the impression of fuller lips.


Eager for more beauty tips or curious if a cosmetology career might be right for you? Reach out to us today for more information on the Hollywood Institutes’ available services and classes.

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