For many years, I was a dancer in a burlesque troupe in Minneapolis. When perform burlesque 2–4 times a week, you learn lots of stage makeup tricks. And then sometimes, said tricks slowly sneak into your regular beauty routine.
Take glitter lips, for instance. Glitter lips are basic Burlesque 101—one of the first things you learn backstage at the makeup table from other performers. They’re an important part of the burlesque dancer’s arsenal. Head to toe sparkle is what it’s all about, from your body glitter to your rhinestones, and a good glitter lip helps you get there.
After you wear glitter lips so often, for so long, they just start to feel … right. Like, you’ll be looking in a mirror when you’re about to go out on a Saturday night and think, “Hmm, my makeup looks good, but it’s missing something.” And then a couple minutes later, you’re sashaying out the door with your lips sparkling like two devastating rubies.
But here’s the thing. Out in public, people often act amazed, as if they’ve never seen glitter lips before. “What kind of lipstick is that?” a passerby on the dance floor will demand. “Where did you get such sparkly lipstick? I mean, does it come like that?” the bartender will ask as she hands you your drink.
PEOPLE. These are glitter lips! The easiest thing ever to do! Here’s how.
• Lipstick (we used Anna Sui Lipstick in 401)
• Fine, makeup-grade glitter (we used Lit Cosmetics Holographic Glitter in Heartbreaker S2)
• Cotton swab or lip brush
1: Start with lipstick. Put it on, blot. Put on more.
2: If you, like me, have no manners, grab a cotton swab and lick it. Or if you’re fancy, use a brush.
3: Twirl the cotton swab or brush in fine, makeup-grade glitter. Get lots of glitter on there. I got mine at an incredible makeup store in Taipei with entire shelves full of glitter; but Lit Cosmetics has tons of colors (and it’s safe for use on lips, too; for this we recommend anything size S2).
4: Roll or pat glitter onto the lips, covering every inch. Repeat! Until your mouth is soooo sparkly.
5: Press lips together to tamp the glitter into place. Then stick a finger in your mouth, purse your lips, and slowly pull the finger out. This is to remove any particles waiting on the inside of your lips to hop onto your teeth.
6: Go dazzle everyone!
Oh, and when you leave the house: Bring the lipstick, cotton swab and glitter with you, because on a high-maintenance scale of 1 to RuPaul, glitter lips fall toward the RuPaul end. You’ll have to keep checking up on the glitter, but believe me, your sparkly smile will be worth it.