They say that nothing makes you feel better than buying a new lipstick, and I’d have to agree: it’s the quickest, most affordable “splurge” that can improve a bad day and make you feel instantly more confident. But it’s equally great to have one go-to lip color in your arsenal that can always be relied upon to moisturize, last all day, perfectly complement your skin tone, or plump up lips (whatever your top priorities may be.) To find out the best of the best, we polled our beauty council of experts to find out the lipstick that’s earned their loyalty and spill their tried-and-true tips for the perfect application.
When you really want to go for it with serious lipstick, nothing—I mean, nothing—is better than Tom Ford. Yes, it’s expensive, but I believe that every girl deserves to have one in her arsenal, whether it’s a classic nude or a full-on red.
This lipstick is very moisturizing so it never feels clumpy, and this subtle shade really brightens my face.
I’m almost always a nude lip kinda girl, and this range of shades is full of flattering options. Packed with natural oils and butters, its as moisturizing as a balm with the most perfect amount of just-shiny-enough color.
This shade was picked out for me by Poppy King herself. I wanted a slightly retro pink that was a pop of color and looked good with a tan — she knew exactly what I should wear.
I’m in love with this lip stick! It stays on all day, doesn’t dry out your lips and is the perfect taupe nude.
This has been my go-to for years. It’s a lipstick for lipstick lovers. It’s thick and intense, but stays on for hours. If you’re a chapstick or a gloss kind of gal I’d steer clear, but if you’re an old pro in the lipstick game this one’s for you.
I love Context’s new formulas and this shade is a fantastic, creamy orange-red.
I always end up coming back to this shade. It’s nude with an added punch and versatile enough to wear year-round.
Pro Tip: Use a lip scrub and moisturizing chapstick 15-20 minutes before applying your matte lipstick to prevent the look of dry, flaky lips while still ensuring long-lasting color.
This shade is flattering on so many different skin tones, and also works well with any eye look.
This formula is matte but doesn’t dry out your lips and the color is just enough for every day without being overwhelming.
Pro Tip: Top with Supergoop’s Shine On for a soft glossy look and SPF 50.
-Samantha Wennerstrom, Could I Have That?