This article originally appeared on InStyle.
Pumpkin Spice Lattes aside, fall is also prime time to break out the dark lipstick. Whether you’re a pro or novice at rocking a vampy bullet, no one is spared from annoying smudges.
We turned to N.Y.C.-based hair and makeup artist Abraham Sprinkle, to fill us in on how to get through the fall season with a smudge-free pout.
If this fall is going to be your first time rocking a dark lip, Sprinkle recommends sticking with a semi-matte or liquid matte formula.
“Glosses can get tricky for new users. Semi-mattes or liquid mattes adhere better to the lip and have less movement.”
Bullets aside, the biggest key to keep your lipstick perfect throughout the day is putting in a little prep work before swiping on your shade of choice. “One of the biggest triggers to smudging lips is improper prepping,” says Sprinkle.
“If the color is applied on a lip that isn’t hydrated, you risk bleeding in the cracks. On the other hand, an over-hydrated lip (too much balm) will cause the lipstick to move everywhere.”
Dip a mascara wand in a lip balm such as Fresh’s Sugar Nourishing Lip Balm Advanced Therapy ($30, sephora.com) to wipe away dead skin and create a clean canvas for your lipstick, and follow by lining the lips using a matching colored or clear liner for extra insurance against bleeding.
When it comes time to apply, Sprinkle suggests using a lip brush like Charlotte Tilbury’s ($26, nordstrom.com) to ensure even product distribution. Once you have your lippie on, outline it with a creamy concealer such as Becca Aqua Luminous Perfecting Concealer ($30, sephora.com).
“If you use concealer at the end of the application to outline the lip, this really cuts down on smears,” explains Sprinkle. “Sometimes, I will also put on loose powder over the concealer using an eyeshadow brush to further set it.
If you do encounter a mishap, don’t sweat it there is a quick solution to fix the mess without wiping off everything and starting over. Sprinkle says to simply dab a Q-tip in face or body lotion and use it to blot off any unwanted color. “This helps remove the dark pigment and keeps it from staining.”