Tell your matte lipsticks to move over – there’s a new K-beauty trend in town. The gradient lip is subtle, eye-catching, and easy to do.
The gradient lip trend has been around for a long time in Korea. But it’s been gaining momentum internationally, so keep reading this article to stay one K-beauty step ahead of the curve.
We’ve got tips on how you can achieve the best Korean gradient lip look, so read on!
What You Need to Get a Gradient Lip:
- Your choice of light lipstick
- Your choice of dark lipstick
- Concealer (optional)
- Clear gloss
- Q-tips (optional)
- Lip balm (optional)
Steps to Getting Korean Gradient Lips
You only need 4 steps to achieve a gradient lip. It’s the perfect finishing touch to your everyday makeup look! You don’t need to be a makeup artist to pull the blended ombre look off, either.
Step 1: Prep Your Lips
This step isn’t a must, but it helps! You don’t want your lips chapped and cracked when you’re trying to achieve a gradient lip look.
Apply some lip balm to have the perfect canvas. It also makes sure that whatever lipstick, lip tint, or colored lip balm you use goes on smoothly!
Step 2: Start Applying the Light Lip Shade
Get the lighter lip shade and add it to the outer edges of your lips. That’s where the gradient lips effect will start.
Focus on the outer rim, but DON’T WORRY if you get some product in the center. You can smoothen out the gradient lip look later.
If you don’t have a lighter lip shade, it’s okay! There are other ways to do it. Get your favorite concealer or foundation and apply a thin layer to your lips.
The goal is to make your natural lip colour a few hues lighter for a proper gradient lips effect.
Step 3: Apply the Darker Lipstick Shade to the Center of Your Lips
Now, get the darker lip colour. Add it to the center of your lips.
The darker color in the center will be the highlight of your gradient lips.
Make sure everything is ready to blend before you move on to the next step.
Step 4: Blend Until You See a Gradient
It’s time to finish this gradient lips look.
Blending is the cherry-on-top of this entire K-beauty trend, so get this step right. You can either use your fingers or a Q-tip.
If you plan to use a finger, make a GENTLE DABBING MOTION to blend the colour together. Reach the edges and corners until you have an ombre look.
Don’t want to get your fingers stained? A Q-tip can help. Do slow, smooth swiping motions to blend everything together.
- A softer look requires more time to blend the lip colour together.
- If you want more of a pop in your face, you can blend quickly to get a stained lip tint to look!
Top it all off with a clear lip gloss. Now you’re ready to debut your new look to the world!
Why Can't I Get a Gradient Lip?
As easy as it sounds, some girls encounter a lot of issues trying to achieve this look. If you’re one of them, there are common issues you can address.
Don’t worry – there’s a way to achieve this look no matter what!
#1 Your Lips Are Chapped
We mentioned applying lip balm before trying the gradient lips trend out, but it may not be enough.
Exfoliate your lips before you try this Korean lookout – or better yet, make lip exfoliation a part of your skincare routine! Use a lip scrub or a damp toothbrush to have your lips soft and smooth.
We suggest you also try a lip balm with peppermint or menthol for a cooling effect as it moisturizes and smoothens.
#2 Your Accuracy is Off
It’s easy to go over the corners of your lips and mouth if you’re just using a lipstick or lip tint.
Using a lip brush can help. You can get the colour where you need them to be, and it’s waaay better to blend with it than using your finger.
#3 You're Wiping It Off from Your Lips Early
Korean gradient lips are easy to lose if you’re constantly smacking your lips together. This can happen while you’re blending out the lip gloss or lip balm as a finish!
We’ve gotten so used to rubbing our lips together, but it ruins the gradient look and all your hard work.
Be careful to not rub out the lip gloss when you touch or fold your lips. Use a swiping motion again to keep the Korean gradient look intact.
#4 It Fades During the Day
You step out of your home with gradient lips and come back with a plain color. Eating, drinking, or just having less pigmented lipstick can make this happen.
Have your lipstick ready to retouch during the day and keep the gradient lips intact! You can also top off your lips with setting powder. To keep your makeup look intact, use a setting spray.
#5 You're Rushing It
Quickly applying everything together won’t make gradient lips! The colors will just blend together into a MESS on your lips instead of having an ombre effect.
As you practice this technique, you may find ways to make it quicker. For now, it’s best to go slow!
We truly love this gradient lips beauty trick from Korea, and we hope our recommendations helped you achieve it!
The gradient technique is perfect if you’re looking to spice up your look. Or even if you’re simply just searching for something new to try.
Just follow our 4 easy steps and you’ll have luscious, eye-catching, and radiant lips in no time!
For top-rated lip options to use for that gradient lip effect, read through our article on the Best Korean Lip Tints for Lasting Color.
July 14, 2021 – Updated internal links, updated external links, removed author box