Helen Mirren's Makeup Artist Reveals Her Secret for Fuller Lips at 77
This makeup trick goes beyond lipstick.
Dame Helen Mirren is, at 77, the very picture of ageless beauty. The actress has received nearly every award in her field—including an Oscar, three Emmys, five SAG Awards, and a Tony—and portrayed famous, fearless females from Cleopatra to Catherine the Great. The English superstar is also a style inspiration, rocking pink hair at 67, and recently becoming a brand ambassador for L'Oreal Paris. And if you're looking to emulate a bit of her sophisticated beauty, you may be happy to know that her makeup artist has revealed Mirren's secret for fuller lips. Read on to find out how the start gets her luminous pout.
First, prep the lip area.
As we age, our bodies decrease their production of new collagen and elastin molecules, which causes lips to "lose the vital subdermal structure needed to remain full and plump," according to North Carolina-based med spa BodyLase.
Before getting out her makeup brushes, though, Garland applies a pore minimizer—a skincare product that exfoliates and cleans out the pores, helping them to appear smaller—to prevent the lipstick from bleeding (which is especially important on hot days). Using a flat brush, she simply fills in any fine lines around her mouth.
Then, grab a brow pencil.
Garland explains to New Beauty that she eschews lip liner on mature or smaller mouths, instead opting for an eyebrow pencil. For Mirren, she uses an "ashen-colored brow pencil" to lightly trace the outside of the lip line. She then blends it, creating a shadow around the outside of the lip which "pushes" the lips forward, helping them appear larger than life.
If you're planning to try this at home, do note that it might not look so great after the first step. "When you first do it it looks like a mustache," Garland told New Beauty. "Your client in the chair has to have confidence that you know what you're doing."
You should also use lipstick as blush on mature skin.
Another trick Garland shared with New Beauty is how she uses lip color as blush on mature skin. On Mirren, she goes with L'Oréal Intense Volume Matte Lipstick because it contains hyaluronic acid, an ingredient she loves because it creates a "radiance within" look without any grease or shine.
According to HealthLine, "Hyaluronic acid is a compound found naturally in the skin, where it binds to water to help retain moisture." As we get older, our bodies decrease their production of this compound, but "when applied to the surface of the skin, hyaluronic acid serums can reduce wrinkles, redness, and dermatitis."
Mirren personally swears by castor oil.
When Mirren graced the cover of the 2022 "Beautiful" issue of People, she shared her personal favorite beauty hack. "I love castor oil. I use a little bit in my hair—very, very little. I use it on my fingernails. I use it on my skin," she said. "Castor oil's amazing. A tiny bit on your hair gives it a little shine, a little separation. [I use it on my] eyebrows, eyelashes, fingernails—just rub it in."
It especially works wonders for the eyebrows. Tiffany Young, certified trichologist and CEO of Thin Hair Thick, previously told Best Life that castor oil can help with regrowth as well as create a temporary plumping effect. "Castor oil is a natural derivative from castor beans and contains the fatty acid, ricinoleic acid, that eyebrows love," she explained.
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Above all, Mirren says to embrace your age.
For beauty advice straight from Mirren's lips (pun intended): "My only beauty secret is don't get fixed on one. What tends to happen is that people get fixated on their current age, whether that is 22 or 52. Then, they try to look like that even as they get older, but that's not possible," she told Vogue India in June 2022. "Don't stop yourself from experimenting with your look… Play with mascara or ditch it. Swipe your red lipstick or pink." That seems like sound advice to us!