How to Overline Lips

How To Overline Lips featured photo

Everyone wants plump and voluminous lips. Not everyone is gifted with such natural lips but that’s what lip enhancement makeup hacks like overlining the lips are for. Because they’re so in right now, many often ask and wonder how to overline lips.

Prep your lips first with a gentle lip scrub and moisturizing lip balm. Then, start lining the outer corners of the lips first before proceeding with your lips’ cupid’s bow. Then, fill in the rest of the lips and soften and blend the edges to maintain a natural look. Apply your lipstick and finish off with a gloss or highlighter.

Overlining your lips isn’t the only option you have for plumper lips. There are, of course, lip enhancement procedures like lip fillers and injections. These offer a more permanent solution than the temporary answer overlining offers.

Below, we’ll go into detail about how you can start overlining your lips. We’ll also give a few more pro tips to get the best results and why exactly so many choose to abide by this makeup hack.

What are Overlined Lips?

Beauty trends come and go. But one that has come and is here to stay is plump, juicy, and pouty lips.

Not everyone is gifted and blessed with natural pouty and plump lips. Some get to enjoy naturally thicker lips while some don’t.

And don’t get us wrong, there’s nothing wrong with thinner lips. In fact, many find it beautiful and wish the same for themselves.

Juicy and thick lips are becoming more and more popular these days (thanks to the Kardashians and other famous social media stars who flaunt theirs).

While not all get to enjoy natural thick lips, it doesn’t mean we can’t. Obviously, there are more permanent solutions out there like lip fillers and injectables. Those are becoming increasingly popular as well.

But not all would prefer the permanence it entails and the price tag it comes along with (it’s not very cheap). Cue and enter overlining.

Overlining the lips is a popular makeup technique that uses a lip liner or lip brush to draw outside your natural lip line. This gives the lips a bigger, thicker, plumper, and juicier look –  temporarily, of course.

When lining the lips the normal way, one would usually draw inside the natural lip line, never going outside the lines like how a little kid stays inside the lines when coloring.

Overlining the lips allows you to achieve a more dramatic look without being clownish or obvious. Your lips look plumper, still in a more subtle and natural way.

Is It Okay to Overline Lips?

Overlining lips is an old-age makeup hack – it’s nothing new. Many makeup enthusiasts have enjoyed it to give their natural lips a plumper, juicier look without undergoing the knife.

When done right and correctly, overlining the lips will look natural and will take your makeup look to a whole new level.

If you want to temporarily give your lips a plumper pout with the art and magic of makeup, then overlining your lips is okay and most definitely encouraged.

Why Overline Lips?

If you’re still on the fence about whether you should give overlining your lips a try, here are all the reasons many find it a worthy additional step in their makeup routines:

It’s not a permanent lip-enhancing technique

Unlike lip-enhancing procedures like lip filler or injections, overlining lips is not a permanent solution. It’s only a temporary way to give your lips a plumper pout.

Unlike the more permanent lip-enhancing solutions, you can erase what you’ve done if you figured you don’t like it as much.

Though it only temporarily enhances your lips, you can still be assured to get the plump and juicy lips you want without going under the knife.

You have full control

As a makeup hack, you can have full control over how you overline your lips. Though there are certain tips professional makeup artists suggest, you have full authority over how you overline your lips.

This means you have control over how subtle or dramatic you want your lips to look.

It’s cheap and convenient

Not everyone has the luxury of time and budget to get lip filler and injections done. These can be quite expensive, especially if you want to keep at it with regular follow-ups.

Overlining your lips instead offers a cheap and convenient way to achieve your goals. What’s more, it’s definitely effective.

How to Overline Lips

Overlining your lips can be a very intimidating task, especially if it’s something you haven’t done before. So here is a detailed guide on how to overline your lips:

  1. Assess your lips

Everyone has a different shape or size of lips. That means there are also varying preferences on what they want to be enhanced.

Take a look at your natural lips and determine where you want more volume and then focus on that particular part.

Overlining your lips is good and all, especially for the illusion of added volume to your lips. But remember, you don’t ever want to overdo it.

You don’t want to start too far from your natural lip line so you can still achieve a more natural look.

  1. Choose the right color of lipliner

It’s essential that you choose the right lipliner color. Your lip liner should match the lipstick or gloss you’re planning to use. A perfect match between these lip products would make for a more natural finish. Obviously, you don’t want a drastic difference between your lip liner and lipstick.

If you’re just starting out, it would be best to stick to a neutral lip liner tone. Something that closely resembles your natural lip color or something at least slightly darker. This would give you something that’s close to your natural lip color to work on.

  1. Prep your lips

Exfoliate your lips to slough off and remove dead skin cells. Grab a gentle exfoliator and rub it gently on your lips. Wash or wipe the product off.

Then, go in with a moisturizing lip balm.

  1. Start with the outer corners

Beginners tend to start lining the cupid’s bow first but it would be more efficient to start lining the lips’ outer corners first. Doing this first leaves less room for mistakes.

Start by lining the outer corners of your lips. Shade the corners, just right outside your natural lip line. You don’t want to stray too far from your lips’ natural lines as this can create an unnatural look.

  1. Line the cupid’s bow

The cupid bow is the heart shape on your top lip. Now you’d want to draw an x at the top portion of your lips. Extend the ends on each side of the lips. This will create a fuller, more defined look on your top lips.

  1. Fill in the rest of the lips

Next, fill in the rest of your lips with the same lip liner. Fill in gaps lightly so you can create a more seamless and natural transition from your natural lips to your overdrawn lips. This also ensures the shape and color last all day.

  1. Soften the edges

For a really natural look on your lips, soften and blend the outline you’ve drawn in. Do this with a Q-tip, a lip brush, or your finger.

  1. Go in with the lipstick

You’re now ready to apply your lipstick of choice. This completes the look and gives your lips full coverage.

  1. Add some dimension

You can even add dimension to your lips by topping it off with lipgloss or highlighter. This adds fullness to your lips and finishes the new look.

Pro Tips on Overlining Lips and Getting that Pouty Lips

Here are a few more pro tips for overlining your lips:

  • When you’re overlining your lips, you’re enhancing your natural lip shape. So don’t overdo it.
  • Do not stray too far from your natural lip line. Instead of plumping up both your upper and lower lips, it might actually give you a clownish look.
  • Go for a neutral lipliner color or something that’s a shade or two darker than your natural lip color. Never go for lighter lip makeup than your natural lip color. Your lip liner and lipstick should also match.
  • Always blend out and soften the edges. This eliminates harsh lines and allows you to achieve a more natural look with your skin tone.


In an age of plump and voluminous pouts, lip fillers, injections, and other lip enhancement procedures are all the rage. In the midst of all those, the art of overlining the lips is more popular than ever with almost everyone doing it.

To overline your lips, you need to first assess and get to know your lips and lip shape. Then, prep your lips with a lip scrub and lip balm. Start lining the outer corners of your lips first to make fewer mistakes. Then proceed with lining the lips’ cupid’s bow before filling in the rest of your lips. Soften the edges for that natural look and fill in both top and bottom lips with your lipstick of choice. Lastly, add some dimension with lipgloss or highlighter.

And that has been our detailed guide on how to overline lips. Learn more about overall lip contouring and facial contouring with makeup.

Michelle Jackson
Michelle Jackson