Everything You Need To Know Before Getting A ‘Lip Blushing’ Tattoo

Everything You Need To Know Before Getting A 'Lip Blushing' Tattoo

Wearing lipstick can brighten up your entire appearance. This could be one of the reasons why red lipsticks are so popular. According to Psychology Today, men are attracted to women with red lips because the color contrast “enhances perceived femininity and attractiveness”. A study published in the International Journal of Psychological Studies in 2012 found that women wearing red lipstick were approached more frequently than those wearing brown, pink or no lipstick at all (via Psychology Today). Although wearing lipstick to look beautiful is wonderful, it can be troublesome to keep reapplying it to maintain a perfect look all the time. There are long-lasting lipsticks and lip tints that last longer than regular lipstick, but they still fade within a few hours. This is where permanent makeup comes in, and it is more common than you might think.

One of the most popular permanent makeups is microblading, in which you receive semi-permanent brows tattooed onto your face, but lip blushing is on the rise. This trend can save you a ton of time while doing your makeup, meaning you’ll always wake up with your lips ready to go. But you still need to know plenty before committing to lip blushing.

What exactly is lip blushing?

A woman getting a lip blushing tattoo

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Lip blushing is a cosmetic procedure that is similar to microblading, but for the lips. Essentially, it is a semi-permanent tattoo that adds color to the lips, creating a more defined shape and fuller appearance without the use of fillers. This technique is also referred to as lip tinting or a lip tattoo. Melissa Pruett, the founder of Melt by Melissa studio in Scottsdale, Arizona, explains that lip blushing is a natural-looking solution that yields a polished pout.

What’s more, Shaughnessy Otsuji, cosmetic tattoo artist and cofounder of Studio Sashiko in Langley, British Columbia, Canada, tells Byrdie, “Using a single needle and a quick, consistent hand motion, we can create a series of dots as opposed to a solid line as the needle goes in and out of the machine, penetrating the skin.” The result is a bright flush of color that fades over time like you always wear a lip tint or stain. You can even choose from a range of shades like pinks, nudes, or mauves based on your preference.

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If you want to wake up daily with lips that look lightly bitten, you must try lip blushing. In addition to adding color and redefining your lips, lip blushing can make your lips look more symmetrical. It can even help combat aging. New York City-based lip-blushing master artist Savannah Kondratyev tells PopSugar, “As we lose collagen and elasticity in our skin, we lose shape, and the color starts to disintegrate into our skin.” Therefore, lip blushing can also make your lips look fuller and younger.

How to get the best results after lip blushing

A woman before and after lip blushing


After getting a lip blushing tattoo, it’s essential to follow the instructions provided by your tattoo artist for proper healing. Master artist Savannah Kondratyev in New York City warns that this procedure can trigger the dormant virus to come out due to the injury it causes to the lips. Therefore, she suggests taking antiviral medication before the appointment and avoiding skin regenerating products for a couple of weeks to ensure the pigments last longer.

“For the first 24 hours, I advise my clients to gently blot their lips with a wet cotton pad and let them air dry. This is to keep the lips clean and remove any body fluids that have surfaced and prevent the fluids from forming scabs,” Christina Son, owner of Sugarin Studio in Los Angeles, tells Elle. Son recommends protecting your lips from direct sunlight and avoiding the gym for about two weeks so that they fully heal.

It’s also essential to care for your lips once they’re healed to maintain the color. On this, dermatologist Shilpi Khetarpal, M.D., tells the Cleveland Clinic, “Lip blushing is something that would need to be repeated at certain intervals to maintain the results.” Once it’s completely healed, you can also wear lipstick over it. Depending on the individual, it usually lasts about two years, but the sun’s UV rays and smoking can lighten the color faster. Keep your lips hydrated and protect them with SPF-infused lip products to make it last.

Who shouldn’t try lip blushing

A smiling pregnant woman

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Lip blushing works for all ages and skin tones, but there are certain situations when you should avoid it. Shaughnessy Otsuji, a cosmetic tattoo artist, tells Byrdie, “If you have severely chapped lips in the winter or if you’re a sun goddess in the summer, it’s a good idea to wait out the season and allow your lips time to recover.” She recommends only trying it on healthy and hydrated lips, so it takes the color and heals properly. Otsuji also doesn’t recommend the procedure for anyone who is pregnant or nursing, those who are on Accutane, steroids, and blood thinners, have cold sores or are prone to post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation/hypopigmentation.

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Moreover, Randi Davis, a licensed cosmetic tattoo artist who specializes in lip blushing, tells Women’s Health that he doesn’t recommend lip blushing for people with a blood clotting disorder or those who are prone to keloid/hypertrophic scarring. If you’re uncertain whether or not lip blushing is right for you, check with your physician before booking your appointment.

Side effects of lip blushing

A woman with chapped lips


As with any cosmetic procedure, lip blushing comes with potential side effects. Board-certified dermatologist Suzanne Friedler warns that there are risks of infection, allergic reactions, and poor technique resulting in an uneven application with any form of permanent or semi-permanent makeup. To minimize risks, Friedler strongly recommends only going to a licensed technician with extensive experience who uses sterile equipment. Veronica Tran, founder of Pretty in the City Lash & Brow Bar in Toronto, adds that swelling, redness, and bruising are common immediately after the procedure.

Since you’re tattooing your lips, there will be some pain. New York City-based master artist Savannah Kondratyev from First Class Cosmetics tells PopSugar, “The pain level is different for everyone. Pain-wise, some people are more sensitive, and usually, those are the people who didn’t follow the precare rules by drinking alcohol and caffeine.” The artist or technician will apply a numbing cream to the area to alleviate the pain. If you take the proper precautions and go to a certified technician, you’re less likely to have severe side effects.

The cost of lip blushing

A woman holding money

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The cost of beautiful, natural-looking, and tinted lips isn’t cheap. You may have stumbled upon a sketchy artist or business if it is cheap. According to PMUHub, the average cost of initial lip-blushing appointments in the United States is $590. However, the outlet notes that it can range anywhere between a little less than $300 and $1,800 depending on several factors, including where the licensed technician got trained, their popularity, and their location.

Overall, lip blushing is a safe procedure to get fuller-looking tinted lips for those whose budget allows it, as long as you choose a reputable office. Your touch-ups can be cheaper than the initial appointment, often ranging between $100 and $350 per appointment, though some places may still charge the initial amount for touch-ups as well. Ultimately, do your research, don’t fall for cheaper beauty scams, and only trust your lips with the best in the business.

Olena Aliamina
I am Olena Aliamina, a prefessional coach and makeup artist. I started my career in beauty industry back in 2016 as a makeup artist, and later on added professional hair design, lash extension and hair stylist skills to my portfolio. I hope you will like my articles and tips I share!