When it comes to lip colour, there's no easier product to wear than a lip stain. The best lip stain will impart a buildable colour to lips that sets in place. It should feel like you're wearing nothing (never dry or sticky) and not be outdone by the countless coffees you need to get you through the day. And that's the crux of it: Lip stain is a perfect choice to see you through a day in the office when you don't have time for touch-ups or during a casual Sunday brunch when you would rather be chatting with friends than checking in on the whereabouts of your favourite glossy lipstick (anywhere but the teeth!).
Some lip stains are designed to leave a wash of colour, while others are pretty punchy. Many double as a cheek stain, so they're good value for the money too. Convinced that you need one in your makeup bag yesterday? Keep scrolling for our edit of the best lip stains.
With antioxidant-rich vitamin E, this water-resistant lip stain doubles up as a cheek colour. Think effortless beach vibes.
This cult-classic stain is a sheer rose tint that will breathe life into your complexion and impart a long-lasting colour to lips.
A nourishing balm, this moisturises lips while leaving a "just bitten" hint of colour. We love the peachy hue.
Want a more dramatic effect? Nyx's dye saturates the lips with full-on colour but dries to a weightless, matte stain.
Super comfortable and long wearing, this fuses to lips like a tattoo but isn't quite so permanent (around 10 hours of uninterrupted colour).
A universal shade, this gel-based stain adapts to the pH levels in your skin and lips for a tailor-made colour that suits you. It increases hydration levels while you wear it—and, I mean, just look at it.
With coconut oil and vitamin E to enrich plus vitamin C to protect, this electric red lip stain makes wearing a statement colour so effortless. It truly brings to mind the muse for this collection, Jane Birkin's daughter Charlotte Gainsbourg.
YSL's take on a matte lip this offers a hefty colour payoff with a "naked" feel. The slanted edge of the marker means the application is a doddle.
This is a "glossy stain," which means it has the sheen of a gloss but leaves a pretty and long-lasting stain behind. It comes in 15 different shades.
Ready for more essentials? We've got 13 MAC lipsticks you have to try before you die.