How to Blend Lipsticks to Make Your Own Signature Color

There's a right way to do this—if you can stand slicing up a favorite formula, that is.

When it comes to makeup, there are more than a few ways to create a look that is entirely your own. And while there are plenty of products on the market to help you establish that unique style, one iteration stands out from all the rest: lipstick. You have a slew of colors at your disposal, which means you're likely to find a shade that will help you meet every moment. But if you're attempting to find your signature shade—the color that perfectly suits your skin tone and makes you feel pulled together, whatever the occasion—you might need to get a little creative and blend up your very own hue. Ahead, Lip Lab by BITE color expert Christina Del Percio shares her tips on mixing up a custom lipstick from two or more tubes.

rows of lipstick from pinks to neutral shades
Getty / Peter Dazeley

Stick to the same finish.

"We mix colors of the same finish," Del Percio shares of the approach adopted by Lip Lab, a custom lipstick service offered by parent company Bite. This is the best method, she notes, since mixing formulas with multiple finishes often cancel each other out, creating a dull end-look (no matter how bright the color actually is). As a general rule of thumb, stick to mixing cream with cream, matte with matte, satin with satin, metallic with metallic—and so on.

Keep your lip color in mind.

Beyond the finish, Del Percio says it's important to keep color theory in mind when mixing shades. And while you do need to think about how two shades will work together, you also need to consider how final color will interact with the natural hue of your lips. "We use our knowledge of color theory to adjust the shade a guest wants to complement their specific skin tone and undertone," she explains. "For example, a cool-toned red on cool-toned lips can lean purple—so, we can warm it up with a touch of apricot, sherry, or brown to reach the desired shade." Here's the secret: Mixed formulas that look drastically different in a new tube can appear exactly the same when applied to two people with different complexions. Where someone with pale pink lips can achieve a ruby red using a bright red lipstick, someone with darker skin will only be able to do so by using a coral-tinted or even a dramatic berry-tinted red. "It's an art and a science," Del Percio adds.

Undertones are everything.

If you have cooler skin, blending cool-toned lipsticks together will help you achieve that signature style. (Pro tip: Oftentimes the brighter the lipstick, the cooler the undertones.) Similarly, if you're warm, blend warm-toned formulas, which tend to appear softer and less bold than their cool counterparts. This isn't to say that you have to abide entirely by your existing complexion, but if you're interested in establishing a hue that enhances your own lip color, keeping your undertones at the forefront is key.

Look to the professionals.

Ultimately, if you don't feel ready to slice up two of your favorite lipsticks, make an appointment with Lip Lab by BITE—virtually or in-store at their SoHo Flagship. By doing so, you'll be able to get one-on-one advice from a color expert who can directly weigh in on your undertones and help you determine which shades will work best for you.

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