The Ultimate Girls' Valentine's Party: Lip + Lash Station

Wheee! Ashley and I are going to have a ball over the next few weeks while we dissect all sorts of fun elements from last year's spectacularly sparkly ladies-only Valentine's Day party! Up for me this week: a lip and lash station that's the icing on an extremely frilly cake. What's more fun and frivolous than a great new lip color or a set of flirty lashes to bat while you're sipping champagne? Watch your girlfriends' reactions after you apply some; they'll sort of stare at you like you're magic. In between staring at themselves in a mirror.
Today we'll go over the essentials while I suggest some tips and tricks (especially when it comes to falsies) and link plenty of supplies that won't eat up all of your party's budget. 'Cause YSL's glossy stains are sheer delight, but at $34 each . . . your lip bar might consist of, um, one lip . . . thing.

Materials:

(Side note: after staring at Haley Sheffield's images again, I really, really miss that hair color. Man.)

So! Product recommendations! We'll start with lipstick: for a budget-friendly option, I absolutely love NYX's matte lipsticks. They're long-lasting, they have a fabulous color payoff (and come in fantastically vivid shades), and they run about six bucks a pop. Plus if you prefer a shiny finish, a clear gloss sets them OFF. I found a super awesome deal on Amazon right now for your choice of six shades for only $30. Dang. As far as selection goes, try to get a real range of shades; what might look stunning on one woman could wash out another. And who doesn't love a wealth of options anyway?
I'd recommend:

  • two reds (Pure Red {orange-based} and Purfect Red {blue-based})
  • two pinks (Shocking Pink {blue-based} and Strawberry Daquiri {red-based})
  • one nude (Nude or Butter) and
  • one wildcard¬†

For me, that last item would be Merlot or Alabama. So vampy! And of course we'll need some disposable lip wands because even you and your bestest best friends are still covered in bacteria (sorry, true) and we don't want to share. The same goes for mascara wands - for the love of all things hygenical, DO NOT SHARE MASCARA WANDS. Phew. Glad I got that out of my system.

Next up: lashy goodness! Basically avoid anything shiny. I mean it. I've had moments on shoots when I spot a little bit of shine on the lashes of a model looking downward and it makes me want to cringe until I'm all cringed up. So anything that's too plastic-y or too solid of a line is probably something to avoid. Instead look for wispy or ruffly sets that emphasize volume more than length - it's the best way to avoid Showgirl Syndrome. I keep Ardell's demi-wispies in my kit at all times, and if you purchase them here it basically works out to $2.50 a pair. Not shabby.
As far as application goes, I like to squirt a dime-sized blob of lash adhesive (Duo is superb) onto a business card and let it sit for several minutes to make sure it gets nice and tacky. Trust me, 75% of my clients' frustration with self-applied falsies stems from trying to force too-slick glue to adhere to their lids. In the meantime, fit your friend's lashes by holding the strips up to each (closed) lid and trimming off any excess width with manicure scissors. Then dip the blunt end of a disposable wand in the adhesive and brush it lightly across the strip, coating it with a thin stripe of glue. Then all you have to do is press the strip close to each lid's lash line and ta-da! The glue should dry within a few minutes. If you're nervous about slippage, simply ask your friend to leave her eyes closed and apply her lipstick as the adhesive dries. 

Once everything's set, a coat of mascara binds it all together and creates one big happy lash family. I adore Benefit's They're Real, but when Maybelline's The Falsies is at least a third of the price . . . I happen to adore The Falsies, too. 

Arrange your goodies however you see fit; custom signage by Julia's Poppies certainly looked pretty awesome accompanying everything - especially against the backdrop of Juli Vaughn's fabulous prop collections. (Also how cute does Juli look in that glittery bow?)

And there you have it! Pure, distilled girly joy perfect for any party or girls' night out.

Want to give it a try? Show us your creative setups and happy buddies by posting on Instagram: tag us @CampMakery with hashtag "lipandlash"!