Your Guide to Achieving the Perfect Red Lip

December 22, 2023
Your Guide to Achieving the Perfect Red Lip

Red is trending this season and what better way to pay it respect than wearing red lipstick?! There are so many reasons to covet a bold red lip right now. It’s a holiday season staple, the perfect notice-me-look for date night and a surefire way to make a beauty statement. It’s also timeless and seasonless if you think about it. Sure, red lipstick can be a little high maintenance, but the payoff cancels that out immediately. And the best part is, you don’t have to break the bank to find your ideal red. You can easily find a dupe for every scarlet tube. If your red lipstick game is a little less Taylor Swift (ahem, next-level) and more novice, we’ve got you. Welcome to your very own red era. Here, you’ll get the best tips and tricks for finding and applying your best crimson pout.


How to Find Your Best Red


Did you know there is a flattering red lipstick that exists for everyone? That might sound like a relief but know there are countless reds to choose from and finding “the one” isn’t exactly easy. To help make it simpler, start by taking note of your skin tone. “If you’re more cool or pink, choose a blue-based red, which some people refer to as a true red,” says Emily Gray, a celebrity makeup artist. “If you are warmer, with yellow or olive undertones, pick an orange-red lipstick, which is like fire red,” she says. Remember: red is such a classic shade and really can be rocked by anyone at any age.



Prep Your Lips The Right Way

The best way to apply red lipstick is to prep and condition your lips so they look and feel healthy. Do this by following a lip care regimen with daily lip serum applied every morning and a conditioning lip mask applied every night. Look for formulas containing nourishing ingredients like vitamins and oils for best results. Your lips will be perfectly prepped for color when the occasion for red lipstick hits.




Tip: Need to banish flaky lips instantly? Mix some sugar with your favorite lip oil or hydrating gloss to create a lip exfoliator. Gently apply it to lips using your fingers and a circular motion, and then wipe away using a damp washcloth.



How to Apply Your Red Lipstick Like a Pro


The first rule of rocking a red pout is to make it budge-proof. Gray recommends using red or nude lipliner to map out your lip shape before applying red lipstick overtop. “The thing about a bold lip is that application and precision means a lot,” she says. “You can get away with more when wearing nude lipstick, but with bold colors like red, you have to be precise.” She also recommends using a lip brush to carefully your red lipstick. “It gives you more control,” she adds. Another case for applying nude lipliner as a base?

Red lipstick tends to stain, which makes it harder to remove at the end of the night.


Pair Your Red Lipstick With…


Pulling off a successful red lipstick look goes beyond finding a great lipstick shade. The best beauty combos are also the most timeless. According to Gray, you can’t go wrong with a classic winged liner look. She recommends pairing it with matte foundation, sculpting the face with a light contour and then using nude matte eyeshadow and black liquid liner to extend the eye. “Think old Hollywood glam,” she says.




For a more modern look, she says to stay focused on that clean girl aesthetic. That means choosing a dewy to natural light-coverage foundation, concealer only where necessary and a little powder under the eyes. “For a fresh and French-inspired look, “keep your eyes bear with a bit of mascara and blush on the apples of the cheeks,” adds Gray.



Stock up on our top red lipstick shades:

Best Blue-or-True-Red: Scandalous Matte Lipstick in Blame the Night


Best Orange-Reds: Shine Bomb Lipstick in Queen of Hearts and Intense Matte Lip Pen in Get Read

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