It doesn’t take a detective to figure out that bold, red lips have come back in a big, big way this season. The red carpet and city streets alike have embraced shades from ruby to oxblood, helping makeup aficionados everywhere channel their inner starlets. Rocking a red lip isn’t just about slathering on a bright color and taking to the streets. Here, we’ll give the best tips about how to make up lips and wear them like a pro.
Starting the Job Right
The perfect red lip starts with a perfect canvas. Cracked, crusty lips don’t just look messy under red lipstick — they also don’t retain the color well. Start by exfoliating your lips to create a smooth base. Combining a little sugar with water makes an ideal lip scrub that tastes great and leaves your lips feeling silky smooth. Then, apply a lip primer. Lip primers help lipsticks adhere to your lips, providing all-day color and shine.
Set Some Boundaries
The secret to a red lip that looks polished and proper is a good, long lasting lip liner. Use your long lasting lip liner to trace the boundaries of your lips. Otherwise, even the best lipsticks can feather and travel. If you really want to punch up your pout, use your long lasting lip liner to push the boundary a little on your upper lip. Being careful not to go too far, draw just slightly outside the line around your cupid’s bow.
Fill It In and Make It Stay
Once you’ve used some long lasting lip liner to create some definition, use a lip brush to fill in your lips. After you’ve applied the first coat, dust over it with finishing powder and then re-apply. That will make sure that your lipstick doesn’t go anywhere during the day.
No matter how perfectly you apply it, a red lip can cause trouble if a couple important rules aren’t observed.
- Choose the right shade.
- Don’t make your lipstick compete.
To choose the right shade, your very best bet is to visit a makeup counter and ask for help. If that’s not your scene, however, you can usually determine the right shade by looking at your skintone.
- Fair, peaches and cream complexions look best in slightly bluer matte red lipsticks. Those with fair skin and yellow undertones can wear warmer brick-colored shades.
- Beige skin tones are ideally suited to dark, deep reds with gold undertones. They can also wear brighter oranges.
- Golden tones can rock neutral red/browns or bright, deep matte corals.
- If you have naturally bronze skin, most shades of red will work. Pinky reds, like corals, are especially well-suited to bronze skin.
- Dark skin tones can wear orange-reds that fall clearly into the warm family. That said, blue-based cool shades can also look fantastic.
To make sure your hot red lips aren’t competing, avoid wearing them with bold eye makeup. It’s best to focus on only one of those areas to avoid looking overdone.
Perfect red lips only require a great primer, long lasting lip liner, and the perfect shade of lipstick. With a little practice, your Hollywood pout won’t just match the red carpet. It will look like it was born to be there.