Ooh, red lipstick. Seven times out of ten, it’s the “quoi” in the “je ne sais quoi.” Most people just don’t realize it. It is that good. And you, sweet reader: you can wear a perfect red lip that is one-hundred percent “you” and immediately draws people’s attention (without them knowing it). It’s pretty easy. Here are the tips to get a red lip that works.
Tip #1: Texture gives you a lot of flexibility.
Want to go bold or be subtle? Choose a type of lip color that you love to wear—and that also elevates your outfit. Gloss? Glossy lipstick? Matte. Sheer. Whether or not you’re typically a “red lip” person, this is the step that keeps things on-point.
Tip #2: Pick a no-fail flattering red.
The ideal red can make your skin glow and your teeth look whiter. Safe bets are hues with a blue undertone, such as top sellers Clinique Pop Lip Colour + Primer in Cherry Pop, Different Lipstick in Angel Red, or Long Last Lipstick in Merlot, which are rich shades that veer towards the deep-pink and plum families. When in doubt, go one shade darker than the natural color of your lips, or try the most popular Clinique shade of red: Long Last Soft Matte Lipstick in Matte Crimson.
Tip #3: Prep and plump.
Just like the rest of your body’s skin, lips look best when plumped and hydrated. Prep them accordingly, and you’ll have a smooth canvas for flawless color. Use a scrub to slough away dry flakes of skin, and follow with balm or moisturizer like All About Lips.
Tip #4: Red lipstick requires a nude base.
Apply foundation to your lips—it lets the red color ring true. Then add lip liner, which works with the foundation to make your color last; it also prevents the red from bleeding into fine lines around your lips. Use a shade that matches your lipstick or gloss (try Quickliner for Lips Intense). Outline your lips, fill them in completely with the liner, and blend like crazy for a full wash of color. Lip liner also has serious staying power—great backup in case your top color wears off.
Tip #5: Color. Blot. Color.
Apply one layer of lip color. Blot with a tissue to remove any excess (that doesn’t stick to the lip liner base). Apply a second layer of lip color. That’s pretty easy red!