Season after season, red lips make an appearance on the runways and this summer and fall are no exception. Designers and
celebrities have a love affair with a bold red lipstick – deep cherry reds, burgundies, creamy orange-reds, true crayon hues and glossy candy colours. It seems that a red lip goes with every trend. But it won’t be your typical ‘90s red this summer and fall. New colours, textures and application techniques have brought red lips to a whole new height. M∙A∙C Cosmetics’ Senior Artist Caitlin Callahan shares her tips for taking your red lip (whether you sport it daily, or are a newbie) to the next beauty level.

1. Draw your pout on right

“When applying red lipstick, symmetry is important,” says Callahan. It may take a few tries in the mirror, but as they say, practice makes perfect and a precisely drawn red lip is both sexy and on trend (red lipstick at Ruffian’s fall 2012 collection looked almost etched on, while Monique L’hullier’s fall look was a soft but defined crimson). “Start your lip application at the bow and work down to the corners. Same at the bottom, from the center and work up,” says Callahan. “If you start at one side and just draw to the other, you will follow a natural line that may not be symmetrical. Use a red lip liner for a more dramatic lip, no liner for softer look.”

1. Make your red lipstick last

When working with such a stark and bold colour, fussing over the perfection makes sense. Bleeding, smudging and creasing can make red lips look messy rather than polished. “Red lips always need a little touching up – it’s the nature of it,” explains Callahan. Follow her tip above and use a liner or a lip brush to create a clean line. “To ensure it stays on longer, blot your lips with a tissue after applying and be sure to apply product with a lip brush so you are pressing the colour into the lip instead of having it sitting on top of the lips.”

View our favourite street style stars sporting bold red lip.

Want to know how to wear red lipstick this fall? Find out on the next page …
3. Make your lips the showstopper

Take a cue from
Angelina Jolie at the Oscars (forget her leg, who else could not stop staring at her glossy red lips?!). Angie’s lips were the focal point of her face while her skin was flawless and her eyes were subtly lined. Even the fall runways toned down the rest of the face to make the lip the focal point (House of Holland, Jonathan Saunders and Nicole Farhi had barely-there makeup). Callahan suggests the same for an everyday look. “The rest of your makeup can be very soft with a red lip,” she explains. “But don’t be afraid of bronzer. Summertime is great for red – just add lots of bronzer and waterproof mascara, super sexy!”

4. Get on the fall trends now

Before you ditch all your summer makeup in prep for fall, hold on to that
bright red lipstick you have stashed in your bag. Bright lips are one trend that transcend from summer easily into fall this summer. You can use the same colour, just switch up your application slightly. “Hot tomato reds are trendy now – So Chaud and Lady Danger are two great M∙A∙C shades. Keep them matte or add a touch of clear gloss right in the center of the lip,” says Callahan. “Red Lips for fall (AW12) are everywhere. For a lot of shows we did a heart-shaped lip: Cut the corners of the lip off to make a super plump shaped lip.”

5. Step outside your comfort zone

For all you red devotees, you can still update your lip colour with new application tips from the fall runways. “If you’re already a huge red lip fan and want to experiment with something new, try the heart-shaped lip or two different colours top and bottom. Another option is to use an orange-coloured pencil with a more tomato colour lipstick – the contrast is fun and striking.”

Read more:

The top red lipsticks of the season

7 red lipsticks under $30

Our favourite celebrities sporting red lips