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Simply red: How to wear red lipstick
1. I’ve never worn red lipstick. How can I ease myself into the look?
“Wearing red lipstick is all about confidence. Red lips have a reputation for being too ‘done’ and theatrical, but if you get the right shade it’s an elegant statement. Experiment to find what depth of pigment is right for you: it could be a dense, matte, true red or a much sheerer wash of pink-based red.”
2. How do I find the right shade for my colouring?
“Blondes look best in shades of red with a yellow-based undertone. Try M.A.C Lipstick in Lady Bug ($16.50). Brunettes can opt for a blue-based red, such as Estée Lauder Pure Color Lipstick in Hot Kiss ($30). It’s a misconception that redheads shouldn’t wear red lipstick. Bright, flame-red hair is best suited to bluer reds, while those with a deeper, more auburn colouring can experiment with warm-based tones, like Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited in RD198 ($28). For daytime, strong red lips work well: Lipstick Queen Red Sinner ($23) creates a really bold look. A sheer shade, like Lipstick Queen Saint Red ($23), is sexy yet subtle for nighttime. The more dressed up you are, the less intense colour you need — it’s all about contrast. Whatever shade you choose, it should contain as little shimmer as possible.”
3. What’s the on-trend way to wear red lipstick?
“To keep red modern, make the rest of your face minimal. Wear as little eye makeup as you feel comfortable with; mascara is fine, but eyeshadow should be neutral or done away with altogether. I love blush, but apply it to the apples of your cheeks, not the cheekbones — you want to look healthy and youthful, not overly made up. Apply lipstick straight from the tube and skip the liner — it’s easy to get it wrong.”
For long-lasting colour, paint a little concealer around your lip line with a fine brush before applying your lipstick. This will prevent the colour from seeping and smudging.