A Guide to Red Lips

Screen-shot-2011-02-08-at-9.39.09-AMSeeing red?

From classy captivating red Marylin Monroe lips, to fire cracker red Gwen Stefani lips, every girl needs a signature red lip. However, there are a few things you need to know about choosing the right shade of red to complement your skin tone and your overall look. More importantly, there are even ways to make that eye catching lip even more irresistible that you might not already know…

Rule No. 1: Start with a Clean Slate

Chapstick is great, but that doesn’t quite satisfy as a full lip treatment. To soothe your lips, try a lip exfoliator. Before you apply lipstick, the exfoliant will ensure a smooth finish by clearing away dryness, and healing chapped lips. Try:
Lush Cosmetics / Lip Treatments
Philosophy / Kiss Me
Fresh / Sugar Lip Polish @ Sephora
Tarte / Maracuja Lip Exfoliant @ Sephora
Bliss / Fabulips Sugar Lip Scrub

    • If you’re in the mood for a DIY treatment: take a tablespoon of honey, one tablespoon of sugar, one teaspoon of olive oil, and one teaspoon of vaseline or shea butter and mix in a small container. Apply a dime size amount and rub onto lips,  rinse with warm water. Use within 2 weeks time, twice a week for soft lips.

Rule No. 2: Picking the Right Color

Though classic true red is universally flattering, knowing which colors actually complement your skin will help you find the right match.

  • If you have an olive, or tan complexion, try Nars Semi-Matte Lipsick in Jungle Red. Note that shades with orange and golden undertones are most complementing.
  • If you have lighter, pale skin, you want to keep an eye out for reds that have a blue undertone. This won’t totally wash out your look, and will not overwhelm your complexion. For example, check-out Buxom Full-Bodied Lipstick in Scoundrel.
  • If you have a darker skintone, pay attention to shades that have a stronger pink undertone. Clinique High Impact Lip Colour in Red-y to Wear is a great example of the kind of shade that is most flattering for you.

Rule No. 3: Tactful Liner

Next, apply a touch of flesh-tone concealer to provide an even base — your own natural lip color can actually alter the hue. With a lip pencil in a complementary shade, fill in lips entirely. Before you even start to apply your lipstick, trace the frame of your lips and the inner rim of your lips. To enhance that flawless red lip, you need to ensure your lips are well lined. Not only will this draw attention to your overall frame, but the liner will keep your lips in place and away from your teeth. Nothing is more distracting than a poorly lined red lip.

Rule No. 4: Bombshell, Not Clown

Prevent the red lipstick from “bleeding” by applying a touch of concealer around the border of your lips. Don’t play up your eyes. Bold red lips look best with a clean, polished eye. Too much drama around the eye can be distorting – in this case less is more! A little mascara and beige shadow will do.

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