Find Your Best Red Lipstick: 30 Days to Gorgeous Mom Style

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At first, I toyed with the idea of letting everyone off easy. Maybe, I thought to myself, I should just say “Find Your Best Bold Lipstick” and offer options, like coral or hot pink, for the red-lipstick-phobe. But I believe in standing up for what matters. And red lipstick matters. It matters because it’s fabulous, and you deserve fabulousness, even in sweats. Especially in sweats. Red lipstick is a game changer. It makes you look more polished, sophisticated, and confident. Also, it’s hot. (Not hot as in warm, hot as in cute).

Not convinced? My friend A.G. tried red lipstick and said it changed her life. Okay, she didn’t say that exactly, but she did say that she loves it, but her mother hates it. Which is pretty much win win. (Just kidding, mom!)

Fortunately, there are reds that work for absolutely everyone. Yes, even you. Safe bets for universal reds include MAC’s legendary “Ruby Woo,” Revlon “Fire & Ice“, and Chanel “Pirate” (the most popular shade in a six-shade range of universal reds called Rouge Allure Luminous Intense Lip Colour). But like anything worth learning, there is an art to wearing red lipstick. Here, all you need to know to find and wear your best red lipstick ever.

1. Well Red

Now that you’ve learned whether you have cool, warm or neutral undertones, you can easily choose the best red lipstick for your skin tone. (If you don’t know your undertone, then you missed this post. Take a moment to read it now!) For a harmonious, and more subtle look, choose a warm red lipstick if you have warm undertones, and a cool one if you have cool undertones. For a more dramatic look, pick a lipstick with the opposite undertone. Here, the best red lipstick to harmonize with your skin tone, and my top picks in each category.

The Best Red Lipstick by Skin Tone

For Fair Skin with Cool Undertones

Nars Audacious Lipstick in "Jeanne," $32, is a great choice for fair cool skintone.

Nars Audacious Lipstick in “Jeanne,” $32, is a great choice for fair cool skintones.

Look for… True red with a hint of pink, like a cherry red

BeautyMommy Pick: Nars Audacious Lipstick in “Jeanne,” $32

 

For Fair Skin with Warm Undertones

Get the iconic J. Crew bold lip with Troi Oilivierre Lipstick in "George", $28, J. Crew, a great pick for fair, warm-toned skin.

Get the iconic J. Crew bold lip with Troi Oilivierre Lipstick in “George”, $28, a great pick for fair, warm-toned skin.

Look for… True red or bold orange-red

BeautyMommy Pick: Troi Ollivierre Lipstick in “George”, exclusively for J. Crew, $28

 

For Medium Skin with Cool Undertones

RImmel "Kate" lipstick, $4.97, is a quick route to the model's signature bold lip, and is great for medium skin with cool undertones.

Rimmel “Kate” lipstick, $4.97, is a quick route to the model’s signature bold lip, and is great for medium skin with cool undertones.

Look for… True red or berry red

BeautyMommy Pick: Rimmel “Kate” Lipstick in #1, a true scarlet, $4.99

 

For Medium Skin with Warm Undertones

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in "True Red," $4.99, is a great choice for medium skin with warm tones.

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in “True Red,” $4.99, is a great choice for medium skin with warm tones.

Look for… True red or orange red

BeautyMommy Pick: Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick Creme in True Red, $4.99

 

For Dark Skin with Cool Undertones

Kat Von D. Studded Kiss Lipstick in "Vampira," $44, is beautiful on deep, cool-toned skin.

Kat Von D. Studded Kiss Lipstick in “Vampira,” $44, is beautiful on dark, cool-toned skin.

Look for… Deep plummy red like maroon or raspberry

BeautyMommy Pick: Kat Von D. Studded Kiss Lipstick in Vampira, $44

 

For Dark Skin with Warm Undertones

Iman Cosmetics Luxury Moisturizing Lipstick in "Wild Thing", $9.99, is gorgeous on dark skin with warm tones.

Iman Cosmetics Luxury Moisturizing Lipstick in “Wild Thing”, $9.99, is gorgeous on dark skin with warm tones.

Look for… Deep warm red like brick or crimson

BeautyMommy Pick: Iman Cosmetics Luxury Moisturizing Lipstick in “Wild Thing”, $9.99

 

2. Red Lipstick for Girls Who Don’t Wear Red Lipstick

Still not convinced? Ease into a crimson lip with these starter reds, in varying levels from beginner to advanced.

The Beginner Red

Fresh Sugar Passion Lip Treatment, $30, gives lips a subtle wash of sheer red.

Fresh Sugar Passion Lip Treatment, $30, gives lips a subtle wash of sheer red.

The “Not-Quite-Ready for Red” Red

Lipstick Queen "Medieval" lipstick, $22, is a very wearable sheer red.

Lipstick Queen “Medieval” lipstick, $22, is a very wearable sheer red.

The Advanced Red

Butter London LIPPY sheer lipgloss, $20, is a true red shade in a light, easy to wear formula.

Butter London LIPPY sheer lipgloss, $20, is a true red shade in a light, easy to wear formula.

The Grown Up Red

DuWop "Private Red", $27.94, adjusts to create the perfect red for your  skintone.

DuWop “Private Red”, $27.94, adjusts to create the perfect red for your skintone.

3. Apply Yourself

With red lipstick, application is everything. Here, 5 simple steps to applying the perfect red lip.

  1. Start with a clean, dry lip. If you want to apply lip balm, apply then blot first.
  2. Using a lip brush (preferred) or the tube, apply the first coat of color carefully. Keep the coat light and even.
  3. Line lips with a matching lip pencil or, for a softer less defined look, a clear lip pencil. (Applying lipliner after lipstick keeps the line more natural and less obvious).
  4. Apply a second coat of lipstick.
  5. Insert your finger into your mouth to remove any lipstick that might migrate onto your teeth.

That’s it! I hope I have been able to talk you through the sometimes daunting process of choosing the best red lipstick for your skin tone, and that you’re inspired to try it! It might just become your signature look!

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