The Ultimate Guide to Rocking Red Lipstick: How to Apply Red Lipstick with Tips and Techniques

Just like a little black dress, red lipstick is a wardrobe essential. Elevate any outfit with a slick of red lippy for a quick and easy confidence boost. From warm orangey tones to cool raspberry hues, there’s an endless range of flattering shades to match your mood and skin tone. Learning how to apply red lipstick is just as important as choosing the right shade. In this guide, we’ll help you do both.

Choosing The Right Shade

It’s uber-flattering, but when figuring out how to wear red lipstick it’s all about choosing the right shade for your skin tone.

 ● If you have fair skin, look for shades of red with blue undertones. Think brick, burgundy, cherry, and cranberry tones. Orange-based reds can make your skin look washed out.
 ● If you have olive skin, orange-based reds like tomato and coral will look amazing on you. Blue undertones will make your skin look sallow.
 ● If you have dark skin, avoid brighter shades, and opt for rich, deep tones of berry, burgundy, and wine.

Not sure whether your skin works better with cool or warm shades of red? Here’s a quick way to check: turn your arm over and look at the veins on your wrist. If they’re blue, your skin works better with cool undertones (blue and purple-red tones). If the veins are greener, your skin works better with warm undertones (orange-red tones). Check out L’Oreal Paris Best Shades of Red Lipsticks:

 1. Color Riche Satin 124 & 125 enriched with nourishing Omega 3 and Vitamin E
 2. Color Riche Intense Volume Matte 336 & 346 infused with hyaluronic acid with a powdery finish
 3. Infallible Matte Resistance 400 & 420 long wear liquid lipstick with a matte finish

The Art of Application

Here’s how to apply red lipstick in three easy steps.

Step 1: Prep Your Lips

Start by exfoliating with a gentle lip scrub to remove any dry spots or flakes. Apply a moisturising lip balm or primer to hydrate. This creates a smooth ‘canvas’ to paint on and will prevent the lipstick from settling into cracks or fine lines.

Step 2: Apply Lip Liner

While you can opt out of this step, there are benefits to using a lip liner. Liners accentuate your shape, providing a crisp outline with a barrier that prevents colour from bleeding and feathering over time. Choose a lip liner that matches your lipstick, starting at the cupid’s bow and gently tracing the curves of your lips.

Step 3: Apply Lipstick

Whether you’re using a traditional tube or modern liquid formula, apply lipstick in the centre of your mouth and blend it upwards. A small brush or applicator can help ensure even strokes without missing any spots.

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Making It Last

You’ve taken the time to apply your lipstick perfectly – it’s only natural you want it to last! Blot your lips with a tissue to keep it from smudging, applying a second layer if needed. You can then set it in place using a translucent powder. A makeup setting spray also works to lock in pigments for all-day colour.

Pairing With Other Makeup

Not sure how to wear red lipstick? The beauty of a bold red lip is that it needs little embellishment. Plan down the rest of your makeup with subtle earth tones to really make your lips pop. Here are a few other makeup ideas to try:

 ● Use a complementary blush on the apples of your cheeks for a radiant glow
 ● Pair your classic red lip with a smoky eye using charcoal and black eye makeup
 ● Team your red lipstick with winged eyeliner and neutral eyeshadow for a vintage-inspired look
 ● Go bare faced except for the lipstick and a touch of highlighter to let your features shine

Red Lipstick for Different Occasions

While it brings glamour to mind, red lipstick is super versatile. Use a sheer tint or lip stain for a casual wash of colour, perfect for daytime outings. Don’t have a lip tint to hand? Dab your favourite shade on with your fingers, working from the centre for a light stained look. When it’s time to make a bolder statement, opt for a full coverage matte lipstick with matching liner. Liquid lipsticks in rich shades of burgundy and crimson get you party ready.

Common Red Lipstick Issues

You can avoid many of the common pitfalls of red lipstick by following our application tips and tricks. Exfoliating and applying lip balm before application prevents dry lips and cracking. But did you know that a good lip primer can also prevent smudging and fading? It helps lipstick adhere to your lips for longer-lasting colour and shine.

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