Years ago, it was en vogue to paint a room in your house red. We’ve all seen the results of red-gone-wrong, a room that either emits an orangeish hue or a too-dark shade that looks like it was the scene of grisly bloodshed. Red isn’t easy; it’s a bold choice and requires trial and error to discover the perfect blend on the color wheel. Choose right and you exude class; choose wrong and you live with Elmo on your walls until you have the patience to paint over it.
Wearing a red lip can go just as right, or just as wrong, and requires every bit as much research to find the perfect blend of perfection. There is nothing more telling of a woman’s confidence than accentuating her pucker in a color that demands attention. Worn best with the minimal eye makeup (liner and mascara are all you need), red lips become the accessory and speak volumes as to their owner. If you’re already a red lipstick lover, the list below may introduce you to a few more that are worthy of adding to your collection. If you’ve always steered clear of a strawberry pout, consider this a beginner’s guide and your opportunity to take a walk on the wild side.
Chanel Rouge Allure (Pirate) – Reflective of its saucy color name, Pirate red is bold enough to demand attention, yet restrained enough to be taken seriously when you walk into the room. A bright hue, yet still board room appropriate, you’ll command your own ship wearing this creamy red. Not too dark; not too flashy. Just piratey perfection. ($37)
Rouge Dior (N˚ 999) – Ah, Dior. This color in a fabulous line of products provides a classic look, but is a bit more subdued than some of its counterparts. This is the perfect color for beginners who aren’t quite used to a bright lip, but who still want to leave a room and be remembered. ($35)
Elizabeth Arden (Red Door Red) – Apropos to its brand’s renowned red door, this classic color can be made as subtle or dramatic as you like depending on the amount applied. Its creamy finish is moisturizing and won’t leave those lips longing for a gloss. ($25)
CoverGirl Outlast All Day Lipcolor (Eternal Flame) – The perfect shade when you want a bold lip without it taking center stage. A deeper red with a slight shimmer, this lipstick marketed as long lasting doesn’t disappoint. Go ahead and sip that foamy latte without fear of leaving half your color behind. Just don’t forget the top moisturizing coat of this two-coat process or your lips will feel a bit on the chalky side. ($9)
Whether you’re a veteran red-wearer or eager to try a new look, finding the perfect shade for you will take a bit of patience and research. Don’t be afraid to sit at the make-up counter and explore the options; it only takes one swipe of a tissue to erase the mark of a wrong shade and you’ll be happy that you took the time to test colors before deciding on a purchase. And, if you take the plunge into any shade of a red pout, just remember to own your choice completely. Put on that red and walk with a bit of sass because it’s just as much about feeling the color as it is wearing it.