Mon | Oct 15, 2018

Party-ready red lips

Published:Sunday | December 7, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Rouge Ecstasy lipstick in a classic red
Burt's tinted balm in Red Dahlia
Cruella Velvet matte lip pencil
M·A·C Prabal Gurung lipstick in Carmine Rouge

Party-ready lips


Colour bleed be damned. There's a red lipstick for everybody nowadays.

You know how celebrity beauty guru Ted Gibson found that out?

"My mother has just now been wearing red lipstick since I turned her on to it over the last two years. Before, she thought red meant you were kind of easy," he laughed.

Red no longer evokes sexpot alone, and it doesn't have to lead to severe chapping. Shades of red can be had in balms, glosses, creamy mattes or a combination of care and colour - or CC as they say in the beauty biz.

If you're unsure of the shade, swipe a bit on the inside of one arm the next time you're in a store, then step outside into natural light for a better idea of how it will look.

And if you're traumatised by lip colour seeping into lines and crevasses beyond where it's supposed to be, use a primer underneath or a lip liner as a barrier. Apply concealer around the outside of the mouth for extra protection against bleed.

"What's great right now is that there are some really creamy, dense, highly pigmented red lipsticks that are fantastic for people who really want to go for that power-pout look. There are also sheer reds for those of us who don't feel so comfortable or who may feel like a clown with a big red mouth," said Alexandra Parnass, beauty director at Harper's Bazaar.

And there's no better time than the holidays to get creative with red for the lips, the two agreed, noting how well the colour goes with holiday gold and urging a breaking of traditional skin-complexion rules. Go for what feels and looks right on you alone.

Even better, pick up a tube or two as a gift or stocking stuffer. Here are some suggestions from Gibson, Parnass, and others.