Tips for Wearing Red Lipstick

So, you guys.  I have a confession.  Actually, two confessions.

The first is that on Tuesday night I slept from 8:15 pm to 7:15 a.m. and then on Wednesday I ate a box of macaroni and cheese and a giant bowl of ice cream AFTER I had already stopped at Panera for dinner on the way home, so I couldn’t finish more than two posts this week.  I just had to lay down.  Three straight weekends out of town have taken their toll, or at least that’s the excuse I’m claiming.

The other confession is that I didn’t teach myself how to wear lipstick until like a month ago.  My office is as casual as it gets, and so is the Columbus bar scene (not that I really get out), so I never had a reason to take the plunge.  However, I had a wedding to attend a few weeks ago and really wanted to do a red lip for some reason, so I scoured the web for instructions while at work and did some practice at home.  Here are five tips that will help you get started, too…

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Take Care of Your Skin

If you’re lucky enough to have the occasional breakout around your mouth or chin (as I am), you’ll want to take perfect care of your skin before wearing a bright lip color.  Stick closely to the routine that works best – don’t try new products that could clog pores or otherwise cause irritation, always remove your makeup before bed, and keep your brushes and sponges clean.

Exfoliate Your Lips

To make sure your lips are as smooth as your skin, exfoliate them every few days in the weeks leading up to your event.  A tablespoon of brown sugar and just enough honey to make the two ingredients into a paste works will work just as well as an expensive lip scrub from Sephora.  Apply lip balm to seal in moisture after each exfoliation treatment.

Whiten Your Teeth

You can also look your best in red lipstick by doing a whitening treatment beforehand to brighten up your smile.  I’d recommend Crest Whitestrips, which I actually mentioned in last week’s Friday Favorites – I’ve always had great results with this brand.  And if you’re willing to wear a set of strips for thirty minutes for ten days as opposed to just doing one treatment, you’ll only have to pay about $20 rather than $50 or $60.

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Choose the Right Red

Once you’ve decided to go with a red lip, you’ll want to choose a shade that complements your skin’s undertones.  If you have cool undertones, you can select a true, blue based red, while if your undertones are warm, you’ll want to buy a lipstick that has a little orange in it.  This trick might help: look at the inside of your wrist.  If your veins appear blue,  you’re cool-toned, while if they appear green, your undertones are warm.

Use Nude Lip Liner

Outlining and then gently filling in your lips with liner helps keep your lipstick from bleeding and give it staying power.  Many articles recommended matching liner shade to lipstick, but I didn’t want to try multiple liners before getting it right, much less buy a new one every time I bought a new lip color.  So, I just went with a neutral shade and luckily it worked out fine.

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Finally, at the risk of writing something you’ve read a million times before, it’s always best to choose between your eyes and lips when wearing bold makeup instead of emphasizing both.  Have a great weekend, whatever your plans are – I may or may not only leave my apartment to lay at the pool alone and I may or may not be looking forward to it.

6 thoughts on “Tips for Wearing Red Lipstick

  1. Lily

    I don’t wear red lips often either, but when I do I definitely make sure my lips are exfoliated (especially if it’s a matte lip product) and moisturized! With certain reds, I like to use an anti-feathering lip liner too because it helps it stay put! Great tips girl!
    xo, Lily
    Beauty With Lily

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