The red lip. It's classic, timeless and utterly sophisticated. For the longest time, I felt really shy and totally out of my comfort zone wearing a red lip, but I somehow managed to slowly wean myself off of my nudes and my corals, and now I love wearing a wide variety of lip colours. I'd say red makes up a good majority of the lip colours I have in my collection, and from the brights to the dark and vampy, there's a red lip out there to suit every girl. I truly believe it's a universally flattering colour on anyone and something that will never go out of style.
The bright red
MAC's Lady Danger Lipstick is my bright red lip of choice and from my photo above, you can tell just how vivid it really is! It leans towards the more coral side of red and compared to my other reds, it looks straight up orange. Fun and flirty, it's my favourite red to bring out during the warmer months, which have sadly come to an end here in Australia. Lady Danger is a matte formula and super long-lasting, but doesn't feel uncomfortable on the lips at all. It's quite a popular MAC shade amongst the beauty blogging community and after picking this up for myself a couple of years ago now, it's not hard to understand why. This is a red I've ended up loving so much more than I initially thought I would.
The retro red
To me, the retro red is the one that takes us back in time and reminds me of Marilyn Monroe, pinup girls and Mad Men. A true classic. The NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella is the most recent lip colour addition to my collection and one that has gotten so much love already. I wore it in a recent blog post, here. It's a deep blue-toned red and reds with blue undertones are my absolute favourite kind of red as not only do I feel they suit my complexion more, but they make your teeth appear whiter too. For a matte formula, it feels really creamy and won't dry out your lips at all. 100% worth the hype.
Funnily enough, the Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick in Icon is described as a "true, classic red", but is ever so slightly more pink-toned than Cruella. You can wear this lightly on the lips as a more berry red, but I really love to build the colour up for a more deep, sultry red that almost verges along the lines of a vampy red that's still classic-looking. I've heard mixed reviews on the formula of these and on me, they're a little drying, but it's a small price to pay for a beautiful, beautiful red.
MAC Ruby Woo Lipstick is the ultimate classic red and out of all my red lip colours, my absolute favourite by far. It was my first red lipstick ever and still to this day, holds the number one spot in my heart. I don't even know why the whole Ruby Woo vs. Russian Red debate even exists because they're clearly two different red colours with Ruby Woo being so much more superior. Sure, it's the most drying of the two mattes and in fact, I've never come across a lipstick so drying as much as Ruby Woo, but that colour! It's the most perfect shade of red ever. Your lips have to be well-prepped with exfoliation and a good lip balm to wear this lipstick, but the hassle is completely and utterly worth it. Once applied, it's not budging nor going anywhere. If you don't own this lipstick, what are you even doing with your life?
For a more long-lasting retro red lip colour, I have the MAC Lip Pencil in Cherry and Make Up Store's Lip Pencil in Burlesque to wear underneath. I even sometimes wear them underneath my darker lip colours just to make them a little more vibrant. Cherry is a hint darker than Burlesque, so I prefer to wear Burlesque under Ruby Woo as it's brighter and more blue-toned, therefore being a more similar match. Both of these lip pencils are smooth upon application and owning quite a few MAC Lip Pencils, I have to say, they're definitely my favourite.
The vampy red
There are three lipstick colours and one lip liner here that I consider my more dark and vampy reds. First up is MAC's Viva Glam I, which is an old favourite of mine. Again, this is a blue-toned red, though Viva Glam I also has brown undertones and appears as a red brick colour. Apart from Ruby Woo, I find MAC matte lipsticks really comfortable to wear and now that autumn is here, I'm looking forward to bringing this out again as a nice transitional colour into the colder months.
The NARS Audacious Lipstick in Leslie is described as "cherrywood" (as worn in this Instagram picture) and is quite similar to Viva Glam I, perhaps a few shades darker and slightly more brown. Did I need both in my collection? Probably not, but I was just too eager to get my hands on the then newly released Audacious Lipsticks! Nevertheless, I'm really glad to have this colour in my collection as it's a beautiful shade and the formula of these lipsticks is just incredible. They're creamy, apply like a dream and while I wouldn't call them a proper matte, they don't look overly sheeny either, which is a look I'm not too fond of in lipsticks. I definitely need more of these!
My darkest red comes in the form of Diva by MAC. I do have a few other vampy shades in my collection, but I'd consider those more purple/brown than red. Also a matte, it should come as no surprise to you by now what my favourite lipstick formulation is! Diva is described as an "intense reddish-burgundy" and has a slight berry undertone in comparison to Viva Glam I and Leslie. I am absolutely dreading winter this year, especially now that I live in Melbourne where it's a lot colder and rainy, but if there's any consolation, it's that I get to wear the seasonal dark lips again.
To line my lips, I use MAC's Lip Pencil in Beet. This red definitely has a pink/berry undertone to it, but once I've applied my lipstick on top, it isn't too pink for my complexion and it just works. As you can tell, it's my least used of my three red lip pencils, but I'm hoping to give it more love now that it's getting colder.
The red gloss
I'm not much of a lip gloss wearer these days. I got rid of the majority I had in my collection (which wasn't a lot to begin with, anyway), but I still have a few beautiful ones that I just could not part with. Sometimes they're nice for a subtle hint of colour, when you're feeling too lazy to fuss around with lipstick and they can help add a beautiful glow to the face. Plus, if your lipstick is feeling a little dry or uncomfortable, a touch of gloss can do just the trick.
When I first ventured into the world of red lip colours, I decided to start off with a lip gloss to ease myself into them. The one I ended up purchasing was Chanel's Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss in Excès, which is a rich cherry red colour. For a lip gloss, it has amazing pigmentation and a lovely creamy formula with no shimmer whatsoever. It is quite thick, however, so you may want to use an invisible lip liner to prevent feathering if worn on its own. I'm not sure if this particular shade has been discontinued as I couldn't find it online anymore, but I'm sure there are similar shades from this lip gloss line if you decide to pick one up.
The other red gloss I own is the YSL Rouge Pur Couture Vernis À Lèvres Glossy Stain in Rouge Enamel. I was super excited to try these when they were first released a couple of years ago and I absolutely adore this shade of red. You can see me wearing it here. I don't find it to actually stain the lips, however, and the gloss itself has a weird thin consistency, but it's super easy to apply and once built up, the colour is absolutely stunning and doesn't dry out the lips at all like most lip stains can.
So, there you have it; an overview of my red lip colours! I'm really happy with my little collection. This post ended up being so much longer than I thought it would be (then again, I could say that for all my blog posts!), but I always try to be as informative, descriptive and helpful as I can.
Let me know what your favourite red lip colours are.