A red lip is often described as the ‘Little Black Dress’ of beauty – it’s timeless, undeniably glamorous and decidedly feminine. Yet, red is still a shade that a lot of us put off trying, for fear that it might overwhelm or worse, make us look clownish. While this fear is justifiable, we still feel that it shouldn’t stop you from trying on a red lip. And no, you don’t need the perfect Cupid’s bow or a glam squad to ace the red lip either. The key here is finding the perfect shade of red that makes you feel powerful and sexy, and you can only do so by testing the colour on your lips, not hands. Here, we present you the 8 reds that we fell head over heels for, and we think you might too.
Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real! Red On, $35
If you like things unconventional, this one’s for you – the matte red lip colour is as pigmented as a lipstick but comes in a mini compact that comes with a tapered brush and mirror. Don’t let the tiny brush fool you, it picks up product and applies quite easily.
Bobbi Brown Crushed Lip Colour in Regal, $41
Like to get some red on your lips but worried that you might look clownish? Then try this formula – it deposits just the right amount of colour to give you a stained, just-kissed look. Contains beeswax and vitamins C and E to hydrate the lips.
Elizabeth Arden Plush Up Lip Gelato in Poppy Pout, $35
This is another option you can try for subtly coloured lips – the colour is buildable but only in tint so you don’t have to worry about being overwhelmed by the intense colour. We’re also awarding this lippie extra brownie points for having skincare ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, shea butter and vitamins in the formula to nourish and moisturise the lips.
Estee Lauder Pure Color Love Lipstick in #320 Burning Love, $36
Easy to apply and relatively long-lasting, the gorgeous shade of red is what we really fell in love with. Incredibly flattering on fair skin tone, it instantly brightens up your complexion and you’re bound to receive compliments every single time you wear it – trust us! Bonus: A delectable vanilla scent.
Guerlain KissKiss Matte Lipstick in M331 Chilli Red, $52
A new interpretation of its KissKiss Lipstick collection, this hot red (with just a tinge of orange) gave us close to 12 hours of wear and barely wavered despite us chowing down a greasy burger. The slight fading that occurred in the centre of lips was barely noticeable, we didn’t even feel the need to reapply. Another element that piqued our interest has got to be its chilli derivative that’s found in all the formula that's added to give lips a hot and cold micro-massage.
Nars Audacious Lipstick in Louise, $46
This medium-dark red hue goes on creamy and smooth, and is so lightweight we could hardly feel it on the lips. You don’t need to swipe back and forth too much with this one here as the pigment game is seriously strong – we’d say the outcome is nearly opaque with just one layer. Bonus: Super hydrating formula!
Smashbox Be Legendary Triple Tone Lipstick in Red Ombre, $42 (from Zalora)
The American brand is known to make really good lipstick and this new offering of theirs is no different, offering good coverage that requires minimal blending. We think it’s a good buy because it’s essentially a lip liner and lipstick in one, so you can skip the lining step. We also like that it sits comfortably on the lips and does not flake, giving you a soft ombre look that is good for daily wear. Application may take some getting used to (you have to turn the lipstick upside down for your bottom lip in order for the darker shade to be on your lip line and the lighter shade in the middle) but the ombre-lip outcome is worth the fuss. Seriously.
YSL Beaute Rouge Pur Couture The Mats Lipstick in 219 Rouge Tatouage, $51
This bright cherry red with cool undertone is really comfortable and stylish to wear. It’s little wonder why the brand dubbed the range of shades leather-matte. Unlike regular matte lip colours that can be a tad drying to the lips, this one gives a soft lustrous finish that stays put through meals and drinks. Fading is of course inevitable especially after a heavy meal, but it fades nicely into a light stain.