Red has been a perennial favourite on catwalks of Milan, Paris and New York for the past for or five seasons. French fashion designers in particular love a bold red lip. “The fastest way for a woman to change her look is to change her lipstick shade,” says Michael Kors. “I love a classic red lip. It always looks chic.” In fact, for autumn 2014, adding a deeper red lipstick is the fastest way to update your beauty look. If you only buy one item this season, make it a deep red lip colour.
This season, Zac Posen, Zimmerman, Jasper Conran, Byblos, Trussardi and Ruffian reworked the red lip using deeper shades and blending in browns, deep aubergine and even some silver. Even Rihanna got in on the act showing up at the Dior show wearing her beloved MAC Ruby Woo lipstick. Most shows kept the colour on the eyes and cheeks neutral to give the lips a starring role. Brows were groomed and lashes coated with mascara, but the rest was kept quite nude.
Top UK makeup artist Nina Westbury recommends starting with a lip liner to draw a sharp, crisp line. You can see from the photo of Rihanna above her makeup artist has used a liner to create a perfect line. “I start by defining the lip line. Then, I fill in the entire lip with the pencil before applying lipstick overtop. Lasts all day!” Bobbi Brown likes to do the reverse. She’ll line lips after applying lipstick. But this takes a bit more practice.
One of the secrets to pulling of a bold red lip is to ensure your lips are perfectly smooth. Take a dry, soft-bristled toothbrush and gently brush your lips to remove any chapped skin. Blot with a damp tissue then apply a lip balm or primer. This creates a perfectly smooth canvas. Finally apply your lipstick. The colour will last longer and look better.
“Fine lines around the lips caused by sun damage can sometimes cause lipstick to bleed,” explains Julie Cusson for Chanel. She recommends filling in any lines with a correcting balm that creates an even lip surface. “Gently pat the balm onto lips. The heat from your fingertips will cause the balm to melt into skin.” She says a correcting lip balm is a big secret pro makeup artists use when making up celebrities.
Choice red picks:
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick in Decadent & Emotional, $34 each
Bobbi Brown Art Stick in Cassis, $30
YSL Rouge Volupte #17 Red Muse, $39
Guerlain Kiss Kiss Lipstick in Red Passion, $41
Chanel Rouge Coco Baume Hydrating Conditioning Lip Balm, $39
Anna Sui Lip Crayon in Anna Red, $28