Thursday, November 29, 2012

How to apply red lipstick

With so many Holiday parties coming up, starting as early as this weekend, its time to start thinking about what makeup look you'll be sporting!  You might be tempted to wear red lipstick, the color of the season, but if you're unsure how to apply or what shade to buy, I've got the guide for you!!!!!

What shade to choose?

I LOVE this little classic guide to picking a red lipstick:

Once you've decided on your shade, you have to create your look, applying the lipstick near-to-last.

What to wear it with:  After applying foundation and a bit of bronzer LOW on the cheeks, add some red-orange blush to the apples of cheeks (you have to go a bit overboard on the blush to balance the red lips!)

Apply an eyeshadow base and use neutrals in shades of tan and black to build up a mid to heavy smokey eye

Don't apply color higher than the crease, this will ensure that you aren't over-doing the makeup.  Alternatively, you can just go for a thicker black liner with a 'wing' at the end, which is VERY classic

make sure you define your brows with a brow pencil, it will really add to your look!

I like to use Maybelle define-a-brow pencil, it is self-sharpening and super thin for easy application!

Now that you have created your 'canvas' its time to prep the lips!

STEP 1:  Exfoliate!!!!  Dry or dead skin on your lips flakes off, and your gorgeous red color right with it if you don't prep the area first.  The easiest and cheapest way to exfoliate is to use your toothbrush!  Be sure to WET your lips and LIGHTLY and gently 'scrub' the lip area and PAT dry with a soft towel

You can also wet lips and use a lip polish, like this all natural version from fresh, which is a sugar based scrub that gently removes all dry dead skin, you just use your finger and rinse off, then pat dry!

If you have extremely dry lips, apply a bit of lip balm with just the tip of your finger, it should hardly create a layer moisture.  Then give it several minutes to fully absorb into the lip area.  If there is too much residue, the lip color will not last as long.

Step 2:  Lip liner!  This is optional, some people really don't like lip liner.  I consider it an essential for the initial application of red lipstick.  You have 2 options here, if you can find a red lip liner that is almost exactly the shade of your lipstick (at least matches the cool or warm tone of the color) then use that.  If you aren't sure or you don't want to invest in a red lip liner, you can use a nude liner instead.

when you line lips, don't be afraid to 'draw outside the lines' a bit and make your lips appear a bit fuller,
or perhaps you want to accentuate your 'cupids bow' more (the top point of your upper lip)

Step 3:  Use a lip brush!!!!  This is the only step I am going to tell you that you can't skip, you have to use a lip brush for the INITIAL application of the lipstick.

Preferably a synthetic bristle with a short, small tip

WHY?  because applying directly from the tube does not distribute the color evenly, which results in fading and feathering (that nasty thing that happens when the color bleeds)

get some product on the lip brush, start from the fattest part of the lip and blend towards the corners.
The first thing you'll notice is that the color is softer and not as vibrant as it might be when you apply it from the tube.  You can add more product to increase the boldness of the color.

I SUPPOSE that if you absolutely can't get your hands on a lip brush you can substitute your ring or pinkie finger.  Just don't apply from the tube.  Better to dab on with your tiny finger than apply directly!

Step 4:  Blot.  Ah ha....I'm about to dispel the myth that you blot like this:

because that's the WRONG way!!!

When blotting, lightly 'tap' the lip to get the access color, never rub!

Step 5:  Apply a gloss.  This is optional of course, you may love the color just as it is.  And truthfully, applying a gloss might make the lipstick fade faster.  I prefer to do a combo of the option and only apply gloss to the very center of the lower lip.  This reflects light and makes the lips appear fuller, and helps the color last better than if you applied gloss all over

Leaving the center of the lip with less color is an ole' makeup artist trick!  Oh yeah!

Step 6:  Touch-ups!  Yeah!  Now you get to use your tube to lightly dab lips (avoid heavy swiping) to brighten up the color as it wears down.  The glossier your color, the more you'll need to re-apply.

The best lipsticks for longer wear that won't make your lips dry out:

1. Chanel Rouge Allure, this semi-matte lipstick has good staying power and the colors are incredible
2. Revlon Kissable Balm Stain (in Romantic)
3. Kat Von D Painted Love Lipstick (at Sephora)
4. Make Up For Ever Aqua Rouge, this is a double-ended lip product with the gloss built in

Complete your look with some false lashes for drama, and swipe on just a bit more blush, and you have a classic look for any holiday get-together!

I'll end here with several of the inspirations from my 'red lipstick' looks

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