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How To Get The Perfect Red Lip

Red lipstick is striking. It is a classic look that all Hollywood celebrities must master. Marilyn Monroe rocked a red lip, along with Betty Boop. Gwen Stephani has mastered the red lip, and you might have noticed Taylor Swift at a Kansas City ballgame with her bright red lips. So, today, I’m going to show you how to get the perfect red lip because it is not just for celebrities.

The Steps To Getting The Perfect Red Lip

It might take a while to find the perfect color of red to match your skin tone. I love a blue/red, a Christmas red, and a pink/red. But I don’t think that orange/red looks good on me. You might be just the opposite, so experiment, experiment, experiment.

When putting on my makeup, I cover my lips with my foundation. This neutralizes the mauve color of my lips and helps the true color of the lipstick to show better.

Red isn’t a forgiving color, and every little mistake shows. I find it easier to use a lip liner to start with since it is easier to erase a tiny mistake versus an entire lip of color.

The first thing I do is find and outline my Cupid’s Bow. Some people like to make their lips larger than they are, so they go above their natural lips. I stick to my lip line, but I will adjust it to make them look symmetrical. We all have one side that will be longer or higher than the other.

Once I have my Cupid’s Bow in place, I continue to outline the entire lip.

Then, I color my lips with the liner. You don’t have to do this step, but I find that my lipstick seems to stay on longer when I use the lip liner to color the entire lips first.

The lip liner and lipstick are a perfect match, but you can see the color is deeper and richer looking once I add the lipstick.

I hate getting lipstick on straws, drinking glasses, or my hubby’s cheek, so I “set” the color with setting powder.

I usually use a brush and cover my lips a couple of times with the powder. It gives a nice matte finish, and the color doesn’t bleed onto things nearly as easily.

To get a crisp lip line, I use a white, ivory, or cream eyeliner to outline sections of my lips.

I line the Cupid’s Bow and the sides of my lower lips.

Then, I take a small, thin makeup brush to carefully blend in the whitish line. You’ll see it for a while since you know it is there, but no one else will know once it is blended in. I only use this brush for this job, and I clean it often to ensure it doesn’t get red on it and smear the white liner.

The products I used for this perfect red lip are:

I followed the same steps as above but used Pat McGrath Labs LiquiLUST™: Legendary Wear Lipstick in the color Elson 4. Unfortunately, this lipstick is tough to find in stock. This is supposedly one of the lipsticks that Taylor Swift wears, so it is out of stock everywhere.

How To Get The Perfect Red Lip With A Lip Crayon

I’m using the NARS Powermatte High Intensity Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl for this look. It is a cross between a lip liner and a lipstick. I didn’t outline or color my lips with a lip liner; I just used the NARS lip pencil as an all-in-one.

I love this color, but it is more of a pink/red than a red/red. This is a color I’ll wear in spring and summer more than in fall and winter.

However, the Cruella 185 shade in the same lip pencil is one of my favorites. I like the deeper color, and I think this one is perfect for fall and winter.

The website called this a tan rose, so maybe it has a hint of brown to tone it down.

How To Get The Perfect Red Lip With A Lip Stain

If you’ve read my blog before, you might have read about my love for Chanel’s LE ROUGE DUO ULTRA TENUE Ultra Wear Lip Colour. I’ve worn Chanel’s lip stains for years, and I love the duo stick with the color on one end and a gloss on the other. These stains last all day long and aren’t as drying as most lip stains. This color is Daring Red, and I think it is the perfect Christmas red!

I hope this post was helpful. Be sure to let me know which is your favorite and if you wear red lipstick.

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Verse Of The Day

Romans 10:10

10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

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77 Comments

  1. Patt Dyal says:

    I adore red lips but it gets all over everything especially my chin!!🤷🏼‍♀️ I will try using more translucent powder on my lips and chin. Perhaps this will help. Thank you!!

  2. Love the brown with glitter nails- 😍

  3. Debbie Brown says:

    I love the red lipstick. I have a friend that wears it all the time and it just pops. I have a hard time finding the right color
    I will use your tips and see what I can do!

    1. I hope you find the right shade! 😊

  4. Robyn Staton says:

    Wow! Thanks Tania!!! This is the best tutorial for red lips I have ever watched! Who knew about the setting powder! Genius! I can’t wait to give it a try!

  5. I love, love, love a red lip! Thank you for the suggestions. I am going to have to try them out.

  6. Kimberlee A Thompson says:

    Thanks so much for the post about red lipstick!!! I struggle with red myself!! I decided to go to ULTA and try a few of your suggestions and ended up with NARS lip crayon in Cruella and I actually like it!!! It stayed on all day!! Thanks!!

    1. I think it is a great color!

  7. Karen Daniel says:

    Thanks for the red lip lesson. I will try the all in one from Ulta.

  8. I wear the same cool tones as you do and love all of your picks! I would like to try the Chanel and Nars next. The pink red is a nice bright change.

  9. Welcome to RV life! We live in Michigan and I’m not surprised you got an RV from here. Should be a lot of fun. The hardest thing is driving and parking. )h, and visiting the “dump and fill” is a hoot. Love the red lip!

    1. We had one before, and Joe drove it several places with his buddies. I never went anywhere in it. Lol! I think it would be a fun adventure, so we will see.

  10. Donna Ingalls says:

    What is the setting powder that you used? I hate when lipstick gets on my straws and glasses too.
    Thanks for this post.

  11. Susan Weston says:

    I love the red lipstick! I wear it often. Those ‘natural’ colors are nice but I refer to those colors as the ‘why bother’ colors!!

    1. Lol! That made me laugh!

  12. I don’t wear true red lipstick. It doesn’t look good on my skin. I wear a more intense coral salmon lipstick. I would have to find an organic foundation or powder to put it on my lips. I have heard that before. Does putting powder and foundation dry your lips?

    1. The powder dries your lips some, but I prefer that to getting lipstick on everything.

  13. I’ve never been comfortable with red lipstick. However, I’m going to give it another try after seeing your tutorial!

    1. I hope it works out for you! 😊

  14. Ginger Hiller says:

    This post is EXTREMELY helpful! Thank you so much for putting it together for us. I actually wore a red lipstick today that ended up turning pinkish on me as the day progressed. Do you always put your foundation on your lips before using any of the reds? All of our Christmas decorating is done due to us being deer hunters. And this is our favorite season. We live on a private dirt road so we don’t have many people to drive by to see our various decorations.

    1. Ginger, it depends on how much in a hurry I am. Sometimes I just use my lipstain, and go. No foundation and no powder. But, if I’m using a lipstick, I always try to remember to use powder.

  15. Sandy Franke says:

    Beautiful Tania! A red lip is hard to pull off but you did it beautifully! Always enjoy your content!

  16. Love the red lipstick on you. I will try your directions to see if I can achieve this classic look. Thanks for the instructions.

  17. Wonderful, informative post on lipstick application. The step-by-step tutorial was very helpful along with your tips to bring out the best results for the lips and red ones at that. Looking forward to more posts to inform and bring out the best.

  18. Louise Logan says:

    Everyone needs a good red lipstick! So classic.

  19. Red looks beautiful on you but I think it’s harsh on me. I guess I’m just not daring enough!

  20. Wanted to comment on the brown nails with glitter. AMAZING!!! They look like beautiful fall leaves. Perfect for fall and Thanksgiving. ☺️

  21. Thanks for this info. I’m inspired to give red a try. BTW not only your lips but lashes and brows are amazing as well. What products are you using for those?

    1. Brenda, I’ve used Rodan and Fields Lash Boost since 2016 for my lashes. It is a serum that helps you get longer looking lashes. I also use R+F Brow Boost for my eyebrows.

  22. Janice Nagle says:

    My favorite red lip on you is the cruella shade. I have a pale skin tone, so all you see is red lips when you look at me. the contrast is too great. I don’t wear red lipstick.

  23. Surprised by 2 things- that your nail polish will last for 3 weeks and that you are putting up your tree now? Different strokes for different folks 🙂

    1. Kathy, if the nails don’t last, I’ll just have them redone. I need my tree up so I can get photos for Christmas content for the blog.

  24. Gonna have to try your steps! On myself, I’ll probs go for a more subtle pink/red. I think a bit of frost tones it down for me as well. Your blog is great!

  25. Jenniffer Groski says:

    Orange red isn’t my color but blue red can work on me. I’ll give this a try!

  26. Kathy Moreno says:

    Great tutorial. Thank you. God bless ❤️

  27. Tania you rock the red lips!!! You look beautiful. Great tutorial! I’m a Mac ruby woo girl for my red. I’m going to try the thrive lip liner and lipstick. It’s stunning on you. I’m a Blue eyed blonde so hopefully it will work for me.

  28. sue ann koren says:

    I am amazed by your eyelashes – are you wearing false eyelashes or you just have a really good mascara?

    1. Lol! It is cheap mascara, but I use Lash Boost to help them be longer looking.

  29. So much to know about lip color!

  30. Red lipstick is so complimentary on many, but need to hone in on the right one, love your picks

  31. Red is so complimentary on many, love your picks

  32. Love a red lip on others. I am working up the courage to try one on myself!

    1. Michelle, I love wearing a red lip!

  33. Laura Garrett says:

    Thank you for the lipstick tips, and BTW, your skin is absolutely beautiful!

  34. I agree with the other posts….looks gorgeous on You! Not so much on me. I could go for the pink/red but can’t bring myself to wear red.

  35. I love this post! It reminded me of my granddaughter getting into my EL red lipstick last week with her cheer uniform on. She’s 5! 😮 I’ve never tried a setting powder. Great to know. I’ll have to get this! I like the way you do your eye makeup too. 😀

    1. Landy, those granddaughters have a way to getting into all of our goodies. Lol!

  36. Judith Bago says:

    Loved your lipstick routine. I find that in my CATHOLIC church with singing all the hymns and helping to serve communion with with 3 words to many parishioners, I find that the lipstick fades but not the lip liner. Your tip on filling in the lip is helpful. Do you use the same brush each time to set the powder?
    How do you manage using the stain lipstick? Do you touch up the inner lips with the gloss or use the stain throughout the day/night? I was hoping you would show more on that application. Thank you always for a nice presentation. (Judy)

    1. I usually use the same brush, or I just use my fingers which is easier. The stains last longer than anything else, and if I need a tiny touchup, it doesn’t take long.

  37. Great tutorial and you look great with red lips! I’m more of a peachy girl but may have to try a bright red!

  38. One of my favorite accessories is a lip color! NARS American Woman has been my favorite go to lately. I don’t apply a full lip coverage. I touch the fullest part of my lips and pat the color on with my finger. It leaves a hint of color without overwhelming my other makeup.
    I will need to check out the NARS lip pencil. The Dragon Girl shade looks amazing on you!

  39. I have always struggled to put on red lipstick because I usually end up looking like clown! Thanks for showing how to apply it the right way.

  40. Great lipsticks tutorial!

  41. I love wearing red!! It’s the best. I actually wear MAC’s – Ruby Woo! ( it’s the same color that Taylor Swift wears)

  42. Great post! I never wear red lipstick & these tips just might me give it a try! Thank you!

  43. Yes, I love NARS Dragon Girl is my favorite RED!!

  44. I’ve always shied away from red, but maybe I should give it a try. It looks so pretty on you!

  45. Like you, I love red lips! And, I too, stay away from the orange reds. Thank you for this great post. You’ve given me a couple of steps to consider. I have the Chanel duo in another shade but am definitely going to check out the Daring Red! 👄 💄

  46. Tania, these red lip colors look good on you. Thanks for the extra tips to keep the color from bleeding into thin lines. Great post today!

  47. Linda Shearer says:

    I dont wear red lipstick but I like that Nars all in one pencil it was more of a ruby red. I will check it out. Thank You!

  48. Dana Smithmier says:

    Red is my fav!! Im loving the 3rd color💋

  49. Stella Gustafson says:

    I like wearing a red lipstick sometimes but never can find one that doesn’t enter the room before I do. How do you find out your skin tone to match the red. Thanks for the tips about how to put it on and make it stay

  50. Tracy Dover Huggins says:

    I love the Chanel lip stain color and picked that up. I usually wear cover girl outlast lip stains but they have not done a good job of updating their colors. I like how the stains are mix of stain and lipstick (not just a stain tint) but I don’t necessarily want a drastic matte. It made your teeth look really white too! I hope I have found a new favorite. Thank you for your recommendations !!!

    1. I’m glad that you enjoyed this post ! Thank you for commenting. 😊

  51. I can’t believe this post,I was just thinking a couple of days ago I wish Tania would do a post on the best red lipsticks. I guess because I’ve been seeing Taylor Swift’s signature red lips. I live close to kc mo, so everything is Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift right now. Great post, I’ve got the lipsticks in my cart.

    1. Joan, I’ve always loved wearing a red lip when I’m at a party, on a date, and at Christmas time.

    1. Let me know if you decide to try my steps.

  52. Red looks so good on you!