LIP

The Best Red Lipsticks for Your Skin Tone, According to Experts

The Best Red Lipsticks for Your Skin Tone, According to Experts

The Best Red Before we dive in, let’s get this out of the way: Anyone can wear red lipstick. All it takes is the desire to wear it. “The right red is the one that makes you feel good,” Los Angeles-based makeup artist Fiona Stiles, whose clients include Margot Robbie, Gabrielle Union, and Lily Collins, tells Allure. However, you stand a better chance at finding a red lipstick you love by taking your skin tone into account. We asked professionals makeup artists to share the shades of red lipstick that flatter each complexion best, and we’ll give you some product recommendations to keep in mind. If you happen to be worried that you can’t “pull off” red, here’s our advice: don’t worry. “If having a hard time stepping into red, then tap on the lipstick with your finger for a sheerer, stained, diffused effect,” recommends New York City-based makeup artist Rommy Najor.
Fair Complexion
Fair Complexion

Fair skin tends to have a naturally pink flush to it, explains New York City-based makeup artist Daniel Martin, whose clients include Jessica Alba and Elisabeth Moss. Complement it using cool-toned red lipsticks with hints of blue and purple instead of warm-toned ones with orange hues. These kinds of colors not only make fair skin look brighter but they also make teeth look whiter.

Colourpop Matte Lux Lipstick in Hi Striker
Colourpop Matte Lux Lipstick in Hi Striker

Colourpop Matte Lux Lipstick in Hi Striker is the epitome of a blue-red lipstick. The opaque stick coats lips in a flattering fire-engine hue with just one coat.

$7 (Shop Now)

Flesh Beauty Proud Flesh Matte Liquid Lipcolor in Brazen
Flesh Beauty Proud Flesh Matte Liquid Lipcolor in Brazen

Flesh Beauty Proud Flesh Matte Liquid Lipcolor in Brazen hasn’t been available for long, but it’s quickly become a go-to for New York City-based makeup artist Ingeborg. The scarlet hue has a hint of warmth to it that won’t wash you out, and Ingeborg says the long-wearing formula doesn’t dry out lips either.

$20 (Shop Now)

TPSY Absoliptly Lipstick in Cherry On Top
TPSY Absoliptly Lipstick in Cherry On Top

Prefer a less vibrant red? Try TPSY Absoliptly Lipstick in Cherry On Top, which is a cool-toned berry despite what its fruity name implies. The more you layer on of this K-beauty pick, the shinier it becomes. Less gives it a more subtle, satin finish.

$21 (Shop Now)

Medium Complexion
The Best Red Medium Complexion

When picking the right shade of red lipstick, “I often think of colors I see in nature,” New York City-based makeup artist Vincent Oquendo says. For medium skin tones, he reaches for an orange-red shade because sunsets come to mind. Like the way oranges mix with reds and taupes in the sky, the same hues work in harmony with medium complexions. Poetry aside, a poppy red also helps cancel out any sallowness you may have in your skin.

RMS Beauty Wild With Desire Lipstick in RMS Red
The Best Red RMS Beauty Wild With Desire Lipstick in RMS Red

Ingeborg swears by the RMS Beauty Wild With Desire Lipstick in RMS Red for medium complexions. Paired with a bronzed glow, she says it helps illuminate the whole face.

$28 (Shop Now)

Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips Lipstick in Tell Laura
The Best Red Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips Lipstick in Tell Laura

Oquendo admits he’s “kind of nuts about” Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips Lipstick in Tell Laura, a tangerine-spiked red. Its orange undertones help counteract the green in medium complexions.

$34 (Shop Now)

M.A.C. Matte Lipstick in Lady Danger
The Best Red M.A.C. Matte Lipstick in Lady Danger

In its tube, M.A.C. Matte Lipstick in Lady Danger, a favorite of Oquendo’s, may seem more cherry-red than orange-red. However, when it’s swiped onto lips, its tangerine tones shine through on olive skin tones.

$19 (Shop Now)

Deep Complexion
The Best Red Deep Complexion

On dark complexions, Martin loves a deep, bright, matte red. Look for true, candy-apple reds. They don’t have a white base, so they won’t look chalky or ashy. Alternately, chocolate-cherry lipsticks work, too, because they mimic the richness and depth of deeper complexions, Oquendo adds.

Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl
The Best Red Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl

Oquendo calls the Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl an “all-American” red. It doesn’t skew too orange or blue. Instead, its intensely-pigmented formula is a true red through and through.

$27 (Shop Now)

Nyx Pin-Up Pout Lipstick in Revolution
The Best Red Nyx Pin-Up Pout Lipstick in Revolution

When Oquendo called out a chocolate-cherry lipstick for deeper skin tones, we immediately thought of the Nyx Pin-Up Pout Lipstick in Revolution. The burgundy shade has gorgeous hints of brown that make it perfect match for a smoky eye look. Najor adds that warmer red lipsticks like this one “tend to feel a bit more soothing and subtle since they aren’t considered ‘bright’.”

$8 (Shop Now)

The Lip Bar Matte Liquid Lipstick in Red
The Best Red The Lip Bar Matte Liquid Lipstick in Red

For deeper skin tones, Oquendo recommends taking inspiration from the red carpet for your perfect red lipstick shade. The Lip Bar Matte Liquid Lipstick in Red fits the bills with its lush, stay-put formula. And a major plus is it’s from a black-owned beauty brand.

$13 (Shop Now)

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