OK, I confess. I am a sucker for red lipstick. Always have been, always will be. Although I have way more than plenty, I can’t seem to resist. Because in these often dark, dreary and chilly days of winter, I find a good lippie perks me up like nobody’s business. And with New Year’s Eve coming up later this week, I have yet one more reason to happily go red; just add a bit of champagne and voila — instant celebration!
My latest lipstick love is Nars Satin Lip Pencil in Majella, a deep, mysterious red (shown at right). Although it’s so intense on me that I feel the need for foundation and some eye makeup to help pull it off successfully. I have long adored Nars lipstick pencils, having worn their Matte Lip Pencils in Forbidden Red, Cruella and Damned in the past. BTW, I have to cringe a little at that last name. Seriously, what am I to say should a sweet, elderly lady in church compliment my red lipstick and ask me for the name of it? 😉
Although not an out-and-out true red lipstick, I am still quite fond of Chanel’s matte La Sensuelle, which has very plummy undertones. Also, I’m still enjoying the dickens out of my old standby: Estee Lauder’s Perfect Silent Red from way back who knows when? I will be heartbroken when that one is gone for I’ve yet to find an exact dupe for it.
But the great thing about red lipstick is that pretty much everyone can wear it. It’s just a matter of finding the right shade to go with your coloring. I do well in reds with a blue undertone, but don’t look so hot in those gorgeous peachy or orange-reds, or lippies that have a lot of brown in them. I often wish I could wear those, or some of the great sheer pinks and peaches, too, but my skin is so fair that I look washed out and ghostlike in them. But it’s OK. For that’s the beauty of lipstick: There’s a shade out there for everyone.
So please share: What’s your current lipstick, lip gloss, or lip balm/Chapstick obsession?
Ann, the Nivea is over in the lip balm isle by the usual suspects, lol. It’s called “Nivea Kiss of Flavor” in strawberry, and in a red tube. Some of them are called lip shimmers, I believe and about 4 dollars.
Great — thanks so much, Julie!! I will give them a whirl! Happy and safe New Year!
I’m late to the lipstick party here. Damn. I love lipstick, gloss, balm, whatever. I keep searching for the holy grail product but have yet to find it. Recently after trying a sample from sephora I fell hard for the Dior Addict Fluid Stick. It’s not quite lipstick and not quite a gloss. Love the feel, hate the price. At $35 it’s the most expensive lippie I’ve ever bought but I don’t regret it so I guess that’s good. A cheaper option that is not quite the same but in the ballpark is the Maybelline Lip Elixir. I’ve got a few of those. Love Revlon Lip Butters too. Also like the Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask which is like a really thick heavy balm. The tube it comes in is dreadful. The product is too thick to easily squeeze out so I usually put it in my pocket to warm it a bit first. If not you risk breaking the tube.
I love reds and nudes but honestly I will try just about any shade. My pale skin and red hair present a few color issues. I have a lot of the neutral pinky shades because I went through a phase I guess. Reds are a commitment though. They require more frequent glances in the mirror to check for migration, funny fading and wear, lipstick on teeth. I’m not sure about favorite specific reds. I like the Red Velvet Lip Butter at the moment. Urban Decay Manic is more plummy than true red.
Red gloss or tint is a nice way to go red without too much stress. The sheer quality makes picking a color easier and more wearable since your own lips show through a bit.
Hiya, Poodle! So nice to see you — not to worry, it’s never too late! I hear you on the sticker shock for the Dior (my wallet winces at some of these prices, too), but if you really love it, I say splurge and enjoy it for all it’s worth. It does sound pretty neat. And I love your other picks; think I tried one of those Maybelline ones and liked it. I’m glad that you’ve found some great shades to love as a redhead, even though a few may take some work. Thanks!
After years (decades!) of not wearing makeup, this Spring I took and got addicted to lipstick. I can’t really do red at all; I don’t like the color red as a rule anyway, and a pale, pinky-blue-toned red head doesn’t look her best in it, either, plus I am very thin lipped!
I do rawk the heck out of dark-fuchsias that probably look red in some lights…Guerlain Rose Grenat, Revlon Cherries in the Snow, and one of those sort of liquid lipstick things Loreal does called Rouge Allure, but I generally do berry, plums and deep but bright pinks. (Which do clash with my hair, but look good with my complexion)
Santa brought me YSL Pink In Devotion, and it is my current go-to, but I also love Revlon’s Lip Butter in Lollipop, NARS Janet, 29 Cosmetics Sinfully Zin, YSL Fuchsua in Excess, Milani Fuchsia Flirt and a host of lip crayons thingees. I like creamy formulas, and can’t do mattes. Am also loving Buxom glosses.
LOVE the idea of Lipstick Monday, thank you!
Yay, Tammy — good for you!! I love those deep fuchsias as well and think they create a great look that’s easily as dramatic and beautiful as red. And hear, hear for the lovely classic Revlon Cherries in the Snow! I loved that one, too, and think I have it around here somewhere. Your other loves sound beautiful as well. So glad you’re loving Lipstick Monday; I think we’ll have to do it more often. BTW, Santa did right by you! 🙂
I love a red lip! Mascara and red lipstick is the easiest way to look ‘done’ for me – although more difficult to maintain over a day and dinner than fancy eyeshadow. I like a red with a juicy pinkness to it, Luxembourg in the Nars pencils is a good example. I’ve just bought one of the new Nars Audacious lipsticks which are lovely, I got a more corally-red shade (Grace) as the very swish evening burgundy I’ve got my eye on (Charlotte) seems to be sold out. Lipstick Queen does great reds in all sorts of finishes but can be jawdroppingly spendy – Medieval is a very nice, sheer red with a balm texture, a good entry level for people who like the idea of red lippy but are a bit afraid.
Hi — so glad you stopped by. I like the look of Luxembourg, just haven’t had time lately to get by the store and test it. And I agree: Those Audacious lipsticks are pretty cool. I think I tried on Vera (?) in my quest to find a replacement for the very hard to find Damned pencil. I need to go meet Grace and Charlotte too. I keep bumping into Lipstick Queen at Ulta’s (beauty store chain) around me, but the testers are always messed up (smashed flat or broken off) and un-tryable. But one of these days … Thanks!
Also have a look at the Three Custom Color service at:
which has had good reviews.
I’m with Dina re the Candy Apple lip butter, and when I go for really red rap lipstick it’s usually MAC, e.g. Russian Red, Charred Red, Ruby Woo (skews pink on me), or Dubonnet. Also fell in love with, appropriately, Rouge in Love by Lancome, 185N, whose non-number name turns out to be Rouge Valentine. These generally are blotted and end up on the matt/stain side, which does seem to cut down on toothy transfer.
Hello, AnnieA! Thanks a million for sharing that site — I will be on it ASAP! It sounds like a dream come true. And I love your red choices; MAC’s Russian Red and Ruby Woo are practically legendary. And I think I’ve seen/tried that Lancome, because the 185N looks very familiar. And yes, yes, to the blotting which does seem to help keep messy teeth at bay. Thanks!
I can’t do red at all, though every few years someone will get me to try again. Never works. My complexion is too light so I end up looking like a time traveler from the 1920’s. The only thing missing is a flapper dress and cloche hat. Great for costume parties though. 🙂
Oh, dear, Maya — there has just got to be a soft, lovely red somewhere that you can wear. Don’t give up; it’s out there somewhere waiting for you, I just know. What about a nice plum or deep, deep pink?
Lipstick is just one of those things that makes one want to be a girl. or a part time girl. or be a shoddy and sad clown next to the glorious Portia Turbo… at any rate… i love it. From Robert Smith goth clown to Madonna’s personalized MDNA tour red- a red lip is an iconic message of oral empowerment.
So i settle for my lip balm obsession. Current obsessions: Moon Butter and Rose Cocoa lip balm from Lalun Naturals (Maggie Mahboubian). the first is a tuberose dream the second a rose chocolate which you will just lick off within seconds anyway. 😉
(btw, if i DID wear red lipstick, i would be searching for any and all safely usable tubes of Scarlet Sage from Aveda, which i believe was discontinued.)
I love your lip balm obsession, and those two you mention sound divine (not to mention delicious). Thanks!
Hey Ann- you should save up a bit of the Estee lauder perfect silent red . The company bite beauty has a ‘lab’ where they custom make/ match any color you want including discontinued favorites. Ofcourse you have to make a trip to NYC for that..:)
I am a sucker for lipsticks too but unlike you i need to wear brown based or warm berry reds. My favorites are Ilia femme fatale, ilia lust for life and RMS beauty Rapture.
Oh, thank you, Lavanya, that would be beyond wonderful. I do “need” to go to NYC and soon. Thanks! BTW, I know you look fabulous in your brown reds and berries!
No recommendations on red lip, but this winter, I’m all about moisture. The thing I’m just using to death is Badger lip balm in the Tangerine Breeze flavor. It’s really, really moisturizing, and my lips look and feel a lot better than they did in the fall. I was thinking I couldn’t pull off deep color anymore, but with enough balm, it might just work out. Just wanted to share the love…
That is good news! It sounds like a super product, and Tangerine Breeze sounds yummy. I’m off to look it up. Thanks for sharing!
I used to be into reds and wore a Chanel but have been into the creamy, tawny go pinks. BUT! And this is gonna sound crazy… I love this glossy balm /chapstick made by Nivea! It’s light, not in the blue tones, and just feels so good! Great for every day since it’s not so “in your face”! but it IS red enough to have garnered a compliment from the husband. 🙂
Julie, that sounds so nice! Do you recall the name of the product? You’ve got me curious now, and I do love a soft red that you can wear everyday. Thanks!
I’ve currently got a Revlon tinted lipbalm in Candy Apple that works well with my skintone, and I’ve got a really old Full Color lipgloss from Smashbox that’s heavily pigmented that works great. It’s called Starlit. I’ll wear red lip color if I’m wearing a red dress or red top, but usually I find it’s too messy to bother with.
Howdy, Dina! But when you do wear it, I know you’ll look great in gorgeous red! Perhaps on New Year’s Eve?
Hi Ann–we have the same preference in the red realm! I like Majella too, plus Hyde Park and the glossy stick in Baroque. Do yourself a favor and pick up a Vincent Longo lip stain at Nordstrom’s site (Liquid Kiss), and apply on well moisturized lips. You can wear on its own, or under lipstick and it lasts forever–which is great when lipstick wears off.
Thanks, Caroline! Those are some great suggestions; I need to try those other Nars lovelies. BTW, what color(s) in the Vincent Longo do you you like?
Liquid Kiss is a good Longo color; Baby Boo was too violet-hued for me. Want to try Cupid’s Breath at some point too.
Will check them out — thanks, Caroline!
I love reds – plummy reds, orangey reds, browny reds, fuschia red… but my favourite (and best suited) is very bright tomato. I’ve been wearing Chanel passion, and a number of Guerlain shades, but I also love shiseido’s wands and my beloved Elizabeth Arden browny red. I can’t wear muted shades or peaches.
That is a great Chanel shade, Anne! Sure hope your much-loved Elizabeth Arden is still available. Which reminds me, EA had a lippie called Lush Red that had a hint of brown in it, and it played very nicely with me. Think I still have it and need to wear it soon.
Im the opposite- i cant do blue reds but prefer the brown or orange toned ones. Everyday red is Clinique chubby stick in Ten Ton Tomato, and i also like Guerlain KissKiss in Red Strass and Estee Lauder Nectarine. I have a deep red Dior gloss but cant recall the name. I also find the Revlon chubby stick equivalents nice and pigmented and moisturising, so i have 3 or 4 of them too.
Lucky you, Lynley, and I bet you look great in them. I’ve seen that particular Clinique chubby stick and wished I could pull it off. Must try the Revlon ones now — thanks!
I don’t wear lipstick because I use Ben Nye’s Plum lip liner and Shu Uemura’s flesh glitter eyeshadow over it to give lift and light.
I have bought a few CHANEL lipsticks as gifts for friends though, everyone loves to pull it out of their purse and reapply in public (though personally I never would)
That sounds beautiful, dear Portia! I’ve heard of Ben Nye but not sure where to find it. Is it an Aussie line?
It’s a TV and Film line that makes a lip pencil that stays firm even in the heat. The colours are really rich and they stay for hours.
How cool is that? Very good to know — thanks!!
After years of dark, Gothy plums, I’ve had a red epiphany as of late and can’t leave the house without red lips and a spritz of fragrance. My go-to is Urban Decay 24/7 lip pencil in Gash lined and filled in, with either Armani 400 or Zoya Velvet Matte (they only make one) over and blotted. If I need it to stay for HOURS, my absolute favorite is Relvon ColorStay in Sangria. It’s discontinued but I bought 6 backups. It seriously stays till the next morning! That said, I’m a sucker for new lippies! It takes all my willpower not to buy every new one I see!
My biggest problem, if anyone has tips, is keeping it off my teeth! I’ve tried the O-lip finger pull. Any others?
I’m with you, Rina — a good red lip and a spritz of fragrance and we’re ready to take on the world! Must check out the colors you mentioned, although the Sangria sounds very familiar to me (maybe it’s somewhere in my stash and I’ve just overlooked it somehow?). No solutions, alas, for the lipstick-teeth dilemma; I just run my tongue along my front teeth several times to try to keep it at bay.
Ooh, I loved Forbidden Red. My current favorite red is Written in Blood by Rituel de Fille. The color is perfect even if the formula tends to be a bit drying. I’m glad to see a few pretty rust colors coming back around. As a redhead with yellow undertones they work really well for me but have been little in evidence the last five or so years.
Yay! Happy to see another Forbidden fan. But too bad it seems to have been discontinued. Still, those pencils seem to last a good long while.I’m glad that more flattering colors are out there for you — wish I could pull off some of those pretty rust shades.