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Ask the Expert:

Rock the Perfect Red Lip

by Akesha Reid

Having the perfect red lip look in your makeup stash is like having the ultimate LBD. It’s the best way to pull together a look, refresh your make-up after work and the best choice when all else fails. But how do you find your holy grail shade and nail the application for a perfect statement look? Luckily, we spoke to an expert to get the red lipstick lowdown…

What’s your hue?

The first step to an excellent red lip look is choosing the right hue - and there is more to it than you think. Not considering your skin’s undertone as well as the depth of your melanin can leave you with a shade that washes out your complexion and is far from flattering. “For dark deep skin tones, look for rich red shades that have orange or blue base,” says Professional Makeup Artist Joy Adenuga. “These make your skin glow with warmth and your smile look amazing.” Bonus - reds with a blue base make teeth appear whiter too. The AJ Crimson Beauty Lipstick in Crimsonrose, £19 is a great choice for a blue base red as the creamy texture makes it easier to apply and the formula lasts all day.

“For really deep skin tones I love reds with wine hues,” says Joy, “and for olive skin tones, I love using true reds. These flatter my clients so much.” Black Up Matte Lipstick in LM06, £24, is a great option for deeper skin tones while the hue LM05 is perfect for olive skin tones.

Girl with red lips

What’s the best base? 

When it comes to the make-up situation around your statement lip it needs to be carefully offset. If you’re opting for a matte lip, then opting for a dewier, fresher base will make the lip look more striking. While with a glossy lip, a matte base is the way to go. For the ultimate matte base, prime with Black Opal Invisible Oil Blocking Gel Primer, £9.50 and finish with the Black Opal Invisible Oil Blocking Loose Powder, £9.50.

AJ Crimson Crimsoned lipstick

The finishing touches…
So you’ve chosen your hue, perfected your base now it’s time for the application. To complete the look, you need two (or three) final products.

A concealer - to define the outline of your lip super precisely a concealer is an essential. It’ll help create the perfect lip shape and be your aide if you make any mistakes with your application. Black Opal's True Color Flawless Perfecting Concealer, £6.50  is the perfect fix.

A lipliner - this can be use in a multitude of ways. You can apply all over your lip before applying your lipstick to help it cling to your lips better. Joy also suggests using a darker red lip liner to deepen the hue of your chosen shade.

A lipgloss - “I like to lift the lip colour with pearl based lipgloss,” suggests Joy. Why not try Makeup 54 Disco Topper Lip Topper in Gitterball, £18.00 layered over your favourite red lipstick to ramp up your favourite statement lip?