Red Lips

• 20 January 2013



Almost five years ago, I began reading Stephanie Nielsen's blog.  What I remember most about my first impression is how glamorous she made stay-at-home-motherhood look.  I found Steph's writing and images very honest, genuine and refreshing, so I came back for more.  I started noticing her ever present red lips and pretty, vintage dresses.  Since I usually hang around home in my pajamas (awesome bed head included), I remember being fascinated with her look and thinking, "I could never get away with red lipstick...but she sure looks fantastic!".

Fast forward about 4 years...I am attending Mighty Summit.  My lovely roommate was Christine Koh (another genuine, fantastic, down-to-earth kind of gal), who also donned red lips during most of the summit.  Since I'd spent the last few years warming up to the idea of red lips (I have a history of being a late adopter...surprised?), I had to ask.  "May I try on your red lipstick?".  Of course, Christine replied, "of course" and I bravely spread her Chanel stick across my lips.  And that, my friends, was the beginning of my new love affair with red lipstick.

Since red lips are more of a statement than your average, nude lipstick, I highly recommend bringing a friend along while you scope the makeup counters at your local Sephora or department store.  It's hard to feel like any store associate will truly be honest with you.  Be sure to not put anything on your lips that day, besides a clear gloss for moisture (more tips about wearing red lipstick here).

If you are looking for a red lipstick with warm undertones, I was guided to the following:

Laura Mercier - Red Amour - considered a moisture-rich, "classic, neutral red".

Nars - Red Square - a warm, orange-red with a matte finish.  Rumor has it that it was also recommended by Jenna Lyons.

Bobbi Brown - Old Hollywood - one site recommended this color for those with warm skin undertones and light-colored hair.  Bobbi calls it a "bright, cherry red".  Made the Top 5 Red Lipstick lineup here.

You may also be interested in reading this basic tutorial about "how to wear red lipstick".  It's perfect for red lipstick virgins like myself and offers great tips.  And one other note, if you want to wear red lipstick into public, but are feeling a little unsure about doing so, try wearing it around the house first (or during an evening when you are staying in).  Sometimes it just takes a little time to get used to new things, even if it's something you are actively pursuing.

If you have any lip color recs or other tips, please chime in!  I loved all your comments on this other makeup post.  Did you know I took you up on a few of your recommendations?

image of the red lipstick I ended up going with...

9 comments:

Chelsea said...

Love a good red lip. Let me go to my purse and pull out my go to favorites:) Be right back... Okay, my most worn is a deep red (I find it's the most flattering on me), and it's Mac's Diva. It is bold, so go very bare everywhere else on the face. But in the warmer months I like to do a more orange red. I wear Nars Red Square Lip Pencil, it's a very matte look. If I want a true classic red I wear Nars Red Lizard (not too orange, and not to purple). I do like my reds!

carol said...

Last year I got a red gloss called dandy cane at Victoria's Secret and I get told "how nice I look today" every single time I wear it! Not ready for full on lipstick tho!Even a red gloss was a step for me-usually stick with a pink or brown gloss.

tll said...

See what happens when you google 'tags'?? You stumble upon red lipstick and that, in turn, unleashes a whole host of memories and a good reason to call and talk to my mom! She ALWAYS wore red lipstick and painted her toenails red to match. Me...nada. I had forgotten about that until reading your blog. She and I are not getting along well right now and I have been avoiding her phone calls but you have given me new purpose and new resolve to enter the fray once again; to be civil; to be patient; to talk about red lipstick! Who knew lol. And since she and I are the same coloring of skin and hair I will ask her what her favorite reds were/are and we'll take it from there. Thanks for the inspiration!

Christine Koh said...

Steph, so funny -- I saw this title in my feed reader and thought, "Yay! Steph is getting into red lipstick!" Was touched to see you reference our Chanel moment. :-)

Miss you -- hugs til next time!

Carrie said...

I WISH I could wear red lipstick. Alas, it looks dreadful on me--no matter what shade. I will have to live vicariously through you:)

Deidra said...

I think the biggest thing with red lipstick is just to own it! At first I felt ridiculous the first time I wore it to church a few years ago, but decided that it was okay, I was just going to own it. Lots of compliments later, I've decided it's all about faking it until you make it. At least when it comes to stepping outside your comfort zone.

Amy Hackworth said...

I can totally picture you with red lipstick. It's perfect!

Phoenix Ascending said...

Yay for red lipstick. I'm a little in love with Bite's Tannin. It's more of a berry red than a hot red but suits a very pale complexion well. I got mine at Sephora.

Good luck! I'm sure you'll look fabulous with whatever you choose.

Lulu the Baker said...

I am a bit of a red-lip novice too, and definitely need these suggestions! Thinking of trying the Bobbi Brown first...I'll let you know if I fall in love!

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