The Expert’s Guide To The Perfect Red Lip

As much as we love a red lip (especially around the holidays), we get it’s not the easiest shade to deal with: Unlike forgiving nudes, red lipstick is hard (#firstworldproblems). Just one wear is prone to smudges, smears, and fading.


Luckily, celebrity makeup artist and famed beauty guru Manny Gutierrez—a.k.a. THE Manny MUA—is showing us how to get the perfect crimson-hued pout. Below, check out a few of his expert-approved tips to nailing the red lipstick look—and making it last.




First things first: Do not put on any liner or lipstick without giving them some much-needed hydration. Gutierrez recommends using an ultra-quenching lip balm beforehand to prevent chapping or fading. Our favorite? The Ilia Beauty Balm Days Lip Conditioner.



Balmy Days Lip Conditioner



If your lips are feeling extra chapped, you may want to use a lip scrub ahead of time to remove any dead skin. You can D.I.Y. your own or, if you’d rather a quick fix, reach for the Rodial Lip Scrub.



Lip Scrub



Not All Lip Liners Are Created Equal


This may seem like a no-brainer at first, but how many times do we just grab whatever red liner we can find and go on our way? That’s a big no-no, according to Gutierrez. For a no-budge hold, he recommends using a waterproof lip liner, like this one from Givenchy.



Waterproof Lip Liner



Opt Out Of The Classic Lipstick


Instead of using a classic tube of red lipstick, Gutierrez suggests using a “liquid-to-matte” version after lining your lips, as they tend to hold in place better than regular ones.


“It’s long-wear, comfortable, and looks good on every skin tone,” he says, suggesting the Lunar Beauty Red Aphrodite Liquid Lipstick. “It also makes your teeth look amazingly white. That blue base to it really makes your smile pop!”


The Red Lipstick Shades You Need For Fall

Lunar Beauty Aphrodite Red Liquid Lipstick, $18


The Final Touch


Gutierrez’s secret to a no-smear lip? “For an extra budge-proof finish, use a translucent powder on top to set it all in place,” he says.  And if you’re in need of a translucent powder, give the Hourglass Veil Translucent Setting Powder a try.



Veil Translucent Setting Powder



Want to extend your red lipstick collection before the holiday season ends? Same. Here’s some of the matte reds we can’t get enough of.


BUXOM’s Big & Sexy Bold Gel Lipstick – Classified Crimson Matte



Big & Sexy Bold Gel Lipstick - Classified Crimson Matte


“BUXOM’s Big & Sexy Bold Gel Lipstick in Classified Crimson Matte is my go-to for clients and models because the color is the perfect red for all skin tones,” says David Birdwell, Director of Artistry and Education at BUXOM. “It’s a true, deep red that’s not too blue or too yellow, so it’s ultra-flattering.”


Smashbox Be Legendary Matte Lipstick – Bing Matte



Be Legendary Matte Lipstick - Bing Matte



A true-red tone for a classic look. Wear on it’s own for a rose petal-matte pout, or pop on some gloss for a dimensional look.


Dior Diorific Matte Lipstick – Audacieuse



Diorific Matte Lipstick



Think of this hue as a crossroads between a deep nude and deep Merlot red. It’s intoxicating, and fits seamlessly into the winter aesthetic.


Lamcome L’Absolu Rouge Drama Matte – Adoration



L'Absolu Rouge Drama Matte



A bright cherry red, for those “extra” days ahead.


Chantecaille Matte Chic Long-Wear Lipstick – Dovima



Matte Chic Long-Wear Lipstick



How could we not feature a liquid lippie in this mix? This raspberry red is the picture-perfect matte, and won’t budge an inch (yes, even after a greasy slice of post-club pizza).


Guerlain Kiss Kiss Matte Lipstick – Chilli Red



Kiss Kiss Matte Lipstick



For a spicy play on the classic red, swipe on this chilli-toned red.


Giorgio Armani Rouge D’Armani Matte Lipstick – 403


Rouge D'Armani Matte Lipstick



This classic Hollywood red is fitting for any exclusive soiree for the night (or just for the perfect at-home selfie).


Tom Ford Lip Color Lipstick – Ruby Rush



Matte Lip Color Lipstick



A ruby red hue, to glow like the gem you are.

No more articles