The Perfect Way to Apply Red Lipstick

Updated on January 6, 2020
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Nicky is multispecialty Nurse Practitioner who is certified in Facial Esthetics (Botox and dermal fillers).

Girl in red lipstick.
Girl in red lipstick. | Source

Red Lipstick Goes With Any Outfit

We all have one thing in common—a desire to look and feel our best. We search for ways to highlight our best features with the hope to catch a crush's eyes or maintain a spouse's attention. Even in the absence of a love interest, we are motivated to make ourselves look and feel attractive.

People always say to put your best foot forward. But before you follow such advice, be sure to put your best foot forward while wearing your finest stilettos and red lipstick. Why red lipstick, you ask? Because red is associated with energy, fire, passion, love, and intense desire.

If you are going to step out in style, you should do it blazingly. Get it? Red, fire, blazing. Nevermind all that, I tend to get a bit corny. But seriously, get your short shorts, mini dress, baggy pants or whatever you think sexy. You are about to embark on a makeup tutorial on how to achieve perfect red lips that guarantee to add glamour to anything you may wear. When you feel beautiful, you feel confident. When you feel confident, you are happiest. So let’s get happy in red lipstick.

A retro-inspired makeup look with red lipstick.
A retro-inspired makeup look with red lipstick.

How to Apply Red Lipstick

Step 1: Moisturize

Begin by moisturizing the lips. Allow the lips to dry for a few seconds, remove excess moisture if necessary. Lip balm helps to repair and soften the lips.

Step 2: Neutralize Your Lip Color

Apply concealer on your lips. This will neutralize your natural lip color and bring out the color of the lipstick.

Step 3: Apply Lip Liner

Use a red lip liner to create a border for the lips. Choose a liner closest to your natural lip color. The liner will prevent the lipstick from bleeding and help the lipstick to last longer. The lip liner will also give the lip a concrete shape, making them stand out more and look fuller.

Step 4: Choose the Shade

Choose your favorite red lipstick and apply it to the lips. Blot the lips to even the color across the lips. The one I use is Maybelline Moisture Extreme Lipstick in Royal Red. It is easy on the lips and flatters any skin tone. It also reduces lip dryness, cracks, and damage. If you are looking for a matte look, try MAC Retro Matte in Ruby Woo. Honestly, I usually stick to the cheaper brands, but this Ruby Woo is affordable and looks great. Keep in mind that your favorite lipstick works just as well.

Step 5: Correct With Concealer

Apply a bit of concealer around the border of the mouth. This will bring out the lipstick more and help the lips to look more shapely and plumper.

Step 6: Add Lip Gloss

You may choose to add some lip gloss for the finishing touch.


  • Don't judge me, but I sometimes apply cayenne pepper to the lips for 5 minutes. This stimulates blood flow and creates an even better pout. Plus, it is rich in vitamin E. Hey, that's my trick- try at your own risk.
  • Avoid wearing red lipstick with excessive eye makeup. Use the lightest possible eye makeup.

Red lipstick bullet.
Red lipstick bullet.

Who the Heck Am I?

But wait! Who am I, and why should you take my advice? After all, I am just a stranger behind a computer screen. Before you roll your eyes, allow me to explain why you may want to continue to read. I am a multi-specialty nurse practitioner with certification in facial esthetics. You read right. Among other things, I am certified in Botox and dermal fillers.

Okay, okay, so I’m not a professional makeup artist. Not many people are. But, wouldn’t you say that Botox and dermal fillers somewhat qualify me to speak on lipstick? If your answer is yes, read on.

If you're still unconvinced, then maybe my personal experience with red lipstick may appeal to you. So I got my first red lipstick as a Mother’s Day gift. At the time I wasn’t even a mother. Now that I think about it, It wasn't long after that gift that I became a mother. Wait, maybe my initial experience with red lipstick isn't the best story to tell. Let's get back on track. Anyway, the red lipstick gift was perfect and gave me the most exquisite, unmatched red lips.

© 2011 Nicky Fuller


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