Katie Brown on Beauty: How to Red Lips

Getting the perfect red lip is kind of like being in a relationship. Everyone wants it, and then once you try it, you find out it’s pretty hard to do.

Fortunately, unlike a relationship, a red lip is a little easier to perfect. With a little bit of practice and the right tools, you’ll be on your way to getting that picture perfect Marylin Monroe pout.

Being someone who can barely draw inside of the lines in a coloring book, I bet you can imagine that putting on a bold lipstick isn’t the easiest task for me. I’ve definitely had to look at my fair share of tutorials and have spent nights in front of my mirror experimenting with my newest shade. This usually ends with a stained mouth and several dirty tissues, but practice makes perfect, right?

So if you’re a normal human being and find that wearing lipstick can be a huge hassle because it results in splotchy, dry lips and colorful front teeth, I’m going to show you my foolproof way of getting a long lasting, perfectly lined red lip.

What you’ll need:

Lip Scrub – Just like the skin on other parts of your body need a good exfoliation, so do your lips! The line of scrubs from Lush are amazing, but if you’re on a budget, try mixing a bit of olive oil with brown sugar for a DIY, natural lip scrub.

Lip Balm – I love Rosebud Salve because it smells amazing, moisturizes lips, and can also be used in a variety of different ways.

Translucent Powder or Baby Powder- Another well-loved Rimmel product that I use on a regular basis is their Transparent powder. It’s meant to be used for the face (which I do use it for) but it’s also perfect for this. You’ll see.  

Tissue – You may mess up. You probably will mess up. Keep these handy!

Matte Red Lipstick – Matte formulas are more long lasting than creamy formulas, making it perfect if you want it to last all day with minimal touch ups. My favorite is MAC’s Ruby Woo, but if you’re looking for a more inexpensive option, Revlon’s Matte lipstick in Really Red is a great option!

Red Lip liner – This goes for any lipstick look – if you want your lipstick to last longer, applying a similar colored or invisible lip liner not only lines the lips for a perfect finish, but also acts as a base for your lipstick to stick to. Rimmel has a really good, inexpensive line of lip liners, and the shade Red Dynamite would work well for this.

Lip gloss (optional)- I’m personally not much of a lip gloss kind of girl, but in case you love yourself some shine, top it off with your favorite red or clear lip gloss.

What you’ll do:

1. Start off with your lip scrub. Make sure your lips are clean, and then use your choice of scrub to exfoliate your lips. This will take off all the dead skin that tends to appear when you put on lipstick. Also, you’ll be surprised how soft your lips will be afterwards!

2. Apply a thin layer of lip balm, just to moisturize your lips after you’ve exfoliated. This seems strange, but then you’re going to wipe off most of the product you’ve just put on. You don’t want too much lip balm on your lips or else the lipstick will have a hard time sticking. You simply just want to moisturize.

3. Now for the lip liner. This may take a bit of practice at first, but don’t worry about it being perfect. Lightly line the outside shape of your lips, and then fill in your lips with it. This step doesn’t have to be perfect – you just want a base.

4. Take your matte red lipstick of choice and apply evenly to your lips, trying not to go outside of the line you made with the lip liner.

5. Take your finger and press the lipstick into your lips. This will create a stain like effect and make the lipstick last longer. Next, take a tissue and lightly dab any excess product off. Don’t worry, you’ll be applying another layer soon!

6. Grab your translucent powder or baby powder and apply it lightly on your lips with a make up brush or your finger. Be careful: you don’t want to white out your lips or create a really thick layer! This trick just further protects the color.

7. Finally, re-apply a final layer of lipstick. This is like the icing on the cake, and your lips should be lookin’ pretty amazing at this point.

8. If you’re feeling like a super diva, apply your lip-gloss.

Voila! These steps may seem long and tedious, but it is definitely worth it for a long lasting, perfect lip. Again, it may take a couple of tries to get it looking how you like, but have patience!

If you tried these steps out and found that it worked for you, I’d love to know! For feedback, questions or comments, feel free to email me at [email protected]

And find my other tips and musings on beauty products here.