There are certain things we cannot stand attempting to buy. Jeans and bras are top of our list, but so is finding the right shade of red lipstick. Images of Marilyn Monroe effortlessly rocking her classic red lips give the illusion that finding the right shade is easy and flattering. The right red lipstick is always something we are on the lookout for, but finding the right shade is always a tiresome process- lips get stained from the first try of a new lipstick. This gives any other lipstick selection after that an unfair colour test. And then it’s the obligatory smile in the mirror wearing the red lipstick that reveals how yellow your teeth are, which then leaves us running for the nearest exit, happily clutching clear lipgloss!
I recently worked with the amazing photographer Ian Philpott and the very talented make up artist Lisa Fensome @licafensomemua on a beauty shoot for a magazine where red lips were a feature of the shoot. It was here where I learnt some top tips for choosing the right colour red.
Finding the correct red has to do with the colour compositon of the lipstick. Still with me? So, any red colour is composed of various amounts of other colours. Any red shade lipstick that is mixed with orange will make your teeth look yellow, so always ask if there is orange in a lipstick. If there is, step away. Always choose a red with blue mixed into it, or ask for a “true red” as these colours will pull out the whiteness of teeth and also work on any skin and hair colour.
When make up artist go on photo shoot trips abroad they are always limited on what make up they can travel with because of baggage restriction. So, finding the right colour red that suits a range of models is imperative. There are two red lipsticks that are core travel essentials for a lot of make up artists because they work on any skin and hair colour, and also cross over nicely from day to night.
The first is from MAC, and the colour is Dubonnet.
The other is from Laura Mercier and is called Sexy Lips.
Here we are wearing the MAC Dubonnet.
and here we are wearing the Laura Mercier Sexy Lips.
As you can see, both lipsticks suit our different skin and hair tones and most importantly, don’t yellow teeth! Who says we can’t wear red lipsticks on playdates?!