I'm so obsessed with red lipstick that I tend to forget that I wasn't always so confident when it came to rocking a bold lip. In fact, I didn't start wearing it regularly until 2010! Before I became majorly obsessed with collecting makeup (read: was sensible and only bought what I needed), I usually just wore a rosy or pale pink lipstick, with little or no variation....vom. Nude lipstick is hugely popular, but to be honest, I'm not a fan and I don't think it suits me - or a lot of people that wear it!
There's a reason why red lippie is a classic - it instantly adds glamour to your look, and a pigmented lip will add life and warmth to your face. If you're afraid of a full-on red lip, ease yourself in with a sheerer, more wearable shade. These are some of my favourites:
L-R: Barry M Touch of Magic, Avon Shine Attract in Passionate Red, Maybelline Hollywood Red, 17 Mirror Shine in Peace, New CID Belle, Clarins Joli Rouge #734 Poppy Red
Barry M Touch of Magic is a fairly strange one. The bullet is green but the colour comes out a pinky-red on me - it swatches differently on everyone according to the pH level of your skin. It is bright, but not in-your-face, and it tends to suit most people as well as lasting an age!
Avon Shine Attract in Passionate Red is a balmy formula which can be built up according to your own taste, with a glossy finish. The shade is a real candy-apple red, which I like, but it doesn't last for very long and tends to go all over the tube if you're not careful. They're still very decent for the price, though, and if you don't really consider yourself a 'lipstick person', these might just convert you. You can read more about the full range of Shine Attract lipsticks here.
Maybelline Hollywood Red is a pretty opaque lipstick with good staying power and a pleasant scent. The shade is great for if you are new to reds, as it leans a little bit coral and isn't too loud. It lasts quite well, and it's a shade that I feel would look good on most people.
17 Mirror Shine in Peace is less of a reddish lipstick, and more of a coral. If your lips are in any way pigmented, (as many Irish girls' are - another reason why I just don't get the nude trend!) this will pull quite red on, though. The formula is super-creamy, balmy and light, so you can build it up or sheer it out as much as you want.
New CID Belle has been a favourite of mine since I got it in a Carmine box.It's a really pretty 'light red' with an extremely subtle pearlescent finish. It smells lovely and the packaging even lights up and has a little mirror - cute! Just as well though, because this just does not last on me. I don't mind reapplying as it isn't drying, but if you're a busy person I wouldn't go for this.
Clarins Joli Rouge in Poppy Red is a very glossy, blue-based red. It's fairly pigmented, but, again, doesn't stick around for long and can be applied quite sheer, as the formula feels more like a glossy balm than a lipstick. I've been enamoured with this lipstick since I received it at an event before Christmas, it's perfect for day or evening. Gorgeous!
What's your favourite 'subtle' red?