kick-ass red lipstick

‘beauty, to me, is about being comfortable in your own skin.
that, or a kick-ass red lipstick.’ – gwyneth paltrow

red lipstick has some kind of power. for one, we see it season after season and it never seems to go out of style. it looks good on everyone and from mac ruby woo to nars jungle red, we all have our very favorite red lip. i was inspired by gwynnie and the perfectly painted pout up above to suss out and share my two go-to’s, one for beauties on a budget and one for the addict in us all:

steal: wet’n’wild silk finish lipstick in hot red, $3
splurge: yves saint laurent rouge volupte in red muse, $34

now, if all your accessories lay dormant for the remainder of this season because, who needs ’em with your new rockin’ red lips, you can totally blame me.

ps – i obviously want to know what ‘stick creates your favorite red lip, so spill!

21 thoughts on “kick-ass red lipstick

  1. i love a kick-ass red lip! my drugstore steal is revlon love that red. i used to wear
    vincent longo lip gloss in venezia red, but haven’t added it back to my collection in a while. inspired to do it asap! it had such a nice patent finish and actually had some staying power for a gloss.


    • i completely forgot about ‘love that red’! amazing choice. and that vinvent longo gloss looks incredible – so perfect for fall. thanks for sharing those :)


  2. When I got the my makeup done for Ann’s wedding, the makeup artist did a red lip on me. I don’t remember what lipstick she used, but she topped it off with Bobbi Brown lip gloss in Ruby Sugar. It’s not a bright red, but very pretty.


      • At first I wasn’t sure about it because I don’t normally wear a bold lip, but I ended up really liking it. I actually bought Ruby Sugar the other day to try it out again :)


  3. Oh man. I feel like I could write an entire entry about my obsession with red lipstick. Here are just a few of what I have in my lipstick make up bag. (Yes. I have a whole makeup bag devoted to lipstick!)

    MAC’s Ruby Woo: I love this shade so much, it’s what I based my former blog on. It’s bright and perfect, but I love how matte it is. Once you put it on, it takes a lot for it to come off. You can’t really swipe this like a traditional lipstick since it is so matte–it’s more of a dabbing on.

    MAC’s Russian Red: This is like the best friend of Ruby Woo. This actually used to be my ultimate go-to, until I noticed how quickly it tended to feather and wear off. Because I’m lazy and don’t like to use lipliner, this wasn’t the greatest option for me because it was so creamy and heavy. The color is fantastic though, and if you have the patience to maintain it, then this would be your pick.

    Maybelline’s Super Stay 24 Color in either Top Tomato or Keep Up the Flame: On days when I know I’m going to be super busy or eating a lot (like at parties or in meetings at work), I always find myself going back to this. It’s one of those two step, stay on your lips forever type deals, and it really does stay on forever. The color goes on first, and then you wait maybe thirty seconds before applying the balm. What I like about this is that it doesn’t dry your lips out like a lot of long-last colors. It’s very nourishing and almost shiny after applying the balm! Oily foods will take this off though when you press your lips together or wipe your mouth, so watch out for that. The other downside is that if you change your mind, you’re going to have to scrub with make-up removal wipes.

    NYX’s Matte Lipstick in Pure Red: This is a newer purchase, so I haven’t had a chance to form strong opinions about it. It’s cheaper than MAC, and the wear-factor lands between Russian Red and Ruby Woo. Not as matte as Ruby Woo, but still stays in place. This is probably my bright shade–even bright than Ruby Woo!

    J Crew’s Poppy King lipstick: I’ve always obsessed over the lip they used in the J Crew catalogs, so I was super excited when they released this special shade. It’s super sheer, which makes it perfect for when you don’t want a super heavy red lip, but still crave some color. Goes on almost like a balm. Also nice for layering over other shades. You can mix this with other fun colors to get crazy notice-me lips!

    You would think I would get the most compliments on my cult-MAC shades, but actually, that honor goes to my L’Oreal Color Riche lipstick in Penelope’s Red. Whenever I wear this, people stop me and ask me what I’m wearing. Even the makeup ladies at my favorite haunt (NORDSTROM!) obsess over the shade and ask to see it. It’s super creamy, doesn’t feather, and is the perfect mixture of bright-look-at-me with a wearable muted quality.

    Because the red lip is so expected of me now, I’ve been branching out into some pretty plum and wine colors. Lipstick is so amazing as a cheater’s way to look glamorous without spending hours in the mirror. I just counted, and I’m up to fifteen different shades that I carry around on a daily basis. I need rehab.

    Sorry for rambling in your comments. I don’t blog anymore, so I guess a quasi-post has been building for awhile!


    formerly of


    • where to begin?! i’m so sad to hear that your blog is no longer. i really enjoyed it! i am thrilled you chimed in, however, since you are my absolute idol when it comes to rockin’ the red lip. thanks so much for all of those suggestions. i am going to look into the maybelline and the nyx and i also completely cosign on the poppy king for j.crew – posted on that one not long ago and love it, love it!


    • it is! and you can totally pull it off. the trick is finding the right red for your tones, it might be an orange-red, a pink-red or even a blue-red. to sephora we go? :)


  4. I have long loved a bright pink lip…have lots of options if you ever chose to post about that.

    But just recently bought a red lip, and I love it – Nars Flamenco. It’s really wearable!


    • flamenco looks really pretty! i also *love* a hot pink lip – my current fave is urban decay’s super saturated high gloss lip color in crush.


  5. MAC Russian Red and Lady Danger for sure. Haven’t found a cheaper red that I love which is unfortunate bc I’m the queen of drugstore lipsticks!! Might have to try your suggestion above though and see for myself. Love a red lipstick – easy and dramatic way to pump up your look!


    • i so agree. looks like revlon has a few great options as well as the wet’n’wild one i suggested. i love how drugstore prices allow me to play with colors and options that i wouldn’t normally invest in at department stores!


  6. I’ve also got a bunch of reds in my collection:

    I loved Rimmel’s Temptation but the smell was too sickly sweet for me. NYC makes a great bright, matte red called Stoplight Red (or 911D) that lasts forever on me but dries out my lips. Clinique has a gorgeous red in their Butter Shine line called Parisian Red that I adore – very glossy and moisturizing (but not as long lasting) – I bought it in an international airport and I’m not sure where else it’s sold. I also have a vampy dark red by Stila – Fiery in their Long Wear Liquid Lip Color line. But right now my go to red is Stila’s Long Wear Lip Color in Lover.

    Now I can’t wait to pick out my red for the day!


    • those are great suggestions! i was actually very torn on the wet’n’wild choice i featured and almost went with stoplight red! in the end, hot red was a better match for the picture’s lips. i am definitely going to try the clinique butter shine and give the stila long wear lip color a go. thanks, natalie :)


  7. Pingback: top ten posts of the year | the glossarie.

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