RED Lipstick for Valentine’s Day

How to Wear Red Lipstick

Happy Valentine’s Day Gorgeous! Today, of all days, you may be wearing a red lip. So, I wanted to post the best way to apply a bold lip so that it lasts all day (or at least through drinks and dinner this evening).

I’ve broken it into into easy steps:

  1. Exfoliate lips!

red lipstick step1

This step is sooo important because it ensures a smooth canvas for lipstick. Especially if you’ve been snow skiing lately or had to endure chapped lips, this step will be very beneficial. And, you can do this in the morning, in the shower, in preparation for the evening.

I used the lip scrub in the photo above which is Jelly Pong Pong Coffee & Coconut Lip Scrub (since the label has worn off—or been exfoliated off—a bit). It is shea butter based, so it also helps pack on the moisture. Coffee helps stimulate and plump lips.

But, you can easily create a little home-made exfoliant from one of the many recipes that are out there online. Here is a handy one:

Coconut Oil Lip Exfoliant recipe:

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (contains antioxidants & moisturizing fatty acids, plus it liquifies when warmed by skin)
  • 1 tablespoon organic manuka honey (has healing antioxidants to take care of any chapping)
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar (the texture for exfoliation)
  • 1/2 tablespoon barely warm water (for better mixing)
  • You can also add an essential oil to this (or any other recipe) for scent and added moisture.
  • to make: Mix the coconut oil and honey together first. Then add the sugar and water.
  • to use: Rub a pea-sized amount onto lips in a gentle circular motion for about 3 minutes, then rinse with warm water. btw, I like to do this in the shower to handle any fall out.

Other DIY ways to make a lip exfoliant may contain cinnamon powder (which helps plump lips via mild irritation to the lip surface and increased blood flow). Alternative moisturizing binders that you can use are things like Vaseline or shea butter. If you like to DIY, this will be a fun little project.

Another option I’ve seen people say works is to use an old toothbrush to gently rub and exfoliate surface of lips.

2. Moisturize

red lipstick step2

In addition to any of the moisture gained from exfoliant ingredients, the next step is to add moisture to lips and seal it all in. This further ensures a smooth surface for lipstick. Especially if you are planning to wear a matte lipstick (which is drying) or have tiny lines in your lips from dry weather.


The above photo shows some of my favorite lips moisturizers. If you want to create a base that includes color, an option like the Glossier (multi-use) tint is fabulous. I used the CLARINS Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in 01 Natural Light this time.

3. Add a thin layer of foundation or concealer to lips

red lipstick step3

A concealer or foundation base creates a blank slate for color and a layer that helps hold onto the color for longer wear. Plus, if you want to over-line lips (for a larger lip) this step is essential.

4. Line lips

red lipstick step4

My technique here looks a little messy as I was trying out an over-lined lip. Lining lips creates definition and an exterior boundary. Here I used two different colors of lip liner for shape shading and even more of a color base.

A darker liner for the outer edge:


A more true red liner to fill in lips:


These two particular lip liners happen to be Wet n Wild gel liners: 657A Plum Together and 656B Red The Scene.



red lipstick step5

I used Shiseido’s Modern Matte Powder lipstick in Exotic Red. This red is a medium-toned, blue-based scarlet.

Because red lipstick (or any dark lipstick) can be difficult to keep in bounds if not applied with precision, I apply it directly from the tube to the center of my lips then use a small lipstick brush to apply the outer edges as well as a cotton swab to pick up any stray color.

Here are several reds that would also be perfect for Valentine’s Day:

Red Lipstick

Last step—

6. Use a concealer brush to make sure all the outer edges are sharp

red lipstick step6

You can also blot lips at this point to remove any excess lip color. Then, using a small makeup brush, redefine lip edges with a tiny bit of concealer, blending out to avoid any hard edges.

Voila! Add a gloss if you like, and you are ready for a night on the town or a romantic dinner at home.

I hope this helps! Let me know your makeup plans for Valentine’s.

Untitled_Artwork 4

Much love,



p.s. Please follow me to automatically receive new posts. xo!

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