Holiday Makeup Ideas: Red Lips


Christmas is never quite Christmas without red lips so read on to find out the different ways you can rock the color!

Matte Red Lips
Classic matte red lips are never out of style. Pair it with winged black liner and fake lashes for a retro glamour look like Camilla Belle or smoky bronze eyeshadow like Mary-Kate Olsen.

Camilla Belle and Mary-Kate Olsen

Product Recs: Lancome L’Absolu Rouge Lipcolor in Absolute Rouge

Glossy Red Lips
Matte lipstick can have an aging effect so if you are still a teen or want to take a few years off your face, try a gloss or a lipstick with a shiny finish.

Emporio Armani and Viktor & Rolf

Product Recs: MAC Tinted Lipglass in Russian Red and Hard Candy Painted Lady Lip Color in Kitten

For a step-by-step tutorial on how to create the perfect glossy red lips, check out these tips from Lancome’s national makeup artist Alex Sanchez.

Stained Red Lips
If you are not used to wearing reds, ease your way in with a lip stain. Alternatively, makeup artist Bobbi Brown recommends “dabbing powder blush over your lipstick with your finger” for a stained look.

Product Recs: Benetint and DuWop Twilight Lip Venom

Need help on picking out the right red? Click here for more tips!

Phyllis Li is the Founder and Editor-in-chief of Makeup For Life, one of the top 50 beauty blogs that focuses on celebrity makeup breakdowns, product reviews, makeup tutorials and all things beauty. Having lived and traveled in North America, Europe and Asia, she was exposed to different techniques and products at an early age and hopes to put a global perspective towards beauty. Phyllis won the Best Content Award by Total Beauty in 2008 and has been featured in various publications and websites including ELLE,, Yahoo Shine!, AOL Stylelist, Nylon Korea, VOGUE China, Ming Pao Daily (Canada) and Shanghai Weekly. In 2010, she was appointed one of the nine Real Women Ambassadors in the United States to take part in the Latisse® Wishes Challenge, working with Hollywood celebrity Kathy Ireland and raised over $400,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation to grant wishes for approximately 54 children. In 2012, she teamed up with luxury skincare brand TATCHA and released a limited-edition 3-Piece Set of her favorite beauty products. Phyllis currently lives in Chicago, US. She is a regular contributor to Shanghai Daily's StyleHai Magazine and a member of the Glam Beauty Network.


  1. I am so inspired to wear reds lately and I just wore a looks similar to Mary Kate’s yesterday, except that my lips were a glossy red and I am very tanned compared to her. Lancome’s Absolute Rouge is on my potential shopping list.

  2. Hey I hae a question for you, maybe you can help!

    I have small lips… I’m young but I have a lot of little vertical fine line on them… they’re not smooth…

    So everytime I put on lipstick, without gloss, it creases and when I smile we can see the lines and it’s not pretty!! Sine I think matte red is really gorgeous, do you have any tricks to stop my color to crease?

    I’ve tried the L’Oréal infaible lipcolor and it doesn’t crease, but the finish is not matte at all… so would you recommend a lip primer and if yes, whitch one? Thanksss!!

  3. Rozylipop,

    If you have a lot of lines on your lips, chances are your lips are chapped so first, you need to invest in a good lip balm and apply religiously.

    Matte lipsticks tend to be on the drying side (which explains why your lines are being accentuated) so again, you need to prep your lips with a generous layer of balm before you apply lipstick.

    I have chapped lips myself too and I personally try to stay away from lipsticks that are completely matte. If you like the matte look, you can always try a lipstick with a satin finish so it’s not completely matte nor glossy. I also find blotting with tissue in between coats help “mattify” the look.

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