Break out the bold this Valentine’s Day
By Brittney MacDonald, Life & Style Editor
Who doesn’t love a daring red lip for Valentine’s Day? But if you’ve ever worn one you know that vibrant colour you so love can be a real pain to keep bright. As someone who’s used to making my makeup last for 13 to 20-plus hours on a convention floor, I’ve decided to share a couple tips on how you can make sure your red is kissable all day.
First and foremost what you need to be concerned with is colour selection. Different skin tones go better with different shades of red. For pale people, like myself, as well as people with darker skin tones, we tend to look better in truer reds. This means going more for the carmine or fire engine red, as opposed to the ruby or scarlet reds. The difference lies in what the shade is mixed with. For true reds, they have more primary red pigment and therefore will compliment either pale or dark skin tones. Because the pigment is more saturated it also means that the shade itself will appear darker on the lipstick, so try it out before you decide whether you want to buy it.
For people with medium or olive skin tones, you’ll tend to look better in reds that have a pink undertone. This means all those ruby or cardinal shades that sound so pretty, and whose names we’re all familiar with.
Now that you have your shade all sorted out, it’s time to get to the good stuff: how to apply it so you’re not checking yourself in the mirror and missing out on your date!
To start with, you’ll need to prep your lips. Try to use a lip scrub the night before to avoid flaky, chapped areas. I tend not to use a primer when doing a red lip, because the undertone won’t affect the shade of lipstick and it seems pointless. But if you have darker lips, or you use the primer because it has a plumping agent, go right ahead and then wait until it dries before moving on to the next step. If you’re like me, just balm you lips and let it soak in slightly.
After your lips are prepped, get out that lip liner. Anytime you’re going for a bold shade like purple, black, or red, you should be lining your lips. Even if your lips have the perfect shape and never allow colour to bleed out, it just looks cleaner and nicer. Line your lips gently; this means no stretching the skin or making goofy faces into your mirror. The line doesn’t need to be thick, and don’t fill it in.
Instead of colouring in the line you’ve drawn, apply a lip stain. If you’ve used a primer you can skip this step, as the primer won’t allow any stain to soak in properly and might just turn it pink. Using a stain instead of filling in the shape with a pencil will help the red stay vibrant longer. It will also keep the red shade up longer through eating and drinking, so you don’t end up with patchy spots on your lips.
After allowing that to soak in, apply your lipstick. For extra control and precision around the corners of your mouth, bring out your inner makeup artist and use a lip brush!
Top it off with a red gloss or matte finisher if you so desire (it’s not required to make it last longer, it’s purely for aesthetics), and get out there to conquer the day!