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There are days—and they seem increasingly common lately—where everything just kind of sucks. And if there’s an easy way to a better mood, we’re all for it. It’s easy to forget (since none of us is going out a lot lately) that there’s a very reliable mood-lifter right in your makeup bag. (Okay, fine, your makeup bag is full of things that make you happy—that’s the point of a makeup bag.).
But the one we’re talking about is lipstick. And not just any lipstick. Red lipstick. Primary red. Badass red. Siren red. Top-of the-food-chain red. It’s the red that is as empowering as it is sexy. It might be the single makeup product that has never gone out of style. And it is physically impossible to swipe it on without standing a little taller and feeling a little better. We asked makeup artist, Mallorie Mason, how to apply red lipstick like a pro—and maybe treat yourself to a little pick-me-up in the process.
Start with clean, dry lips and dab translucent setting powder lightly over them. The setting powder will control shine ensuring a flawless matte finish.
Grab a lip liner that closely matches your natural color. Outline your lips and fill them in. There’s your base.
Ditch the lip brush. “Apply lipstick with your fingertips and press it in gently,” says Mason. “This will make the color melt into your lips and set beautifully.”
Exfoliate your lips using a lip exfoliator at least ten minutes before application.
Grab a lip liner that closely matches your natural color, trace, and fill in the lips. This will ensure that the lipstick adheres well. “Work from the outside towards inside and be sure to take your time,” says Mason.
And keep the lipstick handy. Smears, smudges, and the like are all the more obvious with a bright shade
Use the Nars Nude High-Pigment Longwear Eyeliner to border your lips. The waxiness of the eyeliner in comparison to a lip liner will keep the color from bleeding into fine lines along the lips.
photography by Cassidy Bliss Cooper