beautE by annE

The Trick to Finding Your Perfect Shade of Red Lipstick

Anne JohnsonComment


Have you ever tried on your friend's red lipstick in hopes that it will look just as good on you as it does on her? Or bought a certain shade of red because your favorite celebrity swears it is their holy grail color? Trust me, been THERE, done THAT, and guess what, I never get the results I want. I look pale and clownish…Turns out, some reds just don't look good with certain skin tones. ("Anne what the heck do you mean by that? Red is red! It either looks good or it doesn't." WRONG) Just like there are certain eye shadow colors that will make different eye colors pop, there are also certain shades of red that will best compliment your skin color. So that shade of red that looked good on your friend or that one celebrity, might not work for you because it doesn't "go with" YOUR skin tone. Below are some tips and tricks to figure out which shade of red will look best on you!

First and foremost, (or forearm in this case haha) turn over your forearm and look at your veins. What color are they? Blue? Green? Both?

  • IF you have blueish veins, you have a cool skin tone or pink undertones.( Typically look good in silver jewelry)

  • If you have green veins, you have a warm skin tone or yellow undertones. (Typically look good in gold jewelry)

  • See shades of both? Well then your skin is neutral. (Look good in either silver or gold)

Next, look at your skin tone. Are you fair skinned? Do you tan easily? Are you more caramel or olive colored? Or do you have naturally darker skin? These are all things to consider when picking the right shade of red. Below are some of the general rules of thumb for choosing the right shade based on your skin tone, temperature or undertones, as well as some suggestions (based on my personal preference):


Fair skinned gals:

Let me start off by saying I FEEL YOU. I also didn't get that tanning gene the rest of my family seems to have... have no fear though. You have something going for you: You can rock a red lip. Think Emma Stone. That girl looks amazing in a red lip. I mean just look at her. White as a ghost, but look at how those lips POP.

She is someone who has COOL, fair skin (like me). If this sounds like you, reds that look best on you include:

  • Blue Reds (think raspberry reds or bright reds with blue or pink undertones)These will compliment your fair skin and make your teeth look super white.

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If you have light skin, with WARM undertones, like Nicole Kidman:

Look for reds that have a slight orange tint to them.


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COOL undertone, like Cameron Diaz:

Again, those raspberry reds are going to look best on you. They naturally bring out the pink undertones in your skin and make your skin shine.

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WARM undertone, like Blake Lively:

Reds that will look best on you include:

Orange-Reds (best for summer when your skin in tanned)

Deep Blue Reds (best for winter)


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If you have an olive skin tone like Jessica Alba, you naturally have a yellow- green undertone. Go for a darker shade, such as a brick red. Darker, earthy tones tend to look best with this skin tone.


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I know, I know... We all want to be Beyoncé. She is #GOALS. If you have this breath taking caramel skin like she does, then hey, lucky for you because you are one step closer to your dreams coming true. Why? Because you can rock the same lipstick shade as her. This skin tone looks AMAZING in a true bright red. Think cherry red!


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Darker skin tone like Gabrielle Union:

For those of you with a darker complexion think of using a darker shade of red, like plum. It really compliments the skin tone.


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Deep skin tone like Lupita Nyongo:

THE BOLDER, THE BRIGHTER, THE BETTER. Those with deep dark complexions can wear many different shades of red, but if you really want your lips to POP, then wear a brighter color (such as this orange-red) to contrast your dark skin tone.

OF course, these are all just suggestions. If you feel confident and beautiful in a certain shade of red that goes against these suggestions, then who cares! WEAR IT AND ROCK IT.