A study conducted by Manchester University researchers in England found that red lips hold the attention of the average man longer than bare or even pink ones. "Men are attracted to a red mouth because it symbolizes passion, excitement, and vitality," says makeup artist Carmindy, co-creator of Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired by Carmindy. Just don't wield that crimson lipstick liberally! "Guys may prefer painted lips," Carmindy says. "But they still won't like goopy, messy ones." Follow these tips for the perfect, modern red pout.
#1 Find the right hue for you
"There's a red for everyone!" says Lori Taylor, a Lead Makeup Artist for Smashbox Cosmetics. The basic rules of thumb? If your skin is fair, try a very blue red (we like Smashbox Doubletake Lip Pencil in Cranberry). Medium or olive skin tones look best in a warm, orange-y red (try Nars Lipstick in Flamenco), while deeper burgundy tones (such as L'Oreal Colour Riche Lipstick in Classic Wine) suit darker complexions.
#2 Prep your pout
A washcloth soaked in warm water is a simple and inexpensive exfoliator. Gently rub it over lips to remove flakes and ensure a smooth canvas.
#3 Cover your bases
A nude lip pencil, like Maybelline Color Sensational Lip Liner in Nude, serves as the ideal base for any red, since it won't alter the color. "And it can help if feathering is an issue," Taylor says. Trace lips first, then fill them in with the pencil.
#4 Ease your way in
Stains and sheer lipgloss versions are modern formulas that "give punch without being too scary," Taylor says. "Plus, you can always layer on more as you get more comfortable." Use your finger to push color into your lips for a soft, kissable finish. Check your teeth for any stains, smile, and get ready for contact.
Does your S.O. (significant other) like red lips, pink lips, or neutral lips?