Select your shade –

The colour of the pads of your fingers is similar to that of your lips, so by swiping a couple of shades on your fingertips you will get an accurate visual of which shade will look best. (Bonus: You don’t have to try on makeup counter testers. Yuck!) Then hold your fingers tips close to your mouth to see which shade instantly brightens your eyes and that’s the best red for you!

Consider the lighting –

If you’re going to be outdoors, pick a softer or sheerer shade. For evening, go bolder, so your features stand out.

Avoid deep reds if you have thin lips –

They tend to make lips look smaller.
Instead, try layering a red lipstick over a chapstick for a for a sheerer version of your favourite shade.

Exfoliate –

Use a damp toothbrush or a lip scrub to gently exfoliate your lips.

Prime your lips with a balm –

Without this prep, a bold lip colour will draw attention to any cracks or flakes. Just a dab will do (too much and your lipstick won’t adhere).

Be precise –

With a bold lip colour, you really want to take a minute to apply it correctly. Whether you’re using a brush or applying lipstick straight from the tube, use a steady hand

To Line or not to line –

If a red liner doesn’t match your lipstick perfectly, you’ll end up with a two-tone effect. Try using a shade that’s close to your natural lip colour and use it to outline your lips.

Prevent “bleeding” –

Apply a little concealer around the border of your mouth.

Avoid getting lipstick on your teeth –

After applying, put your finger in your mouth, purse your lips around it, then slowly pull it out to remove excess colour.


Watch this video on how to apply a bold lip using lipliner and a lipgloss.


With bold lips, the rest of your face should stay subdued. Don’t play up your eyes too much. Use a champagne shadow to highlight your eyes, a little liner for definition and, after curling your lashes, a couple of coats of mascara. Polish your brows with a pencil or brow gel, add a neutral blush and you’re done!