Like a favorite shoe or an it bag, there’s something about finding theperfectlip shade that makes or breaks an outfit. Whether it’s a bold statement hue, or a demure #mlbb (my lips but better, for the uninitiated), the rightlip (or lip-and-cheek) shade not only ties a look together; it can also make youfeelprepared for whatever situation you’re wearing it for.
While there really are no rules when it comes to “appropriate” lip shades, the dizzying array of options can sometimes leave you feeling unsure of which lip product to reach for on any given day. To help simplify the selection process, here are a few general suggestions for what color to wear when...
During a busy work day, touch-up times may be few and far between. A classic, “MLBB” nude can fade subtly into your natural lip shade over the course of the day, going from statement lip for morning meetings to a soft tint for end-of-day relaxing with officemates.
On top of that, there’s a reason that matte nudes are considered a style staple. Not only are matte formulations considered “low-maintenance” (see: no time for touch ups), but the natural nude hue lends itself to the “overdrawn lips” trend, helping your pucker look poutier if you so desire.
In the words of performance artist Dita Von Teese, “Heels and red lipstick will put the fear of God into people.” A red lipstick has traditionally been associated with courage, and for good reason: studies have uncovered “the lipstick effect” as a real confidence-boosting phenomenon, onetied throughout history to the iconic red shade.
While the brightness of rouge may intimidate at first glance, devotees of the classic red lip can attest to its powers to make you feel powerful and more put together. A color traditionally associated with boldness, passion, and strength, red can signal, at least to yourself, that you are a strong powerful woman who knows what she’s doing. Wear this shade to that important meeting, the blind date, or any situation where you feel you could use a little more courage.
You’re having a ladies night: Bold colors, fun finishes.
You’ve powered through work and owned that boardroom...now it’s time to kick back with your girls! Those fun Fridays (or any days) out are a great time to get experimental with your look. While bold eyeshadow and bright blush may require skill, a fun and funky lipstick is an easy way to try something new.
For a low-commitment version of a metallic or shimmer lip, top your favorite lip-and-cheek cream or matte lipstick with the same multipurpose shimmer you’ve swatched on your eyelids. This glittery addition will give a little extra oomph to your look, allowing you to get into the party spirit.
Formal occasions are a great time to bring out your inner “vamp” with bold berry hues or deep 90s browns that you may otherwise feel are too dark for every day. Wine shades go well with evening events and formal galas, but can also help “upgrade” an otherwise more business casual look to make it cocktail-acceptable.
What’s the perfect lippie to pair with a no-makeup makeup face? Light rosy tones make you look naturally blooming and soft, and can be swiped on with less precision than more pigmented shades. Guaranteed to make you look fresh and flushed on a lazy day, pinks work on a range of skin tones, since they mimic your skin’s natural blush.