A Guide to Picking the Best Red Lipstick for Your Skin Tone

Celebrity makeup artist shares easy tips to choose the best red shade

We all want that one red lipstick that would turn us into a glamorous diva in a jiffy. “I believe that there’s a gorgeous red out there for every single person - you just have to find it!” Says celebrity makeup artist Bhavya Arora, who has worked for movies, ad films, print campaigns and web series and with celebrities such as Tapsee Pannu, Rasika Dugal, Chitrangada Singh, Shraddha Kapoor, Huma Qureshi, Radhika Apte and more. But finding the perfect shade can be quite overwhelming, when there are so many options available in the market.

Find your undertone 

Bhavya has a bit of advice. “If you know your undertone then it’s simple,” she says. For the uninitiated skin tone is the level of melanin in the skin that ranges from fair to dark, while undertones are the colours (red, yellow, or blue) that, within your skin tone, create your specific complexion.

If you do not know. Here’s what Bhavya suggests you do. 

To understand your undertone you can either check the veins on the inside of your wrists - blue is cool undertone, green is warm and if you have both then you’re a neutral undertone. 

You can also figure your undertone through your clothes and jewellery you tend to prefer. If you think silver looks nice on you then you’re most likely a cool undertone, if golds look better then you’re a warm undertone. 

Same with clothes: if look tend to better in yellow or oranges, then you have a warm undertone. If you look better in blues and greens then you’re a cool undertone and if both work equally well then you’re a neutral! 

Shades that work

Once you find out your undertone, it’s simple thereon. “If you want a subtle look then go with the red that’s on line of your undertone - like an orange red for a warm undertone and a cranberry red for cool undertone,” says Bhavya. If you’re neutral then either of them is fine. On the other hand, if you want your lips to really stand out, then use a red opposite to your undertone.

But what happens if you still don’t know your undertone? Well, there’s a simple solution. “There are certain shades that flatter all kinds of undertones,” says Bhavya. She lists the following that you can try


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1. Ruby Woo by MAC

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2. L’Oréal Paris Infallible Stirred

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3. Always Red by Sephora 

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4. Pioneer by Maybelline 

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5. Fire & Ice by L’Oréal  

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6. Dragon Girl by Nars

And if you still are not sure, pick a red that makes you feel the best and go for it!


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