After recently deleting my Instagram account, I realized I had some “visual projects” going on. For a moment I regretted pushing the “delete” button, but thank God I had saved one of the aforementioned projects on my computer. It’s one of those things you know you would definitely do if only you could find some free time; well, I did it last summer and enjoyed it a lot. It’s called “Every Day Is a Red Lipstick Day” and it was born from my insane passion for red lipsticks. I think it’s something which is part of me: at school my students know there’s something wrong/I’m not well when I’m not wearing red lipstick; they say it’s my trademark and I can’t help but agreeing with them.
A lot has been said on the “therapeutic” power of red lipsticks, not to mention the rise of their sales in times of economic crisis. It’s a small thing but I’ve surely helped the economy by buying a countless number of red lipsticks over the years. The pictures you’ll see here portray only a part of my collection; hopefully I’ll be able to devote another post to the same topic soon. Are you ready for a ride through red glamour? Here we go!
Revlon Fire & Ice has a long story. It was first launched by Revlon in 1952 and became an instant hit; it was re-issued in 2010 and gathered even more fans. This is the only red lipstick by Revlon I own and I love it. I got mine thanks to Jennifer, who bought it for me: it has a beautiful metal retro-looking tube which speaks of Old Hollywood glamour. It’s a Super Lustrous lipstick, which means shiny colour and moisturizing texture; the shade is bright and orange-based and I think it can be flattering on any complexion. I’m not a fan of warm red shades (I prefer cool tones) but this one is lovely.
I could write a book on my addiction to NARS lipsticks: I own lots of them and I can tell you they’re never enough. The most recent addition to my collection is Heat Wave, but I’m always planning to get more (Jungle Red and Scarlett Empress have been sitting in my wishlist for years!). What I love most about NARS (red) lipsticks is…well, everything: they have an incredible longevity and are not dry on the lips. This is also the case of Mascate, one of the two Pure Matte lipsticks I own (the other one is Tonkin). It’s a bold red which is very appropriate for everyday use, because it’s not bright or too in-your-face.
Pleasure Me Red by Maybelline is one of my go-to lipsticks. I reach out for it whenever I want to wear a classic, bold red shade. It’s from the Color Sensational collection and I think it really performs what it promises: it’s creamy and applies like a dream; the colour stays flawless without fading and it’s quite moisturizing. The only downside is that it tends to bleed, which is one of the biggest issues when it comes to red lipsticks. Lining lips with a matching or invisible lip pencil can help, though.
It may sound incredible but New York Red by Chanel is the only Chanel lipstick I own. When I got it in a swap, I had no idea it was a discontinued (and so quite sought-after) shade. It’s a Hydrabase lipstick, so it’s incredibly comfortable on the lips (long-lasting but not drying); it’s a true red, and I can’t see no undertones in it. I can’t say it’s my favourite red shade ever, but it’s definitely into my top ten list (which I will write down, sooner or later). A detail I love, besides the glossy black tube, is its scent – it smells like roses!
Have you ever experienced love at first sight with a beauty product? I have, many times, and one of these had Benefit Flirt Alert as the object of desire. I first saw it reviewed by Christine at Temptalia and I put it in my endless wish-list at MakeUpAlley. When I found it in the Benefit counter at a local Sephora store, I had no doubts: it had to be mine. It’s not be the most long-lasting red lipstick I’ve tried so far, but it’s surely the one with the best texture. Believe me when I say that it’s softer than butter and really applies like a dream. On the lips it feels smooth like a lip balm but with a full coverage. The colour is fantastic, too – a warm-toned true red. I’m not a pink lipstick kind of girl, but I was so in love with the texture that I also bought La La Land, a beautiful pink brown nude shade.
MAC Viva Glam I is one of the most famous products of the brand. Launched in 1994, it was the first of many lipsticks and lipglasses whose sales would be donated to the MAC Aids Fund to “support men, women and children living with HIV and Aids” (this was written on the ad, which featured Lil’ Kim and Mary J. Blige). I can’t see it as a pin-up red, as many beauty bloggers have described it; at the same time, I don’t think it’s an incredibly showy red. I can see a slight cool tone in it, but it manages to work well on all types of complexion. It has a matte finish (which I like) and very good staying power. I guess there must be something which doesn’t convince me much about it because I don’t use it very often…
Clinique Red-y to Wear is a hidden jewel in my collection. It’s not as well-known as other lipsticks I have, but it’s lovely. This is definitely a pin-up red – blue-based, moisturizing, soft to apply, quite long-lasting, not bleeding. It’s from the High Impact collection and it’s the only Clinique lipstick I own.
Oh, well. Now we’re stepping into the Holy Grail territory. Illamasqua Sangers sat for ages in my wish-list: launched in 2011 as part of the Throb collection, it became immediately a best-seller of the British brand and soon nearly impossible to find. I remember my excitement when I found one tube on Asos and when I put it on for the first time. Along with MAC Ruby Woo and Russian Red, it’s probably my favourite red lipstick ever. It’s a beautiful blue-based red with a rich (but a bit drying) consistency; it dries to a matte, refined look and it lasts long. When I visited London last January, I bought a very similar shade – Box – at the Illamasqua shop in Beak Street. I’ll hopefully find the time to make a comparison between them.
The last lipstick I included in the project was Red Lizard by NARS, which I got thanks to a friend who bought it for me in Lugano (Switzerland). It’s a full-powered matte red which screams glamour. I love everything about it – the name (well, NARS products always have the best names), the texture (it’s matte but easy to apply), the longevity and the pigmentation (one swipe is enough to get full coverage). Since I’ve got so many red lipsticks, I don’t reach out for it as often as I should, but I can assure you it’s a must have.
This is a very busy period for me, but I’ll really try to go on with the project. I’ve got tons of red lipsticks I haven’t included here, and more are coming 😉