My Favorite Red Lip Products for VALENTINE'S DAY!

by - February 14, 2017

When I think about Valentine's Day, specifically when it comes to makeup, I think about a red lip. Red lips, while being pretty high maintenance, are always impactful and can really bring a confidence to the person wearing them. I also feel like red lipstick can be a really personal thing, since there are so many different shades that can read differently on different skin tones and different styles. I wanted to go through my collection and pick the red lipsticks that I absolutely love and share them with you guys - even though they might not be exactly the red that you're personally looking for!

Keep reading to take a look at my favorite red lip liners, liquid lipsticks, lip crayons and, of course, traditional bullet style lipsticks!


Arbonne Lip Liner in Pomegranate*
This lip liner is fairly new to my collection, but I've fallen a little bit in love with it. The shade definitely leans cherry for me, which I think is a tone of red that really flatters us cool toned girls and looks absolutely stunning on deeper skin tones. The formula of this lip crayon is really creamy, giving you some time to play before it sets on the lips, but once it sets it's got great staying power.

essence Lipliner in 14 Femme Fatale
The essence Lipliners are my favorite formula in the drugstore and this has been a go to red for me for quite some time. This one is definitely more of a true red shade that the Arbonne and is a little bit stiffer and more matte, but I still find that it applies really easily with great pigmentation and staying power. This is the one I reach for when I want a true power red lip - which is, admittedly, usually what I want in a red lip.

... I wanted to showcase a couple of clear lip liners in this post because I often will pair them with red lips to really keep my look from bleeding and I feel like that's one tip that has changed my red lip game.

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Lip Pencil in Ozone & Know Cosmetics No Bleeding Lips
I'm lumping these two together because I think they basically perform the same. Urban Decay is a little bit creamier than the stiffer Know Cosmetics formula, but both act as a good base for lipstick and can really make a difference in the amount of bleeding outside the lip lines that you're going to see from your deeper lip products. That said, I think that the creamier a deep, pigmented lipstick formula is, the higher the chance that it's going to bleed on you either way, so definitely prep and set your lips well and keep an eye on them throughout the day.

Pomegranate, Femme Fatale, Ozone, No Bleeding Lips (Yes, I swatched the clear ones because... I dunno...)

My biggest tip for getting a long wearing, budge proof red lip is to apply your lip liner all over the lip as a kind of base, because I feel like it gives the lipstick something to stick to and will help it to wear off more slowly. Personally, I prefer a lip liner that's going to have a matte finish and really set on the lips, particularly when I'm using a deeper shade of lipstick. A good lip liner can also be worn alone, but I would definitely recommend adding a balm or a gloss over top because lip liner can look and feel pretty dry on the lips.

Liquid Lipsticks

Colourpop Ultra Matte Lipstick in Creeper
The Colourpop Ultra Matte formula is definitely the driest of the four I chose, but I wanted to include it because I feel like it's the best affordable option for matte liquid lipsticks and this shade is just undeniably gorgeous.

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Beso
The Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipsticks were the first formula that I fell in love with and I reach for Beso a lot when I want a red lip that I know isn't going to move. This formula is also a little bit more dry than I would prefer, but it's just bulletproof so I deal with it.

Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipstick in BAWSE
This is probably my favorite liquid lipstick of all time. OF ALL TIME. It's the perfect red and the formula is the most comfortable while still being long wearing. Plus... Lily. Need I say more? This is probably the red that I'll be reaching for for Valentine's date night.

Too Faced Melted Matte Liquified Matte Lipstick in Lady Balls
Of these four, I'd say that this is the most comfortable, but it is the least budge proof. Still, this is another one of those lippies that I find myself reaching for a lot when a red lip is on the menu, because it is so gorgeous and I do find that it wears much more comfortably throughout the day, though it does need touch ups.

HONORABLE MENTION: Sephora Cream Lip Stain in 01 Always Red
This is a KILLER. If you don't have this in your collection and you like a classic red lip, just buy it. It's under $20 at Sephora and it's so very worth every single penny.

Creeper, Beso, BAWSE, Lady Balls

I didn't realize until I swatched these four shades exactly how similar they are to each other. I think I'd even go so far as to call these dupes because when they're next to each other, you really can't see the difference in them. For me, a matte liquid lipstick is perfect for a night out, because I know it'll hang in and I'll be able to get through the whole night without a touch up. And the reason it's great for Valentine's Day is... I mean, obviously, you can wear a red lip and still put your lips all over someone without making a mess. Not something you can say about most red lip products, so it's a win/win.

Lip Crayons

Colourpop Lippie Stix in Poison
Poison has been one of my favorite reds for the past year and I feel like I'm going to need to get my hands on a backup just in case it gets discontinued... That's how much I love it. This is a deep, brown based red that's perfect for the fall, but I think it works all year long when you want to go a little vampier with your red lip.

e.l.f. Matte Lip Color in Cranberry
Cranberry is a little more sheer, but I find that makes it really easy to wear - not a common thing for a red lip. Even though it's called a matte, I would call it more of a matte cream finish because it does maintain a little bit of that moist shine as you wear it. I'd recommend this for anyone, but it could be particularly appealing for someone just dipping their toe into red lips who might be a little intimidated at first.

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella
I feel like Cruella is one of those perfect matte pinup red shades that works on literally every skin tone and it's one that I reach for a lot when I want that matte intensity but with the creaminess of a lip crayon. This is a true matte, but also really comfortable.

BITE High Pigment Pencil in Pomegranate
This is another classic bombshell red, a little warmer than some others but not at all orange, with a good bit of creamy shine to it. The reason this is a favorite for me is because even though it's really bold and creamy, I find that it wears really well and I don't really experience bleeding with this one.

BITE Matte Créme Lip Crayon in Red Velvet
As you can see in the swatches, Red Velvet is a vampier version of Cruella, but not quite as deep as Poison. It's another one of those creamy matte lipsticks that's really comfortable to wear, but also has really good lasting power and a truly matte finish. Man, I love this lippie.

Poison, Cranberry, Cruella, Pomegranate, Red Velvet

I always have lip crayons in my purse, because for me they're one of the easiest types of lips to apply. The ones I love tend to be really highly pigmented, so you get a really in your face lip look, but they're also more precise than a traditional bullet lipstick so you can easily apply them on the go. Something I like about all of these favorites is that there are variations both in tone and finish even though they're all red.


Milani Color Statement Moisture Matte Lipstick in Matte Confident
Matte Confident is the deepest red of all of my favorites here, which could either make it more intimidating or more wearable based on your taste. I'm definitely in the latter camp, because I feel like that depth takes away some of the brightness and makes this a really easy shade to wear. Also, the Milani Moisture Matte formula is an absolute dream.

Urban Decay VICE Lipstick in 714
For me, this lipstick is a really traditional matte red lip. It doesn't have that slip to the formula that more modern matte formulas have, so it really clings to the lip and wears incredibly. This shade is classic. When I think of a bombshell red lip, this is exactly what I think of. Not too cool or too warm but with a lot of punch.

SMASHBOX Be Legendary Lipstick in Legendary
This formula is definitely one of the creamiest on this list and I think someone who doesn't like a matte lip, but wants that bold red lip would love this one. It reminds me a lot of a Marilyn Monroe type of lipstick - bold red with a lot of shine on the lips. This shade is definitely more in the cherry family than some of the others, but I think that makes it even prettier in this finish.

Rimmel Kate Moss Lipstick in Shade 01
This is the first true red lipstick that I ever fell in love with and one that I will never not have in my collection as long as it's available. I was even wearing it the first night I met my boyfriend. This cream formula is absolutely dreamy, with a lot of pigment and a cling to the lips that reminds me more of a matte than a cream. And this shade is exactly what it should be, a true red that will suit absolutely everyone.

essence Matt Matt Matt Lipstick in 06 Kiss Me If You Can
New to the drugstore, the Kiss Me If You Can is the best red lipstick you can get under $5 by a wide margin. This is another deeper red shade that I think is really, really wearable and not too intimidating. And the formula is AMAZING. It's thick and creamy, highly pigmented, and really long wearing while also being comfortable on the lips. Love!

Arbonne Smoothed Over Lipstick in Currant*
Like Lengendary, Currant is another creamier formula that has some shine to the finish and more slip on the lips, but this shade is warmer and more densely pigmented. I would actually recommend this shade for someone who  might have more lines in their lips who wants a really smooth, plumped look to the lips because this formula is absolutely perfect for that.

Matte Confident, 714, Legendary, Kate Moss 01, Kiss Me if You Can, Currant

I feel like every woman (and makeup wearing man) needs a perfect-for-them red lipstick in their collection. It can be hard to find the right shade for your skin tone and the perfect finish and formula, but once you have that great red lipstick it can always be a go to. Because makeup trends move so quickly, it can get a little bit overwhelming to keep up with them, but I really feel like a bold red lip is something that isn't ever going to go out of style because it's classic and iconic and suits absolutely everyone!

What are your favorite red lip products? I'd love to hear about them in the comments!

Thanks for reading and have a happy Valentine's Day whether you're spending it with a partner or you're out there living large single - both are AWESOME!

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