Call it the "Mad Men" effect or a feminine twist on the military-inspired looks of fall — bold red lips are everywhere. Women are wearing a red pout as an accessory, just as they might a new handbag from Barneys but without the hefty price tag. And the more adventurous aren't just going bold, they're going matte.
Actresses Lea Michele,
and Julie Benz sported shine-free red lips at the 2010 Emmys, as did Christina Hendricks during "Mad Men's" season premiere party,
proving that a matte lip doesn't have to look dried-out or matronly. In fact, it seems to be the most modern and fashion-forward way to wear red this season.
Denizens of Southern California are famously gloss-obsessed. But a bold, matte finish can look very fresh when dimension is added to the lips and other features of the face don't compete with the mouth. Uzo, lead international makeup artist for Nars Cosmetics, has pointers on how to wear the look.
1. She starts by applying bronzer and foundation to the complexion to even it out and warm it up. "The skin should have a satin finish, not too matte or too dewy," Uzo says. "I like to add warmth to the skin so the mouth isn't such a contrast to a fair complexion." She adds this warmth by sweeping bronzer on the cheekbones and apples of the cheeks, then applying foundation over the entire face. "Putting a sheer coat of foundation over the bronzer makes it look more natural and seems like a real warm glow coming from the skin." Uzo blends the color all over the face and then applies concealer to dark areas and blemishes.
2. For the lips, Uzo uses a color called Terre de Feu from the Nars Pure Matte lipstick collection. It contains acai oil and mango butter to keep lips moisturized but not shiny. The shade is a deep cherry that she says is flattering on most skin types. Uzo advises starting with the color in the center of the lip and blending out from there so the lips don't get cakey with product in the corners. Once the lipstick is on, you have the framework for lining the lips.
3. Choose a lip liner color that's the same as the lipstick, which Uzo says is the modern way to wear liner. Smile with your lips closed, and apply the lip liner to the exact line of the mouth. This helps fill in ridges and lines and prevents feathering.
4. For a little more dimension on the lips, add a dab of gloss that's a few shades deeper than the lipstick. The lips will still be matte, but the gloss adds a bit of dimension and luster.
5. Wearing matte red lips with no eye makeup is the most fashionable approach to the trend, but if you want to add a little eye makeup, do it sparingly to avoid looking overdone. Apply a cream shadow in a wash of color on the eyelid in an earthy metallic shade, such as copper or bronze. Brush a little bit of a powder shadow in a similar shade over the cream shadow to set the cream and add depth to the eyelid.