Red Lips Vs. Nude Lips

Which do you prefer?

The two hottest trends in lip color couldn't be further from each other on the color spectrum. Read on to see the benefits of each and find out which one is right for you.

The Lady In Red

Red lips say vamp, vixen and va va voom. Red lips also say confidence, glamour and "being the center of attention suits me just fine." There is nothing quite like a dash of bold red lipstick to complete a look, and contrary to what some believe, every woman can wear red.

How to pick the right red for you? Examining your skin tone is the most sure-fire way to find a flattering shade of red:

  • If you have Fair skin, then try a blue-based or coral red.
  • If you have Olive or Medium toned skin, then you will look best in a bright, fire-engine red.
  • Deep shades like brick and burgundy are ideal on Darker skin.

There were many women throughout history that covered their lips in bold, sexy scarlet. Cleopatra was the first recorded woman to go ruby red. Queen Elizabeth I made crimson lips and a pale white face the look of her day in the 16th century.

Famed makeup houses like Guerlain (who made the first commercial lipstick at the end of the 19th century available for all women), Elizabeth Arden and Estee Lauder popularized juicy cherry-red shades.

The 1920's ushered in the Louise Brooks and Clara Bow look, with deep red lips as the focal point of the face. Later in the 1950's, Hollywood heroines like Liz Taylor and Marilyn Monroe were mad for red lips and fashionable women everywhere eagerly followed suit.

Universally glamorous and right on trend, various shades of red made their way up and down the international catwalks (bridal too), and appear in every major cosmetics collection. All you have to do is pick the perfect hue, and pucker up.

Iconic Red-Lipped Ladies: Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Lucille Ball, Grace Kelly, Madonna, Dita Von Teese

The Nudist

Nude lips say fresh, ingénue, innocent. Nude lips also say counter-culture, rock n' roll and free spirit. Nude lips swung into fashion in the heyday of the '60s when a pale lip contrasted with heavily outlined eyes and layers of false eyelashes. It was the moment of the mod, and a lighter lip fit the youth-quake vibe of the decade.

Nude lips continued to be strong in the '70s when fashionable women preferred a natural, but still glamorous, look. Lauren Hutton and Farrah Fawcett epitomized that sexy, au natural feeling with healthy, glowing skin and tawny, nude makeup colors.

Choosing the ideal shade of nude can be just as tricky as selecting a good red. Your skin tone will be the best indicator for a neutral color:

  • For Fair skin, look for a warm beige shade with a hint of rose.
  • If you're more Medium, then you can wear a true beige and a pinky-nude beige, both will work for you.
  • If your skin is Darker, you will look best in nudes with a brown base that are closer to your skin tone.

The perfect contrast to this season's bolder reds and powerful brights, nude lips whisper chic, tasteful trendsetter with just a touch of quirky, cool-girl.

Iconic Nudists: Brigitte Bardot, Twiggy, Julie Christie, Jennifer Lopez, Gwyneth Paltrow, Chrissie Hynde

--Juli Alvarez

Tags: Trends , Beauty , make-up
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