I dragged out the Christmas lights this weekend and began unraveling the many tangled cords of festive little bulbs of colored joy. It took some time as I sat thinking near boxes of last year”s decorations, nutcrackers from my childhood, Christopher Radko snow globes bundled up cozily in bubble wrap, and ornaments galore.
Actually, I find it therapeutic.
The red stockings personalized for our four dogs and our giant red fiber optic poinsettia tree all remind me that red is everywhere in December, and when it comes to choosing the right shade of red lipstick, well, my lips are not sealed.
More and more women are asking me how to wear red this season. As I plugged in a strand of lights to find half the strand not working, I began changing bulbs and thinking of the myriad of reds when it comes to lipsticks. A classic red lip is quintessential to the holidays and can be merry and bright with the right magic.
When choosing the best red for your “fa la la la la,” remember pale skin tones look magical in violet reds, while olive skin tones should sing an orangey red tune. Here”s another tip: the lips thin as we age, so the darker, richer shades of red tend to accentuate too many birthdays. Opt for lighter hues. Dark complexions are radiant in rich, burgundy reds, and it”s best for everyone to line the inside of lips with a lip liner since red lipsticks bleed. Also, when painting the season red with a bright lip shade, the rest of the face should blend into the choir.
When making a face for the holidays, sometimes I even skip eyeliner and blush, opting for a few more coats of black mascara for brunettes and brown mascara for blondes and redheads. After all, you wouldn”t throw everything onto the Christmas tree, would you? OK, my best friend Tracey would, but she always was eccentric.
Everyone always asks me for my favorite shade of red lipstick. Since Estee Lauder no longer makes my favorite “Neiman Marcus Red,” I am asking Santa for help with that one. Just like those old Christmas lights took a little time to unwind, switching out bulbs through trial and error, so goes the patient hunt for your best red lip this year.
The prize for all your effort will be a joyful new red to light up the season, beautifully, just like my tree.
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.
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