Look Book: Holiday Lips

Holiday Lips

With Diwali right behind us and plenty more holidays just around the corner, it’s about time we did a look to wear to those holiday parties and functions, so today we will be concentrating on the lips with a deep red, the color of the holiday season, keeping the rest of the face muted with warm tones to create the latest Look Book: Holiday Lips.

holiday lips
holiday lips

I only like to make one feature really pop because this way we can direct people’s attention wherever we want – most commonly either the eyes or the lips. Obviously, since we’re playing up the lips in this look, we have to add one step to our normal face preparation of cleansing, toning and moisturizing. We have to exfoliate the lips so that our lip products go on completely smooth and don’t get stuck on any dead skin. You can do an at-home sugar treatment, a store bought exfoliant, or find your own solution to remove any dead skin and make your lips super smooth.

Before I start working on my face, I apply my NARS Face Primer to keep my makeup in place for longer. It also helps the products go on smoother versus just applying makeup over a moisturizer. Just be sure to let your moisturizer be absorbed by your skin for about 10 minutes prior to applying your primer over. Once our faces are primed, the next steps are to fill in our brows (today I used NYX’s Eyebrow Pencil in Dark Brown topped with MAC’s Studied Brown) and to prime our eyelids using Lancome’s Aquatique. I also added MAC’s Strobe Cream to my agenda today, it’s a moisturizer that creates an iridescent effect on the skin and looks lovely under makeup. I wouldn’t recommend applying it to your entire face, just areas that you want to highlight. Today, for example, I just applied the Strobe Cream to the apples of my cheeks.

When doing a look of this kind, in which you are playing up one feature over the others, it’s best to do the center of attention first. This way, it is easier to know how much or little makeup to apply to the other areas of your face. So, I started with the lips and applied MAC’s Pro Longwear Lipstain Marker in Purposefully Red. I started with the bow and lined my upper lip, working my way out in short strokes then colored the top lip in. Then, I colored in the inner portion of the lower lip then lined it using the same short-handed strokes. When doing dark or bold colors, I often prefer doing a stain under a gloss so that I can enjoy my evening without having to worry about the product transferring to my glass (or worse… my teeth!), fading as I eat or speak, etc. But before applying my gloss, I really make my lips pop even more by lining the outer portion of my mouth with concealer (I used Bobbi Brown’s Face Touch Up Stick in Golden). It made my lips stand out much more because the lines were perfectly hard and there was no bleeding or feathering.

Even though the eyes are not going to be the focal point, that does not mean we have to leave them bare. Instead, we will do a sheer wash of color using MAC’s Eyeshadow in Bronze. After applying Bronze to the entire eyelid up to the crease I followed it with MAC’s Eyeshadow in Brule to soften the hard edges and as a subtle highlight under the brow and in the corners of my eyes. Typically, I would use a frosted shadow as a highlight on the eyes, but again, since we are making the mouth the center of attention I used this matte color to add dimension but not in an obvious way. I removed any fallout before applying my base makeup (Bronze is a very difficult color to remove if it happens to mix in with your makeup… and I’m speaking from experience) which is why we went in this order. I topped my lashes off with Lancome’s Cils Booster XL followed by Cargo’s Lash Activator to darken my lashes and plump them up a bit, but not make them overly dramatic since today is not about my eyes.

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It’s a good thing that nobody is around when I do my makeup because by this time, my face is looking pretty strange with my eyes and lips done without any base makeup! I start with my undereye area, applying my usual products from Bobbi Brown – the Corrector and Creamy Concealer. To the rest of my face, I pick up my Face Touch Up Stick again and top everything off with her Sheer Pressed Powder in Golden Orange.

To keep my cheeks in line with the rest of my face, I used a warm toned blush that blended easily and wouldn’t be attention-grabbing. I reached for Rock & Republic’s Pressed Blush in Lust, which almost looks like a bronzer.

The very last step, and a step I often wait until I am minutes away from my destination, is to top my ruby stained lips off with a gloss and to keep the theme going I chose Fusion Beauty’s Lip Fusion in Smooch, a shimmering rich red, and I was ready for the evening!

This article was written by Natasha Kohli, makeup artist and editor of TheCosView.com . Natasha’s philosophy on beauty is to find and then do what makes you feel good and feel gorgeous no matter what it may be, because that’s what this is all about.


21 thoughts on “Look Book: Holiday Lips

    1. Hi Monika, thank you! Naturally my lips are bi-colored, and since I used a stain and a semi-sheer gloss, the natural color of my lips was not completely covered by product so it shines through a bit. 🙂

  1. As always, loved your post..I wanted to try a darker lipstick too, actually did try at the counter, but I thought will wait and see if I still want it another day or two and then buy it…..is like a sign now..I have to get it after seeing your post 😀 😀 :D…though the lipstick I picked was more pink-maroon based than a pretty red 🙂

    1. Glad I could help, Radhika! Often times women are apprehensive about darker or bolder colors (reds, especially) but if you find a few that are flattering it could really change your approach to color!

    1. Hi Suma, thanks so much for the compliment. My secret weapon is the Lancome Cils Booster. Applied under ANY mascara (drugstore or department store finds), it really builds the lashes and gives length and volume. It also conditions, which is great. Between us, my lashes are quite thin but a bit on the longer side. With the Cils Booster I get asked all the time whether or not I am wearing false lashes. I highly recommend that product if you’re looking for some extra lash “oomph”!

  2. Another great look!! The blush is soo delicate, and the eyes look great. You haven’t lined your lower lashes \ water line, was that on purpose?
    I have a question about the red lipstick- how do you choose the perfect red for your skin tone? Because , fairer people’s red would be a li’l different from not-so-fair people, right ?

    1. Hi Smita, thanks! Yes, it was on purpose. I wanted the eyes to be as simple and open as possible so that onlookers would know to concentrate on one thing… my lips. By having an obvious focal point, my face does not look overdone.

      The perfect red is a question I receive all the time, and Janhavi has given some great tips below. For fairer skin tones, if you have cool undertones (check the veins on your arm to see if they are green or blue… typically blue veins = cool undertones) cool reds would look best on you. However, with Indian skin, lighter tones usually have yellow or olive undertones in which case orange or brown based colors look best. And for deeper Indian skin, with warm undertones, a red with a brown undertone looks best.

      Again, Janhavi offers great advice again in saying that the best method to try it out would be to try it on and see what looks best. Because even though there are general guidelines and tips to find the right shades everyone’s skin tone and type is so different I would have to have you sit in my chair!

      Hope that helps. 🙂

      1. Thank you so much for taking the time and explaining to me Natasha.
        I will definitely look up my undertones and match it with the base colour, keeping your words in mind.
        The best way to find out what suits you is trying them on indeed – but sometimes , just sometimes, experts advice helps 😉

  3. From what I can tell fair people, skin with cool undertones go for blue based reds.. people with yellow undertones go for more orangey, brownie reds. Although I know some people will reccomend a blue red no matter what your skin tone. Another one is to go for a tomato red red because its a pretty universally flattering red. The best thing to do though is to just try it on your lips 😛

  4. That being said – I think its a trial and error thing – like I am in the NC shades so I have yellow undertones so I LOVE MAC chilli – my friend however wears C shades which is for people with yellow undertones, but fairer complexion and Chilli loooked YUCK on her – when we put MAC cherry on her lips which is blue pink red – she totally rocked the color 😕

      1. Awww – Ive been struggling with Red for so long , I can see why its such a thing for us Indian women – btw am loving the MAC lipstain on your lips – you are absolutely right about lipstains for when you have a long night ahead and dont want to worry about getting lipstick on your glass or eating it up 😛 😛 😛 I always put one under my red lippie ……

        This was a neat right up on how to do make-up with red lipstick 😀

  5. You look fab, Natasha. I wrote the comment in morning but somehow forgot to publish it and then I think I closed the tab. :(((

    I have tried various reds and i think I have finally found a red that looks decent on me. However I have to admit that I am only comfortable wearing strawberry red gloss outside but I am getting a little experimental now. 🙂

    You so love you studied brown no? 🙂

    1. Thanks, Rati. 🙂

      Red is so much fun to play with, especially around this time of the year. When the rest of the face is toned down it’s really classy and classic, so you should absolutely wear it outside and show the world your confidence!

      I really do… But I’ll try looking for a color to replace it that is available to all. 😉

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