We love a quick fix, and when it comes to makeup, there's no better quick fix than a red lip.
Whether used as a mood-boosting tool, a bold distraction, or as a power play, there are many reasons why a great red lip is regularly hailed as the ultimate makeup solve-all. Simply put, for many, red lipstick is the symbolic cherry-on-top of your regular makeup routine.
However, when it comes to finding the right one, the simple act of applying a red lip can start to feel a whole lot more complicated than swiping on your favourite shade. While it may be a classic, there isn't just one colour (or formulation) perfect for everyone. From blue-based reds to bright orangey hues, subtle glossy formulas, and lip-stains, the options for wearing red are potentially endless—and entirely personal.
To help simplify the process, we've pulled together a list of the best reds, arranged by colour and type, so regardless of individual preference, you can take your pick from the top tier (according to us at least).
Read on below for our favourite red lipsticks to wear in 2021.
The Best True Red Lipsticks
Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution in Red Carpet Red
This richly pigmented true red tone was inspired by Hollywood bombshells. Shop here.
Shiseido VisionAiry Gel Lipstick in Ginza Red
Enriched with gel technology, this lipstick has a vibrant colour payoff with comfortable wear. Shop here.
Westman Atelier Squeaky Clean Lip Oil in Pipsqueak
Amplify lips with this weightless hydrating formula for a pop of colour and sheen. Shop here.
Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dragon Girl
The pencil-shaped design is perfect for lining, defining, and filling in lips. Shop here.
Gucci Beauty Rouge à Lèvres Mat Lipstick in Constance Vermillon
Lightweight, creamy, and long-wearing, this shade was inspired by old Hollywood. Pricey, but absolutely worth it. Shop here.
The Best Orange-Red Lipsticks
Armani Beauty Rouge D'Armani Lipstick in Fire Red
This unique formula gives lips up to 8 hours of intense colour with the comfort of a balm. Shop here.
LANCÔME L'Absolu Rouge Lipstick in Isabella
Infused with moisture-boosting properties, this formula imparts high colour minus dryness. Shop here.
Gucci Beauty Rouge à Lèvres Satin in Agatha Orange
This silky formula is enriched with emollients to leave a creamy finish. Shop here.
The Best Blue-Red Lipsticks
Chanel Rouge Coco Ultra Hydrating Lip Colour in Gabrielle
Bright and juicy, this classic blue-red shade features just a hint of sparkle. Shop here.
CODE8 Matte Velour Lipstick in Opera
Create a Hollywood pout with this comfortable and ultra-buildable formula. Shop here.
Tom Ford Fucking Fabulous Lip Colour
This limited-edition lipstick is bright, bold, and sure to make a statement. Shop here.
The Best Pinky-Red Lipsticks
Gucci Baume à Lèvres in René Pink
Balmy and buildable, this formula is the perfect soft wash of colour for a subtle finish. Shop here.
Chanel Rouge Allure Ink Second-Skin Intense Matte Liquid Lip Colour in Deep Pink
Waterproof and ultra long-wearing, this second-skin liquid lip colour has an impeccable hold. Shop here.
The Best Deep Red Lipsticks
Burberry Beauty Burberry Kisses in Oxblood No.293
Oxblood is a deep red that can be built from a lip tint to a full coverage finish. Shop here.
Kosas Weightless Lip Colour in Darkroom
This creamy, rich burgundy lipstick blends hydrating plant oils with bold colour. Shop here.
Ilia Color Block Lipstick in Rumba
This deep red lipstick contains sunflower seed wax to seal in moisture for a creamy finish. Shop here.
The Best Berry Coloured Lipsticks
NARS Audacious Lipstick in Bette
These iconic lipsticks offer bold, saturated, and long-lasting colour that won't bleed or feather. Shop here.
The Best Universally Flattering Red Lipsticks
M.A.C Cosmetics Retro Matte Lipstick in Ruby Woo
Universally loved, this bold and bright red features intense colour payoff in a fade-proof formula. Shop here.
Sephora Collection Cream Lip Stain in Always Red
Thanks to its formula enriched with avocado oil, this matte liquid lipstick feels super comfortable. Shop here.
Chanel Rouge Allure Luminous Intense Lip Colour in Pirate
Ultra-thin pigments provide an intensely luminous colour coupled with comfortable wear. Shop here.
Westman Atelier Lip Suede in Les Rouges
This lip palette comes with four matte red shades allowing for endless versatility. Shop here.
The Best Budget Red Lip Sticks
Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Fire And Ice
Infused with mega-moisturisers, this bold formula will seal in colour and softness. Shop here.
Maybelline Colour Sensational Made For All Lipstick in Ruby For Me
This universally flattering red was designed to suit every skin tone. Shop here.
Designer Brands Moisturising Lipstick in Crimson Red
This vegan and cruelty-free formula leaves lips feeling smooth, soft, and supple. Shop here.
The Best Long-Wear Red Lipsticks
IL MAKIAGE Infinity Long Wear Matte Lip Cream in In Love
IL MAKIAGE recently launched in Australia and this is one brand that deserves the hype. With staying power that won't crack or smudge, this is a real winner. Shop here.
Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink Liquid Lipstick in Pioneer
This super intense, matte liquid lipstick gives a flawless finish that stays put up to 16 hours. Shop here.
FENTY BEAUTY Stunna Lip Paint Longwear Fluid Lip Color in Uncensored
Weightless and bold, this liquid lipstick has a soft matte finish for low-maintenance long-wear. Shop here.
Now that your pout is perfect, check out this hitlist of skin serums we can't live without.
Design credit: Dom Lonsdale
Editor's note: Urban List editors independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. Urban List has affiliate partnerships, so we get revenue from your purchase.