The Best Red Lip Color

It's a year-round classic and a holiday-look staple. Here, the six best ways to go bold.


Best Matte


L'Oréal Paris Colour Riche Le Matte Lip Pen in Mad for Matte
The best thing about matte lipstick is its longevity. The worst? Dryness. This pen contains argan oil, so you get color that lasts through lunch and lips that feel plush, not parched.

To buy: $10,

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Best Budget


Wet n' Wild Mega Shield SPF 15 Lip Color in A Currant Affair
Hydrating avocado oil plus serious color payoff equals vibrant, velvety lips for less than the price of a latte. "It's my not-so-guilty pleasure," said a tester.

To buy: $3,

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Dose of Colors Matte Lipstick in Merlot
"It's the lipstick you can leave at home," a tester raved. This pigmented pick goes on like a gloss and sets into a satiny stain that won't budge.

To buy: $18,

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Best Gloss


Make Up For Ever Artist Plexi-Gloss in 403 Red
Forget hair-grabbing formulas with barely-there pigment. This lightweight liquid delivers a noticeable amount of color and shine that stays put without feeling tacky.

To buy: $19,

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Best Balm


Wander Beauty Love Lock Hydrating Lip Gel in Parisian Red
This sheer salve tints lips with just enough color to brighten up your face without looking too "made-up." The balmy formula is easy to apply—no mirrors or brushes needed.

To buy: $24,

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Best Splurge


Bobbi Brown Luxe Lip Color in Retro Red
From the gilded tube to the vitamin E–laced formula, this creamy crimson looks and feels decadent—even after hours of wear. Bonus: It has plumping peptides to smooth out any lines.

To buy: $35,

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