How to Get Matte Red Lips That Really Last

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When backstage at the Monique Lhuillier show during New York Fashion Week, I learned a pretty snazzy trick that’ll help make all of your bold lipsticks — red included — last longer and look perfectly matte. The secret is blush, yes, blush.

Makeup artist Val Garland created a gorgeous look (a la an “early ’90s Helmut Lang girl”) that was defined by a fabulous red lip. And, in order to get the perfect shade of red you see above, she mixed three products. First she applied a blue-based red lip liner (she used MAC Lip Pencil in Cherry, $14) then she topped the liner with a yellow-based red lipstick (she used MAC Lipstick in Lady Danger, $14.50). The combo together adds depth to your pout to make it look fuller. And finally, the most important and interesting part — she set the lipstick with blush. Yes, the powdery stuff you normally dust on your cheeks. She dabbed a reddish orange blush over the lipstick to make it appear super matte and to set the color for long-lasting wear. She used MAC Pro Satin Blush in Devil, $15.50 (available at Pro stores only).

I’ve set mine with loose powder before, but haven’t ever tried blush. Have you? I’m definitely attempting it the next time I go for red.

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