Dark lip - how to

There is no better way to wake up your face than a slick of bold lipstick, but as editor Trudi Brewer discovers it's not the colour but the intensity that's in question.

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Lipstick is a beauty staple. From burgundy to pink and back to red, most season's there's something bright on offer. But this winter as long as it's dark and daring it's on trend. Makeup artist Bex Elliot at Bobbi Brown Britomart in Auckland, believes one woman's bold maybe another's demure; it all comes down to the intensity and what you are comfortable wearing. Her advice: "Explore your options, visit an expert makeup artist and play with colours. You will soon work out whether you're a hot pink woman, a sunset orange or a classic red lady. Secondly, if you’re new to bold lips, think about the occasion for its debut."
Most of us are naturally drawn to red when we think of wearing a bright colour; Elliot says red is certainly on trend and going nowhere.  

Here's how to wear a bold lip: This season we favour dark plum or crimson when making a bold statement. However, Elliot says it's all about the finish. "It's more the finish that is drawing women in, than the colour. Think matte, or low-sheen, a look you can achieve by quickly dusting lips with a little translucent powder. And then pair that striking lip, with a classic black liner and peach blush." And just as we have become more adventurous with eye makeup, it's time to head south and be more creative with textures and finishes on the lips. She suggests a graduated bold look to wean you onto wearing a more daring shade. "Makeup artists do it all the time. Apply a bright red lipstick on your top lip, and a deeper version of the shade on the bottom lip. Or use two different tones of red, apply one over another, followed by the second, slightly lighter shade only in the centre of the bottom lip." With this intense colour in fashion, a less extreme option in a sheer gloss or a well-blended stain works too. "Most woman can wear a bright lipstick. But if your apprehension lies within shade selection, in general, you can't go wrong with a neutral red, one with a brown base."  

My pick of dark shades.

AboveMAC Lipstick in Hang Up, $40. Smashbox Be Legendary Lipstick in Plum Scene $46. Nars Pure Matt Lipstick in Volga, $49. Clinique Pop Colour Lipstick in Cola Pop, $46.