I know, I know: I'm really slow to catch on with this one…

The thing is, I've been searching for the perfect red lipstick for YEARS now, but because of my "difficult" colouring, very few really work for me. For a long time, I've suspected that the original "Viva Glam" by MAC might be The One: from the swatches I've seen, and from what I'd read, I knew it was one of those classic, bluey-reds – the kind you see on women in old-fashioned movies – and that was exactly what I was looking for, but I don't have a MAC counter near me, and I don't like buying lipstick online (See: "nothing ever works on me", above), so I just never seemed to get round to it.

Last week, though, I was happily browsing through the MAC store in Orlando when I remembered my quest for the Perfect Red Lipstick, and my suspicion that Viva Glam 1 might be that very lipstick. I was actually running late and should really have left the store about 20 minutes earlier, so I took a calculated risk, grabbed a tube, paid up and left.

Yeah, I know: all those years of refusing to buy it without trying it on first, and then I go and do exactly that WHILE I'M IN THE MAC STORE.

Luckily for me, the risk paid off and I absolutely love this. It's probably not an "everyday" lipstick, because it's very bright, but it's ideal for any time you want something with a bit of impact. Because it is so bright, this has to be applied carefully, with a brush and lip-liner, but once it's on, it has excellent staying power and won't need to be touched up too often. It also has a lovely, matt finish and is a red that I think will work with lots of different complexions because it somehow manages to be bluey and brown-ish at the same time. Because of the lighting in the photo above, though, you're just going to have to tale my word for that. Sorry.

BUY: MAC Viva Glam 1, £12

  1. Haha, thanks! I recommend it – the photo doesn’t really show it very well but I think it’s the perfect matt red: very “olden days movie star”.

  2. I was going to say, it doesn’t look too bright in the picture, I think it looks DIVINE. I too have been on the hunt for the purrfect red, and it’s always too brown, too orange, or too bright. But i was talking to a saleslady (shamelessly hawking her wares), but she made a cogent point…i’m just not USED to seeing my lips so much. I think when I turn 30, I’ll start wearing red lips.

  3. Amber, have you tried Urgent! Slimshine (also MAC?). It’s a sheer classic red, very easy to wear and one of my favourites – I’m a pale skinned redhead too (although not a natural one!).

  4. Mmmm, that’s lovely – might just have to give it a try. I also have problems finding a red lipstick to suit me, but for different reasons. I have very full lips, pale skin and dark hair. The pale skin/dark hair thing would be fine, but the full lips mean that most red lipsticks end up looking a bit ‘hooker chic’ on me!

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