Since red lipstick is a versatile shade for all mankind, I wasn't exactly surprised to learn you can use red lipstick as concealer — and just about a million other things. When I finally found the perfect shade of crimson for my face I realized I had a surplus of red lipsticks in my makeup bag that had only been worn a couple of times. Fortunately, I've found that I could repurpose all those old shades. Red lipstick is one of the few beauty items I can think of that does more than is advertised on its pretty packaging.
Who exactly invented red lipstick is debatable as its history dates back to ancient times, but if I could time-travel and meet the first person who thought to paint their lips scarlett, I would give them a firm handshake with a single tear of gratitude on my face. To be sure that all those "other uses" you see on Pinterest and the like weren't just a load a myths, I went ahead and tried out seven ways red lipstick can be used to save the day. Honestly, I have to say it exceeded my expectations.
1. Use Red Lipstick As A Concealer
After you finish cleansing and moisturizing your face for the day, apply red lipstick to your fingertips and dab underneath your eyes. The warm red offsets the cool blue of dark circles, neutralizing it all out to a circle-free zone.
2. Get Empowered By Red Lipstick
Trying to get that raise? Put on some red lipstick for added empowerment. Red lipstick has a long history of being worn by badass women, so you almost can't help but feel like you're channeling them when you swipe some on. Also, waitresses who wear red lipstick get more tips. I'm making the bold (and wishful) assumption that this carries over to other careers as well.
3. Make A Lip Gloss With Red Lipstick
If you are looking for a great red lip gloss, look no further than your makeup bag. Just slice a thin piece of lipstick off of an old red shade and then add a tablespoon of beeswax and coconut oil. Mix in a small sealable container (perhaps, an old eye shadow or gloss tube) and voila! Your lip gloss is poppin'!
4. Write Love Notes In Red Lipstick
Trying to find a pen in the age of cell phones has become a dire situation. You're better off asking if someone has red lipstick that you could borrow to write that cutie on the subway a lil love note with your phone number on it.
5. Use Red Lipstick as a Blush
Feeling a little dull? Use your red lipstick as a blush to brighten up your face. Just make a small spot (no larger than a dime) on each cheek and gently blend into your skin. It's extra important to remove your makeup at the end of the night if you do this, since lipstick isn't usually formulated to prevent breakouts like some blushes can be.
6. Wear Red Lipstick As An Eyeshadow
This is one of the first beauty hacks I learned as a teen. Craving the look of bleeding eyes (seriously), I would take red lipstick and apply a thick layer over my eyes — obviously, looking terrifying and sexy are synonymous for a young goth. I mostly got over that phase, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't occasionally wear red lipstick on my eyelids as an adult.
7. Use Red Lipstick To Ward Off Death
OK, maybe this one is a stretch. According to sources at ELLE, Queen Elizabeth and her crew used red lipstick to keep illness and death away. Since my friend pictured above was literally DYING to get out of work, I thought I would revive her by applying red lipstick to her lifeless body. Viola! Instant rejuvenation (though she did still have to finish her shift).
Image: Kristin Collins Jackson