Chinese New Year Reds

My dormant range of red beauty products usually stirs into activity during the Chinese New Year season. This is the time of the year when I use the most amount of red, thanks to the traditional belief that this colour wards off evil and brings good fortune (I’m not superstitious but there’s no harm in colour collusion for banishing diabolical forces and ushering in good luck! ;)). As such, lippies, glosses, blushes, nail varnishes (and sometimes, eyeshadows) in this shade will come out in full force during this time to greet the lunar new year with auspicious glamour.

This year, I used some of my favourite reds. Spanning cherry to berry, they are:

  1. Kevyn Aucoin The Expert Lip Tint in Bloodroses
  2. MAC Frost Lipstick in Sundressing
  3. MAC Lipglass in V-Red
  4. Vincent Longo Lip Stain in Madison
  5. Shiseido Everlasting Lipstick in Mulberry Wine
  6. MAC Nail Lacquer in Vintage Vamp (a deep red-maroon/wine-coloured polish with a creamy finish)

A few of these lip products have long been discontinued. Happily, they’ve kept their formula well and are surprisingly fresh, despite their age (that said, I am very particular about my makeup – I like to clean my lippies after every use).

These aren’t the best of swatches but you can see the varying textures and tones of these reds.

  1. Bloodroses is a blood red, a deep and strong shade of cool toned – almost blackened – red with a hint of berry. It has an incredibly lustrous texture and glides easily over the lips. It carries a somewhat obvious rose scent that might be unpleasant for some.
  2. Sundressing is a mid-tone red with subtle frosty pink tones, best for when I want a not-so-overt red. It is shimmery and a little reflective on the lips.
  3. V-Red is quite opaque and though it seems warm in the swatch, it pulls cool and is a pinked red. Like most Lipglasses, it is sticky and shiny.
  4. Madison is a classic cherry red, a lovely slick of colour that looks and feels moist on the lips. It doesn’t last very long on the lips because of its formula but I love its cheery shade which can be layered for a stronger effect.
  5. Mulberry Wine is a nice plum when applied lightly and an intense berry when layered – very dark and deep. This is the driest and the most lasting of the lot; it doesn’t bleed easily. Even so, this matte lipstick with a sheen goes on smoothly and effortlessly. Shiseido does such formulas so well!

This lip love bunch gives life to my visage. I can look drawn and tired without colour on my face and these cool toned hues not only perk up my complexion instantly, they also make me look like I have fairer and clearer skin. So don’t fear reds, dear friends – they can do wonders for your appearance. Just make sure you find the right one for your skin tone. :)


  • AtelierGal says:

    Kevyn Aucoin!! I want!!

    • makeupmag says:

      Hi AtelierGal,

      Kevyn Aucoin is an exquisite line. I hope they don’t discontinue it and that it makes its way here someday.

  • Lilian says:

    thanks for the posting, the mac lippie looks really nice! any tips on finding a red that suits fair-medium yellow toned skin? thanks!

    • makeupmag says:

      Hi Lilian,

      Have you tried MAC Russian Red lipstick? That might work. The nicest thing? It has teeth-brightening blue tones!

  • TheUndercoverGypsy says:

    All the lippies look lovely! I especially love the Shiseido Everlasting one – but it’s a discontinued line, isn’t it? But’s that’s such a gorgeous colour.

    A couple of my favourite reds are the Estee Lauder Signature lipstick in Rich Red and Givenchy Rouge interdit in Elegant Rouge – both have excellent colour payoff.

    Btw – I just discovered your site and have had a great couple of days reading back your entries – it’s so informative and fun :)

    • makeupmag says:

      Hi there, TheUndercoverGypsy!

      Thank you for your lovely comments. :) Yes, that Shiseido line is discontinued but you could try something similar, texture-wise, from the new Glowing Matte range.

      If you’re looking for a colour dupe, that berried shade can also be found at Urban Decay – I believe the brand’s Confession lipstick is similar to it, only glossier.

      Thanks for your lippy recs; I will take a closer look at those EL and Givenchy ranges now!

  • AtelierGal says:

    There was a private sale sometime ago in the States, but the skin enhancer wasn’t included so I didn’t get it. Nor does Sephora have my shade. I doubt the brand will make it here :(

    • makeupmag says:

      Hey AG,

      I know! The HauteLook sale was very good, apparently. I was tempted but I do have quite a few new things to revel in lately, so I didn’t bite. You don’t need the Skin Enhancer! ;)

  • AtelierGal says:

    I don’t? I heard a little goes a long way and I’m dying to try it! To think I waited up so late for the launch sale…

  • AtelierGal says:

    Gosh no, why is everyone saying that? My skin is not good, plus Mum bought all these CNY snacks and forces us to finish them. I’m having a minor breakout :(

    Speaking of red lipstick, check out Elizabeth Arden’s Ceramide Plump Perfect Lipstick in Perfect Currant

  • AtelierGal says:


    It really is! The other day I just stained my lips with the color, and finish off with tiny bit of gloss. I’ve got stares the entire time at Orchard. I was in a daring mood that day lol

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