20 Best Red Lipsticks For Indian Skin Tones

Make-up is supposed to be fun. What’s the point of putting on make-up if you’re going to play it safe and stick to the same old looks? Which brings me to the colour red: I know a lot of women who are intimidated by it. Bold red lips are so empowering — just like that heady feeling you get when you wear high heels — and nothing spells confidence better than a strong red pout.

if you’re not ready to commit to a dark colour, experiment with sheer formulas first. You can gradually move on to a deeper red once you’re comfortable. Later on, you can even start mixing different shades to make your very own personalised shade of red. Trust me, once you give it a go, you’ll have more than one red lipstick in your arsenal for different moods and occasions!

One question I’m often asked is, “Can I wear red lipstick if I have dark skin?” Of course, you can! Red is a classic colour for a reason: it looks good on EVERYONE. You just have to find the one that’s right for your complexion. Here are 20 of the best red lipsticks that are worth giving a try.


Maybelline Colorsensational Lipstick Fatal Red_Hauterfly

1. Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick – Fatal Red (Rs 340)
A warm red that is flattering on every Indian tone, Maybelline’s Fatal Red is a gorgeous, glossy red. Its creamy, smooth texture stays put for over 3 hours, and leaves a lovely pinkish tint as it fades.


Loreal Paris Color Riche Red Passion_Hauterfly

2. L’Oréal Paris Color Riche – Red Passion (Rs 720) 

This deep red has a hint of shimmer that suits almost every complexion, although it might look a tad too bright on fair skin. However, this should not deter fair-skinned girls from wearing this lustrous lipstick, which lasts upto 5 hours without leaving a tint. An added bonus is that it is hydrating, as it is enriched with Vitamin E and omega-3 oils.


MAC Russian Red_Hauterfly

3. MAC – Russian Red (Rs 2,100)

A classic red shade with blue undertones, this super popular MAC lipstick is almost always sold out. This deep red colour flatters nearly every skin tone, making it perfect for Indian complexions. It has a creamy texture and is not drying, even though it has a matte finish. It lasts a good 5-6 hours without bleeding or settling into fine lines.


Chanel Rouge Allure Luminous Satin Lip Color Pirate_Hauterfly

4. Chanel Rouge Allure Luminous Satin Lip Color – Pirate (Rs 2,550)

This blue-toned red complements warmer skin tones and looks great on mature women. Intensely pigmented, the lipstick may look shimmery in the tube, but glides on to a satiny finish on  the lips. It’s both long-lasting as well as hydrating.


MAC Ruby Woo_Hauterfly

5. MAC – Ruby Woo (Rs 1,500)

No red lipstick list is complete without MAC’s Ruby Woo in it. If you want your lips to make an entry before you, Ruby Woo is what you need. This pop red colour can be worn by anyone, no matter your skin tone. It is highly pigmented and stays put for at least 6 hours. However, your lips might need a little lip balm after a few hours because it is a really matte formula. Since it is a blue-based red, it makes your teeth look whiter. #Win!


NARS Heat Wave_Hauterfly

6. NARS Semi Matte Lipstick – Heat Wave (Rs 2,536)

NARS Heat Wave is like the subtle sister of MAC’s Lady Danger. A velvety orange red, it has the ability to brighten your face without looking OTT. It is a semi-matte lipstick, which means it doesn’t fade, bleed or settle into fine lines. It is pigmented and creamy enough to apply without tugging.


Yves Saint Laurent Glossy Stain in Rouge Laque_Hauterfly

7. Yves Saint Laurent Glossy Stain – Rouge Laque (Rs 2,400 approx)

Glossy stains are a category to themselves. They aren’t lipsticks, nor are they lip glosses. They are lip stains in a glossy finish. The liquid consistency may seem sticky on application, but it feels better within five minutes later and leaves you with luscious, cherry-red lips. It can last up to four hours. This shade can look a little overwhelming on fair-skinned girls, and is best for evening wear thanks to its intensely glossy finish.


Nars Audacious Lipstick in Rita_Hauterfly

8. Nars Audacious Lipstick – Rita (Rs Rs 2,069)

This new line of lipsticks from Nars is absolutely phenomenal — long-lasting, smooth, saturated and comfortable to wear. It’s the kind of lipstick that make you realise that sometimes splurging on make-up can be worth it. Rita is a gorgeous scarlet that really pops on medium-tone complexions.


Bobbi Brown Rich Lip Color SPF 12 – Old Hollywood_Hauterfly

9. Bobbi Brown Rich Lip Color SPF 12 – Old Hollywood (Rs 2,100)

What if I tell you that you can have an intensely pigmented, cherry red lipstick that lasts 6-8 hours without budging, transferring, bleeding, or drying out your lips? Incredible, ins’t it? Old Hollywood from Bobbi Brown is all of the above. The blue-based red is creamy yet lightweight, and provides full coverage in a single swipe. It’s pretty similar to MAC’s Russian Red but isn’t as bright.


Chambor Powder Matte Lipstick in Rubis Rouge_Hauterfly

10. Chambor Powder Matte Lipstick in Rubis Rouge (Rs 535)

A tomato red colour, Rubis Rouge has orange undertones and comes in a matte formula. A single swipe will not look as pigmented as the red in the tube, but it can definitely be worn as tint during the day. It has a buildable formula and two swipes give off a fabulous retro vibe. It lasts for about four hours. The only downside is that it transfers a lot.


Inglot Freedom System Lipstick 82_Hauterfly

11. Inglot Freedom System Lipstick Square – #82 (Rs 450)

The Ingot Lipstick Square ins shade 82 is a lovely pink-hued red that’s best suited for red lipstick virgins. It goes on smoothly, fades evenly and leaves a beautiful tint. It lasts about three-four hours and is glossy without looking OTT. Unlike a lot of red lipsticks, this one doesn’t dry out your lips. Skip the lip brush and put it on with your fingers if you only want a hint of colour.


Colorbar Velvet Matte Lipstick Hearts And Tarts_Hauterfly

12. Colorbar Velvet Matte Lipstick – Hearts And Tarts (Rs 288)

A warm, bright red lipstick, Hearts and Tarts has orange undertones. Although it’s a matte formula, it has a velvety smooth texture. It smudges quite a bit so you need to be careful after application, but it has an amazing staying power. It fades away after 5-6 hours of wear without settling in fine lines. It looks best on people with mid-tone complexions.


13. Colorbar Velvet Matte Lipstick – Hot Hot Hot (Rs 299)

It is very difficult to find a bright red colour that doesn’t scream for attention. Hot Hot Hot is one such lipstick that instantly brightens your face, and that’s not even the best part. It suits every complexion and undertone, which is a tall order from a drugstore brand. Although it’s from the Velvet Matte range, it glides on without an effort and looks slightly glossy. The only downside is that it smudges a lot. But it’s nothing a translucent powder can’t fix.


Guerlain Rouge G Jewel Lipstick Compact Garconne_Hauterfly

14. Guerlain Rouge G Jewel Lipstick Compact – Garconne (Rs 3,271)

A classic glossy red, Garconne is not your regular bright red lipstick. More on the muted side, it is a medium-dark red with pronounced blue undertones. Just one stroke is enough to get a fully opaque colour. It is soft and creamy and lasts a good six hours without making lips feel dry.


Deborah Atomic Red Matte Lipsticks 05_Hauterfly

15. Deborah Atomic Red Matte Lipstick – #05 (Rs 625)

Deborah Atomic Red in shade 05 is a neutral red with equal pigments of orange and blue in it. It goes on creamy but is a matte formula that easily lasts four-five hours. The pigmentation is amazing and you could say it is the duller cousin of Ruby Woo.


L'Oreal Paris Collection Star Pure Brick (Aishwarya Rai) Lipstick_Hauterfly

16. L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Star Red – Pure Brick (Rs 796)

Pure Brick is an insanely gorgeous earthy red; the kind that is powerful without being overwhelming. It is a brownish red shade with orange undertones, it looks smashing on Indian skin. It goes on smoothly and settles into a comfortable matte finish. It lasts up to seven hours without any touch-ups. You might need a touch of clear lip balm after a few hours if you have dry lips though.


Maybelline 14 Hr Non Stop Red_Hauterfly

17. Maybelline 14 Hr Lipstick – Non Stop Red (Rs 460)

So you don’t want to err on the side of caution every single time. While muted reds are great for the day or at work, you might want a bright pop of red on your lips for a night out. Non Stop Red is what I would call a party-appropriate red. It is neon tone and stays put for six hours and even survives heavy meals. What’s even better is that it fades evenly, leaving a pleasant red tint.


Maybelline Bold Matte – Mat 4_Hauterfly

18. Maybelline Color Sensational Bold Matte Lipstick – Mat 4 (Rs 425)

Mat 4 is a bright coral red. One swipe gives a mere hint of colour, which works well for people who aren’t comfortable wearing bright shades. You’ll need two to three swipes for fully pigmented colour. The staying power is four hours and although it is a matte formula, it looks glossy and doesn’t settle into fine lines.


Lakme Absolute Sculpt Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick - Red Rush_Hauterfly

19. Lakmé Absolute Hi-Definition Matte Lipstick – Red Rush (Rs 680)

A bright red with orange undertones, Red Rush is soft and creamy and isn’t a neon shade even though it looks that way in the tube. Its velvety-matte texture is extremely pigmented and lightweight, and lasts a good six hours without bleeding or feathering.


Topshop Hazard_Hauterfly

20. Topshop – Lips In Hazard (Rs 800 approx)

Toyshop’s Hazard is a retro bright red. It’s the kind of red you can wear and then forget about because once applied, it won’t budge or transfer for a good five hours. It looks creamy, but it is a matte lipstick. However, it does not dry out lips like most mattes tend to do.

Hauterfly Staff

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