Are you comfortable wearing lipstick? I have a few girlfriends who look AMAZING in it (Jess, for one, rocks a red lip like nobody’s business) but I’ve always been a little hesitant even though I love the look. When several readers requested more beauty content and Nordstrom asked me to share their fall lipsticks on Design Darling, I figured the stars had aligned and it was high time I get over my fear of walking out the door with a painted pout. So I enlisted (who else?) my bestie Amy‘s second opinion and we spent an afternoon trying to figure out the best lipsticks for redheads before heading out for margaritas. I definitely found a couple new favorites but I’ll let you all be the judge!

design darling lipstick

Tory Burch cosmetic case

chanel extatique

Chanel Rouge Allure Luminous Intense lip colour in “Extatique”  //  Joie blouse  //  Michael Kors double strap leather watch

fresh sugar tint rose

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15 in “Rose”

red lipstick for redheads

NARS lipstick in “Jungle Red”

shiseido ophelia

Shiseido Lacquer Rouge Lipstick in “Ophelia”

tom ford flamingo lipstick

Tom Ford lip color in “Flamingo”  //  Jouer cheek tint in “Peony”

ysl encre rose lip gloss

YSL Rouge Pur Couture glossy stain in “Encre Rose”

Here’s a little cheat sheet to help you keep them straight:

best lipstick for red hair

Pretty packaging aside, I think the two I’ll wear the most are NARS “Jungle Red” (I’m already contemplating more colors) and Shiseido “Ophelia.” The first is the only red lipstick I’ve found that looks good on a redhead (with the smoothest application) and the second is a great pink gloss for days when I’m feeling something a little fancier than chapstick. (Though if you’re a chapstick devotee, I have a feeling you’ll really like the Fresh tint!) It was really fun to step outside my comfort zone and get in touch with my inner girly girl. I can’t wait to do a little more experimenting in Nordstrom’s beauty department (I decided to pick up this moisturizer as well so I’ll report back on that!). I’d love to know your favorite lipsticks in the comments!

*Thank you to Amy Stone for the photos and to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post!


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  1. I love Sue Devitt’s Balanced Sheer lipstick in Hollywood. It’s such a pretty color that works for any skin tone. Plus, hydration! I don’t have to wear Chapstick with it. It’s great. Also, any product that gets 4.7/5 on MUA is A+ in my book.

  2. I love Mac Pink Nouveau, it’s such a pretty pink! 🙂 I want Rebel next, it’s a pretty dark purple but will be fun for Fall, I love how I can experiment with color using lipstick! 🙂

  3. I love all of these on you, Mackenzie! I am a redhead as well, and have long been on the hunt for a good red. I can’t wait to try out Nars Jungle Red!

  4. Being a redhead, I’ll have to try your recommendation for the Nars Jungle Red! I agree, it’s impossible to find a red lipstick that works for gingers!

  5. I feel the EXACT same way! Love the way lipstick looks on other people, but when I put it on, I somehow feel like a little girl playing dress up. I’m going to attempt to get over my fear as well. You look fab in the Jungle Red. I just purchased NARS’ new Audacious Lipstick in Annabella–what they call a “poppy red.” Wish me luck!

  6. I love this post. I never wear makeup and this is inspiring me to pick some new products. I also love the joie too you’re wearing, but can’t find it online. Do you know the name of the shirt? Thanks!

      1. Thanks! You always find the cutest clothes 🙂 do you think you’ll post another piece on good (cheap) skinny jeans soon? I got the old navy ones you keep wearing in your posts, but I’m nervous the blue dye is going to rub off. Any other cute skinnies under $100 you suggest?

  7. Aw, love!!! You should definitely rock lipstick more often. I love NARS for their color selections, Niagara is my everyday go-to, and I also like Funny Face for a fun pink. Their matte are great, too, I think you’d like Carthage a lot! I have a few YSL I wear pretty often but my new favorite thing is BITE Beauty’s….I picked up Violet a few weeks ago and am SO in love with the color, wear and consistency!!

    Blonde in this City

  8. Like you, I’ve just started to get on the lipstick bandwagon. So far I’ve only found one that I truly LOVE on me but I think I need to devote some more time to experiment (Nordstrom here I come)! I absolute love how the NARS looks on you as well as the Tom Ford! This was definitely to kick in the butt that I needed to start experimenting more with lipstick!

  9. I’ve always loved lipstick. I remember watching my mom and grandma putting it on, all dolled up to the nines before a big evening out and thinkng that it was just so glamorous. Chanel is by far my favorite, but if I’m wanting something trendy I’ll go to MAC. Surprisingly, Cover Girl has some nice options as well. Two good investments for lipstick lovers: A good lip brush and MAC’s Prime & Prep balm, which really does help make your lipstick stay on longer!

  10. Loving the lipstick on you, Mackenzie! Such a great post. I am a big believer in lipstick and wear it every day. My favourite shade is Show Orchid by Mac – it’s the perfect pink! You should try it!

  11. Mackenzie–I think the pink shades look great on you! Have you ever tried NARS Schiap? I, too, love the look of a red lip but have a hard time wearing it myself. I initially tried the Velvet Matte Pencil in Red Square, which I think looks amazing on others, but was just too jarring on me. I also realized that I don’t like a matte lip on myself. So I recently tried NARS Sheer Lipstick in Manhunt which I absolutely love. It’s a poppy red, so it’s warm and has a little pink in it. I am brunette and have light olive skin but I do think it would work on a redhead. I liked the formula so much that I recently picked up the shade Gipsy–more of a berry red for fall.

    On most days, I wear the Fresh Sugar tints–I own Rose, Passion, and Plum and love them all. They don’t wear for very long if you’re eating and drinking but they’re so moisturizing and I don’t need a mirror to apply. Perfect for keeping in your desk drawer.

    I look forward to more beauty posts!