A Bold, Matte Lip

Nothing sets off a pair of sunglasses quite like a loud pout for me. I’m not one to play around with colour – experimentation in that forte is confined to lips and tips only – but I’ve been swatching around with textures, shades and trends of the former and came across something that just clicked into place. It’s not the most seasonal of discoveries, but paired with a parred down complexion and a some ‘Bans, a good matte textured bold lip is where it’s at. A single statement, that’s finish requires minimal upkeep and wins points on longevity without the tooth-smudging stress. Now we’re talking. Here’s three of my faves that I’ve been swiping on when the sunnies come out to play…

The Tango take on Red: NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Red Square. This is the pencil-formed product that set the matte ball rolling for me and is the one I’m sporting in the pictures above. It’s ridiculously easy to draw on, imparts the most gorgeous orange-toned red on the lips that I’ve found – think MAC Morange but a little less tangoed – and hangs around for aaaaaages. I usually struggle with lipstick smudging all over my teeth, but with this I don’t even have to do the whole ‘unattractive finger suck’, it just doesn’t move. The ultimate no-fuss lip for all.

The Classic: MAC Lipstick in Ruby Woo. I bloomin’ love this suits all rouge. Not too cool, or too warm I’ve yet to find someone who doesn’t look kick ass in this straight-up red shade. I also find this colour to mix really well with my other two picks – a bit of the NARS to add some orange into the blend or Illamasqua Immodest to ramp up a pinky undertone. It’s probably the most matte out of the three and requires a dollop and a half of By Terry Baume de Rose to be applied pre and post application but it’s worth it as trust me – this stuff does not budge.

The Smudged-out Pink: Illamasqua Lipstick in Immodest*. Are you sitting down for this one? Moi, in a Barbie-type pink? Yup. I initially tossed this to the back of my drawers, rejecting it as too overtly dollish for my tastes. But blended softly over the lip, and blotted in with your fingertips washes the lip with a girlie hued stain that actually looks pretty fun. Helpful hint: toss on with a BB cream and a dash of mascara to keep things looking flirty and fresh.

My regime for application when it comes to matte lippies is simple: slick on, blot off, reapply. Then it’s time to bask in the sun in your typically more spotted in winter lip choice; because sometimes it’s fun to break the beauty rules a little, right?

*PR Sample


  • Beth Shea

    Nothing better than a bright lip! Absolutely loving the NARS shade, but I think it might be time for me to finally cave and buy Ruby Woo!
    Great post 🙂 xx

  • Nic Daniels

    Yeah, i love the reds too!! Even better when you can find a lipstick that doesn’t smudge your teeth which is normally really frustrating for me because my teeth are quite large.

    From Nic

  • Janna

    Could I have some advice please 🙂 I’m very pale with medium-dark brown hair (and red undertones) and love matte lipsticks, but I’m afraid of colour and this post has inspired me, any suggestions of a bright matte colour? x

  • rosie_cumberlidge

    I need to invest in a good matte red, I only have cheapy drugstore ones. MAC Morange is at the top of my lipstick wishlist at the moment but I also need Ruby Woo in my life in a big way! My RayBans have got red on the inside so I definitely need a lip product to match for the summer :).


  • Guest

    I love matte lipsticks! They are great for every day wear.
    Great Post

  • Ambi Sud

    I bought MAC So Chaud earlier this year – a great, matte orangey red! So nice for summer!

    Ambi xx

    • Annie Tasker

      I second that 🙂

      • Ambi Sud

        It’s so pretty isn’t?! Everyone and their mother raves about Ruby Woo (and for good reason) but I just love So Chaud for summer! x

  • ta
  • Ellie Smith

    I have serious Ray Ban envy right now!! I love the looks of the NARS Red Square, i’ll give it a swatch next time I’m perusing Space NK, I hope it looks as lovely on me as it does on you! xx

  • Danielle Barbeau

    I’ve been LOVING matte lipsticks recently as well. I have NARS Dragon Girl, and Red Square is next on my list. Love the formulation, and even when you have a drink, it stays on! My other favourite is MAC Lady Danger.

  • celine
  • Zo Bloggs

    Oh how I wish I had your lovely skin tone so I could pull off looks like this *sighs*
    Zo x

  • I just started wearing red lipstick OUTSIDE! So fulfilling! Haha!

  • Ahhhh I love red lips and sunnies, you look gorgeous!


  • Ada

    It’s nice that it’s a trend, but I’m rocking a bright matte lip all day and all night ;D I love it almost every single day of the week and all year round. Looks great on you. 🙂

  • beautyandtheb

    I really want to try ruby woo, can’t believe I haven’t yet! I do love lady danger though as a matte red!

    B xx

  • Hollie Galvin

    I bet Ruby Woo looks great on you. I’m yet to own ruby woo but I do love Kate Moss matte lipstick in 110 for a neon matte red 🙂

  • Danielle

    I am bold lip junkie! Great post!
    – Danielle

  • bacardi chaser

    this suits you sooo much!

  • wow I love the Nars pencil. I am a sucker for a lip crayon at the moment, I think it stems from a childhood addiction to Crayolas 🙂 I have been eyeing up the Nars offering for a while and believe you may have just sold it to me!

  • Ooh Anna, this hue suits you so much! Inspired by this post as I got ready this morning, I’m currently sporting a blotted down and mattified Rimmel Apocalips in Stella. Noice. xx

  • Amy

    Bold coloured lips are me all over! I much prefer a bold lip to a dark smokey eye!

    Amy x

  • Brianna

    This post couldn’t have come at a better time! I woke up this morning thinking, “I should wear a red lip today!” and then after reading this post I decided to do it! 😛 I used Mac Viva Glam I though. These are good suggestions to add to my collection!

  • I love the bold matte lipsticks,in all possible strong colours, but i have a deep love for anything burgundy,and i think you lookkk gorgeous with the sunglasses pout!

  • thebeautymist

    I love the look of the Nars pencil:) x

  • Annie Tasker

    I absolutely love this look, it’s perfect too for ‘back to the office’ after bank holiday weekend! Looking forward to sporting this Tomorow with my tortoise shell sunnies from FC 🙂

    Annie @

  • allthingsheatherlee

    Looks amazing, awesome picks. I’m looking forward to giving the NARS Velvet Matte a shot for sure!

  • Anne

    What an amazing shade on you! Looks absolutely divine!

    I’m not usually a big fan of matte lip products but I will definitely check these Nars pencils!

    Thanks for sharing Anna!

    Kisses from Switzerland! xx

  • You look so beautiful with red lipstick <3

  • Kelly N

    I love me a good bold rep lip! Such an easy look – definitely agree with you there on the BB + mascara to keep it day time and fresh.

  • Wow that nars lip pencil looks stunning!

    jess xx

  • Caitie S

    Ahh I’ve been desperate to get my hands on ruby woo for ages! Think it’s time for me to finally treat myself!

  • Rachel Jones

    I absolutely adore Ruby Woo, but the NARS Lip pencil looks amazing on you. One for me to try, I think!
    Rach | Emerald Skies

  • Louisa

    I really want to try Ruby Woo. The NARS colour looks great on you!

    Louisa’s Notebook

  • Pippa Jones

    Love the mac colour! such a pretty colour! You look lovely with a red lip!

    Pipp xx

  • Clara Chetcuti

    The Nars colour looks so amazing on you! I MUST have it – it looks, and sounds, right up my street!

  • I can’t wait to try the Nars Lip Pencils! Red Square looks amazing, my only issue is I imagine them to be quite drying on your lips?

  • Ana

    I feel the same way about bold lips. My most favorite red right now is the Armani Rouge I think it’s #400…. I’m not sure. the numbers rubbed off the bottom of the tube but…. I did a blog post on it. I really like the color you’re wearing in the picture.


  • I like some of Kate Moss’ Rimmel lipstick have a similar effect to these. Love this!

    <3 Carolyn
    Simply Vera VERA WANG Giveaway

  • Aurora Ammy

    All three of these lipsticks are now on my wish list! XO