There are a couple of things I'm wary of when it comes to makeup looks. I love a winged-eyeliner look, but I'm too nervous about my eyeliner application skills to try it on the regular. The same goes for a smoky eye—whenever I try it, it doesn't quite look right. And as much as I would like to have super-defined cheekbones, I don't contour that much because I feel very much like a poser. So in short, I keep my makeup pretty minimal, and only every now and then will I do a full face of makeup.
But the one thing I don't mind experimenting with, makeup-wise, is bright and bold lipstick. Because I'm a fan of the no-makeup makeup look, I really rely on a statement-making lipstick to make, well, a statement. I find that even just a swipe of a vibrant lip product can really amp up your look from zero to 100. And it's just so easy, which is perfect for someone like me who's kind of lazy when it comes to getting ready.
I'm really looking forward to updating my lipstick collection with some bold hues for this season. To me, summer is the perfect time to experiment with makeup. So I'm gravitating toward hot pinks, fiery reds, and cheery oranges.
For more inspiration, I tapped my Who What Wear fashion colleagues to get their favorite bright-lipstick recs. See their picks below, plus a few extras from beauty editor Courtney Higgs and me.
"There's so much to love about this lipstick I don't know where to start, but here we go: As implied by the name, this product is a bit sheer and more moisturizing than your average lipstick. This lends it to a slightly less 'done' look that still packs a punch of pigment. The Rituel de Fille founders (a trio of badass sisters based in Los Angeles) really know color. There is something about each shade that feels far from basic. My favorite color has been discontinued (sob!), but Bittersweet and Devil's Claw are great too. The brand is clean, and it discloses every single ingredient, something that's a bit of a rarity in the beauty world. I also like that this pick comes in a slim tube that doesn't take up too much space in my packed-to-the-brim makeup bag." — Kat Collings, editor in chief
"When it comes to lipstick, I very much like to take the J.Lo approach to things and keep my nude lip close to the chest. That being said, when I am feeling bolder, I love Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips Lipstick 2 in the Patsy Red shade. Not only does this bright red look good with my skin tone (which isn't always easy to find when you have melanin), but it also doesn't fade or clump like other lipsticks. It truly is my favorite bright-red lipstick." — Jasmine Fox-Suliaman, audience engagement editor
"I'm really not a bright-lipstick kind of person, but there's something about a good red lipstick that speaks to my soul. I can't get over this one from Violette. It’s described as 'the shade of red,' and it really is. It’s vivid and romantic and could give anyone that certain je ne sais quoi. I put it through the mask test as I stepped out to walk my dog after applying, and it didn’t transfer at all. In fact, I was still wearing it by dinnertime, and it held up through an entire meal! I think I’ve found my new date-night lip. That said, it's a true matte, so exfoliating and hydrating your lips ahead of time is super important if you want to avoid dry, flaky, crusty-feeling lips." — Courtney Higgs, beauty editor
"Here's another red lipstick that sets my soul on fire. It's an opaque liquid lipstick that applies like lipgloss but dries down to a plush, satin jolt of vibrant color. At first glance, I thought it might be too blue-red, but the color is absolutely perfect for my warm skin tone. I love that it's formulated with polymers meant to keep the lips hydrated and boost color intensity. They work!" — Higgs
"This coral-orange lipstick is my summertime go-to. I think it just looks so flattering on my skin. It's the right amount of orange, not too crazy, but still something different than the usual pinks and reds. Also, it's buildable. I might apply a light layer if I just want a subtle tint or put on more than one coat if I really want a statement lip." — Sarah Yang, THE/THIRTY managing editor
"I love this pink lipstick. It's a totally classic shade. This one has a velvety, matte finish and is so long-lasting I don't have to worry about reapplying a bunch of times during the day. I always feel so feminine and a little flirty when I wear this hue." — Yang
More Bright Lipsticks to Try
This bold red lipstick from Maybelline is just so rich and highly pigmented. It's a liquid lipstick that dries to a long-lasting matte finish.
And if you want something different from the pinks, reds, and oranges here, might we suggest this vivid purple? You get 10 hours of wear with this one.