This article was last updated on April 16, 2022
Oxblood, burgundy, merlot…whatever you call it, this distinctive, deep-red hue is having a major moment. While that’s all well and good on the fashion front, it’s not quite as simple to translate this tricky trend to your face. Is it now?
Well, to aid with just that, we asked makeup maestro Sara Glick to show us her secrets to wearing this dark and gothically gorgeous hue on your eyes, lips, and cheeks. “I think that burgundy is really having a comeback because women are feeling more comfortable being adventurous with their makeup,” says Glick. “Burgundy can be worn by anyone. Many women with darker skin tones look fantastic in it, while the palest of the pale can also pull it off. It’s the kind of color that can easily be worn if used moderately — with burgundy, a lot goes a long way.”
Read on to get the full scoop on fearlessly adding this bloody-good shade into your makeup routine.
“I love a strong lip and burgundy is one of the strongest,” says Glick. “It is a classic look — very old Hollywood — and it serves as a great alternative to the usual red lip. Some women find it hard to switch up things from their normal routines, but I have noticed that wearing a bright red lip has lost a little bit of its sparkle. It has become more mainstream and doesn’t convey the same rebelliousness as it once did. I think that is why this deeper richer color red has such a beautiful allure.” She adds that burgundy may be tough to wear if you have thinner lips as it draws most of the attention of the face to the mouth.
For this look, Glick lined the lips with Dior Contour Lip Pencil in Mysterious Plum to create a flawless shape. She then colored in lips withBuxom Big & Healthy Lip Stick in Shanghai. To create a little pop, she applied a tiny bit of gloss to the inner part of the top and bottom lips. “This creates a little depth and can be a fun alternative to the matte look,” she says.
Other burgundy lip hues Glick loves include Dior Sérum De Rouge Lip Treatment in Pum Serum,Illamasqua Lipstick in Growl, Shiseido Lacquer Rouge in Nocturne, Tom Ford Beauty Lip Color in Black Orchid, and Giorgio Armani Rouge D’Armani in 526.
“Wearing a burgundy eye can be fun and bring a little life to your look,” says Glick. “Usually, people say that they feel as though it makes them look ‘dead’ or ‘tired,’ but if done right, it can really make you pop.” According to Glick, the key to a good application is mixing the burgundy tones with other warm tones, like deep browns, greens, purples, or black. “You can wear it alone, without any lowlight or highlight shading, but this look only really works for the bold or in the magazines,” she cautions. “If you incorporate this color, thinking of it like a jewel tone, it doesn’t seem as scary.”
To get this sultry smoky eye, Glick swept Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow in Dark Red across the lid, extending the color to just above the crease. She then applied a dark brown and a black shadow on the outer corners of the eye and drew the color in through the crease to create depth. Using Nyx Jumbo Eye Pencil in Rust (which Glick says she really likes because it’s next to impossible to find an actual eyeliner that’s red — most makeup artists just wind up using lip liners because of this), the lined the top lash line, making sure to blend it well to create a softer look.
She then lined the bottom lid first with the burgundy pencil — making sure to pull it down just below the lash line — then went back over it with a black shadow right in the lash line. She applied another layer of burgundy on the top lid and added some gold shadow to the space right below the eyebrow and in the inner corners of the eyes to make sure the color popped, then finished up with a few coats of mascara.
A burgundy cheek “is a great opportunity to play down the eyes and lip,” says Glick. “I think a strong cheek should have one accompaniment, like just a lip or just an eye but both should be subtle and soft. The cheek will make its own statement and there is no need to compete with the other features of the face.” She adds that if you are going to do a full face of makeup, you should use a cream or powder blush: Liquids or stains can pick up your foundation and make it appear splotchy.
The best thing about focusing in on your cheek? It’s beyond simple. Glick started by prepping Taj’s skin with Epicuren Colostrum Cream to create a smooth, moisturized canvas and ensure the blush blended easily into the skin. “For this look, I made the cheek a bit more dramatic. I applied color to the cheekbones and swept it into the apples,” says Glick. She blended together Bare Escentuals BareMinerals Blush in Compassion and Amused to create the perfect burgundy flush. To give the look more drama, Glick added a highlighter above the cheekbones, directing it up and into the temples.
Photographed by Sunny Shokrae
Makeup by Sara Glick;
Hair by Andi Y;
Model Taj Alwan
Click HERE to read more from Refinery29.