French red lipsticks have become my go-to beauty product within the last year for many reasons. Besides the fact, they are synonymous with the sophisticated but effortless French aesthetic, they are a beautiful and simple way to elevate your style.
You can easily change an entire look based on the lipstick shade you are wearing. Personally, I love a simple top with denim and nothing else but red lips.
Red lipsticks aren’t anything out of the ordinary by any means but over time the French have taken red lipstick to a whole new level. Think about all the times you’ve seen a picture of a French woman and she’s wearing a bright red lip. Or all the articles you’ve read talking about how to get that perfect French pout.
There are many different shades of red lipsticks to choose from and knowing which one to wear, and which one is the perfect red, might seem overwhelming. Over the year I’ve tried out many French red shades and there are several which have become my daily staple and are part of my French beauty routine.
Finding the perfect red can sometimes be challenging because every shade has different undertones and knowing which one works with your skin tone is key. I have learned it’s best to try one you gravitate towards. It also helps to have a friendly face at the lipstick counter who can help you decide.
I’ve rounded up 10 iconic French red lipstick shades and ones I recommend. The colors listed here aren’t exclusively French brands but ones that will give you that perfect red lip. It’s a personal decision whether you want to add a lip pencil or not to your lipstick.
10 Best French Red Lipsticks
CHANEL Rouge Coco Bloom No.140 ALIVE
This shade of the CHANEL Rouge Coco Bloom, ALIVE, has become my favorite shade to this point. This is a shade I wear the most and honestly the one I receive the most questions and compliments about.
It has a high-shine finish and looks vibrant but not overpowering when worn. I don’t personally wear a lip liner with this color but it does last quite a long time. I’ve even drank coffee and water and it’s stayed on for the most part.
CHANEL Rouge Allure No. 99 PIRATE
The Rouge Allure, PIRATE, is a new shade to me and one of Chanel’s iconic, classic red lipsticks. Several readers have told me, this is their favorite shade to wear.
Pirate is vibrant and luminous and gives a deep, radiant, satin color. For some, I could see this being more of an evening color. You can apply this directly to your lips or if using a lip pencil, apply the lipstick with a brush.
CHANEL Les Beiges Healthy Glow INTENSE
The Les Beiges Healthy Glow, INTENSE, is actually more of a lightweight lip balm. It’s incredibly hydrating and has an instantly radiant effect.
You could actually wear this under another lipstick as a moisturizing base due to the vitamin E and Moringa butter it contains. I like to wear this shade on those days when I don’t necessarily want something vibrant but still want to have some color on my lips.
Sisley Phyto Rouge No. 41 Sheer Red Love
The Sisley Phyto Rouge, Sheer Red Love, is the first red lipstick I actually bought in Paris from Le Bon Marche. It only seemed appropriate to buy red lipstick in Paris.
This color actually has a bit more of a red/orange undertone on me but is also very glossy and pretty. However, this just shows that shades look different on every skin tone. It does feel amazing on though and contains Hyaluronic Acid and Konjac Microspheres to help lips look plum and soft.
Dior Rouge Dior No. 999 Velvet
Dior Rouge 999 is one of the brand’s most iconic shades which comes in 4 different finishes: Satin, Matte, Metallic, and Velvet. The packaging also comes in a refillable option as well which is quite nice.
For me, I don’t think the color lasts on me as long as the CHANEL shades but that’s just me. I have this color in the metallic finish, which is a bit more glossy. This shade also pulls a more orange-red undertone for me. I prefer to wear this one more in summer when I have a little color.
CHANEL Rouge Coco No. 444 Gabrielle
CHANEL Rouge, GABRIELLE, is another iconic best French red lipstick shade of all time. It provides beautiful full coverage color with a creamy and lightweight finish. The vibrant hue is actually inspired by artists, close friends, and lovers of Gabrielle Chanel, who called her, “Coco.”
The formula of this shade, which is comprised of 24 shades, includes 3 vegetable waxes to provide ultimate hydration and nourishment. You can either apply it directly to your lips or if you want an accentuated lip then follow up with a lip pencil.
YSL Rouge Pur Couture Lipstick in Le Rouge
YSL Rouge in Le Rouge is one of the brand’s iconic crimson shades in a satin finish. The shade is presented in a beautiful gold case with the brand’s signature logo.
You can apply directly to your lips or use a lip brush for greater application. Reviews say this is the most pigmented red lipstick they’ve owned.
Hermès Rouge Hermès Satin No. 64 Rouge Casaque
Hermès No. 64 Rouge Casaque, a radiant red from the brand inspired by garments worn by jockeys. The brand does more than just produce those famous orange boxes.
Plus, the lipstick container is gorgeous. This red is a matte finish which helps to provide intense and long-lasting color throughout the day.
Guerlain Rouge G No.214
Guerlain Rouge G No. 214 Satin, is the iconic shade for this brand. The shade comes in 3 different finishes, satin, sheer shine, and matte. You can also customize your lipstick case which is sold separately.
MAC Ruby Woo
This MAC Ruby Woo is actually a cult shade and celebrity favorite among many famous French girls as well. It’s also the brand’s most iconic shade as well. It has a matte finish with minimal to no shine. So, if you are a no-shine girl, then this is the perfect shade for you.
- CHANEL Rouge Coco Bloom, ALIVE
- CHANEL The Rouge Allure, PIRATE
- CHANEL Les Beiges Healthy Glow, INTENSE
- Sisley Phyto Rouge, Sheer Red Love
- Dior Rouge 999
- CHANEL Rouge, GABRIELLE
- YSL Rouge in Le Rouge
- Hermès No. 64 Rouge Casaque
- Guerlain Rouge G No. 214 Satin
- MAC Ruby Woo
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