How Do I Choose the Best Makeup for Redheads?

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  • Written By: Lynelle Harmon
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 04 December 2019
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Red-haired individuals can follow the same basic makeup guidance as those with other hues of hair with a few exceptions. The best makeup for redheads begins with facial makeup, the shade of which will depend on whether the hair is naturally red, which normally includes a pale skin tone, or dyed red, in which case skin tone can be darker. Cheeks should be kept natural and color emphasis kept to either enhancing eye color or emphasizing lips. Earth tones should generally be avoided, but pinks or reds are fair game, though they're often thought to clash with red hair.

Makeup for redheads should start with flawless skin, which can be achieved from a combination of foundation, powder, and concealer. Redheads with naturally pale skin may need to turn to specialty department brands to find shades of foundation and powder that are pale enough to match their natural tone, while dyed redheads can typically find a match in any makeup line. Face products should be tested in artificial and natural light to ensure a perfect match, and the products should contain sunscreen protection when available.


A hint of blush warms up the pale cheeks of natural redheads. Shades of pink do the best to simulate a natural flush and thus won't clash with the hair. Pale redheads should use a light shade of pink, while darker skin tones can use a medium shade. Careful application is the key, using a proper blush makeup brush and working slowly. Heavy blush will create a clown-like effect.

Eye makeup for redheads depends on eye color, with green and blue eyes most common for natural redheads. Purples and pinks accentuate green eyes, while blue eyes are brought out by shades of purple, silver, and rose. Brown eyes work best with eye shadows and eyeliners in shades of purple, green, and blue.

Lips can be played up instead of eyes. A bold look can be achieved with matte lipstick or a richly-pigmented gloss to match the natural lip tones or in a shade darker. Lip stains or sheer gloss is better for a daytime or more natural look. Reds and pinks are unexpected shades of makeup for redheads, as they're traditionally thought to clash.

Earth tones are best avoided when selecting makeup for redheads. Neutral shades of brown and copper can wash out the complexion when compared to the hair. This includes eye shadow, lip color, and blush. If earth tones must be used, it's best to use them sparingly, such as with a brown eyeliner, and use the shade next to a more complementary color.


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