Ashley Benson’s Wine Lip Is Almost Better Than Merlot — Almost

Photo: Ben Gabbe/Getty Images.
Ashley Benson called, and she says it's time to give your red lipstick a break. Luckily, the actress has a killer replacement for us all: matte merlot. Red carpet makeup artist Hung Vanngo gave the Pretty Little Liars actress the deep, moody lip for PaleyFest, a media event in New York City on Sunday. Paired with shiny, sharply parted locks from hairstylist Tommy Buckett, the makeup was modern, fresh, and perfect for fall. Want to score the look at home? Good news — it's actually quite simple to re-create. First, select a super-matte formula that won't budge, no matter what. Just like with a dark nail color, precision is required. We suggest Troy Surratt's Automatique Lip Crayon in Mahogany; it's a dead ringer for Benson's color, it's easy to apply, and it won't budge.

The trick to pulling off a wine lip? Contour and shimmery eyeshadow.

A lip color this dark can zap all the life from your skin, so take note. Warm up your complexion with powder, foundation, or bronzer a few shades darker than your everyday formula. How? Apply your regular makeup, and then apply the darker hue like contour: along your hairline, under your cheekbones, under your jawline, and over the nose and chin. Then, follow with blush in the same color family as your lip color, applied under your cheekbones, like contour. Tarte's Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Exposed will work on fair skin, and Dazzled is perfect for darker complexions.

For the eyes, use a simple, shimmery shadow to enliven your gaze. Using a small, stiff brush, press a creamy gold shadow all around the top and bottom lashline before adding a few coats of mascara. Try Dior Diorshow Fusion Mono Long-Wear Professional Mirror-Shine Eyeshadow in Chimère or Maybelline's shadow in Bad To The Bronze. Unless you're going for more of a Fairuza Balk in The Craft effect (in which case, more power to you), skip the eyeliner and let your lips do the talking. Our condolences to your red lipstick.

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