I am a total fan of red lipstick. The right color can whiten your teeth, and brighten your entire face. Is it scary to wear the first couple of times? Absolutely! Bright lips are an automatic, attention grabber, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. One thing you do have to keep in mind when it comes to red lips is, you're going to have to touch up at least once (depending on quality of product) during an eight hour day.
At the moment, I'm currently obsessed with Bite Beauty's high pigment pencil in pomegranate. The pencil size makes this intense color so much easier to apply without an over abundance of precision or clean up. The color is a fantastic, true red and the formula is between matte and glossy. It's kind of hard to explain; it's not super shiny, but it's not super matte. It's nourishing on your lips as well, so it doesn't dry out or take on that cracked look as the day goes on.
One key element to red lips is the balance among the rest of your face. Since your lips are the main focus, keep the rest of your features toned down. I tend to lean toward a more neutral blush and neutral eyes with a bit of drama to fit with my lips, but not completely over-powering either.
To achieve a balanced look, I opt for bright eyes with a bit of smoke in the outer corners and black eyeliner. After I apply eyeshadow primer, I start with Urban Decay eyeshadow in flow and place it all over my lid. Next, with a fluffy brush, I apply chase to my crease area. After that, I follow with another fluffy brush and apply m.i.a. Last, I go in with blackout on a pencil brush and apply only to the outer v of my eyes.
To finish off, I apply Marc Jacobs highliner in blacquer to both lash lines and add some of MAC's opulash mascara in bad, bad, black.
Palette shown is Urban Decay's 15 Anniversary Limited Edition (no longer available)
Bite Beauty High Pigment Pencil pomegranate
Marc Jacobs Highliner blacquer
MAC Opulash Mascara bad, bad, black
Urban Decay flow (not available, but sin is very similar)
Urban Decay m.i.a. (not available, but darkhorse is very similar)
Urban Decay blackout (available in single pot)
Affiliate links used, but all opinions are my own.