Red lips, like fire, are hard to contain. They’re also hard to resist. Every gal I’ve ever known has wanted to wear red lips at one time or another. Even my staunchly anti-makeup BFF Cindy, who will get in her car and drive 50 miles away from me if I approach her with a lip brush, craves crimson sometimes.
One trick to controlling the fiery power that is red is containing it within a boundary, like by lining the edges of your lips with lip liner. For a defined, distinct boundary around your red, use a liner shade slightly darker than the red lipstick you plan to apply, then fill your lips with the same liner, except for the middle of your top and bottom lips (to create subtle variations between the color in that middle area and the other parts of your lips for extra dimension).
Now, soften any harsh edges with a lip brush, while keeping that open area in the middle of your lips clear for the next step: your lipstick.