Some people avoid flying and spiders, I'm afraid of red lipstick. A handful of my co-workers and friends swear by the crimson shade’s witchcraft that makes you feel polished when you’re running late in an Uber to the function or need a pick-me-up on a less than stellar day. But for me, a slick of red is the equivalent of wearing a scratchy wool sweater: I’m always conscious it’s on my lips and paranoid that the color’s migrated onto my skin or teeth.
There are a bunch of red lipsticks I’ve tried on and could cope with wearing, but I’ve never felt the ride-or-die connection to a single tube like the moment I swiped on Glossier’s Generation G Sheer Matte Lipstick in Zip ($18; glossier.com). Sheer and matte might seem like a makeup contradiction, but one coat of the color proves that there’s really no better way to describe the soft wash of buildable color it leaves on your lips.
Usually bold shades—especially of the matte variety—are praised for their staying power, but what I love about Glossier’s formula is how it looks when wears off. The shade starts off pigmented but as it settles in and you make it through the day’s coffees, it wears off evenly rendering scheduled touch-ups unnecessary. Basically the tube gives me the effortless popsicle-stained effect I’ve always dreamed of finding in a lipstick, but no previous formula ever quite lived up to my fantasy.
Consider my status as a red lip convert proof that you should never say never to a makeup shade.