March 12, 2010

Milani The Perfect Red Lipstick Review and Swatches

Milani joins the long list of brands that have taken on the color changing lipstick and gloss world. Quite a few of ’em around now aren’t there? The new Milani Perfect Red Lipstick promises a single shade of red for all skin tones as it promises to adapt and become your perfect shade of red.

Does it work?

Could be!


If you have a yearning, burning need to own DuWop Private Red Lipstick, you can snag the Milani The Perfect Red Lipstick and actually go right ahead and call it a day. The products are almost identical in nature aside from Milani’s way more affordable price tag and in some cases superior formula.

Color changing? Yes, somewhat. It does adapt a tiny bit but pretty much stays a very, very vibrant shade of true red which I cannot easily pull off. My ideal red is more warmer, something in brick or maroon. I simply can’t go the clown red route and I fear the Perfect Red Lipstick and Private Red suffer the same problem, TOO red, too vibrant, too outrageous for me.

The formula is incredible! It’s really slick, really moisturizing, and glides onto lips seamlessly. If you’re wanting to sport some of Lady Gaga’s best lip looks where she has that BRIGHT red lipstick on, this will do the trick. In some cases the formula could be considered incredible where as in others it might be the cause of woe. One downfall and highlight is the shade stains lips red! You know how I laugh at “Lip and Eye Makeup Remover” and proceed to ask who the hell uses eye makeup remover on their lips? Well, you’ll need it with this. The formula is richly pigmented and will dye lips a crazy shade of red. This is both fab and not so fab as once it wears off you do need to touch up quickly to avoid looking rather strange. It could prove a pitfall or a blessing.

The packaging itself does not appeal to me in all honestly however I cannot deny that it has a shabby chic retro feel to it. It’s one of those old style gold cases that your grandmother might having laying around. In some ways the packaging fits the timeless beauty of red lipstick.

Overall, if you’re searching for that shade of incredibly red lipstick I’d highly suggest checking this out. I personally can’t pull the shade off without looking like a clown but I know many people who rock red hard, if you happen to be so lucky, this is a shade to try. As I mentioned it does adjust ever so slightly but not enough to suit my skin tone sadly.

Great formula, incredible value at less than $5, and pretty much one red lipstick you’ll prob love if you’re already a lover of red.

Count me impressed even though I didn’t like how it looked on.


Available now for a limited time at CVS. Grab it while the grabbing is good.

Anyone try?



Do share it!

Disclosure: The following item was purchased by me for review purposes (and because I like flinging my money at makeup products of any kind) on Musings of a Muse. For further information please see my FTC Guidelines or my Disclosure/Disclaimer posts.

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


  • Phyrra

    Hmm I love reds, but I hate stuff that stains my skin that I can’t get off. I actually tend to love using MAC Cherry Lip Pencil and a red lipglass.

  • Brandon

    I love to paint a red lip on someone lol Especially perfect a matte brown/red that looks like its straight outta the nineties xD

    I think if women are intimidated by red lipstick (or any other form of colorful, or new makeup) they should just pop in on their lips and wear it around the house while they are doing chores or something productive. And maybe every time they catch a glimpse of themselves in the mirror, they will get more comfortable each time 🙂

    these Milani shades look like great, and affordable ways to experiment. But Rimmel makes an AMAZING full coverage, creamy red lipstick as well called Alarm. Its one of the ones in the purple tubes with the slanted top, i don’t know what the ones in that range are called lol

  • linda

    Hi! I just picked this up today 🙂
    I love the case, feels very glamorous!
    The lipstick does go on incredibly smooth & covers beautifully. I’m not sure if it changed, but it does look nice on me and is def a keeper>

    • the Muse

      hey linda awesome 😀 glad to hear you’re lovin’! I wish it changed a little warmer on me than it would be perfect!

  • mercedes

    in that picture it does look a seriously pigmented red. I tend to stay away from red lipstick,it terrifys me with a capitol T! also eyeshadow frightens (im always afraid i will put on something terribly outrageous,and wierd looking) me as well unless it very muted,and nude looking.I bet you can pull off red lipstick,i mean come on,a girl as gorg as you can prob pull off anything!

    • the Muse

      you’re too kind mercedes *hugs* really bozo the clown lol me and bright red=FAIL 😀

  • Melissa

    Muse – I follow a few bloggers that cover makeup and what not but you are the funniest. You crack me up I love the light tone in your reviews. Some bloggers are just a little to serious. Lipstick is fun right? Anyways, The only other lip thing i love more than pink lip gloss is red lipstick. I’m blessed enough to rock just about any bold shade. I need this. I got the private red in a sephora kit and still have plenty left but ya know for $5 right? I foresee CVS on my list for the weekend. PS. hauled a couple of thingies from mac’s liberty london and debating on the quilt from target. Its not their fabric but their patterns for sure.

    • the Muse

      hey melissa aw shucks thanks hun! So glad you laugh some 😀 hells yes lipstick is fun! Sure we should laugh about it lol! You are SO lucky girl wish I could say the same! go today buy 1 get 1 50% yay! 😀 I haven’t hit up target yet but def WANTS 😀 MAC LOL failed to appeal sadly le sigh!

  • jones

    I WANT IT but they didnt have it at my walgreens =/ i dnt even wear red lipstick but it looks so retro like something marilyn monroe would whip out lol

    • the Muse

      true jones very retro 🙂 try cvs hun that’s where I found it 🙂

  • Hana

    From how you’re describing the formula, I really wish they’d do this in other colors. I’m afraid of wearing red lipstick. XD

  • Jennifer L.

    I absolutely love red lipsticks! Now I really want to try this out! Would you say this is more a of a blue-based red? I can’t really judge by photos.

    • the Muse

      hi karin I think you commented on the wrong post lol as I am not wearing the lipstick in a pic!?

    • the Muse

      aw shucks robyn thanks! I’ll try to rock it but it may be more along the lines of rocking it like bozo the clown lol!

  • MC

    I like retro packaging, but this one would make me feel like I am 80 years old if I pulled it out of my purse!!! The only true red I feel I can pull off is Russian Red Lipglass. Most red lipsticks just make me look (and feel) a bit to..ummm nice way to put this…like I should work a cheap brothel. >_<;

    • the Muse

      lol mc yes it does have that style of a vintage feel 🙂 LOL!!!!!! me it’s more bozo the clown look!

  • Queen of Mayhem

    Hm, I just bought a red lipstick from Kevyn Aucoin. I’m not much of a lipstick/makeup wearer but I find the formula amazing! I think the colour is similar to that of this product… so I’m curious to try it. I just wonder if I can pull of the colour. haha

    • the Muse

      hey queen! worth a try at this price 😀 I’m not good with such vibrant reds sadly le sigh!

  • Jess

    I’m the same way: I need a deeper, more brick red….Revlon’s Super Lustrous lipstick in Garnet was AMAZING!!! Of course, it’s no longer sold…sigh.

    • the Muse

      mmmmmmmm jess sounds nice I think I hear the cruel song of E-bay calling me 😀

  • Shannon

    Just an FYI CVS has Milani BOGO 50% off this week. So after learning about this lipstick from you Muse I picked it up. Very nice formula & a good shade… now I doubt I’ll ever have the guts to leave the house in it (red scares me too), but glad I quenched the urge to buy DuWop private red and for WAY cheaper.

    And the stain it leaves reminded me a bit of stilla stain in Cherry…? No? I didn’t find the stain to be too terrible.

    • the Muse

      thanks shannon good news! LOL me too. It’s gorgeous and identical to DuWop Private Red and agreed WAY cheaper 😀 No, not terrible at all and with a little gloss on top very flattering 😀

  • Gabriela

    Thanks for the review! This lipstick looks great. However I don`t dare to wear this colour.

  • Tammy

    I have this & I don’t have any problems taking it off….weird!!

    I like this color, but like you said it can be kind of hard to pull off.

    • the Muse

      tammy it stains my lips red 😀 so I def need remover to get it all off 😀 but yea..sigh…it’s a bit too red for me, lovely but way too red!

  • Charmaine

    Hiya Iz!
    I grabbed this stuff when I saw it, and I have the EXACT same problem as you [bright red + me = clown], lol! I totally 2nd your entire review, I, too, looooove the slick n creamy feel, the price can’t be beat, but the shade, oh woe is us! lmao
    ok I’m done
    <3 ya!!!!

    • the Muse

      charmaine SAME thing! It’s such a beautiful formula and the price can’t be beat but woe…the color is so wrong for me 😀

      Love ya doll *hugs*

  • Denisse

    I bought this hoping it would adapt to my fair skin- it did not. It does not change at all – it stays the same garrish bright red mess as in the tube. Do NOT waste your money on this. I’m currently trying to find a contact number for the company to see if I can get my money back.

    • the Muse

      sorry to hear it denisse! It def didn’t change on me sadly either however I didn’t think it was a complete waste of Monday as the formula is not bad at all if you can sport such a vibrant shade of red. The only thing that bothered me was it was TOO red but if I could have pulled it off I’d prob have been quite happy with the product 😀

  • CatG

    I think I have two reds by Milani and I have been happy with them! Milani knows how to make a good red 🙂

  • malinda jane

    I wanted this when I saw the super glam vintage-inspired tube, but when I’m wearing a bold lip like a red I prefer a more matte finish so I don’t have to worry about it smearing or migrating all over my face. I’m not scared of wearing any shade on my lips, but I don’t like maintenance of something that emollient. I’ll have to pass. Bummer.