Fall 2012 beauty is simple: It’s all about red lips. From Victoria Beckham to Nina Ricci, nearly every shade of red appeared on designer fall runways. But even though it’s the beauty trend of the season, this classic look is also a bold one that can scare off many women. So, we turned to makeup guru Katelyn Simkins, who created the face for 5280’s September fashion feature, for some tips to rock the red:

Pick the Right Shade

A good rule of thumb when picking the perfect shade of red is to contrast your skin’s coloring. For example, if you have skin with warm undertones, go with a cool tone, like a cranberry or any blue-red; if you have cool tones in your skin, stick with something on the warmer side, like a blood-orange red.

Get the Right Formulation

For mature women, feathering is the biggest problem, so using a lip liner really helps. Choose a waxy version like Too Faced‘s Borderline Anti-Feathering Lip Pencil ($18.50) to keep the color reigned in. Also avoid gloss; you’re better off with a product like Jane Iredale‘s Just Kissed Lip Plumper ($25; pictured) if you want a bit of a shine without bleed.

Pair with the Right Face

Generally, it’s a good idea to make one facial feature the “star” and have the rest play supporting roles. I love red lips with JUST mascara on the eyes, or—if you need a bit more oomph—try a thin swipe of classic black liquid eyeliner.

Bonus: Check out our slideshow to learn how to create the perfect red lip.