His face covered with red lead, he would lead a clumsy dance.
(W. Beare, The Roman Stage, ch. 2)
…where anxiety and dysmorphia thrived symbiotically with the serried ranks of beauticians, cosmeticians, chemists, and the nail salons, whose bright windows presented a kind of colonialist tableau: small, deft Asian women working tirelessly on the long white feet of their blonde customers, painting and burnishing their pink toenails up to a violent and barbarous red…
(Elias Greig, ‘The whale ghosts’, Contrappasso)
Since carboxyhaemoglobin has a characteristic cherry-red hue—Götz, or it could be Meyer, always clicks his tongue when referring to cherries—these asphyxiated victims do not turn blue as others do, rather their skin acquires a pinkish tinge and their lips turn bright red. This explains why the Serbian prisoners are thinking: ‘Lipstick’ as the first heap of corpses tumbles towards them.
(David Albahari, Götz and Meyer, tr. Ellen Elias-Bursać)
She was a small, pale-faced girl with long red hair. There is a photo of her taken at a party given by Lillian Roxon and she could have come straight from the social pages of the Women’s Weekly: hair smoothly pulled back from her face and secured at the nape of her neck, dark-red lipstick, earrings, nail polish and a stylish scarf knotted at her throat.
(Anne Coombs, Sex and Anarchy 5)
The ladies of his court – and plenty of the men too – adapted their maquillage to take advantage of artificial lighting to draw attention to their rosy cheeks, white bosoms, jet black eyebrows and scarlet lips.
(Tim Blanning ‘The reinvention of the night’, Times Literary Supplement, Sep. 2011)