I often talk about adding more color to your wardrobe.

One really fabulous color to add is red. The color of love.

In this article I will show you how to wear red in many different ways and we will also show you how you can find your right shade of red.

How to wear red

The color red is especially good for women with a warm skin tone like myself, as it brightens up your complexion and makes you shine even more.

However, even if you have a cooler skin tone, you can still wear this color and look amazing.

There are many ways to wear red.

Red makes an impact. When you wear red, people will notice you. Red is also a very versatile color. Easy to combine with black, white, blue, camel and so many other colors.

I’m growing ever more fond of red and have learned to embrace the color for myself.

You can can wear red in a subtle way by wearing a red accessory or you can make a bolder statement with the color. Whatever your comfort zone with the color red, there is a way to add this color to your wardrobe for everyone.

Let’s explore all the different ways on how you can wear red!

Wearing a bold color like red with just one other color is your easiest option and one of the nicest and easiest options by far is to pair it with white. It’s also one of my favorite combinations.

Wearing a red top

Wearing a red top is my most used choice for wearing red. Nothing brightens my face and makes me come more alive than wearing red close to my face. I have several red tops in several colors that I wear with both pants and skirts.

Halogen red top | 40plusstyle.com

Halogen lace and crepe top

The pleated red top below is great at hiding the belly and can be worn on its won or with a jacket.pleated red top | 40plusstyle.com

EIMIN pleated red top

Wearing a printed red top

If full on red is too much for you you can consider a printed top that includes red to soften the look. This blouse comes in several prints and also in solid red.

Printed red blouse | 40plusstyle.com

Treasure & Bond printed blouse

Wearing a red dress

A red dress makes a statement on its own. This versatile piece will look great with the right statement necklace. But it can also be worn over skinnies and leggings.

Chelsea28 shift dress

Wearing red as an accessory

If you’d like to include red as part of your style but want to do it in a subtle way, red accessories are the way to go.

Red add a bit of polish to your look and red shoes can each outfit a lift. These shoes are stylish and comofrtable.

red shoes


A red bag can give an otherwise monochrome or neutral outfit a lift. This clutch bag that can also be worn over your shoulders is the perfect accessory.

Michael Kors leather envelope clutch

Are you looking for more creative ideas on how to wear red?

If I like to get more ideas on how to combine a certain color and create really interesting combinations, I go to colourlovers. This tool allows you to see many color palettes immediately and will give you lots of ideas. Just search for red in the colour palettes search box and you will instantly get lots of different options.

Here are some great color combinations I found.

Color combinations for wearing burgundy or marsala | 40plusstyle.com

Another way to get inspiration for a great color palette or the colors for your outfit is to look at an image that you love. I was struck by this image from Yoox. This image actually inspired this article!

Wearing red with peach and orange | 40plusstyle.com

I just LOVE this color combination and feel that it’s the most current and hip way to wear red right now. So I took this picture into Colourlovers and created a unique color palette from this image.

a color palette for wearing red with peach | 40plusstyle.com

This color palette is the main inspiration for the shopping options I will give you today as I feel this combination looks chic, modern and special. I’m very tempted by many of these items, but I actually think I have the building blocks available in my closet to create this look, so stay tuned!

how to wear red with peach and orange | 40plusstyle.com

Lots more examples on how to wear red

Red with white

A loose cropped red top from Stella Carakasi which you can layer with tops underneath.

More details on this look. 

Red and white outfit looks | 40plusstyle.com

A refreshing red and white look for spring and summer.

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You can also wear this color combination during transitional weather.

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Stylish women bloggers over 40 and how to style wide legged pants | 40plusstyle.com

With wide leg cropped pants.

More details on this look here.

How to wear red with white - donna karen red skirt | 40plusstyle.com

Red and white looks chic and understated. If you don’t want too much red close to your face, combine it with a white top. This is one of my favorite skirts and it combines with a lot of my tops like this white top from CK Calvin Klein.

More details on this look.

White capris with a red top | 40plusstyle.com

You can do the reverse if you do like to have red close to your face as I do as it brightens up my complexion. Same sophistication, just slightly different.

More details on this look.

wide leg white trousers with a red and white striped shirt | 40plusstyle.com

White and red works well in a print too.

More details on this look.

White dress with red accessories | 40plusstyle.com

Red is the perfect color to make a white dress more interesting and vibrant.

More details on this look.

how to wear a short dress over pants - red top and white pants | 40plustyle.com

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For more glamour add a bit of gold into the mix!

How to wear red | combine with white! | 40plusstyle.com

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How to wear red on holiday| 40plusstyle.com

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Red from head to toe

Wearing a red dress and jacket | 40plusstyle.com

Wearing a red A-line dress | 40plusstyle.com

Lady in red | 40plusstyle.com

Lady in a red pant suit | 40plusstyle.com

wearing a red dress with a pop of lime green | 40plusstyle.com

Red with black

How to wear red | red and black printed dress | 40plusstyle.com

Many of you prefer black to white and that is a great easy option too.

More details on this look.

Red with blue

colorblocking with red | 40plusstyle.com

More details on this look.

Red and blue is another versatile combination. Instead of a skirt, opt for some great blue jeans!

Red with purple

red and purple flowers | 40plusstyle.com

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More unusual is red with purple, but it is actually a really good combination as this look shows.

Red – bohemian style

Wearing a red see through dress | 40plusstyle.com

Red and gold

wear kitten heels over 40 | 40plusstyle.com

More details on this outfit. 

Adding a third color

Most looks are even more interesting when a third color is added. You can do so with an additonal garment, a print or an accessory.

Red with blue and white

How to wear asymmetric pieces over 40 | 40plusstyle.com

A chic color twist on my favorite asymmetric pieces.

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marine look with red, blue and white | 40plusstyle.com

More details about this look.

A very traditional and always chic combination is red with blue and white. It creates a marine look that is always in style.

Red, white and black/gray

Pattern mixing in red, cream and black | 40plusstyle.com

Black and white always works well with red and creates a more graphical look.

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Red accessories| 40plusstyle.com

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Stylish looks with the color red | 40plusstyle.com

More details on this look.

winter outfit for the snow

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Red, fuchsia and gray

how to combine red - wear it with fuchsia and gray | 40plusstyle.com

More details on this look.

A more unusual combination for an arty look.

Red with camel and brown

mom on the go outfit

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A more sophisticated and chic combination, especially if you add some animal print into the mix.

Red with camel and white

how to wear red - lots of ideas and inspiration | 40plusstyle.com

Similar to above but now with white added into the mix for a slightly fresher look.


More details on this outfit.

Add a print into the mix!

Adding a third color will often make your outfit more interesting and dynamic. This will be further enhance if you add some print as well. You can do that within your clothing or with an accessory or shoe.

Outfit idea: A chic floral jacket with jeans. | 40plusstyle.com

A chic floral jacket with jeans.

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Red with yellow / mustard and brown and animal print

40 ways to wear red: | 40plusstyle.com

The animal print shoes make this outfit more special.

More details on this look.


One of my favorite looks. Camel with red look super chic and the yellow makes it more funky. The animal print belt makes this outfit hip and modern.

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Red, camel, white and animal print

white skirt animal print belt

Great for casual lunch!

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Red with white, green and yellow

creatingwardrobecapsule (1 of 2)

If you like a bit more of a color splash, you can play with the primary and secondary colors. This look is playful, fun and fresh.

More details about this look.

Red with blue

Red and blue outfits for women| 40plusstyle.com

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Mored details on this look.

Make a statement with head to toe red

Sometimes you just want to stand out and nothing shows more confidence to the world than an all-red outfit.

red calvin klein silk dress

More details on this look.


More red looks here.

Wear a beautiful print with the color red

Red is not just for solids, it looks great in many prints too.

40 ways to wear red - wearing red as a print | 40plusstyle.com

More details on this look.

Wearing a darker red – burgundy or oxblood red

If you prefer your red to be more muted you can also opt for a darker red like burgundy or marsala (which is actually the color of the year!). Here are some color palettes for wearing burgundy.

how to wear burgundy red | 40plusstyle.com

Here is how you could appy the Curtain Closed palette.

how to wear oxblood red

Burgundy with orange

A beautiful color combination with the colors of fall.

Layers of burgundy and a beautiful print - how to wear red | 40plusstyle.com

this woman combines layers of red with beautiful prints (photo by Denton Taylor).

This is how I recently wore it.

The comprehensive guide on how to wear red | leather jacket | 40plusstyle.com

More details on this look.

Do you find it hard to wear red? Try accessories!

If red is normally not your color or you are afraid to stand out, then opt for a red accessory. It often really brightens up your outfit and adds extra interest.

Wear red sunglasses

Adding red through accessories like sunglasses | 40plusstyle.com

Comfortable and chic.

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Add a red hat or some red lipstick

pattern mixing and playing with red and black hats in white, black and red | 40plusstyle.com

More details about this outfit.

Add a red bag as a color accent

Soft green with red.

More details about this look.

pantsstyle (1 of 1)

Look how much more fun and interesting this outfit is with the addition of a red bag!

More details about this outfit.

Grey dress with red accessories | 40plusstyle.com

Adding red accessories is also a great tactic when you want to wear clothes that are not necessarily the best color for you. Wearing the gray without the red would be too bland for me.

More details on this look.

Add a necklace with a red color accent

Wearing a pendant featuring red | 40plusstyle.com

Sometimes all you need is a red necklace or pendant.

Making a printed dress more interesting with a red necklace | 40plusstyle.com

Add a red scarf

Adding red with a scarf - 40 ways to wear red! | 40plusstyle.com

More details on this look.

Add some red shoes

Wearing red with camel and cream | 40plusstyle.com

I wear my red shoes a LOT. It’s so easy to make a neutral outfit more interesting by adding some red shoes!

I hope this guide on how to wear red has given you some inspiration to wear this color! Perhaps you like to give it a go if you don’t normally wear it. Or you may try to wear it in a different combination from what you normally do.

Below is a really helpful video from 40+Style stylist Ruth on how to find the best shade of red for you.

How to find your right shade of red

Want more? We have a lot more training on color and choosing the right colors for you in the style club. Get access here.

More interested in another color, I also have guides on

Do you like to wear red? What is your preferred way of wearing it?


Like this article on how to wear red? Save it on Pinterest!

How to wear red over 40 | 40plusstyle.com

Photos from Denton Taylor

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