Carola Long: 'Deep-red lips are not an easy look to pull off – the wrong shade can leave one looking like an anaemic vampire'

There's a general consensus that opting for a sexy Halloween outfit is bad form. Dressing up as a Playboy cat or a 'Witches of Eastwick'-type sorceress rather than your more traditional green-faced cackling version is cheating. If you want respect, get gluing those Rice Krispie warts on now, or for the more artistic out there, try the ghoulish looks demonstrated by Mac on YouTube.

That said, for anyone who loves make-up rather than face paint, Halloween is just too prime an opportunity to experiment with a dark, dangerous beauty trend to throw it away on a face covered in cereal.

The kind of deep-red lips that put the vamp into vampire appeared at several autumn/winter shows including Gucci, Dior (pictured below), Henry Holland, Hussein Chalayan and Alexander McQueen.

If you want to be as in touch with the trends as you are with your dark side, feel free to forget the adage about not teaming strong lips with heavy eyes. Renowned make-up artist Sonia Kashuk says that "the current trend is for a very finished face, it's so chic to partner a darker lip such as my Bordeux [available at] with a strong smoky eye for the most dramatic effect". She recommends making the colour last by filling in the lips with a pencil in the same shade.

It's not an easy look to pull off, though, and the wrong shade can leave one looking like an anaemic vampire who hasn't feasted for weeks.

Alan Pan, the international make-up artist for Estée Lauder, says that anyone with darker skin can get away with a deep shade such as Lauder's Plumberry and black skin tones suit very dark, vibrant colours and either cool or warm tones.

He advises that "fair-skinned people with blonde, brown or red hair should steer clear of going too dark and choose a warm shade". Try Lauder's Pure Colour Gloss Stick in Pomegranate Kiss, which Pan says "creates the illusion of a bitten lip". Very "True Blood".