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The colour red can indicate that something is hot or that you should stop and it’s also synonymous with Taylor Swift‘s lips. But if this year’s red carpets – from the Oscars and the Golden Globes to the SAG Awards, BAFTAs and Grammys – are any indication, it’s also the colour du jour for ingenues and the old-Hollywood guard.

And there’s good reason for the scarlet hue getting a lot of attention, considering that it has been proven to increase sexual desire in women. It can also look wickedly fierce without the need for a ton of makeup.

But how do you wear it? Isn’t it a bit much? Actually, no.

Go easy on the accessories

A basic rule of thumb for wearing red (and we mean red, not pink or mauve or blush or rose) is to lighten up on the accessories. Basically, if you can get away with none at all, that’s perfect. But if you must, choose a small clutch and subtle jewellery. You’re wearing a bold colour so let it breathe and shine. It can do so much good on its own.

Work those curves

Once you’ve picked out the frock that works for you, get it tailored to fit. Too much flowing and excess fabric will give people the wrong idea. Red is sexy, so show off your curves; it can really make your figure pop.

Make a statement with minimal makeup

And lastly, your beauty regimen should result in a refined, minimal look. A red lip can complement your dress, but the eyes and face shouldn’t be overwhelmingly made up. Aim for a statement that says “no makeup,” even if you’re wearing it. As for tans? Red can actually pair beautifully with a slight tan, as it aids in livening up your colour.

Not sold? We can prove it. These 11 women ruled the red carpet in red, and you can, too. Here are some more tips for pulling off scarlet style, with a little help from Julianne Moore, Helen Mirren, Sofia Vergara and more: 

Whose red dress will sizzle on the Oscars red carpet? Find out by catching the 87th Academy Awards on Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. (ET) on CTV.