I'm a fashion expert and this is how to wear red for the autumn/winter season

Wondering how to wear red? This trending hue is everywhere at the moment, and these outfit ideas make incorporating the vivid colour simple.

how to wear red: three women wearing red items
(Image credit: Getty Images)

If you're wondering how to wear red, you may already be aware that it is this season's hottest hue. First spotted on the runways of Gucci, Valentino, and Prada (amongst countless others) back in February, it was immediately clear that firey tones would be cropping up everywhere with the turn of the weather - and this bold colour trend is finally here.

The 'pop of red' styling trick took over street style snaps during fashion month of September, and it's already set to be one of the biggest autumn/winter fashion trends for 2023. The idea is that you can elevate any outfit by adding a hint of red to it, whether that be through accessories, footwear, or even outerwear, to break up the typically inky autumnal fashion colour palette. Red leather jackets were a notable Paris Fashion Week street style trend, whilst red accessories cropped up regularly in Milan Fashion Week street style shots, proving the popularity of this simple yet statement look.

Although you might already have several red items in your wardrobe, it can be challenging to figure out when and where to include them in your outfits. A standout colour that will attract attention, it has to be slotted in carefully. We've broken down our top five ways to incorporate red into your looks, taking notes from the street style set for inspiration. Whether you're ready to jump in head first or you want to start slowly, one of these pieces is bound to inspire you.

5 ways to wear red this season

composite of street style shots of women wearing red

(Image credit: Getty Images)

It's easier than you might think to learn how to wear red, adding pops of this hue to your autumn outfit ideas. We've focused on five main categories to make the process easy: knitwear, jeans, dresses, accessories, and outerwear. Follow these simple outfit formulas and transform classic ensembles into fashion-forward looks.

1. How to wear a red top

When it comes to how to wear red on your top half, be mindful about balancing the colour on your bottom half. Red works brilliantly with neutrals and can add a chic element to your look, as well as giving contrast to a look. If you need to break up a red top, try adding a darker scarf or a black blazer to break up the look. 

2. How to wear red with jeans

Red works particularly well with denim - particularly all blue hues. From light to dark denim washes, these neutral building blocks allow your red additions to shine. 

3. How to wear red shoes

If you want to keep red away from your face, particularly if you have a more pinky complexion, look to inject this trending colour into your shoe collection. Don't be afraid to opt for more subtle tones of red too.

4. How to wear a red handbag

In a similar vein to shoes, the latest autumn/winter handbag trends 2023 also favoured red and selecting a bag in this hue will help update your winter outfits in a flash.

5. How to wear a red coat

A red coat is a power play and will exude confidence. If you're looking to update your best winter coat this season, then embracing this coat trend will ensure you look directional every time you step out of the house.

6. How to wear a red dress

Nothing ushers in the festive season quite like a red dress and this look is truly as timeless and classic as your favourite LBD. A lot more of a statement, think about selecting a dress shape that you're already comfortable with, such as a flattering fit and flare to make the transition to this look easier. 

What colours go well with red?

"When learning how to wear red, it's a great idea to look at the roster of colours that go well with red," says woman&home fashion editor Rivkie Baum. "As a strong accent colour, red teams well with nearly all neutrals, contrasting with black and looking elegant teamed with light grey and tan hues. For a more nautical feel, red also teams brilliantly with navy and white."

Can anybody wear red?

"Absolutely. But there are some guidelines I would recommend you adhere to," says Rivkie.  "Although red can be worn by everyone, as with all colours there are certain things to consider. These include the exact shade of red, as so you might not find a red with a blue undertone suits you as well as warmer shades of red. In addition to this if you have very pinky undertones to your skin, you can find that red emphasises this. In this case, you may wish to wear red away from your face. So opt for a pair of red shoes, a red skirt, or even red jeans, and go for a more muted colour on top to tone down your complexion."

Rivkie Baum
Rivkie Baum

With over fifteen years' experience, Rivkie is an accomplished fashion editor, writer and stylist. Covering international fashion weeks, and styling photoshoots all over the world, Rivkie loves translating the trends in an accessible way to make fashion available for all budgets. 

Amelia Yeomans
Senior writer

Amelia joined woman&home in 2022 after graduating with an MA in Magazine Journalism from City University and is now a senior writer. She began building her career as a lifestyle journalist after completing a fashion journalism course at the Condé Nast College of Fashion & Design in 2019, writing for a variety of titles including OK! magazine, New! magazine and Notion on topics such as sustainable fashion and entertainment. She specialises in fashion and beauty content, covering everything from product reviews and nail art trends to reporting on fashion weeks and the best-dressed celebrities at red carpet events. With a keen eye for lifestyle trends, she is always on the lookout for the latest products and brands to hit the market.