Wednesday, June 24th, 2015

ColourPop Vice Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick
ColourPop Vice Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick

ColourPop Vice Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick ($6.00 for 0.11 fl. oz.) is a light, pink-tinged peach with warm undertones and a matte finish. This was one of the worst shades in the range, because it applied unevenly. It was extremely challenging to get decent application–the photos in the post are the fourth attempt. Normally, I like to apply color to the top and bottom lip separately, but I had the best success by applying heavily to my bottom lip and then pressing my lips together and quickly finishing the top lip. When I tried to apply a second coat (after waiting fifteen minutes to ensure the first had completely dried down), it looked extremely thick and uneven. This one dries down very, very quickly. The color lasted fairly well for six hours but faded away more quickly from the center of the mouth and left more of a ring of color after four hours, and I hadn’t had anything to eat or drink during that time. It was lightly drying after the fifth hour of wear. Anastasia Pure Hollywood (P, $20.00) is darker, warmer. MAC Riot House (LE, $16.00) is lighter, warmer, glossier. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

ColourPop Sundae Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick ($6.00 for 0.11 fl. oz.) is a brightened, medium fuchsia-pink with lighter violet micro-shimmer over a matte finish. This one was a surprise, as it is the only shade in the range with shimmer–like a matte frost, but the shimmer is very fine. It was mostly opaque, though some of the natural lip comes through, and it applies a little streakily. Luckily, it is such a bright shade that it distracts from any visible streaks. The color lasted for eight and a half hours with minimal, even fading while the shimmer seemed to travel slightly over time. It was slightly drying after six hours and then drying enough to want it off by the eighth hour. Tom Ford Beauty Electric Pink (15) (P, $50.00) is less shimmery, glossier. Tom Ford Beauty Justin (LE, $32.00) is lighter, glossier. Kat Von D Backstage Bambi (P, $19.00) is less shimmery, lighter. Kat Von D Lullabye (P, $21.00) is more shimmery, darker, less glossy. Kat Von D Sexer (P, $21.00) is more shimmery. Melt Cosmetics Shady Lady (P, $19.00) is less shimmery, darker, glossier. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Yaoi (P, $18.00) is more shimmery, glossier. Too Faced Melted Fuchsia (P, $21.00) is less shimmery, glossier. Tom Ford Beauty Pablo (LE, $32.00) is lower quality, less glossy. NARS Michiyo (P, $32.00) is lower quality, less glossy. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

Formula Summary: ColourPop Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick ($6.00 for 0.11 fl. oz.) is a long-wearing, pigmented lipstick that starts off glossy and dries down quickly to that super flat matte finish. They have minimal transfer with some of the lighter shades having almost none for the first few hours of wear, but any time you’ve had a meal, they lose that transfer-resistant quality to a noticeable degree. They tend to wear anywhere from six to ten hours with darker shades maintaining better color coverage and wear over a longer period of time. Some shades get a little drying about two-thirds to three-fourths through the wear, while a few shades have been fairly non-drying even many hours into wear. They fade away evenly with most color loss occurring from the center of the lips if eating a more oil-based meal but the majority of color survives a meal. Reapplication has been hit or miss and tends to depend on how well it wore away and how easily the shade applies normally, but reapplication tends to emphasize the lip’s natural texture significantly compared to initial application and gives lips a very wrinkled, dried-up look. I’ve layered gloss on top of some shades with moderate success, though it will obviously lose the matte finish and will transfer and I’ll get tiny flakes where the matte lip color has lifted by mixing with gloss but has been pretty minimal. The formula had no discernible taste or scent. After playing with the packaging, it seemed like 16 of the 25 shades I received were significantly overfilled and had regular overflow of liquid lipstick coming out of them for about 10-15 open-and-closes where I needed to use a makeup removing wipe to clean the rim of the tube prior to closing or else the lipstick would ooze out of the closing. I have not had this issue with any of my other liquid lipsticks (Anastasia, Hourglass, Kat Von D, Make Up For Ever, Stila) personally, though readers reported experiencing similar issues with Anastasia and the previous Kat Von D packaging.

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7/10

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8.5/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

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Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015

L'Oreal Ice Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator
L’Oreal Ice Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator

L’Oreal Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator ($12.99 for 0.31 oz.) is supposed to be a highlight powder that can be used all-over or on the high planes of the face, and there are three shades. Each shade is divided into four colors, though you’ll end up using at least two together unless you use a very, very small brush. I didn’t feel like it mattered a whole lot whether you mixed evenly or leaned towards one side or the other. The texture of these feels soft and smooth in the pan, but it’s a drier powder where the shimmer separates from the powder to a degree, which makes the shimmer emphasize the skin’s natural texture even more than it already does do to the high shimmer and micro-sparkle amount. It read more like a glittery highlighter on the skin than a luminous sheen. I can’t imagine using this all-over as a highlighter unless you were going for a very over-the-top, disco-ball effect, but I don’t think that’s going to work for most. The wear was eight hours across the board, but the sparkle and shimmer travel all over–I had sparkle on my neck and around my nose, so by the end of the day, all of me was effectively highlighted. On my skin tone, there isn’t a big difference between Ice and Rose; on very fair or cooler-toned skin, you might pick up more of a difference applied. What’s funny about this particular highlighter is I think it looks ten times better in photos than in does in person, so maybe if you aren’t actually going out and just need to take a photo, these might do the trick! I’m very disappointed, because the powder seemed promising just touching the powder itself, and there aren’t nearly enough budget-friendly highlighter options on the market.

L’Oreal Ice Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator ($12.99 for 0.31 oz.) is a brightened, pink-tinged white with warmer gold shimmer and pink sparkle. It was intensely pigmented and very frosted on the skin with visible specks of sparkle/micro-glitter that emphasized pores and the skin’s natural texture (it made my cheeks look dry and textured). It wore for eight hours, but I had glittery bits all over my face and neck by the end of the day. The powder itself feels really smooth in the compact but can be powdery. L’Oreal Ice (P, $12.99) is less shimmery, darker, warmer. Becca Pearl (P, $38.00) is less shimmery. MAC Light Sunshine (LE, $26.00) is less shimmery, darker. Chanel Lumiere Sculptee de Chanel Highlighting Powder (LE, $72.00) is less shimmery, darker. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

L’Oreal Golden Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator ($12.99 for 0.31 oz.) is a brightened, orange-based gold with a frosted sheen and lighter gold sparkle. It was intensely pigmented with a very soft feel to the powder’s surface but was quite powdery once you worked with it. Again, the sparkly bits tended to lift from the base color and get everywhere. The powder itself lasted for eight hours, and this was the only one with visible color on my medium skin tone. The sparkly, metallic finish emphasized pores and gave my cheeks a drier look. L’Oreal Golden (P, $12.99) is lighter, brighter. Becca Opal (P, $38.00) is less shimmery, lighter. Becca Opal (P, $38.00) is less shimmery, lighter. Dior Transatlantique (LE, $58.00) is less shimmery. Guerlain Terracotta Sun in the City Illuminating Powder (LE, $70.00) is less shimmery, darker. bareMinerals The Shining Moment (LE, $26.00) is less shimmery, lighter. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

L’Oreal Rose Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator ($12.99 for 0.31 oz.) is a light beige with warm undertones and a frosted sheen with visible sparkle/micro-glitter. The texture was soft, smooth, and only a little powdery, but as soon as you start to blend it out, the shimmer and sparkle separate from the powder. This shade had the least visible sparkle compared to the other two. It’s actually a product best applied wet or with fingertips, I think. The highlighter emphasized the skin’s texture and made it look worse for the wear as pores looked enormous! On me, the effect lasted for eight hours but the sparkle migrated all over the face. MAC Mystery Princess (LE, $26.00) is more shimmery, less pigmented. MAC Sparkling Rose (LE, $28.00) is darker, warmer. Cle de Peau Delicate Pink (14) (P, $55.00) is less shimmery. Bobbi Brown Pink Glow (LE, $45.00) is more shimmery, darker, warmer. NARS Devotee (LE, $29.00) is more shimmery, darker. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

P.S. — I will review the liquid versions soon.

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7/10

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Golden

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7/10

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10/10

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7/10

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7/10

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4/5

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7/10

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Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015

Maybelline Vibrant Violet ColorSensational Creamy Matte Lip Color
Maybelline Vibrant Violet ColorSensational Creamy Matte Lip Color

Maybelline Vibrant Violet ColorSensational Creamy Matte Lip Color ($7.99 for 0.15 oz.) is a brightened, purple with strong, pink undertones giving it a warmer undertone overall paired with a satin finish. It had semi-opaque color coverage with a lightly creamy consistency so the color applied evenly. The color lasted for five and a half hours, while the formula was neither drying nor hydrating but fairly comfortable to wear. MAC Up the Amp (P, $16.00) is lighter, glossier. MAC RiRi Boy (LE, $16.00) is lighter, less glossy. Kat Von D L.U.V. (P, $21.00) is lighter, less glossy. Kat Von D L.U.V. (P, $19.00) is brighter, less glossy. Colour Pop Grind (P, $5.00) is lighter, brighter, glossier. Anastasia Vintage (P, $20.00) is darker, less glossy. Colour Pop Lychee (P, $6.00) is lighter, less glossy. Colour Pop Zipper (P, $6.00) is darker, less glossy. MAC Heroine (P, $16.00) is lighter, brighter, glossier. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

Maybelline Electric Pink ColorSensational Creamy Matte Lip Color ($7.99 for 0.15 oz.) is a brightened, light-medium pink with strong, cool blue undertones and a satin finish. It had mostly opaque pigmentation that covered evenly initially, though I had some color slip into lip lines after four and a half hours of wear. This shade lasted for five and a half hours in total and was neither drying nor hydrating. Colour Pop Buds (P, $6.00) is darker, less glossy. NARS Angela (P, $32.00) is darker, more muted. Clinique Wow Pop (P, $18.00) is darker, more muted, warmer. Anastasia Party Pink (P, $20.00) is lighter, brighter, less glossy. Kat Von D Backstage Bambi (P, $19.00) is darker, brighter, less glossy. Melt Cosmetics Stupid Love (P, $19.00) is darker. MAC Happy-Go-Lucky (LE, $16.00) is warmer, glossier. Illamasqua Luster (P, $26.00) is lighter, glossier. Bite Beauty Satsuma (LE, $24.00) is darker, warmer, glossier. MAC Candy Yum Yum (P, $16.00) is darker. Maybelline Pink ‘n Chic (P, $7.99) is lighter, more muted. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

Maybelline Pink ‘n Chic ColorSensational Creamy Matte Lip Color ($7.99 for 0.15 oz.) is a brightened, light-medium cotton candy pink with strong, blue undertones and a satin finish. It’s definitely not what you’d think of for a matte finish, though it is a lot more comfortable to wear than your average matte as it had more slip. The texture was creamy and lightweight, almost velvety, and lasted for four and a half hours but some color pulled into lip lines over time.
Illamasqua Luster (P, $26.00) is darker, glossier. Kat Von D Armageddon (P, $19.00) is lighter, brighter, less glossy. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Mannequin (P, $18.00) is lighter, brighter. MAC Saint Germain (LE, $16.00) is cooler. MAC Pink Nouveau (P, $16.00) is darker, more muted, glossier. MAC Raspberry Swirl (LE, $16.00) is lighter, more muted. Maybelline Electric Pink (P, $7.99) is lighter, more muted. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

Maybelline Blushing Pout ColorSensational Creamy Matte Lip Color ($7.99 for 0.15 oz.) is a muted, light-medium pink with hints of cooler, mauve tones to it, though it had more of a neutral-to-cool undertone paired with a satin finish. It had fairly opaque coverage that applied evenly overall, but there is some translucency so if you have a stronger natural lip color, it may pull differently on you. It was lightweight, comfortable to wear, and lasted for five hours on me. I did notice some color pulled into lip lines after three and a half hours of wear. Maybelline Ravishing Rose (P, $7.99) is darker, less pigmented, warmer. Colour Pop Shimmy (P, $6.00) is lighter, less glossy. Maybelline Lust for Blush (P, $7.99) is darker, warmer. Bite Beauty #005 (LE, $36.00) is brighter, less glossy, cooler. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

Formula Summary: It is supposed to “deliver a burst of bold lip color” with a “creamy texture” and a matte finish. In general, the formula has good color payoff with a velvety, creamy consistency that covers evenly and most shades seem to make lips appear smoother but some shades were prone to pulling into lip lines as the color wore away. The big thing about these is that they have a mostly matte finish and are more comfortable to wear than many matte formulas due to the velvety feel (almost like a silicone primer, but not quite as heavy and not clingy). The formula was neither drying nor hydrating on me. It had a sweet, plastic-like scent but no taste.

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Electric Pink

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8.5/10

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8.5/10

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5/5

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8.5/10

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8.5/10

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8/10

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Monday, June 22nd, 2015

ColourPop Trap Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick
ColourPop Trap Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick

ColourPop Trap Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick ($6.00 for 0.11 fl. oz.) is a subdued, gray-ish mauve with hints of pink and an ultra-matte finish. The texture is lightweight, a little runny but with substance, so one coat is more than enough product for both top and bottom lips. It has a quick dry down, so you’ll want to work quickly. I recommend applying to either the top or the bottom lip, then going to the opposite lip to maximize your working time. This one seemed to “crack” a little more after the dry down than some of the other shades, so I liked to relax and smile as it was drying down, which helped the color dry down more smoothly overall. Once it dries down, it feels fairly weightless and doesn’t feel clingy, though if you put your fingertip to your lip, it has a dry “feel.” It will emphasize lip lines but wore down evenly over an eight-hour period. It was non-drying until the very last hour. It was mostly transfer-proof, though if you do more than pat your lips with a napkin, it does flake off very slightly. I don’t have any good dupes for this one, so hopefully readers more familiar with all of the liquid lipstick offerings on the market may be able to chime in with more. NARS Catfight (P, $26.00) is more shimmery, darker. MAC Fun Finds (LE, $16.00) is lighter, glossier. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

ColourPop Tulle Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick ($6.00 for 0.11 fl. oz.) is a medium-dark, neutral-to-warm plum-red with a matte finish. It had fairly coverage that went on evenly and smoothly without pulling into lip lines or emphasizing them too much. It wasn’t too thin, but it wasn’t thick or goopy, so dry down time was a little faster than average but I had enough time to apply to the top and bottom without getting streaks. This shade lasted for twelve hours with minimal fading and what fading there was fairly even. It had minimal transfer until after I ate, and then it seemed to transfer more noticeably but blotting once or twice post-meal should help bring it back down to minimal transfer. For me, I noticed my lips feeling a little dry after six and a half hours of wear, and it was getting painfully dry at the eight-hour mark. Maybelline Burgundy Blush (P, $7.99) is darker, brighter, warmer, glossier. MAC Diva (P, $16.00) is brighter, glossier. Burberry Redwood (304) (P, $30.00) is lighter, brighter, glossier. Laura Mercier Myth (P, $24.00) is lighter, brighter. MAC Eugenie (LE, $16.00) is darker, cooler, glossier. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

Formula Summary: ColourPop Ultra Matte Liquid Lipstick ($6.00 for 0.11 fl. oz.) is a long-wearing, pigmented lipstick that starts off glossy and dries down quickly to that super flat matte finish. They have minimal transfer with some of the lighter shades having almost none for the first few hours of wear, but any time you’ve had a meal, they lose that transfer-resistant quality to a noticeable degree. They tend to wear anywhere from six to ten hours with darker shades maintaining better color coverage and wear over a longer period of time. Some shades get a little drying about two-thirds to three-fourths through the wear, while a few shades have been fairly non-drying even many hours into wear. They fade away evenly with most color loss occurring from the center of the lips if eating a more oil-based meal but the majority of color survives a meal. Reapplication has been hit or miss and tends to depend on how well it wore away and how easily the shade applies normally, but reapplication tends to emphasize the lip’s natural texture significantly compared to initial application and gives lips a very wrinkled, dried-up look. I’ve layered gloss on top of some shades with moderate success, though it will obviously lose the matte finish and will transfer and I’ll get tiny flakes where the matte lip color has lifted by mixing with gloss but has been pretty minimal. The formula had no discernible taste or scent. After playing with the packaging, it seemed like 16 of the 25 shades I received were significantly overfilled and had regular overflow of liquid lipstick coming out of them for about 10-15 open-and-closes where I needed to use a makeup removing wipe to clean the rim of the tube prior to closing or else the lipstick would ooze out of the closing but seems to have finally stopped (if that changes, I’ll update the post, as I’m still fussing with the packaging!). I have not had this issue with any of my other liquid lipsticks (Anastasia, Hourglass, Kat Von D, Make Up For Ever, Stila) personally, though readers reported experiencing similar issues with Anastasia and the previous Kat Von D packaging.

Re: packaging, over the last three days, I’ve been opening and closing all 25 shades, as well as laying some down and keeping some standing up, rinse and repeat. I’ll also be turning some upside down to see how they fare to make doubly sure that they’re only overfilled, which seems to be the case at this time. If you carry it with you for travel or in a makeup bag, you certainly don’t want to worry about opening/closing it! If you don’t wipe down, the liquid will dry and crust over the base of the tube (that is slightly exposed to air). It’s messy business! 12 of them have had enough accumulated product after one to two openings/closings to ooze out, and then seven more had some excess accumulation after three to four openings. 6 were totally fine even after opening and closing them over a dozen times.

Here are my best tips for applying matte liquid lipstick, as it is a bit of a different animal compared to regular lipstick or liquid lipstick (that doesn’t have the matte dry down):

  • Proper prep is always useful — smoother lips are best, as dry or flaky lips will often be emphasized (lines can get emphasized, too); hydrating with lip balm prior to applying (and then removing before you put on the product) helps keep lips happier longer
  • Start in the middle of the lip and work your way to the edges, try to apply using fluid strokes and then use very short taps and strokes to finish or manipulate any edges
  • Don’t fuss with the color too long; a lot of streaks and unevenness will disappear as the color dries down
  • If you’ve never tried liquid lipstick, you may need to apply a few times to get the hang of it, and removing using jojoba or olive oil is easiest on the lips
  • Keep your lips partially open while it is drying down; avoid the upper and bottom lips touching as the formulas tend to turn a little tacky as they are drying down and this will cause color to lift unevenly and give you patchiness that wasn’t there to begin with
  • Some formulas react well to gloss/balm on top, some don’t (still testing this one for that), which can be helpful for managing the drying factor of some liquid lipstick formulas/shades

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Trap

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Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

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5/5

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Product

8.5/10

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8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

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4.5/5

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Sunday, June 21st, 2015

Maybelline Summer 2015 Creamy Matte Lip Colors

Just in time for summer, there are ten new shades of Maybelline ColorSensational Creamy Matte Lip Color ($7.99 for 0.15 oz.). I bought mine online at Ulta, and I thought I’d share a sneak peek while I work through testing these!

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Saturday, June 20th, 2015

NYX Spice Cake Intense Butter Gloss
NYX Spice Cake Intense Butter Gloss

NYX Spice Cake Intense Butter Gloss ($5.99 for 0.27 fl. oz.) is a brightened, medium-dark berry with cool undertones and a cream finish. It had rich, opaque color coverage that applied beautifully with even, smooth color. On me, it lasted for almost five hours and left behind a slight stain. The formula was comfortable to wear but not hydrating. Urban Decay Quiver (P, $22.00) is lighter, warmer. Milani Ravish Raspberry (06) (P, $5.49) is lighter, warmer. Milani Berry Tempting (05) (P, $5.49) is lighter, less pigmented, warmer. Maybelline Amethyst Potion (045) (P, $8.99) is more shimmery, lighter, less pigmented. Urban Decay Big Bang (P, $19.00) is more shimmery, darker, less glossy. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

NYX Toasted Marshmallow Intense Butter Gloss ($5.99 for 0.27 fl. oz.) is a deepened, medium-dark plum with cool undertones and a cream finish. It had good color payoff that went on smoothly and evenly, though this one emphasized lip lines just a smidgen. The color wore well for four and a half hours and was neither drying nor hydrating. MAC Ruby (LE, $20.00) is lighter, less glossy. Revlon Embellished (P, $7.49) is warmer. Marc Jacobs Beauty Fame (206) (P, $28.00) is warmer. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

NYX Tres Leches Intense Butter Gloss ($5.99 for 0.27 fl. oz.) is a light-medium, pinky-peach with warm undertones and a cream finish. This shade seemed extra glossy to me compared to others in the range. It had mostly opaque pigmentation, but the milkiness of the gloss seemed to make it prone to pulling into lip lines, and it did settle into them further as the gloss wore on (for four hours). It did apply better than a lot of similar-hued glosses do, though. MAC Boy Bait (P, $20.00) is lighter. Buxom Creamsicle (P, $19.00) is cooler. NARS Giza (P, $26.00) is warmer. MAC On the Scene (LE, $20.00) is lighter. Divergent Supreme Ritual (LE, ) is lighter, warmer. MAC Summer Sweetheart (LE, $15.00) is lighter. Divergent Natural Virtue (LE, ) is warmer. MAC Poetic (LE, $22.00) is more shimmery, lighter. MAC Chic Supremacy (LE, $15.00) is lighter. Charlotte Tilbury Bardot Beige (P, $22.00) is lighter, warmer. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

Formula Summary: NYX Intense Butter Gloss ($5.99 for 0.27 fl. oz.) is supposed to be a very pigmented gloss that “keeps lips soft and glossy without being sticky.” They are typically very pigmented, but some shades apply better than others; when they apply well, they’re really a great option for anyone who likes their gloss more pigmented. They have a medium-weight consistency that is heavier than the original Butter Gloss formula with light tackiness that develops over time. It’s not hydrating but not usually drying either. The gloss wears four hours on me on average, and the formula has a slight vanilla scent to me, but it seems a little synthetic (something off about it) but had no discernible taste to me.

The Glossover

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10/10

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9/10

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9.5/10

Application

5/5

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Toasted Marshmallow

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9/10

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9.5/10

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8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

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5/5

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Tres Leches

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8.5/10

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9/10

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8/10

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8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

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