Saturday, August 18th, 2012

MAC Styleseekers Mattene Lipstickes
MAC Styleseeker Mattene Lipsticks

Why Aren’t Mattenes Permanent?

MAC Styleseeker Mattene Lipsticks ($15.00 for 0.08 oz.) includes five shades: Camden Chic (rich brick red), Delectable (orange-beige), Eden Rouge (bright blue-red), Fashion Nomad (bright red orange), and Fun Finds (light nude pink). All five shades are limited edition.

  • Camden Chic is a brown-red with a natural sheen. The color is opaque on. NARS Amsterdam has less brown in it. MAC Extended Play is more red than brown. MAC Unknown Pleasures is several shades darker, less brown. MAC Legendary is a smidgen darker. Shiseido Mystery is very comparable.
  • Delectable is a peachy orange with opaque color and a natural sheen. This shade, while still creamy, was a bit less forgiving on the lips. MAC Peachstock is lighter, less orange, more beige. Bobbi Brown Bare Pink is more beige. Cle de Peau Calliope is similar but not quite as orange.
  • Eden Rouge is a blue-based medium bright red with opaque color coveage and a natural sheen. Edward Bess Midnight Bloom is very similar. MAC Red Racer is similar, not quite as bright. CoverGirl Hot is also close. MAC Russian Red is a bit darker.
  • Fashion Nomad is a bright medium-dark orange with red undertones. The color coverage is opaque, even, and finishes with a natural sheen. We have seen this color over and over again by MAC. MAC Morange is similar–perhaps jsut a smidgen darker. MAC Booyah!!! is a bit more subdued. MAC Good to Go is close. MAC Neon Orange is also similar. Illamasqua Flare is more matte but close in color.
  • Fun Finds is a pale pink-beige with a mostly matte finish. This was the least creamy of the five, and it was definitely the least forgiving. It tended to emphasize any imperfections on the lips (and I actually swatched this first out of the Mattenes–I go light to dark if there are any potentially staining shades, like Eden Rouge, in the line-up). MAC Ruffian Naked is pretty similar, perhaps a little more gray-toned. MAC Myth is a bit pinker. MAC Innocence, Beware! is lighter, less pink.

Mattenes are supposed to deliver rich color, semi-matte finishes, and be hydrating and creamy to apply while still maintaining that semi-matte finish. These are very creamy; they glide-on and yield opaque color coverage in a single stroke–and even color at that.  Delectable and Fun Finds were the two shades that didn’t look really nice on; I think it’s the lighter color combined with the matte formula that makes it harder to really nails these types of colors–they just tend to be less forgivingo n the lips and accentuate the natural texture of my lips.  None of the five shades are particularly unique, though I liked the overall feel and look of Camden ChicEden Rouge, and Fashion Nomad (this one being the most dupeable).

Because Delectable and Eden Rouge have both been released previously, I tested those recently using the previous iterations I had, though the swatches and photos are of the most recent release.  Camden Chic wore for five hours, Delectable wore for four, Eden Rouge for six, Fashion Nomad for five, and Fun Finds for four.  While three were somewhat hydrating, Delectable and Fun Finds were just a little drying.  These are vanilla-scented and come in slim matte black tubes and contain just a bit less product than regular MAC lipsticks (0.08 oz. vs. 0.10 oz.).

The Glossover

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MAC Styleseeker Mattene Lipsticks Review, Photos, Swatches

A
I continue to be surprised that this formula doesn't get added to the permanent range, because I think there's a market for them and people who covet the formula.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4.5/5

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Thursday, August 16th, 2012

Guerlain Gracy Rouge G Lipstick
Guerlain Gracy Rouge G Lipstick

Another Summer Hue Just in Time for Fall

Guerlain Gracy Rouge G Lipstick ($48.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a warm coral-pink with a little hint of red. It has almost imperceptible pearl; there’s a minor reflection and sheen but no obvious shimmer particles. MAC Watch me Simmer is much lighter. MAC Force of Love is pinker and lighter. Wet ‘n’ Wild Hot Paris Pink is a smidgen lighter but close. Make Up For Ever #38 is less pink but a little brighter. OCC Trollop is lighter and pinker. MAC Fusion Pink is redder and has a pink iridescent sheen. Chanel Phoenix is a bit lighter and has noticeable pink shimmer.

Bright and bold with full color coverage and a natural finish, Gracy is more summer than fall, even if it is part of the fall release.  The color glides on and hugs lips without feeling clingy, while the formula itself wears for six and a half hours and keeps lips well-hydrated the entire time.  I did not experience any feathering or bleeding lip color.

Like the rest of the range, there is a perfume-like scent attached to these but no discernible scent. Each is packaged in a hefty silver metal case that has a flip mirror. I appreciate the sleek design of the case, and it feels very luxe to hold, but from a practical purpose, they’re kind of heavy to keep your bag, and there’s no great way to store them (the top and bottom are curved), and they do hold fingerprints.

The Glossover

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Guerlain Gracy Rouge G Lipstick Review, Photos, Swatches

A+
If you love bright corals with some darkness to them, you'll like Gracy. It feels very summery to me, partially because corals are so often part of one's summer routine, but also the level of brightness in the shade.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Hourglass Raven Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick
Hourglass Raven Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick

Not Nearly for 14 Hours–Maybe for 8 Hours

Hourglass Raven Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick ($28.00 for 0.10 oz.) is described as an “orange-red.” It’s a vibrant, bold orange-red that’s much more orange than red. Nonetheless, it is extremely bright and attention-grabbing! The color is not that unusual; there are numerous orange-red lipsticks. MAC Strut Your Stuff is a smidgen lighter. Guerlain Genna is very similar but has a sheen. Estee Lauder Extravagant Red is similar but has gold shimmer. MAC Ruffian Red is less orange. OCC Stalker is quite similar.

This is a new product from the brand, and it’s, in essence, a liquid lipstick. It’s supposed to be extremely pigmented, have a matte finish, and last 14 hours (with “continuous wear without flaking or dryness.” I’m usually impressed by Hourglass’ products, but I had a sinking feeling about the wear as soon as I read “14 hours.” That’s a really, really long-time for a lip product. Most (maybe all? I’m no cosmetic scientist) makeup breaks down with oil, which means eating oily food will contribute to faster breakdown of long-wearing products even in this kind of formulation.

Hourglass’ liquid lipstick creates a second-skin feel and look on the lips, almost like cling wrap but far more comfortable. The formula is one of the best-feeling I’ve worn to-date, because it’s not drying at all. I wore this shade for ten full hours, and I didn’t have to run for the lip balm, which is something I typically have to do with these formulas. It starts off glossy but sets after thirty seconds to a minute. I recommend trying to keep lips slightly parted while it’s drying, because as it drying, it gets a smidgen tacky, so it can cause unevenness if you press your lips together during the setting time. The color was totally opaque with one pull of product.

There was minor transfer throughout the day. I let it set for a full half hour before I tested it for transfer (note, the description of this product does not indicate it is transfer-free or -resistant), and there was a few stray marks on my coffee cup; very little but some. I put this on after breakfast around 10AM, then had lunch at 1PM, where there was some loss of color but it looked about 90% there. After eating dinner at 6PM, it had definitely worn away significantly and was flaking in places. I did not experience any feathering or bleeding, though. I did, unfortunately, find stray bits of lipstick on my teeth throughout the day, which is not normal standard operating procedure. It removed easily when I used my shu umeura cleansing oil to remove all of my makeup. There was no residual staining post-removal either, which is nice!

I recommend prepping lips for application; it’s not drying, but the matte finish is a less forgiving finish if you have any dry or flaking areas on your lips. It’s also imperative that you remove any lip balm that you may have been wearing prior to applying this–lip balm will absolutely impair the wear as well as the application, because it will cause uneven color and shorter wear. If you have dry lips, apply lip balm beforehand, let it sink in, and then blot. I always apply to the bottom lip first, and then the upper lip going around the cupid’s bow first. Then, I press lips together and look for any unevenness.

At best, this would wear better for eight to ten hours if you had a relatively oil-free meal (when I tested another shade of this formula, I timed it better and only had it on for one meal, so it lasted closer to 10 hours).  It will last through many, many cups of whatever you happen to drink.  Meals will test it, and the oilier the meal, the less likely it will make it to the end fully intact.  I wish the claim wasn’t so extravagant–14 hours is a very long time!–because the way it looks at eight hours is discouraging (note, the brand said 14 hours of continuous wear).

The Glossover

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Raven

B
At best, this would wear better for eight to ten hours if you had a relatively oil-free meal. It will last through many, many cups of whatever you happen to drink. Meals will test it, and the oilier the meal, the less likely it will make it to the end fully intact. It's comfortable to wear, hydrating, and fully opaque--it just doesn't last the full 14 hours as claimed.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

5/10

Application

4/5

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Friday, August 10th, 2012

Urban Decay Naked Super-Saturated High Gloss Lip Color
Urban Decay Naked Super-Saturated High Gloss Lip Color

Is Naked the New Nude?

Urban Decay Naked Super-Saturated High Gloss Lip Color ($19.00 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “nude pink sheen.” It’s a rosy pink with hints of a reddish-brown, which give it more muted coloring and make it easier to wear. There’s a very fine white micro-shimmer that’s barely visible to the eye but adds a noticeable reflective effect. On me, the brown tones came out more than the rosy ones, but if you have more natural pink hues to your lip color, you’ll likely see it going pinker on you. Revlon Pink Truffle has a less reflective sheen and is pinker. MAC Shanghai Spice is lighter. CoverGirl Romance has more plum. CoverGirl Rush is darker. NARS Montego is a bit lighter and pinker. MAC Gem of Roses is a bit pinker. Bobbi Brown Heather Pink is a bit more mauve.

It’s a new-for-fall shade, but it’s joining the permanent range of other Super-Saturated Lip Colors. This pencil is supposed to be creamy, “sumptuously pigmented,” and have a “high-gloss finish.” The color coverage is very nearly opaque, and the consistency is creamy, lightly tacky, and feels like a lipstick that’s melted in the car.  Naked was comfortable to wear, lasted a full four hours, and didn’t dry out my lips.

The only downside is something most lip pencils like these share:  you will lose some product when you sharpen it, especially given how soft and creamy this particular pencil is.  Readers have recommended freezing these types of pencils prior to sharpening, which should help minimize some of the product loss.  At least in this pencil, you’re getting a good amount of product (about as much as most lipsticks).

The Glossover

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Naked

A-
I'm pleasantly surprised that Naked wasn't the more typical interpretation of nude (pale beige) -- it's different than its lipstick counterpart, but it's still in the natural, neutral, naked camp so it's wearable by a variety of skin tones.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, August 8th, 2012

Dior Incognito Addict Extreme Lipstick
Dior Incognito Addict Extreme Lipstick

They’ll Never Know with Color Like This

Dior Incognito Addict Extreme Lipstick ($30.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a subtly rose-tinted beige with a natural shine. Make Up For Ever #N40 is lighter, more beige. Tom Ford Blush Nude is lighter. Chanel Superstition is gold-shimmered. MAC Woo Me is several shades lighter. MAC Mellow Mood has a similar color but also has gold shimmer.

Talk about an effortless nude! I like to think of nude color as if your natural lip color and your skin color merged together to form something natural and infinitely flattering–on you.  This might be why it can be a challenge to find that perfect nude.  Many nudes are very pale, light, and don’t always work as nudes on a lot of complexions.  Incognito takes the natural pink and beige tones often found in the skin to create a nude that will work really well on light to medium complexions. It might be lighter than nude for medium-dark to dark skin tones (but it can still be worn–it just might not be your perfect nude, you know?).

After testing a bolder shade in the range, I wasn’t surprised that this one wasn’t long-wearing like Dior described it to be.  It does have mostly opaque color with a natural shine, but the wear is right around four hours, which is what I typically get with most lipsticks, including plenty of Dior shades from the past.  Incognito applies more evenly than Lucky when I was trialing it, but it had the same subtle translucency that gives it a really lush look on lips.  The texture is creamy enough that it slides across lips without tugging, but it’s not thick or heavy.  Not drying, lightly hydrating, it’s an all-around comfortable formula to wear.  It has a light perfume-y scent that I couldn’t notice once applied.

The Glossover

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Incognito

A-
Incognito takes the natural pink and beige tones often found in the skin to create a nude that will work really well on light to medium complexions. It might be lighter than nude for medium-dark to dark skin tones (but it can still be worn--it just might not be your perfect nude, you know?).

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

5/5

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Sunday, August 5th, 2012

Dior Lucky Addict Extreme Lipstick
Dior Lucky Addict Extreme Lipstick

Feel Lucky with This Not-Too-Vibrant Pink

Dior Lucky Addict Extreme Lipstick ($30.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a fuchsia-pink with the barest hint of coral; there’s an underlying warmth lurking just beneath the surface. Tarina Tarantino Fuchsia Lining is a bitter redder. MAC Speak Louder is pinker, cooler-toned. MAC Party Parrot is brighter, less red. Lancome Fuchsia Clutch is a bit darker and has a light smattering of iridescent fuchsia shimmer.

This formula is supposed to be long-wearing and yield bold color with “radiant shine.” I like the formula overall, though it doesn’t deliver particularly stellar results when it comes to wear–Lucky wore for five hours well, though the shine had faded after three–but it’s not much better than other Dior lipsticks (that aren’t marketed as long-wearing) or other lipsticks overall (typically, lipsticks average four hours on me). It lasts for a good length of time, but it’s short of long-wearing, which I would expect to clock in between six to eight hours. It definitely has a distinctly glossy shine that reflects the light well and gives lips a fuller look.

The color is semi-opaque (though almost opaque) with a slight translucency, so some of the natural lip color will peek through. When I applied the lipstick, the color coverage was mostly even but you can see how it didn’t go on perfectly even. It has a somewhat creamy consistency, but it reminded me more of a lip balm in a way, because it feels wetter–think Revlon’s Lip Butters with less slip.  There is a light perfume-y scent that’s just noticeable in the tube but not after it is applied.

The Glossover

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Lucky

A-
This color should be flattering on a variety of skin tones, because it's not too warm or too cool-toned and has enough vibrancy to contrast against the complexion. It has a really nice shine, feels comfortable on, but it's not as long-wearing as touted.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

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