Thursday, December 17th, 2009

Sally Hansen Garnet Lipstick
Sally Hansen Garnet Lipstick

The Scarlet Season: Sally Hansen Garnet Lipstick

Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Garnet Lipstick ($4.99) is a glossy, bright raspberry red — it’s not even what I’d really think of when I think raspberry, because it seems so much redder, but it’s clear that there are some strong signs of pinkness to this shade. Sally Hansen’s Color Comfort Lip Color is one of my favorite drugstore lipstick brands to turn to; they’re moisturizing, beautiful, and easy to apply. The color is rich and lasts a good four hours on me.

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009


Laura Mercier Mocha Rouge Lip Velvet

Long-Lasting Lip Color: Laura Mercier Lip Velvet

Laura Mercier Mocha Rouge Lip Velvet ($22.00) is a brightened up adobe brown–there may be a little redness to it, but not too much warmth–it’s not the easiest color to describe. It’s very neutral, despite its richness in pigmentation.

Lip Velvets are long-wearing liquid lipsticks. If you’ve been around the beauty-sphere for a bit, MAC’s Lac Lusters, which have been long discontinued. I know some of you are wondering how it compares to my beloved Chanel Rouge Allure Laques, and I don’t think they’re the same product. Oh, they’re most certainly similar–but they have different qualities that may appeal to you.

Lip Velvet is lightly creamy, very smooth, and intensely pigmented. It comes with a doe-foot wand applicator that’s fairly easy to use, but with the color richness, it’s best to apply with a mirror. The formula is also much more matte (I’d call it semi-matte, though) with some of the dryness associated with mattes. The product feels fairly dry on the lips, but it’s not actually drying. It’s not particularly hydrating, but it seems to retain whatever moisture you already had in your lips before applying it–making it no better or worse.

The color hugs and clings to lips and gives me around six hours of wear, plus a residual stain that lingers thereafter. This really is a long-wearing product that doesn’t dry your lips out (but just be prepared for it to feel a little… well, matte and dry!), which is a huge plus and often a failing of long-wear products. It goes on opaque in just one swipe, so you don’t need much product at all to get full-coverage color. The finish isn’t quite matte, as it does have a slightly glossy sheen, but it’s mostly matte.

Chanel Rouge Allure Laques are more moisturizing and not quite as thick, plus they’re very much glossy. There’s no “matte” in Rouge Allure Laque; it’s shimmery, glossy color. I think just the difference in finish really makes them two different products, or at the very least, products to consider together rather than trying to pick one over the other.

Lip Velvet’s do beat Chanel on wearing time, though – they certainly last longer, and even the lighter shades tend to persist for hours. I hope Laura Mercier will add some more shades that *pop* during 2010–the existing shade range is a bit everyday, neutral, and work-safe. (Not bad things, but I’d love to see more variation!)

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: For long-wearing lip color that doesn’t dry out lips but lasts for hours, Laura Mercier’s Lip Velvets are a good place to start.

Availability: Blue Mercury

See more photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009

MAC Dare You Lipstick
MAC Dare You Lipstick

The Scarlet Season: MAC Dare You Lipstick

MAC Dare You Lipstick ($14.00) is a gorgeous shade of shimmering ruby red. It’s a deep ruby red with brighter ruby red shimmer laced throughout. It’s incredibly pigmented, and it looks opaque with just one layer. Dare You feels creamy, moisturizing, and it lasts a good four to six hours on my lips. It’s really a stunning red from MAC’s permanent line-up, and if I may–also an overlooked shade!

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

Dolce & Gabbana Ruby Lipstick
Dolce & Gabbana Ruby Lipstick

The Scarlet Season: Dolce & Gabbana Ruby Lipstick

Dolce & Gabbana Ruby Shine Lipstick ($30.00) is a beautiful, shimmery raspberry red lip color. It’s a semi-sheer lipstick formula, but I actually found it to be quite opaque. I mean, if this is semi-sheer, I wish all semi-sheer lipsticks were gave me this kind of coverage! :) It has lovely pinky-raspberry shimmer that’s subtle but still sparkles in the light. The feeling, texture, and payoff of this lipstick reminds me a bit of Guerlain’s Rouge G formula (and it’s $15 less!)–smooth, moisturizing, and even.

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Monday, December 14th, 2009

Julie Hewett Rouge Noir Lipstick
Julie Hewett Rouge Noir Lipstick

The Scarlet Season: Julie Hewett Rouge Noir Lipstick

Julie Hewett Rouge Noir Lipstick ($22.50) is a rich, ultra pigmented blue-based red with a nice sheen. It’s not glossy nor shimmery–just very bold and goes on opaque with little product. I want to say it’s creamy, but on the other hand, it’s really not creamy. It applies very smoothly and evenly, so it’s not dry, but yet it’s not actually that creamy.

One of the best parts about this lipstick (and Julie Hewett lipsticks in general) is that it clings to lips for several hours before wearing off. I just wish that when it wore off (after about five or six hours), it left more of a stain than a ring around my lips! Nonetheless, if you’re not planning to be out for more than six hours or you can reapply after about five, this is a great pick!

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Sunday, December 13th, 2009

LORAC Leading Lady Lipstick
LORAC Leading Lady Lipstick

The Scarlet Season: LORAC Leading Lady Lipstick

LORAC Leading Lady Lipstick ($22.00) is a creamy, nearly neutral red (runs slightly orange-red) with a very bright sheen (more sheen than glossiness). It applies easily and well, and you can get an opaque look in just two or three layers.

The lipstick formula contains “SMS Complex,” which is an anti-aging ingredient that “neutralizes and prevents the signs of aging by helping to stimulate collagen production and promote cell turnover.” Can’t tell you if any of that is true, but since the price tag is $22 and not $30 just because there is “anti-aging” ingredients in it, it’s like an added bonus if it does work.

But I can tell you this was a moisturizing lipstick that wore very well throughout the day! I found I got a good five or six hours of wear in this, and after it wore off through a meal, there was a slightly reddish stain that was left behind.

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →