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Illamasqua Stranger Intense Lipgloss

Illamasqua Stranger Intense Lipgloss
Illamasqua Stranger Intense Lipgloss

A Gold Lipgloss for the Season

Illamasqua Stranger Intense Lipgloss ($22.00 for 0.20 oz.) is described as a “metallic gold.” It’s a dirty, antique gold with a green-ish tinge and warmer, bronzy gold shimmer. It’s probably a shock to no one that I don’t have a laundry list of dupes for this shade–in fact, I couldn’t think of anything all that similar. MAC Liquid Lurex had a similar coloring in the tube, but it’s very sheer and glittery. OCC Triptych is warm, yellow-y gold. It’s different, and it’s certainly not a shade for everyone, but I’m really glad I picked it up. I think you can lightly dab it over various lipsticks/glosses to add a metallic shimmer if wearing it on its own isn’t your style.

It has mostly opaque color coverage, and the color applied evenly overall.  The Intense Lipgloss formula is designed to give rich color with a high shine finish.  It’s supposed to have a non-sticky texture, and there was no tack in the gloss to speak of.  It delivered a lot of color (and a ton of shimmer), and the finish was a bit glossy but very metallic.  Stranger lasted five hours on me, which is longer than average for a gloss. While worn, it was neither drying nor hydrating. The only downside is that ever since Illamasqua switched to brush-type applicator, nearly all of mine have had wonky, splayed brushes.

Illamasqua Intense Lipgloss Stranger
Stranger
Stranger
9
Product
9.5
Pigmentation
9.5
Texture
9
Longevity
4.5
Application
92%
Total

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Giorgio Armani #400 (The Red) Lip Maestro

Giorgio Armani #400 (The Red) Lip Maestro
Giorgio Armani #400 (The Red) Lip Maestro

A Beautiful, Deep Red

Giorgio Armani #400 (The Red) Lip Maestro ($32.00 for 0.22 fl. oz.) is a subtly blue-based, deep red. This is darker, less pink, compared to Giorgio Armani #503 Red Fuchsia Lip Maestro, which I reviewed previously. Dior Diorling is a bit bluer-based. MAC Charmed, I’m Sure is bluer-based, a bit brighter. Guerlain Luxure is a bit browner. MAC Runaway Red has a pink-y edge to it. Chanel Dragon is very similar, but it has noticeable shimmer. It is the closest I’ve come to duping Dragon, and at a stretch, #400 is slightly less blue-based and doesn’t have the same shimmer, but it’s hard to tell if you aren’t looking close-up.

The formula is fully opaque in a single pass–a little goes a long way–and it is a very long-wearing shade that’s comfortable to wear from start to finish.  The Red lasted seven and a half hours on me with extraordinary color, and it lingered into the ninth and tenth hours with 70% or so color remaining–it had a slightly faded, almost stained-like look.  It has a velvety texture and if you’re familiar with silicone-based primers, it also has that feel, too.  Very smooth, and the consistency is thin and glides on, yet it adheres well without being clingy or drying.  It seems glossy close-up, but from a normal distance, it has a modern matte finish–not flat but not glossy.  The best part about this long-wearing formula is that it wears (and feels) like a lipstick; so it doesn’t flake or peel off at all and fades naturally and evenly over time.

Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro The Red (400)
10
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
99%
Total

Bobbi Brown Black Pearl Shimmer Lip Gloss

Bobbi Brown Black Pearl Shimmer Lip Gloss
Bobbi Brown Black Pearl Shimmer Lip Gloss

Bobbi Brown Black Pearl Shimmer Lip Gloss ($23.00 for 0.24 fl. oz.) is described as a “dusty mauve.” It’s a gray-tinged mauve with a hint of plumminess and pale mauve shimmer. What it does on my lips is darken the natural lip color, give it a cool-toned cast, and add a healthy dosage of pale mauve shimmer. Chanel Pleasing is warmer, less plum. Urban Decay Perversion is a bit darker.

This shade yielded semi-sheer color coverage, but it distinctly added/altered my natural lip color, and there was a lot of visible shimmer. The shimmer spread evenly across the lips, and it didn’t settle into lip lines. It has a very thin texture with a lightly tacky feel. The formula is vanilla-scented and comes with a doe-foot applicator. Black Pearl wore for three and a half hours on me, and it was neither drying nor hydrating.

Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lip Gloss Black Pearl
Black Pearl

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Clinique Grandest Grape (08) Chubby Stick Intense

Clinique Grandest Grape (08) Chubby Stick Intense
Clinique Grandest Grape (08) Chubby Stick Intense

The Grandest Grape is the Sweetest

Clinique Grandest Grape (08) Chubby Stick Intense ($16.00 for 0.10 oz.) is berry-red with a glossy sheen. NARS Afghan Red is a touch lighter, less red. MAC Rebel is more fuchsia. Guerlain Guet-Apens is lighter. Guerlain Nuit d’Amour is darker. Guerlain Bee is purpler.

This shade yielded semi-opaque color coverage; there was enough translucency that my natural lip color was still a bit visible, and my lip freckle was very much visible still (always a good measure of opacity!). This shade wore exceptionally well–five hours–and it left a soft stain behind. It was hydrating both during wear, as well as even as it wore off and a couple of hours afterward–my lips were in better shape after I wore it than when I initially applied it. The consistency was creamy, balm-like, and applied easily.

Clinique Grandest Grape (08) Chubby Stick Intense

A
10
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
9.5
Longevity
4.5
Application
98%
Total

Clinique Heftiest Hibiscus (04) Chubby Stick Intense

Clinique Heftiest Hibiscus (04) Chubby Stick Intense
Clinique Heftiest Hibiscus (04) Chubby Stick Intense

What is a Hefty Hibiscus Anyway?

Clinique Heftiest Hibiscus (04) Chubby Stick Intense ($16.00 for 0.10 oz.) is an orange-coral with hints of red. It has a subtle glossy sheen. MAC Scarlet Ibis is brighter and redder. Tom Ford True Coral is lighter and brighter. YSL Blood Orange is similar but sheerer. MAC Sail la Vie is more orange. Urban Decay 5150 is a touch redder. MAC Hibiscus is a touch lighter and pinker.

This winter, Clinique launched a more pigmented version of their Chubby Sticks, which are supposed to be a moisturizing lip balm. This richer version is described as a “nourishing tinted balm halfway between sheer and opaque.” The color of Heftiest Hibiscus is mostly opaque with some translucency where the natural lip color comes through–if you have naturally redder lips, this will turn redder on you as a result. It has a creamy, balm-like consistency that enables easy glide-on application and feels comfortable to wear.  This shade lasted four hours on me, and it was hydrating while worn. What I like best about the Chubby Sticks, both these and the original ones, is the twist-up packaging–no sharpening required (so, no waste).

Clinique Heftiest Hibiscus (04) Chubby Stick Intense

A-
9.5
Product
9
Pigmentation
10
Texture
8.5
Longevity
4.5
Application
92%
Total

Burberry Antique Pink (303) Lip Velvet

Burberry Pink Apricot Lip Velvet
Burberry Antique Pink (303) Lip Velvet

Burberry Antique Pink (303) Lip Velvet ($30.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a pinky-brown with hints of beige. It’s a fairly neutral color, but if I had to pick, I’d say it leans warmer rather than cool, but I think it is rather neutral overall. Urban Decay Naked has a soft pink iridescence and is rosier overall. MAC Impressive is slightly darker and pinker. Bobbi Brown Heather Pink is a touch pinker. Guerlain Avarice is brighter, pinker. MAC Spice is very comparable. Bobbi Brown Uber Nude is browner–lacks the rosiness of this shade.

The formula is just creamy enough to enable a great glide-on consistency that deposits even, opaque color without pulling or tugging at the lip. Because it’s not too creamy, it doesn’t move around or feather, and it feels lightweight on. It was comfortable to wear and lightly hydrating over the five and a half hours it wore for. It comes in a square, matte-finish tube with a magnetic enclosure and has a sweet, fruity scent but no taste.

Burberry Lip Velvet Antique Pink (303)
10
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
9.5
Longevity
5
Application
99%
Total

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