Monday, July 23rd, 2012

NARS Amsterdam Pure Matte Lipstick
NARS Amsterdam Pure Matte Lipstick

A Deep Red Lip for Fall Courtesy of NARS

NARS Amsterdam Pure Matte Lipstick ($25.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “garnet red.” It’s a medium-dark red with burgundy-brown undertones and a natural matte finish, which means there’s the barest of sheen but it doesn’t look flat. MAC Rocker is slightly darker, cooler-toned. MAC Runaway Red is brighter. shu uemura Rouge Luster is similar but has shimmer. MAC Such Flare is slightly redder and brighter. MAC Extended Play is a bit browner. NARS Mascate is cooler-toned and brighter. Make Up For Ever #48 is sheerer and a bit more intense. MAC Dark Side is similar but has a glossier finish.

NARS’ Pure Matte formula is supposed to be matte, ultra pigmented, long-wearing, moisturizing, and comfortable to wear.  Amsterdam is an excellent example of matte done superbly. The color coverage is fully opaque, and you don’t need a lot of product to yield full color coverage.  It has that mostly matte finish without being flat, or worse, terribly drying. It’s lightly moisturizing (it certainly won’t replace your favorite balm!) and fairly forgiving on the lips, even if your lips are slightly dry.  I wore this shade last week, and Amsterdam hung on for an impressive six and a half hours.

If you often find that reds look too bright, too bold, you might like Amsterdam. There’s a muted quality to the color that keeps it from being vampy, but there’s enough burgundy/brown in it to keep it from looking too red.

The Glossover

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Amsterdam

A+
If you often find that reds look too bright, too bold, you might like Amsterdam. There's a muted quality to the color that keeps it from being vampy, but there's enough burgundy/brown in it to keep it from looking too red.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

NARS Moscow Pure Matte Lipstick
NARS Moscow Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Moscow Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Moscow Pure Matte Lipstick ($25.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “strawberry red.” This is an orange-red coral with a natural sheen that reads mostly matte from afar. Guerlain Habit Rouge is redder. Guerlain Sheer is a bit glossier, a touch lighter. NARS Joyous is a browner, more muted version.  Moscow has incredible pigmentation with opaque color in a single pass.

NARS’ Pure Matte Lipstick formula lives up to the majority of the brand’s claims, and it’s one of the better matte lipsticks on the market, because it doesn’t have that dry, agitating formula that makes lips look chapped and cracked after wear. It’s not the most moisturizing formula, period, but it’s one of the most hydrating matte lipsticks I have tried. Even after eight hours of wearing this–it wears well for seven full hours and starts declining after that–my lips feel good; healthy and hydrated enough that I don’t feel compelled to immediately apply balm. It’s also scent- and taste-free. The consistency is lightly creamy; not slippery but it glides on easily enough and deposits opaque color with very little product.

The Glossover

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Moscow

A
I love how it's rich and deep in color but still has a softer, muted quality to it; it's not the in-your-face bright orange-red that you might expect for summer. This shade should flatter deeper and warmer skin tones, and it will complement the Ramatuelle trio.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

NARS Valparaiso Pure Matte Lipstick
NARS Valparaiso Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Spring 2012: Valparaiso Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Valparaiso Pure Matte Lipstick ($25.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “rich raspberry.” It’s a rich raspberry with a slight emphasis on the berry portion. It has a very slightly frosted sheen. The color provides full coverage in a single pass. Guerlain Nuit d’Amour is redder, less pink. MAC Red Dwarf is less red, pinker. MAC Rebel is more berry-like. Guerlain Bee is purpler. MAC Wild ‘Bout You is redder, less pink.

Pure Matte lipsticks are supposed to be long-wearing and opaque with a consistency that glides on and wears comfortably. They also contain wild mango butter to better hydrate lips. What’s nice about the formula is there enough creaminess for even application, easy glide, but not so much that it slips around the lips or causes bleeding or feathering. Valparaiso is definitely opaque in one pass, and it wore for six and a half hours for me and left behind a slight stain. It’s not the most moisturizing formula I’ve tried, but it’s definitely one of the more hydrating matte (or nearly matte) lipstick formulas. I’ve had the best luck with the darker shades in this range, while lighter ones tend to be a little less forgiving.

The Glossover

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Valparaiso

A
It's actually a surprising shade to see for spring! It does coordinate well with the eyeshadow trio NARS Has for spring, though! It has nice color payoff, long-wear, and feels comfortable on.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4.5/5

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Sunday, July 24th, 2011


NARS Montego Bay Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Montego Bay Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Montego Bay Pure Matte Lipstick ($25.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “rose pink.” It’s a soft pink with just a hint of coral to me–it has the warmth and lightness of pink but not the brightness of your typical coral. Montego Bay is muted without being dull or overly dusty and pale. It is, though, on the lighter side, so the creaminess in the texture is more noticeable.  I can see this color looking a little different depending on skin tone and natural pigmentation of the lips–it may look pinker on some, more coral on others.  It’s a little darker than MAC Ever Hip, pinker than MAC Gem of Roses, darker than Giorgio Armani #507, and more opaque than Shiseido PK327.

The Pure Matte formula is designed to be opaque and long-wearing in a base that glides on and wears comfortably–it also contains wild mango butter to moisturize lips. I found this particular shade to be creamier than most of the Pure Mattes, and this resulted in a noticeable sheen to the finish, though these are supposed to be “perfectly matte.” It helps the color glide on and apply evenly, but it wears four hours or so before it really begins to fade. The color itself is nearly opaque and delivers good color coverage without a lot of product.

Pure Mattes are mostly matte without being drying or uncomfortable to wear and deliver excellent color coverage with little product. It could be a touch more moisturizing over the time it wears, but for a matte, achieving “not drying” status is good.

The Glossover

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Montego Bay

B+
Four hours on a lighter shade like this is good, but it's not quite long-wearing. It's less matte than expected, which may be a good thing, depending on your personal preferences, but it strays a little from NARS' claim of "perfectly matte."

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

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Saturday, July 23rd, 2011


NARS Mascate Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Mascate Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Mascate Pure Matte Lipstick ($25.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “bold red,” and it is certainly that: a decadent, deep red that’s neither blue nor orange. It is a cooler-toned red, so the base is subtly blue, but it is the type of red that will work on cooler and warmer skin tones. The finish is nearly matte, with a touch of shine when the light hits the center of the lips.

The Pure Matte formula is designed to be opaque and long-wearing in a base that glides on and wears comfortably–it also contains wild mango butter to moisturize lips. There is enough creaminess to allow the color to apply easily onto lips without dragging or pulling, but not so much that it causes feathering. The color becomes opaque in one stroke, too–very high pigmentation–and between the matte finish and the boldness of the color, it lasts six to eight hours on me. It does stain slightly if worn for more than a couple of hours.

I don’t find that all of the Pure Mattes are created equal, but the darker and bolder shades like Mascate work wonderfully. They’re mostly matte without being drying or uncomfortable to wear and deliver excellent color coverage with little product. It could be a touch more moisturizing over the time it wears, but for a matte, achieving “not drying” status is good.

The Glossover

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Mascate

A
I like the depth in this red--it gives it the boldness that reds always have, but it's not a bright red, so it pairs well with an assortment of looks and situations.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

NARS Carthage Pure Matte Lipstick
NARS Carthage Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Carthage Pure Matte Lipstick ($25.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “matte, hot pink hue saturates lips with rich, bold color.” It has a slight sheen to it–I wouldn’t say it’s completely matte–and really rich, vibrant fuchsia pink with blue undertones. The color coverage is excellent, and it really takes no more than a pass and a half or so to get even, full color coverage.

my thoughts on the formula: Pure Matte lipsticks have a matte finish, and while they’re not moisturizing, they don’t rob my lips of moisture. Mattes do, however, last longer on lips, and NARS’ Pure Matte lipsticks last between four and five hours on me, though deeper shades like Carthage last five to six hours.

The Glossover

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Carthage

A-
It's a bright pink that still brings depth to the table--and that isn't always easy to do. The cooler undertones in this lipstick will make it slightly more flattering on those with pink undertones, but the brightness should enable it to be workable on warmer complexions, too.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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