Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

NARS Cythere Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil
NARS Cythere Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Spring 2013: Cythere

NARS Cythere Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) is described as a “soft metallic rose.” It’s a beige-brown with a rainbow shimmer. I’m not sure where NARS is seeing rose, as it yields a very metallic champagne/beige/brown kind of color both swatched and applied. The shimmer reminded me a lot of the kind found in Illamasqua Opulent, but the color of Opulent isn’t like Cythere. MAC Straight to the Head has a lot more glitter. Lancome Amande is browner.

The Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil is supposed to provide hydration, shine, and feel comfortable to wear. Cythere has mostly opaque color coverage along with a high-shine finish; not super glossy but very metallic and reflective. The texture is lightly tacky, creamy, and on the thicker side. This shade lasted four hours on me, and it was lightly hydrating while I wore it.  The color applied evenly and smoothly, but sharpening this formula can be a bit of a pain, as it is a very soft, creamy consistency that can get stuck and smeared all over your sharpener.  It’s better to put the pencil in the freezer for a bit, then sharpen, to minimize mess and waste.

The Glossover

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Cythere

A-
A nice variation on the idea of nude by darkening and adding some brown, plus beautiful rainbow shimmer, that won't wash a lot of complexions out.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

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Thursday, July 26th, 2012

NARS More Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil
NARS More Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

Would You Say Auburn is Universally Flattering?

NARS More Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) is described as “auburn.” It’s a medium orange-brown with a glossy sheen. It’s like a lighter terracotta. NARS Hopi is less brown, sheerer, and shimmery. MAC Hot Spell is less orange and has shimmer. MAC Tea Ceremony is lighter. NARS Casablanca is more orange, less brown. Cle de Peau Just Joey is lighter.

Velvet Gloss Lip Pencils are supposed to be lightweight, have great shine, feel hydrating, and be easy to apply. More is a new shade for fall, but it is being added to the permanent collection. When I wore it last week, it lasted for four and a half hours, which is good; above average.  It yields opaque color coverage, and the color applies evenly.  This shade felt less shiny compared to other pencils I’ve tried in the range, though it’s definitely a stronger sheen than the Velvet Matte range!   I found it neither moisturizing nor drying, just kind of there (better that than drying).  It does have a creamy, lightweight texture that seems thin but applies easily.

I’m not a fan of this type of packaging, especially because the pencil is on the softer, creamier side, so it can easily get stuck inside a pencil sharpener.  Readers have advised freezing the pencil prior to sharpening to help minimize waste, which definitely helps but hasn’t fully eliminated the problem (there’s still some waste).

The Glossover

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More

A
It's an interesting shade of orange-brown, because it doesn't read very warm-toned, despite that brown and orange tend to be warmer hues. There's warmth there, but it's subtle.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Monday, April 16th, 2012

NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil
NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) is described as a “nude beige pink.” It’s a light peach beige with a subtle shine. The color coverage is mostly opaque. It’s not quite as glossy or as shiny as other hues within the Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil range, though. MAC Naturally Eccentric is lighter. MAC Peachstock is darker, more orange. Guerlain Guerlinade is slightly darker.  What I like about the color is that it’s more universally wearable–it’s not so pale and light that it becomes the kind of nude that can easily wash out complexions.  There’s enough warmth, color, and opaqueness to give lips a lighter look without washing them out.

When I wore Buenos Aires, it lasted for just over three and a half hours. There was a very slight tackiness after an hour or so–very subtle but still there. The texture is fairly lightweight and thin. While the formula is supposed to be moisturizing, I found it neutral; neither drying nor moisturizing. The tip of the pencil is soft and creamy, so it applies fairly easily and provides even coverage.  The packaging is a bit of a bummer, because the softness of the pencil means a lot of it gets stuck in the sharpener, so there is a fair amount of loss every time you sharpen it. You can freeze the pencil to help minimize it, but it’s still a problem.

The Glossover

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Buenos Aires

B+
What I like about the color is that it's more universally wearable--it's not so pale and light that it becomes the kind of nude that can easily wash out complexions. There's enough warmth, color, and opaqueness to give lips a lighter look without washing them out.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, January 12th, 2012

NARS Mexican Rose Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil
NARS Mexican Rose Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Spring 2012: Mexican Rose Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Mexican Rose Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) is described as a “hot pink.” It’s new and permanent, just in time for spring. It’s a glossy raspberry pink with a touch of sheerness but is still very pigmented for a gloss and, overall, nearly opaque. There’s a shiny finish that makes the lips look almost wet. MAC Scandelicious is brighter, pinker. MAC Radiant Jewels is similar but less opaque and even. NARS Hot Wired is redder and has a shimmery iridescence. Lancome Electric Pink is a bit lighter and has shimmer.

I reviewed the formula in-depth here. I wore Mexican Rose to test out the wear, though, and it wore for three and a half hours. It’s comfortable to wear, because it has the texture of lip balm–thin, lightweight–but the high-gloss shine of your favorite lipgloss. You won’t get quite the lush lip look without some of the cushion-like texture of a true gloss, but you do get a good amount of added luminosity and fullness from the shine. I also really loved how evenly this applied.

The major downside is that these are not twist-up pencils, so they require sharpening. With the softness of the pencil (which actually broke on me while I was applying it for swatching), you’ll waste a lot if you don’t freeze them (many readers have said they had good luck freezing pencils like this!).

The Glossover

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Mexican Rose

A-
The packaging can be frustrating, but if you're OK with dealing with it, then it's more like an A- product. It feels comfortable on the lips, applies evenly, and yields true color.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011


NARS Club Mix Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencils

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) was a new product, released for spring, as a twist on NARS’ Velvet Matte Lip Pencil. It’s a glossy, moisturizing jumbo-sized pencil available in six “glazed” shades. The range includes: Baroque (raspberry sorbet), Club Mix (sheer grape), Frivolous (iridescent seashell pink), Happy Days (pink coral infused with gold shimmer), abd Hopi (honey beige), and New Lover (gold infused strawberry pink).

  • Baroque is a dark, pink-tinged red with silver and pink shimmer. It’s nearly opaque on lips.
  • Club Mix is a berry plum with soft pink and burgundy with a slight metallic finish. It’s semi-sheer to semi-opaque on lips with a glossy shine.
  • Frivolous is a sheer pink nude with soft gold shimmer that applies semi-sheer to semi-opaque. For me, it’s a rather my-lips-but-better shade.
  • Happy Days is a sheer coral-red with coppery gold shimmer that gives medium color coverage.
  • Hopi is a darkened, coppered tan with gold and copper shimmer. It is almost semi-opaque on lips, but you can still see my lip freckle.
  • New Lover is a dark, cool-toned pink with iridescent pink-peach shimmer. Like Hopi, it is almost semi-opaque in color coverage.

It’s hard to determine just what kind of color coverage to expect from these, because it seems to range from semi-sheer to semi-opaque overall, with Baroque being the most opaque and Frivolous being the sheerest. Given NARS’ gloss range and lipgloss in general, they are typically not opaque, so I think the pigmentation level in these is good and above average.

The finishes of each is a glossy enough to be a gloss but the thin texture of the pencil won’t give lips as full of a look as thicker lip gloss does. These are a great alternative to those who want the shine of the gloss but the texture of a lip balm.

These are smooth and glide on effortlessly, and the coverage is fairly even without having to work at it. They also deposit color well without requiring lots of layers to achieve the results seen in swatches. I get about three hours of wear with these, which is about average. I detected no scent or taste, and the texture of these is not at all tacky.

My concern with these lip pencils is how soft the pencil is–though it lends to easier application, these are so soft that they don’t do well if the temperature is 70 degrees or higher and end up rather melty. Jumbo-sized pencils like these can waste product when sharpened, and the softness of the pencil seems to exacerbate that problem.

Iwish NARS had gone with twist-up packaging, like Clinique, which would make these more convenient (no sharpening required) and eliminate the waste. The amount of waste does seem to vary from sharpener to sharpener, and I usually reach for Urban Decay’s Grindhouse, which gives me minimized waste, but there is still some.

The Glossover

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NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
If the packaging didn't waste product every time you sharpened it (or conversely, if they gave you a lot more product!), I'd love these more (they'd be rated a B+ if packaging was fine!). The color range is really workable and wearable across skin tones, and I can see New Lover being a favorite.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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