A few years ago you couldn’t impress me with any kind of lipstick – I just wasn’t phased. This was mostly because I was nervous to wear most of them (I’m a little special in the poise department – I always have food spilled somewhere and in related news I always used to have lipstick on my face/teeth/the living room walls).
But something happened somewhere along the line. Formulas improved greatly and I started picking the right ones. And before I knew it I had an entire drawer full of lipstick. In honour of my lipstipiphany I’ve rounded up my favourite new(ish) luxury choices. So hide your credit card, sit back, and enjoy the read.
I’m really excited so I’m just going to start with my ultimate favourite of the lot – Chanel Rouge Allure Ink. It looks kind of unimpressive in the small matte tube, but as soon as you open it you’re rewarded with rich, vibrant colour. I wasn’t planning on swatching anything, but you can see Seduisant and Choquant below. You can also see Choquant on my lips over here.
The Rouge Allure Inks go on opaque, dry down to a matte finish, and feel hardly detectable on the lips – I’m not sure how they do it. Somehow it also fades without leaving behind any signs of its former opaque glory – just a subtle stain. Magic, I tell you.
Get Rouge Allure Ink for R610 each – locally we have 8 variations of red to choose from.
Inside you’ll find 12 lipstick shades in varying finishes. I initially thought the colour selection is a bit odd, but I’ve since changed my mind and decided it’s a great way to try some shades I would never have chosen for myself. In fact, starting tomorrow I’m going to work my way through the palette and try every shade at least once – can’t wait to get to 714, the iconic Ruby Rose red.
Aside from the contents, the packaging is pretty phenomenal too. Sturdy metal case, protective cover to shield your lipsticks from accidental damage and a pretty decent lip brush – all for R700.
The Urban Decay Vice Blackmail Lipstick palette is limited edition, so you better run to the Sandton or Eastgate UD stores if you want one.
With their return to SA shores YSL colour cosmetics shook up a few things, including very kindly adding a new variant of their iconic Glossy Stains – YSL Vinyl Cream Lip Stains.
They’re creamier, more opaque, and they last much longer; but the stain is still there – you can forget to touch up and it doesn’t look odd at all. I love that they did this – they took the best parts of an existing product, and added even better parts to it.
I have Explicit Pink, and I have a strong suspicion that Fuchsia Live *cough* and possibly also Burgundy Vibes will make their way into my shopping basket some time soon.
Get YSL Vinyl Cream Lip Stains for R520 each.
There’s not that much to say about it since it’s a fairly straight forward lipstick, but I wanted to mention Black Up for the texture and pigmentation. Super smooth, mega pigmented – definitely a brand to consider if you want statement lips.
R315, available at Edgars.
Another hybrid lippie is Elizabeth Arden Beautiful Color Bold Liquid Lipstick – it’s a lipstick-meets-gloss product. It has a cushion-like applicator and a handy click mechanism that allows you to distribute the correct amount of product onto the tip for each application. I realise that I’m geeking out over a clicky thing, but I really get great satisfaction from smart products.
The formula itself is super creamy and well pigmented, but it’s not the most long lasting one I’ve used. I don’t mean this as a criticism – it fades gradually and doesn’t dry out my lips, so I’m very happy to reapply every now and then.
Get Elizabeth Arden Beautiful Colour Bold Liquid Lipstick for R295 each, 7 shades available.
Finally we have a classic, luxurious lipstick in the most gorgeous, James Bond-style packaging. The new Lancome L’Absolu Rouge lipsticks were developed by makeup legend Lisa Eldrige. They’re all pinks and reds and we have 25 shades available locally in cream and matte finishes.
It’s difficult to describe (I’ll load an Instagram video to demo if I can remember) but you press down on one side and then there’s a pop as the lipstick slides out the other side. But just far enough for you to safely remove it from there. I don’t know, maybe I’m too easily impressed by clever, shiny things but I suspect it’s the most aesthetically pleasing makeup item I’ve laid hands on all year.
I enjoy both the cream and matte formulas – the matte one obviously lasts a bit longer. Both feel good and as you can imagine it’s very satisfying whipping out one of these tubes and touching up your lips – sommer so in the middle of dinner conversation, thank you very much.
Get Lancome L’Absolu Rouge lipsticks for R400 each.
Right, we’re all done here. Which one of the above is at the top of your list?