REVIEW: Benefit They’re Real! Big Sexy Lip Kit – Flame Game, Pink Thrills, Revved-Up Red & Lusty Rose

Hey everyone!

In 2015, Laneige sparked the craze for effortless ombré lip with their Two Tone Lip Bars across Asia and even though more than two years have passed since that game-changing debut (which would have been obsolete by now in this fast-moving industry), it was only in recent months that dual- or multi-tone lipsticks had finally caught on in the Western market. Not only has Maybelline leveraged the innovation, Givenchy has also come up with their own version of the concept, thus reaffirming South Korea as the leading trendsetter in the global beauty scene once again. Now that there are already brands dedicating to the mass and premium markets, you may be wondering who is going to fill the void to cater to most of us (I assume) – the mid-tier consumers.

Well, ponder no more, Benefit is your answer!

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set

Launched last fall, they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set includes four 2-in-1 lipstick liners in complimenting colours named Flame Game, Pink Thrills, Revved-Up Red and Lusty Rose. These lipstick liners – subsequently known as They’re real! double the lip when they were upsized to singles earlier this year – has a tip shaped like a teardrop to ensure precise placement along the edges and throughout the lips for the appearance of volume and dimension. They are also advertised to have an 8-hour longevity which I was very sceptical about.

Presented in a light metallic box, each of these miniature They’re real! double the lip is loaded in a reflective fun-sized retractable twist-up tube with a net weight of 0.75 g / 0.02 oz (S$51 / S$12.75 each) vis-à-vis the 1.5 g / 0.5 oz of product contained in every single (S$35). If my math doesn’t fail me (because not all Asians are math prodigies 🙃), this set should be cheaper by more than S$6 per gram. But the price was further marked down for me (at 20% off!) because this was purchased at a Sephora private sale not too long ago.

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set

Actual size of the packaging - slightly longer than my index finger, but only the little cylindrical tube at the top is filled with product which makes about 50% of the packaging hollow after factoring in the mechanics of it 🤔 How misleading and what a waste of resources, definitely..

Actual size of the packaging – slightly longer than my index finger, but only the little cylindrical tube at the top is filled with product which makes about 50% of the packaging hollow after factoring in the mechanics of it 🤔 How misleading and what a waste of resources, definitely..

At their maximum length

At their maximum length

Since these lipsticks serve primarily as a sneak preview of the actual product, don’t expect them to last an eternity. Each bullet measures only about 1.5 cm (approximately 0.6 inches) long when twisted up to its maximum length which, with daily use, should deplete within 2 months. But the good news is that there are four lipsticks in every set, so you get four times the maximum length of use 😭

Overview of all the swatches

Overview of all the swatches

Truth be told, for a lipstick that promises visibly fuller and sexier-looking lips after usage, I was not entirely pleased with the swatches. They appear too muted to achieve that sort of result and will most likely not show as prominently on darker skin tones. But until I tried them on my lips, I thought I should give them the benefit (no pun intended) of the doubt. Body chemistry works in mysterious ways and for all you know, they might turn out differently upon skin contact. So let’s see…

At the time of trial, my lower lip was still recovering from a scab (blame my itchy fingers) which I would be using as a means to assess the opacity and consistency of the lipsticks. Ha, striking while the iron is hot 😝

#1 Flame Game

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game

Flame Game is described as a fiery orange-red. It is a brightened, medium orange with red undertones which complements Asian skin tone (even those with olive and dark skin) very well. It has a satin finish and glides on the lips with some tug, leaving an uneven and streaky payoff which becomes more conspicuous after several hours of wear. It offers medium pigmentation with a slight sheen. Although sheer, it is buildable to a semi-opaque coverage. The product settles into my lip lines and around my scab while accentuating other imperfections of my lips but generally it feels hydrating and lightweight. The lip liner, however, camouflages into the main colour and cannot really be seen.

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Flame Game - swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Flame Game – swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

#2 Pink Thrills

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills

Pink Thrills is described as a real pink or to be more precise, a very flattering shade of cool muted pink which lends the lips a soft, diffused look. Lightweight, it has more of a matte finish to it with very minimal shine. This shade is slightly drying so it glides on the lips with some tug. It does not discernibly settle into my lip lines but does bunch up at some edges of my scab, though not as pronounced as Flame Game. It has medium pigmentation with mostly sheer coverage that lends a more seamless colour payoff and the lip liner is also noticeable enough to give the lips some depth. This shade leaves an unattractive ring around the edges of my lips after about five hours of wear.

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Pink Thrills - swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Pink Thrills – swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

#3 Revved-Up Red

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red

Revved-Up Red is described as a cherry red. It is a muted cool red with pink undertones and has a satin finish with a soft sheen and a creamier, stain-like consistency. It applies with some tug and although the lip liner appears a lot darker than the main colour on the bullet, it does not translate into the desired ombre appearance on the lips. In fact, it looks a tone lighter close up which doesn’t quite does it job in defining the lips. The product settles slightly into lip lines but not as noticeably around my scab. It has medium pigmentation with some patchiness and is mostly sheer but buildable to a low-medium coverage. This shade, on the overall, feels hydrating and lightweight but budges upon contact with water and food, leaving with just a hint of colour.

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Revved-Up Red - swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Revved-Up Red – swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

#4 Lusty Rose

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose

Lusty Rose is described as a rosy neutral. It is a muted cool mauve with pink undertones – the most flattering MLBB shade in the set which, I feel, goes well with any skin tone. This shade gives the lips a sophisticated look without appearing too overdone, making it perfect for any occasion – be it making a quick run to the grocery store or work. It has more of a matte finish to it with a soft sheen but like the other shades, it also applies with some tug.

Out of all four shades, this is perhaps the only one with a visibly deeper liner colour (I mean, it’s rather telling just by looking at the swatch) that contrasts enough again the main colour to give that intended depth. It has medium pigmentation and a medium-but-buildable coverage that enables it to conceal my scab entirely with a layer of solid colour. It has a slightly patchy consistency and feels slightly drying and heavier as compared to the other shades so you may need to exfoliate before application. Still, it is comfortable to wear and is also probably the only shade that lives up to the 8-hour longevity claim (but with some flakiness). Hands down, Lusty Rose is my top pick from this set and I’m already planning on getting the full size once I exhaust this.

they're real BIG sexy lipstick set - Lusty Rose - swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

they’re real BIG sexy lipstick set – Lusty Rose – swatch comparison with similar shade from other brands

All in all, if you take Benefit’s over-the-top guarantees with a pinch of salt (if you’ve been a Benefit user long enough, you’d be familiar with their marketing style so this is nothing out of the ordinary 😅), this set actually makes a pretty good and worthwhile buy. The colour selection is very varied and wearable in my opinion, and the compact and handy size also makes it convenient to carry in your pocket or purse wherever you go. I recommend getting it if you’re not ready to commit to the full-size version, or if you want more bang for your buck while still being able to try out more colours from this range.

What do you think about this new lipstick kit by Benefit? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

Benefit they’re real! big sexy lip kit is now available at sephora singapore online and outlets.

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REVIEW: Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Liquid Lipsticks – Gilded, Brilliant, Ritzy, Lavish & Opulent

Hello everyone!

From glossy to matte to satin, liquid lipsticks have taken on a plethora of finishes since they entered the beauty realm to parallel those of traditional bullet lipsticks and have rightfully stolen all the spotlight with their high-intensity colour. But the most recent liquid lip trend has more to it than just being imbued with incredibly rich colour; it is jam-packed with unapologetic sparkles and has hints of holographic shimmers to make you look like you’ve just stepped out of an editorial. Dubbed the metallic lip look, this latest beauty phenomenon rides on the beauty community’s love affair with frosty lips and has taken the beauty world by storm, so much so that virtually every makeup brand would have started its own line of metallic lipsticks (like Kylie Cosmetics Metals, which I reviewed a while back).

But for those who weren’t ready to squander their money on this fad, there was one problem. Metallic liquid lipsticks, though prevalent in the Western beauty markets, were not readily available in the drugstores here, leaving us with way pricier options from Sephora – that is, until Palladio (available at selected Guardian outlets) introduced a new addition to their lipstick line – the Velvet Matte Metallic formula.

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color

Product label

Product label

Priced to meet the tightest of budget constraints (because of other makeup priorities 😜), these metallic lipsticks are so affordable at only S$11.90 a pop (4.16 g / 0.147 oz), they give ColourPop (US$6 for 2.8 g / 0.10 oz) and NYX (US$7.50 for 0.13 oz, will cost at least S$20 when it hits stores here) a run for their money and you can literally buy all 5 shades without feeling much of a pinch. On top of that, I did not see other brands carrying any metallic liquid lipstick range from my recent visits to Guardian and Watsons so I think it’s safe to say – but correct me if I’m wrong – that Palladio is the first and only drugstore brand so far to do so in Singapore.

Presented in clear plastic tubes with a container shaped like a lipstick bullet inside to make the overall packaging appear less effortless, these fragrance-free (with a hint of plastic smell) Velvet Matte Metallic lipsticks look very similar to the brand’s normal Velvet Matte (review here) range as well as Maybelline Velvet Matte Lip Color which may cause some confusion. Apart from that, there is an inconsistency in the printing on the plastic tube depicted on the website and the actual product – the former has ‘matte’ printed after ‘metallic’ while the latter the opposite as you can see. I don’t know, I feel that this boo-boo is inexcusable for an established brand in this day and age, especially where counterfeiting is rampant 🤔

Nevertheless, my verdict on the products is based on their performance, so if you’re not the least bothered by the packaging, read on!

#1 Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Gilded

The lightest shade in this metallic lipstick range is Gilded, a warm rusty brown infused with fine bronze shimmers. It applies buttery smooth and offers sheer but buildable coverage, leaving a tacky yet emollient texture which wears comfortably without settling into the lip lines. The lipstick does not dry down completely thus making it seem like a film of easily-removable gloss on the lips. Moreover, it clumps up around the inner rim of my mouth, forming a very visible (and unsightly) ring of crust. Glided fades to a muted brown after several hours of wear.

#2 Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Brilliant

Rock the edgy vibe with Brilliant, a deep burgundy brown laden in fine reddish brown shimmers. It goes on thick and creamy with somewhat streaky (and tacky) consistency to create that distressed appearance. Although it lends a mostly opaque coverage, it pulls and separates noticeably into the lip lines over time, making them seem ever so prominent. Each application gives less product and because it does not dry down completely, it can be removed with the slightest touch.

#3 Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Ritzy

Regardless of the finish, no lipstick collection would be complete without a classic red. Therefore, it is absolutely necessary to include Ritzy, a vivid bluish-red with purple shimmers into this line of metallic lipsticks to cater to those not quite ready to step out of their comfort zone. The consistency of this highly pigmented red is thick and creamy, and a little of it really goes a long way. Its rich texture gives an opaque payoff and is able to conceal the lip lines with just one swipe.

Its inability to dry down gives it a wet, sultry look but at the same time, it also makes it extremely prone to transfer. Besides, unlike the others, the duochrome effect in Ritzy is barely noticeable on the lips as the shimmers seem to get buried deeper into the product with additional applications. So disappointingly, it appears entirely red with only a strong sheen which I feel does not justify paying close to S$2 more than the regular Palladio Velvet Matte lipstick for it.

#4 Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Lavish

If bright siren red isn’t your cup of tea, there is a darker alternative going by the name of Lavish. This deep ruby red has brown undertones and is riddled with fine purple shimmers. Although the sparkles are mostly camouflaged within the product, the purple metallic tint still pops to some degree in the right light. The lipstick goes on creamy with an opaque coverage and is definitely patchier than Ritzy. Like the rest, Lavish is not touch-proof and has a tacky finish, but feels hydrating on the lips.

#5 Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent (US$8.00 / S$11.90)

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic Cream Lip Color in Opulent

It may already be 2017. But like it or not, dark plum lipsticks are here to stay. This universally flattering shade goes well with practically every skin tone  – I’ve honestly never come across anyone who doesn’t look good in it. If you haven’t already added a dark plum lipstick to your stash, it’s not too late to get one now. And you being new to this whole vampy lip look, you may want to start small and Opulent is one affordable option you can consider.

Opulent is a deep burgundy with similarly unnoticeable fine purple shimmers. It has a creamy application with a streaky consistency that accentuates lip lines. Perhaps due to its thinner texture, Opulent dries down (albeit not totally) seemingly the fastest among all five shades featured here, and is perhaps the only one that does at all. Although not completely transfer-resistant, it cannot be removed with regular wet wipes unlike the others. It is emollient and more long-lasting which enables it to fade to a plum stain after several hours of wear.

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic swatch comparisons with other metallic liquid lipsticks I have. No dupes identified except for Brilliant and Kylie Cosmetics' Reign which are closely similar each other. Reign is more muted with a more even distribution of shimmers, making it look more metallic than Brilliant

Palladio Velvet Matte Metallic swatch comparisons with other metallic liquid lipsticks I have. No dupes identified except for Brilliant and Kylie Cosmetics’ Reign which are closely similar each other. Reign is more muted with a more even distribution of shimmers, making it look more metallic than Brilliant

Despite the name given to this line of lipsticks, they are barely velvet (creamy would be a better description) and matte (too much of a wet look to it) while the metallic intensity differs from shade to shade. I noticed the darker the lipstick, the sparsely distributed the shimmers. But generally, the metallic effect is not as pronounced as what you see in the market, which makes it very wearable in a largely conservative place like Singapore. I would recommend these to those looking to add a new twist to their lipstick colours without overdoing it or digging into their pockets. However, as one who prefers my lipsticks to be more transfer-resistant (I can’t be bothered to touch up my makeup once I’m out), these unfortunately warrant a ‘no’ from me.

What do you think? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or through my poll!

Thanks for reading!

Palladio velvet matte metallic cream lip color is now available online for US$8.00 each and at selected local guardian outlets for S$11.90 each.
Products featured in this review were editorially selected. All opinions, as always, are genuine and uninfluenced.

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REVIEW: MAC Liptensity Lipsticks in Smoked Almond & Marsala

Hello everyone!

On top of possessing a larger vocabulary of colour names, research has also shown that women are better than men at distinguishing colours. In other words, while we perceive navy and cobalt as two completely different colours, our male counterparts may beg to differ. Even though this is backed by scientific facts (which has got something to do with our X chromosomes), I still can’t help but think that these capabilities could, too, be attributed to our exposure to the world of cosmetics. Years of comparing makeup swatches and the perpetual release of “new” lipstick shades with explicit colour descriptions by various brands would have undoubtedly trained our eyes to recognise any tonal differences and broadened our horizons of colour knowledge.

But just as we thought we’ve seen every colour in the visible spectrum on the Sephora racks, M.A.C pushed that boundary further and opened our eyes to a myriad of unexplored colours with its Liptensity collection which was launched online in September and in Singapore the following month last year.

M.A.C Liptensity

M.A.C Liptensity

Leveraging the skills of Maureen Seaberg, a tetrachromat who has the genetic ability to see up to 100 million hues (that is, a hundred times the number of colours an average person can), M.A.C unveiled 24 lipsticks which promise never-seen-before extreme colour intensity in just one stroke.

💥 FUN FACTS 💥

Tetrachromacy may seem like a fascinating deformity to have but in actual fact, it does at times pose great inconvenience to the sufferer and stir up insecurities about her image (as this condition primarily affects females).

As Concetta Antico, a tetrachromat artist, put it in an interview, tetrachromats “see colours in other colours” and can therefore see all the reds and blues in every vein and blemish vividly on their face, spurring them to level out the colours in their skin with a lot of makeup. Endowed with the ability to spot even the slightest difference in skin colour, tetrachromats can also easily tell the emotions of others, or if they’re sick.

(Jeez, I’d hate to have face-to-face conversation with tetrachromats since my dark circles, blackheads, acne and hyperpigmentation will all be intensified in their eyes 😲)

A permanent addition (with 6 LE shades) to the brand’s 14 other finishes, the Liptensity range is formulated to be the most pigmented lipstick by M.A.C to date. It contains presaturated pigment with a clear base to prevent our body chemistry from altering the original colour over time. Seaberg, whose role involved adjusting the shades to make sure that the colour stayed true, tested the formula in and out of sunlight to ensure its infallibility. I don’t know about you, but as one who has experienced firsthand the disparity in the colour payoff of lipsticks on the hand and lips (I don’t feel comfortable applying testers to my face), this sounds like a breakthrough!

2 out of the 24 Liptensity lipsticks released by M.A.C

2 out of the 24 Liptensity lipsticks released by M.A.C

The Liptensity line is so exceptional, even the design of the product had to be given a major overhaul. The shade names are pasted on the box that encases the lipstick (as opposed to having them printed on). and the seemingly slimmer-than-usual lipstick tube is made of a smooth matte material which gives it a nice grip.

Like the Giambattista Valli collection, the lipsticks each comes with a cap that coordinates with the colour of the bullet inside. It has remarkable aesthetic appeal – the differentiation in its outer packaging forms a glorious rainbow of colours when placed side-by-side. But most importantly, it is a lifesaver for those (i.e. me) who have to set time aside daily to go through their hoard of M.A.C lipsticks before deciding on what to wear for the day because you can just zoom into the colour you have in mind from side or top-view.

Furthermore, the bullet comes totally flat on top with concave edges which, from my understanding, marks the second diversion from the brand’s signature diagonal tip after the Sheen Supreme collection. Although it is the first of its kind in M.A.C history, it is not unique to the brand as Wet n Wild MegaLast Lipstick shares the exact same mould. That said, I’m not fond of how the bullet is shaped as it isn’t easy to draw a precise line with it. As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

Smoked Almond & Marsala

Smoked Almond & Marsala

Alright, too much talkin’ (as usual 😅) before the actual review, so here! I had the luxury of choosing two Liptensity lipsticks as part of my press kit at a M.A.C preview and trust me, it was the most difficult two choices I made in my life 😥 So, after much deliberation and graffitied my hand with beautiful swatches, I finally got down on..

#1 Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond (US$21/ S$39)

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond (US$21 / S$39)

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Smoked Almond

One of the highly-raved shades in this collection, Smoked Almond has not gotten a negative rating (but then again, there’s hardly any for the entire range) and it is not hard to understand why.

First of all, the colour is absolutely flattering on fair and medium skin tones. I was contemplating between this and Toast And Butter but the latter made me look tanner than I already was. Smoked Almond just complements my skin tone perrr-fectly. With a little tug, this bright rosebrown goes on creamy and pigmented on the lips and leaves a luscious shine. It applies like a Matte due to its thick consistency but has a Satin finish. I had a scab on the bottom left of my lip but you can’t really see it in the picture because it is fully concealed by the lipstick which wrapped around it like a second skin. Moisturing with an emollient effect, Smoked Almond doesn’t settle into lip lines but is prone to transfer and will leave discernible streaks after hours of wear.

Swatch comparison for Smoked Almond: Pander Me is close but has more yellow undertones

Swatch comparison for Smoked Almond: Pander Me is close but has more yellow undertones

#2 Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala (US$21 / S$39)

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala (US$21 / S$39)

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

M.A.C Liptensity Lipstick in Marsala

Among my other choices (which I had narrowed down a lot *hits chest*) were a few crimsons and fuchsias, such as Claretcast and Cordovan, but I eventually settled on Marsala not knowing that this was also Temptalia’s top pick. Well, I guess it’s true when they say great minds think alike, aye? 😝

Accurately described as a deep magenta pink with a Satin finish, Marsala came across to me as a darkened version of Heaux when I first swatched it and for that reason, I had to pick it up because I loooove Heaux. It applies glossier and more buttery than Smoked Almond and lends a vibrant colour payoff in one swipe. You know how most sheeny berry-toned lipsticks tend to be blotchy? Marsala doesn’t have that sort of nonsense. It has a thick and uniform consistency, yet lightweight and super hydrating.

However, it is slightly tacky and definitely not transfer-proof. Still, you could easily eliminate these problems by gently dabbing your lips with facial tissue to remove the excess oil while still preserving the intensity. Please, just don’t let these minor drawbacks forestall you from getting this dreamy shade! Swatch this in store if you don’t believe me 🤗 Good thing this shade, together with Smoked Almond, is permanent so you don’t have to rush into buying it 😉

Swatch comparison for Marsala: Heaux is close but is lighter and warmer. Diva Antics is darker and cooler

Swatch comparison for Marsala: Heaux is close but is lighter and warmer. Diva Antics is darker and cooler

Based on the two Liptensity lipsticks I just reviewed, this collection does what it promises, which is to deliver unrivaled and unfaltering pigment intensity while nourishing the lips with maximum moisture (which warrants the price hike).. but if only these were more long-lasting! Moreover, perhaps because I don’t have an extra type of cone cell in my eyes, the shades look rather identical to what I already own. There isn’t much stark difference to make me go gaga over it.

So, are you team Smoked Almond, Marsala or none at all?

So, are you team Smoked Almond, Marsala or none at all?

What are your thoughts on the Liptensity collection? Let me know your thoughts below or respond to my poll ☺

Thanks for reading!

M.A.C Liptensity is now available online and at all local M.A.C outlets for S$39.
Products featured in this review were editorially selected. All opinions, as always, are genuine and uninfluenced.

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REVIEW: MAC x Gabriel Zamora Lipstick in Gabriel Zamora

Hello everyone!

These days, the perks of being a social media influencer or an opinion leader don’t just end at receiving event invitations, free products or financial compensation for sponsored content. In addition to those, the cream of the crop may even score beauty deals with global cosmetics companies to create new products, and already there have been a few of such instances like the collaboration between NikkieTutorials and Too Faced; Nicole Guerriero and Anastasia Beverly Hills; and Grav3YardGirl and Tarte. Joining the ranks of these major deal clinchers are LarLarLee, Gabriel Zamora as well as 8 others around the globe (excluding Asia.. why though? 😠) as they became the first influencers to ink a pact (one any beauty enthusiast would envy 😞) with M.A.C Cosmetics to create their own personalised lipsticks.

Given M.A.C’s history of collaborations with Hollywood celebrities and designers with much greater star power, this came across as an unlikely partnership. But it also goes to show that they are willing to move with the times and adapt to trends (since tapping influencers seems like the “in” thing now). Besides, we all know M.A.C loves springing some surprise element in their collaborations.

10 INFLUENCERS & LAUNCH DATES

… because if it ain’t big, it ain’t M.A.C 😁

United Kingdom (April 19)

#MACxFleurDeForce by @FleurDeForce
#MACxAlessandra by @alexsteinherr

United States of America (April 20)

#MACxLarLarLee by @LarLarLee
#MACxGabrielZamora by @TheGabrielZamora

Canada (April 22)

#MACxSamanthaRavndahl by @ssssamanthaa

Australia (May 22)

#MACxNikkiaJoy by @NikkiaJoy

Germany (May 31)

#MACxCaroDaur by @CaroDaur

France (June 7)

#MACxMarie by @EnjoyPhoenix

Middle East (June 15)

#MACxTheRealFouz by @TheRealFouz

Brazil (August)

#MACxVicCeridono by @VicCeridono

Dear M.A.C, maybe some Asian influencers next time…?

Each of the influencer is entitled to tailor-make one lipstick (named after them) which would/will then be sold solely in their country of origin in very limited quantities. My trusted forwarder only ships from the U.S. so I was only able to buy the U.S.-exclusive shades concocted by LarLarLee and Gabriel Zamora – both beauty vloggers – but the former sold out before I could even bat an eyelid, thereby leaving me with only Gabriel Zamora to purchase.

While it is true that these influencers have strong presence on social media, some did not necessarily found fame online. Alessandra Steinherr, in particular, is beauty director of Glamour UK and as an avid reader of the magazine, I was inclined to lend my support but was once again thwarted by shipping restrictions.

M.A.C X Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C X Gabriel Zamora

Having made headlines last year for being the first male makeup artist to be signed by Ipsy (a beauty sampling service co-founded by fellow beauty vlogger Michelle Phan), 26-year-old Gabriel Zamora is certainly not new to the spotlight. However, he consider his partnership with M.A.C his first major collaboration. Instantly identifiable by his distinct electric-blue hair, Zamora is also known as one of the few beauty gurus who produce bilingual content in English and Spanish on YouTube. Talk about dedication!

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

The lipstick is sheathed in a box bearing the name and autograph of the influencer who designed the shade with its finish also indicated very clearly on it. The packaging, on the overall, is meh because M.A.C obviously knew the lipsticks were going to be snapped up by overzealous fans anyway.

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora

Intuitively, one might expect Zamora to opt for a statement-making colour for his lipstick to go with his flamboyant hairstyle. But he had instead done the complete opposite and decided on a shade that would “work well with virtually any skin tone”. Described as a brown nude with Satin finish, one swipe of Gabriel Zamora lends a creamy and opaque coat of warm terracotta brown on the lips and indeed, you can never go wrong with this shade. This universally-flattering colour is a great for everyday wear and it is simply GORGEOUS!

Although buildable to a darker tone, the vivid colour payoff of just one coat of the lipstick renders additional application wholly unnecessary. Comfortably thick with a nice slip, it clings on to the lips to allow for a longer wear without drying them out, so at some point it felt like a Matte because it doesn’t budge easily. It’s so perfect, words can’t describe how much I love this shade! My current go-to nude lipstick (in Pander Me, a limited-edition shade that is no longer on sale) is running out and this totally saved me the headache of finding a replacement.

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora swatch comparison

M.A.C Gabriel Zamora swatch comparison

What do you think about this lipstick? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or take a quick poll!  🙂

Thanks for reading!

The now sold-out M.A.C × Gabriel Zamora lipstick was available in the U.S. only.

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REVIEW: MAC x Min Liu Lipsticks – Peach Blossom Pink & Dynasty Red

Hello everyone!

Since the highly-coveted glitzy Bao Bao Wan collection in 2015, M.A.C has been making a point of enlisting China’s most esteemed style stars for at least one of their beauty campaigns every year and being Chinese, I can’t help but feel an odd sense of pride even though I am not from China (yes, Singapore is a country on its own that is more than 2000 miles away from China in case you weren’t aware). In that same year, they joined forces with couturier Guo Pei to create a lavish capsule collection embellished with exotic floral prints, followed by Chris Chang in the subsequent year who lent her creative expertise to probably the most kaleidoscopic collection in the history of M.A.C and not long ago, with Min Liu (刘旻 liǔ mín), a Fuzhou-born fashion designer and founder of the Ms MIN label.

Before I dive into this collection, I thought I should clarify certain inaccuracies about Min Liu’s identity – she is not to be confused with the New York-based motion graphics designer (her quirky work is really right up my alley nonetheless, go check them out!) of the same name whom even the supposedly trustworthy beauty websites mistook for (like this one here, here and here *sigh* they’re two completely different people, y’all 🙄 #lazyjournalism). While it can be a real challenge for some to distinguish between Asians, especially when many of us share the same name, it wouldn’t hurt to delve a wee bit deeper into her background and perhaps, exercise a little common sense? A prolific graphic designer running a chain of boutiques? Yeah, it’s possible but ain’t nobody got time for that 🙄

M.A.C X Min Liu Collection (Can we also take a moment to appreciate the beauty of those dresses in the promo picture?)

M.A.C X Min Liu Collection (Can we also take a moment to appreciate the beauty of those dresses in the promo picture?)

After more than three years in the making, the M.A.C × Min Liu collection finally came to fruition and was launched in conjunction with the start of Shanghai Fashion Week in early April. Drawing inspiration from the concept of “气 (qì),” or energy, which is often invoked as a proxy for health and attractiveness in the traditional Chinese culture, this collection adopts pink and red as two of its primary colours (apart from silver and black) because of their customary association with health and positive energy. Read more about the philosophy behind the collaboration here.

Initially slated for limited Asia-Pacific release, this limited-edition collection comprising two shades of Lipstick and Lipglass (Peach Blossom Pink / Fortune Red), Eyeshadow Duo (Fortune Duo), Pearlmatte Face Powder, Fluidline gel liner, Cream Color Base, Brush Roll and a makeup bag eventually rolled out globally in special packaging around mid-April.

M.A.C X Min Liu lipsticks

M.A.C X Min Liu lipsticks

M.A.C X Min Liu lipsticks

M.A.C X Min Liu lipsticks

The lipsticks are encased in a polished, all-black angular tube bedecked with a black tassel (which came protected in a plastic roll to prevent it from fraying), therefore felt a lot bulkier than usual. Naturally, with that extra ornament and the untypical-of-M.A.C packaging, the lipsticks are expected to cost more than those in the regular line. $3 more, as a matter of fact.

#1 Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink (US$20)

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink (US$20)

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Peach Blossom Pink

In the words of Min Liu, “pink is a metaphor of beauty” so there has to be some variant of pink here. And what better way to incorporate pink into this collection than to actually make a lipstick of that colour? Hence, there’s Peach Blossom Pink, a clean midtone pink with Matte finish that looks like a familiar shade of cool fuchsia which you most probably would already have in your stash.

This lipstick is so pigmented that it does not take more than two swipes to deliver long-wearing full coverage and a completely opaque wash of colour. However, the slightly drying consistency of the formula causes it to tug at the lips during application. The product also tends to settle into the fine lines and around the dry edges, thereby revealing cracks on the lips. But these flaws are only noticeable within close proximity.

M.A.C Min Liu Peach Blossom Pink swatch comparison

M.A.C Min Liu Peach Blossom Pink swatch comparison

#2 Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red (US$20)

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red (US$20)

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

M.A.C X Min Liu lipstick in Dynasty Red

Red, on the other hand, has been an important colour in the Chinese culture as it takes on multiple symbolic meanings such as fortune, loyalty and bravery. So the exclusion of any red hue in this China-inspired collection would be akin to committing blasphemy.

This auspicious colour takes the form of a lipstick (and gloss) described as a yellow vibrant red with Matte finish. Called Dynasty Red, it glides on like butter with no tug and lends an intensely pigmented payoff. Boasting a creamy and seamless consistency, it even has a subtle sheen to it. It gives full coverage with opaque colour and is comfortably emollient on the lips, making it feel almost nothing like a Matte. This shade is neither drying nor hydrating.

M.A.C Min Liu Dynasty Red swatch comparison

M.A.C Min Liu Dynasty Red swatch comparison

Although the lipsticks generally did not disappoint in terms of application, I wouldn’t have bought them if not for the special packaging because these lipstick shades are seriously cliched and overused.

What are your views about this collection? Chime in below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M.A.C × Min Liu is now available on MACCosmetics.com and exclusively at M.A.C ION Orchard outlet.

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REVIEW: KKW x Kylie Cosmetics Crème Liquid Lipsticks – Kimberly, Kim, Kiki & Kimmie

Hello everyone!

Whether you love them or hate them, there’s no denying that whatever the Kardashians/Jenners put out would certainly sell like wildfire. The constant bombardment of the family across the social media has sort of voodooed us into splashing our money on whatever they promote and I’m not gonna lie – I’m one of those who have unknowingly been sucked into the Jenners vortex. Ever since Kylie Jenner started her own cosmetics line, I’ve been religiously keeping tabs on her product launches and am now owner to many of her lip kits (which I will find time to review here). Recently, she has also been getting her family involved in the behind-the-scene process and I can’t help but feel excited about what they have in store for us!

So, following the massive success of her collaboration with Khloe Kardashian last year (which prompted three restocks, by the way), the Queen of Snapchat teamed up with yet another of her sisters on a capsule collection two months ago, once again sending fans of the Kardashian clan into a complete state of hysteria. Well, well, well… who could it be?

KKW X Kylie

KKW X Kylie

Yes, it’s the undisputed queen of the nude lip herself! This time, Kim Kardashian, or better known as Kim Kardashian West (KKW) after her marriage to mic-grabber rapper Kanye West, got a share of the pie as she jointly launched a four-piece lipstick set with her makeup maven of a sister under the Kylie Cosmetics label. This collaboration also saw the introduction of a new range of products by the brand – the Créme Liquid Lipsticks.

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

Featuring a highly moisturising formula, the lipsticks come in four shades of nude to recreate the signature Kim Kardashian look: Kimberly, Kim, Kiki and Kimmie – all variants of her first name – and are packed in a matte, pale pink velvety sliding box which essentially makes this collection the classiest and most professional-looking of everything the brand has offered by far. The liquid lipsticks are full-sized, filled in slightly frosted tubes marked by an unmistakable pale pink drip motif below the cap and.. it’s only US$45 with free shipping!

But unlike the very first Koko collection which sold out in under six minutes, this collaboration met with lukewarm response from the beauty community and were moving relatively slowly off the shelves during launch-time. Either a lot more stocks were prepared or the choice of (really light) nude shades just didn’t go well with most people. Nevertheless, I finally carted mine out after a 15-minute wait on the holding page and was nearly late for work 😒 The sets sold out after an hour but were swiftly restocked three days later.

As always, the company was experiencing high volume of orders so I half-expected my shipment to be held up. But the delay was exceptionally long this time for a domestic order – it took them seven days to ship out my parcel and another eight days for it to reach my U.S. address although I acknowledge that the latter is beyond their control. I was still collating orders to be shipped to Singapore so I wasn’t in a hurry to receive my item. Can you imagine the anxiety and frustration of other buyers, though?

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics

Before the launch went live, there were already comments about the shades being vastly similar to one another (I thought so too but I caved in because of the packaging). The swatches depicted above should more or less confirm that suspicion – they are indeed very similar (especially Kim and Kiki) and, as a matter of fact, boring. The only shade that stood out was Kimmie because it is the darkest of the lot. Still, all of them reminded me of M.A.C lipsticks that I had rated poorly in the past. But giving a conclusive opinion before actually wearing them would be unfair, so here goes..

#1 Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimberly

Channel some serious Kim Kardashian vibes with Kimberly, a light cool beige described as a “true nude” and named after Kim K’s birth name.

It is glossy and has a sheer, barely buildable coverage despite reports claiming otherwise. I had tried applying more layers to intensify the colour but all it does was adding more moist and watery patches that diffuse into the fine lines around the lips. The runny consistency of the lipstick also makes application messy and uncontrollable. The formula doesn’t bleed, but it spreads out to reveal an uneven and wrinkled appearance no matter how I tried to conceal it with more product. Besides, it does not dry down a single bit so it is not at all transfer-proof. The moment it touches something, practically the entire coat gets removed, maybe save for some leftover streaks. Yucks!

#2 Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kim

Kim is a light warm beige described as a “peachy nude” with a similar glossy finish to Kimberly. But this goes on thicker with a drier texture while still keeping the lips adequately hydrated. Although sheer, it is slightly more pigmented and buildable. However, due to the watery nature of the lipstick, the product settles into lip lines immediately upon application, therefore accentuating dry patches and that is a big ‘Nope’ right there because I have naturally chapped lips.

#3 Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kiki

Kiki, as Kim K’s family so affectionately calls her, is a light coral beige described as a “pinky nude”. In comparison to Kim (because this shade made me doubt my eyesight for a moment so I figured some of you may not be able to tell them apart at first glance as well), Kiki is slightly warmer with more red undertones.

Likewise, it has a lightweight and creamy consistency that is sadly overshadowed by its rubbish staying power due to the fact that it stays liquefied even after hours of wear. Its opacity – or should I say, translucency – is comparable to that of a gloss and the streaky mess is truly a shame. The Crème formula is really basically just gloss under the disguise of a more hydrating Velvet finish, minus the tacky texture. And it is awful.

KKW X Kylie Créme Liquid Lipsticks - Kiki & Kim swatch comparisons

KKW X Kylie Créme Liquid Lipsticks – Kiki & Kim swatch comparisons

#4 Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

KKW X Kylie Cosmetics Créme Liquid Lipstick in Kimmie

Despite having ranted against every lipstick in this collection so far, there is actually one shade among the four that I find rather wearable with decent coverage, and that’s Kimmie. It is vaguely (and inaccurately) described as a “deep nude” but I think it appears more as a muted terracotta.

Perhaps because of its darker hue, Kimmie has a more buildable and pigmented payoff and on top of that, applies more evenly and does not cling to the dry areas on the lips as conspicuously as the rest. Still, I cannot ignore the fact that it is short-lived on my lips. Reckoning that this would probably not withstand the test of gluttony and would require constant reapplication on the go, I ended up bringing my regular lipstick in a bullet along for touch-ups when I wore this out. I was so glad I did because it started to budge by the first hour and what was left on my lips after my dinner were a few unsightly powdery streaks.

KKW X Kylie Créme Liquid Lipsticks - Kimmie & Kimberly swatch comparisons

KKW X Kylie Créme Liquid Lipsticks – Kimmie & Kimberly swatch comparisons

As a bonus, here’s a lip swatch of all the four shades side-by-side:

Spot the difference... 🙄

Spot the difference… 🙄

All in all, unless comfort wearing is your utmost priority or you’re into creamy liquid lipsticks with diluted consistency and preposterously short lasting power, this new formula is utter garbage and should be avoided at all costs.

I really don’t see the point in this new formula at all. If Kim isn’t a fan of mattes (which is understandable since her makeup artist prefers creamy- and satin-finish lipsticks), she could have just stuck with the existing velvet formula, right? Arrrrgh. What a waste of our money 😒

Final verdict: 👎

Final verdict: 👎

What are your views on this collection? Let me know in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading! ♥

KKW × Kylie Cosmetics is a limited-edition collection launched on 25 April 2017 on kyliecosmetics.com and restocked in limited quality on kkwbeauty.com on 21 june 2017. now sold out, it can still be found in the reseller market (beware of fakes).

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REVIEW: MAC x James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

Hello everyone!

While many of us (still) struggle to find our ultimate goal in life, Detroit-born James Kaliardos realised his calling to be a makeup artist when doing his mother’s makeup at just age seven. His interest for makeup sparked after constantly watching his mother doll up her lids with eye shadow and despite his tender age, he was able to translate his love for colours and drawing into the beauty looks he saw on Vogue. This passion followed him through his formative years – where he helped his female friends look aesthetically rad for school proms – before it progressed to theatrical makeup.

Now a master makeup artist among other trades, he creates trends backstage across all international fashion weeks and had worked on the most famous faces in the world including Hillary Clinton, Madonna (especially Madonna – you know her Ray of Light-era boho-tech look? Yeah, that’s the work of James Kaliardos!), Julianne Moore, Barbra Streisand, Nicole Kidman, Lady Gaga, Miley Cyrus and Victoria Beckham (source). On top of that, he is a publishing mogul, having co-founded one of today’s most exclusive and expensive magazines Visionaire which ranges in the hundreds of dollars with very limited circulation, and an actor with his own troupe, the Innocent Theatre Company. Holy moly, how the heck does he do it?! I can’t even keep up with one job 😨

That’s not all! Adding to his already-impressive portfolio of achievements, Kaliardos recently collaborated with M.A.C on a new makeup range as part of the 50-piece Make-Up Art Cosmetics collection with two other notable makeup maestros Diane Kendal and Kabuki (which I passed on). But he commands a larger chunk of this launch with 22 pieces. However, as my money was saved for other upcoming releases, I only spent on a single lipstick (out of 4) from this sub-collection.

M.A.C X James Kaliardos lipstick packaging

M.A.C X James Kaliardos lipstick packaging

Every item in this collaboration is decked out in limited-edition packaging with the name and autograph of the makeup artist printed below the M.A.C logo in gold foil on both the black box and container, so the lipstick is no exception. The lipstick tube has a matte surface that feels smooth to the touch. All of the four lipsticks in the James Kaliardos collection are shades that he frequently uses to create red carpet looks and for photo shoots.

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper (US$17)

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper (US$17)

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Lipstick in Jasper

Described as a deep reddish brown with Satin finish, Jasper is in fact based on the brown from Paramount with deep wine pigment mixed into it. In appearance, it is a drop-dead gorgeous burgundy with cool undertones.

It runs smoothly on the lips with no tug and leaves a comfortable and hydrating texture topped with a healthy sheen. It is mostly opaque with a buildable intensity – swipe once for a just bitten look and two more coats for full coverage. It has a slightly patchy consistency so some parts of the lips would seem darker than the rest, but it’s not really visible from far and you can fix it momentarily by pursing your lips.

This lasts relatively long on me (I don’t really take note of the duration because I pig out a lot and lipsticks generally don’t remain in their original state after coming contact with anything) and fades to a natural-looking stain. Jasper is a shade that goes well with every skin tone!

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Jasper swatch comparison - Diva is brighter and warmer whereas Hearts Aflamed is more muted and warmer

M.A.C X James Kaliardos Jasper swatch comparison – Diva is brighter and warmer whereas Hearts Aflamed is more muted and warmer

What do you think of this lipstick? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or take a quick poll! 🙂

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C James Kaliardos was launched in january and is still available on MACCosmetics.com (collection page taken down, so lipsticks only here or view the full list of items here on the australian site). do check with your local M.A.C outlets on its availability.

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