REVIEW: M.A.C x Nicki Minaj Lipsticks in Nicki’s Nude & The Pinkprint

Since her debut, Nicki Minaj had never failed to generate buzz with her outlandish dress sense. But most recently, she has ditched her neon and over-the-top aesthetics in favour of a more natural and sophisticated look and cleverly translated her newfound (understated) style into business opportunities. Not long after the announcement of her upcoming collaboration with H&M, the “Rake It Up” rapper is in the spotlight again for scoring yet another endorsement deal. This time, it’s from M∙A∙C.

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017

The M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj collection boasts a wide array of nude lipsticks and lipglasses – mostly repromotes and in regular packaging – including two nude lipsticks she had custom-designed for M·A·C. What’s more, we makeup fanatics in Singapore got to shop the collection two weeks before it officially hits stores in the U.S. 😍 Our prayers have been answered at last – no more lagging behind the rest of the world in getting first dibs on new M∙A∙C collections!

This was actually the fourth time Nicki Minaj had team up with M∙A∙C. In 2010, she worked with the brand to create a special edition Pink 4 Friday lipstick, and then in 2012 and 2013 on the Viva Glam line which saw the release of two limited-edition funky-coloured lipsticks in the name of supporting the M∙A∙C AIDS Fund. Hence, even if you’re not into pop music, this multi-talented American rapper-singer-songwriter shouldn’t be at all stranger to you.

If you haven’t had the chance to access the latest collection, fret not for I’ve got scoops to share! Once again, a big thank you to M∙A∙C Singapore for allowing me to preview the collection before it was made available to the public on 7 September 2017.

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017 - the display

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj 2017 – the display

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - all Lipsticks and Lipglasses in this collection

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – all Lipsticks and Lipglasses in this collection

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipsticks (regular packaging)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipsticks (regular packaging)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipstick swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipglass

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipglass

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Lipglass swatches

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Lipglass swatches

Last but not least, the two #NickiNudes that sold out in the U.K. in less than 7 hours…

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj - Nicki's Nude and The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj – Nicki’s Nude and The Pinkprint

Created by Nicki Minaj, Nicki’s Nude and The Pinkprint are the only shades from this collection to have differentiated packaging conferred upon them. They are presented in corresponding-coloured tube endorsed by the rapper herself (to give them a more personal touch) and tucked into a box of the same colour. Naturally as a packaging junkie, I was drawn towards them despite having had my eyes set on Derriere and A Girl’s Got Needs. I’m sure this was the case in the U.K. as well 😅

#1 Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude

Nicki’s Nude is a pinked beige described as a soft corally pink with Amplified finish. This highly-wearable shade complements most skin tones. It goes on sheer but is buildable to medium coverage and is hydrating and emollient with a hint of sheen to give the face a healthy glow.

Although the application is smooth, it lends an uneven consistency to the lips especially around drier areas (unfortunately my lips were exceptionally parched when I wore this due to heatiness) and settles into the lines so it was impossible to achieve uniformity with this lipstick. The chalky and transfer-prone texture also renders it short-lived on the lips. Once the product wears off, it leaves obvious streaks all over the lips as shown in the animated lip swatch above.

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki's Nude - swatch comparison

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in Nicki’s Nude – swatch comparison

#2 The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (US$17.50 / S$33)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint (bottom: when lipstick is freshly applied to the lips vs once it wears off)

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint

Named after Nicki Minaj’s third studio album, The Pinkprint is a bright cool pink which is described by M∙A∙C as a midtone creamy pink with Amplified finish. It glides on buttery and moist with a generous dose of sheen to exude an impish glamour à la Her Minajesty (what Minaj refers to herself as). In addition, it feels balmy and emollient and gives a moderately opaque payoff but with very limited buildability. However, it isn’t very long-lasting and has the same issue of leaving powdery streaks once it wears off.

And uh… is it just me or does this shade remind you of one of her many pink latex outfits?

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint - swatch comparison

M∙A∙C × Nicki Minaj lipstick in The Pinkprint – swatch comparison

On the whole, the limited-edition lipsticks are alright and nothing exceptional. If not for their packaging and the fact that this collection will be discontinued from 19 October, I wouldn’t have bought them for sure. A big part of me had hoped that Nicki had designed something else from the accompanying 18 lipsticks because I’m personally not very fond of pink hues. But if I have to choose between Nicki’s Nude and The Pinkprint, I’d pick the former because The Pinkprint is too pale for my liking (even though, admittedly, it applies slightly better).

On a side note, the star seems to have bigger plans up her sleeves and these lipsticks barely scratch the surface of what she has in store for us. Just last month, she had teased on her Instagram account that she is currently working on a “first of its kind partnership” with the brand that is slated for release next year. I may not be a fan of her music but collaborations with M∙A∙C always gets my attention. So until she spills the beans (which I’m quite positive is pretty soon), I am definitely keeping a close eye on further updates about this secret project! Could she be introducing a more extensive range of pink lipsticks?

What are your thoughts about this and her upcoming collection? Let me know in the comments below, or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M.A.C × Nicki Minaj is now available islandwide and M.A.C (UK). It will be launched on MACCosmetics.com on 21 September 2017.
MAKE-UP USED: [EYES] Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Tenant Eyeshadow Palette / Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Deep End & Mars / Clinique Pretty Easy Liquid Eyelining Pen [BROWS] Sigma Brow Powder Duo in Medium [FACE] shu uemura Petal Skin Fluid Foundation 764 / Benefit Hoola Quickie Contour Stick / Benefit Rockateur / Benefit Girl Meets Pearl Luminizer

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REVIEW: LORAC Cosmetics x Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipsticks – Belle-ieve, True Beauty, Savoir Faire, Red Rose & Tres Chic

Hello everyone!

These days, it is imperative to set aside some money for rainy days. And by rainy days, I mean days when makeup companies drop new products unannounced.

So.. LORAC Cosmetics recently sprang a surprise on unknowing beauty community with the launch of their Beauty and the Beast capsule line which included a limited-edition eye shadow palette, cheek palette, lip gloss collection, and lipstick collection. Since this collection didn’t serve primarily as a build-up to the premiere of the movie (or directly capitalise on its popularity since this was release in June, more than 2 months after it completed its run in major theatres), I supposed no one had expected this collaboration to happen.

Fortunately, I was lurking around the internet when the news got out so I managed to snag some stuff before the rest of the world did. No prize for guessing what I bought😂

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection (US$36)

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection (US$36)

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

This Beauty and The Beast lipstick collection features 5 brand new moderate-coverage MOD Cream shades that are inspired by the Disney classic, right down to their names. Vanilla-scented and decked out in clear plastic with gold-foiled rose detailing and a metallic gold body where the movie title is imprinted on, these lipsticks are cleverly and luxuriously packaged to fondly remind one of the iconic yellow gown Belle wore in the film while taking away the “cheap” look.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection swatches

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection swatches

The lipsticks are neatly arranged in a vacuum-formed plastic tray and then packed into a paper box. Each set is priced at US$36 (domestic shipping is free), which breaks down to a cost of less than S$10 per lipstick. WOW! I am sure no one expected it to be this affordable especially with the Disney logo plastered on every lipstick (which gives most sellers the excuse to jack up their prices). But I can’t help feeling sceptical about the quality 🤔

#1 Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve

Belle-ieve is a warm mauve with a hint of pink undertones and a satin finish. It has the right amount of slip to allow for a smooth and even application across the lips without skipping or tugging. Highly pigmented, it delivers a one-swipe intense colour and an opaque payoff with an added sheen of moisture. It has such thick mousse-like consistency that it actually sits atop the lips nicely and conceals most of its flaws rather perfectly at the same time.

The lipstick also lends a slightly tacky sensation but that can easily be eliminated (while still maintaining the intensity) by dabbing the excess oil onto a facial tissue. Doing that would also extend its wear time. On days I don’t stuff my face with food, it could last about 5 hours on me so its longevity is not an issue. What really bothers me, however, is malleability of the bullet. It seems really prone to melting and has already slanted quite a bit after a few uses even though I usually keep my lipsticks away from the sunlight. I’m not sure if this is an isolated problem but do be careful not to exert too much pressure on the first use just in case.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Belle-ieve - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Belle-ieve – swatch comparison

#2 True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty

True Beauty is a cool pale pink with fine gold shimmers infused into it which imparts a subtle frosty sheen. This smooth lipstick glides on like butter and eventually lends a glossy finish which offers some plumping effect. It applies sheer at first, but is buildable to a medium coverage. That said, it settles noticeably into the lines and ends up streakier with each coat. It, too, leaves a tacky sensation on the lips which likewise can be removed. Due to its exceptionally soft and creamy consistency, it tends to ball up upon application and roughen the look as shown in the above lip swatch. Hence, I would suggest using a lip brush to apply this lipstick for better control of the texture.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - True Beauty - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – True Beauty – swatch comparison

#3 Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire

Savoir Faire is a peachy coral with a satin finish that applies effortlessly to deliver full coverage and colour intensity. This universally-flattering shade casts a radiantly youthful glow and instantly brightens up even the dullest of faces. It has a creamy and nourishing texture topped with a lustrous sheen to soften the lines and lend a glossy appearance to the lips. If wet lips aren’t your thing, simply blot the excess moisture away gently for a matter look and a longer-lasting wear. I have nothing much to rant about this shade. Needless to say, this is definitely one of my favourites from this collection!

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Savoir Faire - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Savoir Faire – swatch comparison

#4 Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose

Red Rose is a cool-toned red with a satin finish. It applies like a dream and offers insanely-pigmented colour in full opacity in a single stroke. Ultra moisturising, this lipstick is formulated to provide uniform colour coverage and high-shine to add luster and volume to the lips without settling into the lines so they (even for the thin ones) look absolutely juicy and fuller. It has the same tackiness as the other lipsticks in this collection and is certainly not transfer-proof. But it is comfortable enough for you to keep wanting to reapply the product.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Red Rose - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Red Rose – swatch comparison

#5 Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic

Très Chic is a cool brown with the shine and softness of a satin but the tug and pull of a matte during application. It goes on thick and balmy to deliver a light wash of colour and mostly-sheer colour payoff which needs to be layered to achieve reasonable opacity. It applies patchy and the uneven consistency accentuates any imperfections on the lips so exfoliation is a must beforehand. Although this shade feels the driest among the lipsticks in this bundle, it has the best staying power as it clings onto the lips all day without weighing them down.

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection - Très Chic - swatch comparison

LORAC Cosmetics × Disney Beauty and the Beast Lipstick Collection – Très Chic – swatch comparison

All in all, these lipsticks (my first from LORAC!), save for a few shortfalls, have earned a spot in my regular makeup roster. The creamy and soft bullets are highly susceptible to melting so you have to ensure that the lipsticks are kept in cool environment (especially in humid countries like Singapore) or they will break or dislodge easily. But of course, if that happens you can always employ the melt-and-freeze trick to repair it. Every application renders a thick and rich consistency because more product is dispensed each time although this also translates to lesser uses. Nonetheless, this lipstick bundle is a very worthy purchase because the quality is really up there for the price you pay. I would definitely recommend this to anyone in a heartbeat!

What are your thoughts about these LORAC MOD lipsticks? Let me know in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

LORAC × Disney Beauty and the Beast was available on LORACCosmetics.com.

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REVIEW: M.A.C x Steve J & Yoni P Lipsticks in Spotlight Me & A Killing Smile

Hello everyone!

Husband-and-wife design duo Steve Jung and Yoni Pai are not only a household name for their contemporary casual pieces in South Korea, but are also widely known among western fashion cognoscenti since having their creations stocked at major retailers such as Selfridges, Nordstrom and NET-A-PORTER. Following their inception in 2007 with their label Steve J & Yoni P (or SJYP), the London-based designers have dominated runways of late and had even collaborated with Topshop on a capsule collection in 2011. They were further catapulted into prominence when Lee Hyo-ri and Jang Keun-suk (among many of their high-profile clients) as well as Hollywood celebrities Rita Ora and Olivia Palermo were spotted wearing the brand on a few occasions.

With such an influence, it came as no surprise that M·A·C (a longtime sponsor of the makeup for Steve J and Yoni P’s shows during Seoul Fashion week) would sought to tap into their creativity and fashion prowess to release a collection “as cheeky and progressive” as their style for summer!

Steve J & Yoni P for M·A·C 2017

Steve J & Yoni P for M·A·C 2017

Launched in June 2017, the M.A.C × Steve J & Yoni P collection comprises 4 lipsticks (Spotlight Me / Candy Yum Yum / A Killing Smile / Yoni Crush), Lip & Cheek X 6 (Yoni Attraction), Eye Shadow X 2 (Touch Me Baby), Dazzleshadow X 2 (Midnight Fever), Powder Blush (Peony Petal), brushes (159SH Duo Fibre & 217SH Blending), a makeup bag and Studio Eye Gloss (Pearl Varnish). The packaging design drew inspiration from Yoni P’s signature look of blonde hair and thick, black eyeliner while other graphics of the components “speak articulately to the existing street style in Seoul”. This campaign was supposed to be a joint effort with a two-person team but I don’t know, it appears to be more centered around one 🤔

Cheeky and quirky packaging

Cheeky and quirky packaging

I’m personally not really a fan of the packaging (oops!) because I find the artistic direction to be too.. haphazard? The exaggerated facial features created with simple lines seem thoughtless and just don’t appeal to me. Furthermore, the packaging reminds me of that of Yazbukey for shu uemura, but quirkier. What do you think?

#1 Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me

Spotlight Me is a warm peach and described by M·A·C as a light peachy nude with Amplified finish. It has a balmy consistency which gives it plenty of slip and a soft, creamy texture. Furthermore, it offers a buildable-to-opaque coverage with a hydrating shine. However, it leaves a tacky and waxy sensation and has the tendency to settle into the lines of the lips. This lipstick is lightweight and not transfer-proof so frequent reapplication is expected throughout the wear.

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me - swatch comparison

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in Spotlight Me – swatch comparison

#2 A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile (US$17.50 / S$36)

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile

A Killing Smile is described as a bright pinkish red with Matte finish. This formula applies smoothly with no tug to lend a lip-hugging and opaque coat of cool raspberry pink, complete with a semi-matte appearance and a soft shine. It has a thick texture and an even and mostly opaque consistency, which can still be built upon for greater intensity. Like most M·A·C mattes, this shade is slightly drying but not to the extent of absorbing all the moisture from the lips and leaving them looking uncomfortably parched and cracked. It may not have the extreme longevity of M·A·C’s older mattes, but this still lasted on me for at least 4 hours.

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile - swatch comparison

M·A·C × Steve J & Yoni P Lipstick in A Killing Smile – swatch comparison

Admittedly, despite the Asian-friendly colours and this collection being borne out of a partnership with Asian designers, I am just not feeling all of this. I had even hesitated on getting these lipsticks (hence the delay in this review) due to the limited range of shades that look vastly similar to many of my M·A·C lipsticks.

The unexciting and repetitive choice of colours meant that they are not intended to be statement pieces but collector’s items. M·A·C knows very well that die-hard fans of the brand and K-pop would try to snag a piece regardless of the products (and price) so long as they are adorned in limited-edition packaging – and I am a living example of how their effective marketing can convince customers into buying things they don’t need 😖

Having said that, this collection does offer a narrowed-down selection of lipstick shades that will certainly go well with most fair and medium skin-toned Asians if you don’t already own any of them. Furthermore, these are priced the same as regular-packaged lipsticks (yes, gone are the days of US$16-17 M·A·C lipsticks – prices are creeping up without us realising!)

So, what are your favourite products from this collection? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below or take a poll!

Thanks for reading!

M.A.C × Steve J & Yoni P collection is now available on MACCosmetics.com and M.A.C Bugis Junction, ION, NEX, Ngee Ann City and TANGS at Tang Plaza.

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REVIEW: M.A.C Cosmetics Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour – To Matte With Love, Dance With Me & High Drama

Hello everyone!

From my observation as an ardent M·A·C user, the brand is often late to the party when it comes to following beauty trends. Or rather, they simply do not see the point in rushing into conformity and churning out low-quality products that would potentially tarnish their good reputation. But more often than not, you can be sure it’s worth the wait. Hence, when M·A·C finally announced that they were bringing out their own line of liquid lipsticks (literally years after every makeup brand had already done so), I had my hopes up and was eagerly awaiting their launch in January last year.

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour‘s debut saw the introduction of 15 robustly saturated colours in a liquid-suede finish (basically what you would expect from your Retro Matte lipsticks but in liquid form) packed in an all-black box and encased in a long clear plastic tube screw-capped with M·A·C’s trademark black dome-like lid. Each tube contains 5 ml / 0.17 fl oz of vanilla-scented product and comes with a fluffy yet flat applicator for better precision and control.

To date, there are already 31 shades in this range and most of them – including the three below – are permanent.

#1 To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love (US$21 / S$39)

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love (US$21 / S$39)

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love

To Matte With Love is a cool fuchsia pink described by M·A·C as a bright raspberry. It glides across the lips without skipping or tugging and upon application, the lipstick dries down almost instantly, transforming an initially creamy texture into a budge-free velvety (as opposed to a powdery) and matte finish. The product is so intensely pigmented and opaque, it fills the lips entirely with just one swipe. It has an even consistency which makes it easier to define the lip shape. On top of that, it does not crack when I move my lips (at least for the first few hours of wear), even without any form of lip nourishment. It is extremely long-lasting but feels drying on the lips and will start flaking and peeling the moment it comes in contact with grease.

I vaguely remember this as an online-exclusive product (which was why I bought it because I wouldn’t have gotten a shade that’s so not me) but it doesn’t seem to be the case. No regrets, though. To Matte With Love is gorgeous even though I already have something quite similar 😭

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love - swatch comparison

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in To Matte With Love – swatch comparison

#2 Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me (US$21 / S$39)

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me (US$21 / S$39)

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me

Dance With Me is a cool darkened red described by M·A·C as a deep cranberry red. It has a more watered-down consistency even though on the whole it still applies somewhat thick, creamy and with some tugging. It needs just one swipe to fill the lips with a reasonably opaque wash of colour.

However, it doesn’t build well especially when it is still in the wet stage as the initial layer tends to shift around with the movement of the applicator and thereafter, leave an uneven and blotchy appearance. It dries down completely to a slightly velvety and matte finish (with a rubbery texture which made my lips feel synthetic 😭), albeit in a longer time (about 2 minutes). But my lips feel increasingly constricted as traces of moisture wear off from the lipstick every millisecond. The dried-down finish also highlights every crinkle and crevice and accentuates flaws to some extent. But no doubt, it is very long-lasting. This is relatively difficult to remove as it stains the lips.

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me - swatch comparison

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in Dance With Me – swatch comparison

#3 High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama (US$21 / S$39)

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama (US$21 / S$39)

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama

High Drama is a deep burgundy purple described by M·A·C as a deep dark plum. It has a thin and streaky consistency and hence would require at least two passes to completely fill the lips. It lends a sheer smear of colour at the first swipe and has very limited buildability even though it is rather pigmented. It seems like the more layers I apply, the patchier (marked by very noticeable dark spots) it becomes. It feels like it has the tendency to bleed (which it sorta did around the edges).

This shade yields a satiny texture with subtle sheen which gives the impression of hydration when in fact, it is extremely drying. The heavy and hardening sensation on the lips while wearing High Drama makes the experience uncomfortable. Moreover, the product bunches and is distributed unevenly across the lips, causing them to look wrinkly and rough. It starts cracking and becoming flaky after three hours of wear without eating or drinking. Needless to say, its longevity would be a lot shorter when it comes into contact with anything (more particularly food and drink).

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama - swatch comparison

M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour in High Drama – swatch comparison

While there’s definitely much to work on for the darker shades, the lighter ones (more specifically To Matte With Love) seem to offer a more seamless application on top of a thicker and a more velvety consistency. But then again, these were purchased more than a year ago when they were first launched so, I don’t know, there could already be some improvements made to the formula. When in doubt, drop by any M·A·C outlet and swatch them to your heart’s content!

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C retro matte liquid lipcolour is now available on MACCosmetics.com and at all local M.A.C outlets.

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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.

Follow me on Instagram and Facebook for bite-sized beauty updates!

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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