I don’t think I’ve ever walked into Mecca or Sephora without actually purchasing a new lip product. It’s problematic at best and an addiction at worst. The number of “berry” toned lipsticks/stains I own fill their own compartment in my makeup draws. And yet, they are each so nuanced and necessary for my life. And when I say ‘life’ I mean, the time when I decide to play in my makeup draws and watch Real Housewives in my pyjamas while lookin’ pretty.
What I’m trying to say is, I’d like to think I’ve tried enough to have a thoroughly-researched opinion about some of the best on offer, for any look you wish to create.
Links to purchase in the titles!
The best lip balm in existence for the softest lips you’ll ever have – Mecca Lip De-Luscious
This is hands-down the most luscious, soft-lip inducing lip balm I have ever used in my life and the only one I have stuck to religiously (I was so the girl with 35 variants of lip balm at the bottom of her bag without ever using a single one up. Gone. All gone!), because it unfailingly works miracles. After applying to dry, chapped horrible winter lips, I can literally feel the dry skin melting away. The residue doesn’t feel sticky, the scent isn’t overpowering and it doesn’t taste yucky, it’s amazing. I have converted many, many girlfriends who have had a try. Oh and the best best bit: it’s now available in a TINTED version with many stunning colours (I own 3 + the original. The dark berry is my fave) so you can have soft lips even when you’re rocking a ‘look’. Runner up would have to be Korres Lip Butter even though they discontinued my favourite colour, they still have Wild Rose which is GOR-GEOUS (and overall it’s a more affordable option than the Mecca one) PLUS it’s available in tube form.
Velvety-matte goodness – NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils
I am big into matte-finish lip products because I am a low-maintenance gal and this shit stays put. NARS’ Velvet Matte Lip Pencils changed my life. They are easier to apply than lipstick + lip gloss + any other lip product as they are essentially a beautifully formulated crayon. Pictured above is “Never Say Never” which is a really pretty dusty mauvey pink, not as pigmented as some of their others, but I’ve completely fallen in love with it regardless, to my own surprise. Give it a go, it makes a really nice alternative to the usual pinks and reds (especially when applied over a dark pink/berry/fuchsia stain – heaven!). My other top picks: Damned (dark berry), Red Square (orangey-red), Dragon Girl (pinky-red) and Cruella (true red). Yes, maybe I also have a problem with reds.
A statement lip – NARS Lipstick
What I’m trying to say here is that NARS excels at their lip products (and illuminators, and bronzers, and blushes…) and I absolutely trust that any time I buy something it will be the best quality, have decent staying power and feel very lovely on my lips i.e. all v. v. important things. My favourite all-time shade they ever released was Love Devotion, the most perfect universally flattering sheer coral I’ve ever had the pleasure of applying to my lips, and I will hold a slight grudge towards NARS for the rest of my life for discontinuing it. Luckily last time I was in the U.S. I bought 4 of them. It was over a year ago. I’m down to my last one. I have the panics. However my other staple is Scarlett Empress. Yes, it does look like another berry product and very dark and maybe a lil scary BUT in actuality, it is more like a bright stunning fuchsia. I am obsessed. This is my go-to for a statement look for a big night out and probs will be forever and ever (cost-effective alternative: Colourpop’s More Better). With these matte lippies, I apply by first dabbing it on with my finger for a ‘stained’ look as my base – it reeeeaaaally increases the longevity. Then I just grab the tube and kind of tap it on over the top to even it all out (but no big swipey swipey moves with the lipstick itself! I never do this – it always looks messy and clumpy and undone). Then if I really need this to last, dab with a tissue and do it all again. That shit will not budge. And while I did title this section “statement lip” but this range also includes one of my favourite everyday nudes – Dolce Vita. Another one which has taken off in my friendship group. Oddly flattering.
Glossy magic wizardry – YSL Rouge Pur Couture Glossy Stain
Genuinely no other way to describe this lip product. It must be magic. It has to be. What other product goes on like a gloss, with the pigmentation of lipstick and the staying power of a stain? NONE. It is MAGIC. I don’t know how it works and I genuinely don’t care. I just hope they never change their formulation (true story: just typed “formation” instead of formulation because, Bey). I have three of these – #27 (sheer peach), #11 (the BEST pinky red) and #9 (orange/coral) and I will continue to build my collection. I usually hate gloss as well. But with this one, no hair getting stuck in your lips, no drippiness, no discomfort, nothing. It feels amazing. BUY IT. It’s a worthy investment.
Everyday basics – Bobbi Brown Creamy Lip Colour
Miss Bobbi Brown knows what she’s doing when it comes to “natural no makeup makeup” and these lipsticks are heaven on Earth. I’ve been using Uber Pink for about 8 years (okay, that’s terrifying, and ages me – let’s say I started at 12) and it still makes me happy when I put it on. It’s my perfect nude (hint: look at your gums. *That* is your perfect nude!) and I can wear it with literally any makeup ‘look’. Fresh skin, mascara, bit of cheek tint, Uber Pink. Smoky eye, bronzed face, Uber Pink. Liquid liner, peachy blush and highlighter, Uber Pink. It. Just. Works. Lovely creamy formula too and can be applied straight from the tube for the lowest maintenance made up face of your life. Obviously, as it’s creamy, you have to reapply but it takes about 3 seconds.
I hope that was as fun for you as it was mortifying for me – I own too many lip products 😐
Images: Mecca, NARS, Glambot