Wednesday, July 06, 2016

The State of the Union - Liquid Lipsticks


I think I’ve been around the liquid lipstick block a few times now and with the latest ones I’ve tried being on the indie side, I have some more observations. It seems that just about every brand is coming out with their own version these days, which is great, but not so great when you kinda know what formula works for you, and you don’t get it when you open the tube. If you’re on the liquid lipstick (will abbreviate to LL) bandwagon, do you know which form you like best? I think I do, now that I’ve tried quite a few different brands:

Chanel, Wet N Wild, Tarte, Buxom (part of BareMinerals), ColourPop, Motives, Cailyn Cosmetics, L’Oreal, Make Up For Ever, Stila, Laura Mercier, Merle Norman, NARS, Lime Crime, Ofra Cosmetics, Fyinnae, Maybelline, Ciate London, L'Oreal, Napoleon Perdis, Houglass Cosmetics, CoverGirl, LipSense by SeneGence, Giorgio Armani, Sephora, Kat Von D, MAC, Makeup Monster, LA Splash Cosmetics, Caked, Beauty Bakerie.

Brands on my list to try: The new ones from Smashbox, Anastasia Beverly Hills (I know, I know, I'm like the only one on the planet but I've read mixed reviews), Jeffree Star, Milani (drugstores are always out of the Amore Mattes!), Lonely Planet.



So if you are unfamiliar with the LL, what are the perks?

  • high pigment
  • once applied, most don’t move
  • most wear for hours without having to touch up
  • no lip liner required!

Disclaimer – please keep in mind that my choices below are my experiences with each. I mean, I’ve heard of some people who really loath the Ultra Matte formula from ColourPop. I’m not a huge fan but I don’t hate it. Also keep in mind something I learned from – two different colors cut from the same cloth, so to speak, can perform different from one another, like I love Beauty Bakerie's Mon Cheri color is really great, while the Hawaiian Cheesecake shade is streaky and horrible). Seems odd that this happens but that’s why Christine swatches every color in a collection in her features.

Some overall things I’ve noticed about liquid lipsticks:

  • red seems to be the most difficult for these companies to make last the longest
  • makeup wipes don’t seem to remove LL’s; only an oil-based makeup remover will remove most
  • one of the first LLs I ever tried is still one of my favorites


There seems to be 3 different formulas I have come across that LLs fall into and below will give you details on each. Note that these are just some of the colors from the brands I own. For some I own more than others and my picks are based on the performances of a couple of the shades from each but I didn't include every color I own in the pics. 

Super Matte

The super matte formula that can sometimes look like a desert on lips. Not too comfortable but some colors seem to be better than others at pulling it off. And believe it or not, these below are the least desert-y feeling on lips!


Ones that do it well: Lime Crime Velvetines, Beauty Bakerie Lip Whip, Dose of Colors Matte Liquid Lipstick.


Ones that do it eh: ColourPop Ultra Matte, Kat Von D Everlasting Love Liquid Lipstick, Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick, Cailyn Cosmetics Extreme Matte Tint, MUA Makeup Academy Liquid Lipstick, Makeup Monster Matte Liquid Lipstick, LA Splash Lip Couture.

Mousse or Satin

The ‘mousse’ or ‘satin' LLs adhere to lips but don’t fully dry down so they are tad transferable. If you are new to the LL craze, you might want to start in this category. 


Ones that do it well: Caked Lip Fondant, ColourPop Ultra Satin Lips, Ciate London Liquid Velvet, Laura Mercier Paint Wash Liquid Lip Colour, Sephora Cream Lip Stain.

Ones that do it eh: I don't really have any that fall into the eh category for this one. 

Zero Dry Down

The third category seems to be the liquid lip color that has the high pigment but zero dry down, thus it can bleed into fine lines around the mouth if you have them. The few I have come across of these don’t usually fare well with me and I end up with a little color here, a little there. It’s just too transferable for a person like me but I'm sure there are some out there that like it.


Ones that do it: NARS Lip Cover, Tarte Tartiest Lip Paint, Motives All Day Liquid Sticks, Milani Liquid Color, Buxom Wildly Whipped Soft Matte Lip Color. 

Matte with a Gloss

I made the above category of Matte with a Gloss a blue color because I don't really consider it a whole category. A few brands that have mastered the formula so much that they offer a gloss topper that doesn’t mess with the applied color. This is super rare!! And I can vouch for each of the below products, wearing just the color alone without the gloss is pretty comfortable on lips.


Ones that do it: MAC Pro Longwear Lip Color, Chanel Ultra Wear Lip Colour, L’Oreal Infallible Lip Color, and Make Up For Ever Aqua Rouge, Maybelline Super Stay 24 Color.


I do have one overall problem with liquid lipstick though and that's not always knowing what kind of dry down it will have. Usually the name itself with Mousse or Super Matte in the title will tell you but the ones with zero dry down don't give any hint, which I don't like. 

Overall, liquid lipsticks are probably the most exciting thing in beauty for me right now and has been for a while and my love is only intensifying as more brands put them out in their line. Do you see any you want to try? Do share in the comments as I'm always on the lookout for more to try.

And below are some favorite Liquid Lipsticks from fellow beauty bloggers, so be sure to check out their picks!

Sheila from Painted Ladies - "I really like Colour Pop Ultra Satin Lip Colors. They are smooth, long-wearing, and won’t dry out your lips. The color in this post is Botanical."

Bailey from I Know All the Words - "My picks are the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks. They're super long wearing but don't get flaky or wear off in the centre of lips like some brands. My favourite shades are Lovesick and Ayesha."

Shipra from Tanaja’s Bride - "I love ColourPop Dopey and Lost! They are my go-to!"

Kath from Thefabzilla - "My #1 fave remains to be Anastasia Liquid Lipsticks. Infinite-wearing and superbly pigmented without drying my lips. My favorite shades are Kathryn, Crush & Soft Lilac."

Courtney from Phyrra - "My #1 favorite is Fyrinnae Wizardry. I love this formula because it's very comfortable."

Tasha from Belleza Kisses - "My all time favorite is the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita. I love it because it doesn't make my lips super dry and it's really long lasting."

Allison from Never Say Die Beauty - "Mine is Stila Stay All Day. It's super pigmented, super glossy, non-drying, and leaves enough color behind after eating a meal."

Nikki from Nik Makeup Junkie - "My favorite are the Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipsticks. I find the applicator is super easy to use and the formula is nice, opaque and long wearing without being as drying as some other brands."

Shelley from Polarbelle - "My favorites are the ones that apply a little lighter and wear a long time without cracking or feeling so dry that I want to pull my lips off. Jouer, Colourpop and Kat Von D."

Darci from Beauty with Attitude - "My Favorite is the Tarte lip paints, they last all day whether you’re eating and drinking, they are also none drying!"

Katie from From My Vanity - "I think I just found my favorite liquid lipstick of all time -- the new Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipsticks!"



I thought I'd tried quite a few LL brands, but this post has quite a few I've yet to get to (and Anastasia is one of them!)


Hi Bailey, yes there are so many different brands out there now and more are cropping up, it seems.

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