Surratt Beauty is one of those lines I’ve only tried a few things from but love everything I’ve tested. The Lip Lustre ($32 each for 0.2 oz/ 6 mL) was one of the first beauty products I splurged on and fell in love with them. I reviewed a couple several years ago and have since bought a few more shades, repurchased one and then the Surratt team sent one more for me to try. Some of the shades look extremely sparkly in the tube and the shimmer particles are definitely visible, but on the lips they look really pretty.
Color descriptions, order described in same order as shown above from top to bottom:
Etoile is a clear gloss with gold flecks (sent by the team), this is the only one I would say is not one I absolutely love because it’s primarily clear with tiny gold flecks, I’m just not the biggest fan of clear gloss, although this one is nice
Coquette is a super pale baby pink shimmer, I was worried it would be chalky looking but it applies smoothly and it’s very pretty, I have pigmented lips so if you have lighter lips it will be more true to tube on you
Soigne is my favorite it’s the prettiest rose shimmer and I repurchased it, if you buy one this is the one to buy, pigment is medium to full
Amethyste is a gorgeous purple shimmer, it’s semi sheer but gives the prettiest soft lilac shimmer, when this brand launched on Sephora it literally took me several months before I could buy it because it kept selling out and rightfully so
Ensoleille is a pigmented nude bronze peach, it’s so unique and looks really pretty on the lips
Flamant is one I bought in store at Barneys, the artists pulled this one and said this looks great on everyone and told me not to be scared of the tube color, they swatched it on their hands mixed over other shades of lipstick and with other glosses and by itself, I decided to give it a try because it’s not as scary as it is in the tube and love it, it’s a sheer red color with pigment
Au Naturelle is a creamy nude beige, this one is a nice nude but just not as special as the other colors to me, still it’s a solid performer and wears well on my lips
Overall pigment is varied depending on color. With the exception of the clear shade the colors all show up well on the lips. Texture is a bit sticky and a bit on the thick side but I like them. They adhere well to the lips and don’t slide around. To me there’s no detectable scent.
A closer look and swatches, left tor right is Etoile, Coquette, Soigne, Amethyste, Ensoleille, Flamant and Au Naturelle. They have a flattened sponge tip applicator.
I really love these but they are on the pricey side. My top three picks are Soigne, Amethyste and Flamant. Your mileage may vary depending on your tolerance for sticky and preference for pigment. I find Soigne and Ensoleille have fuller pigment while the others are more on the sheerer side. As you can see from the lip swatches they all show up but some have a more jelly like sheer finish compared to others. They are sticky but not too thick feeling on me.
You can find Surratt Beauty Lip Lustres now at Sephora and Barneys New York. If you’re shopping the Sephora sale you still have time to save with these codes:
4/18 to 4/24 VIB Rouge will receive 15% off, use code ROUGESPRING
4/19 to 4/24 VIBs will receive 15% off, use code VIBSPRING
4/20 to 4/23 BIs will receive 10% off, use code BISPRING
Other Surratt Beauty Features of the Artistique Blushes and Lip Products also on the blog. Have you tried anything from the line before? What did you think?
Etoile provided by the Surratt team. All other shades from my personal collection.
Surratt Beauty is one of those harder to find beauty brands that I’ve played with here and there over the past few years. It’s a makeup line designed by artist Troy Surratt and I discovered it a while back when it was exclusive to Barneys New York and am thrilled that products have expanded to Sephora and Space NK. I’ve liked most of the products I’ve tried from his line, in particular some of his lip products like his Prismatique Lips, Lipsliques and Lip Lustres. Today I have a review of his Artistique Blush ($32 each for 0.14 oz/4g, made in Japan). I bought several last year but never got around to reviewing them. There have been some new additions that I ordered online sight unseen and they arrived last week just in time for me to test them out to review for the Sephora VIB Rouge Sale.
I have 10 shades to review today and most of them are very light in color. I ordered the newer shades sight unseen and did not know what to expect color-wise but they are excellent in color, pigment and texture. First a few notes on the blushes themselves. They are made with a unique Japanese technique called “slurry” which makes them super lightweight and fine in texture, almost making them feel like a soft silk pillow. They come in individual pans and there are separate compacts you can purchase to put the blush inside. At $32 each they are extremely pricey – to fill a larger compact with 3 blushes costs $118 ($32 x 3 + $22 for 1 compact). The ones I ordered last year were 6 g each and the ones I ordered last week indicate the product amount has been reduced to 4 g. Update – I just received an email from the Surratt Team informing me that the weight of the blushes has always been 4 g and was not reduced, the original ones were labeled incorrectly due to a typo.
The products are not magnetic – they have an adhesive sticker which I’ve kept on to make the pans easier to interchange in compacts. Given the price points I do think it would be nice to have magnetic pans.
Overall they have a very soft natural looking finish and feel. They are among the most natural looking finish blushes I’ve tried. They meld unlike anything else on the skin. There are a number of great blushes on the beauty market. The ones from Surratt Beauty are unique in their finely milled texture. Even the shimmers look incredibly natural on the face. I do believe there are some more pigmented options but the ones I have are so natural they are impossible to overdo.
Colors I have include matte, satin and shimmers:
Top Row, left to right:
Coup de Genie is a perfect peachy champagne highlight, it has the prettiest shimmer and warmth to it which is just perfect
Cherubique is a warm pink rose shimmer
La Rosee du Soir is a satiny nude pink with a matte finish
Angelique is a shimmering beige peach champagne
Chaleur is a tan peach matte
Bottom Row, left to right:
Grisalle is a light taupe grey nude matte
Duchesse is a super pale light peach matte
Aureole is a white gold shimmer
Parfait is a peachy cantaloupe matte
Guimauve is a sheer cool baby pink matte
Per the Surratt Beauty team, the ones I bought last year with the 6 g labels were labeled incorrectly and the weight has always been 4 g. Hope this clarifies any confusion if you have older ones labeled differently from the current ones.
A few more close ups shot at angles to show the texture and shimmer:
The artists I’ve spoken to at the Barneys counters have said the line is inspired by Japanese beauty which is usually very natural. The one word that comes to mind with these is just that, “natural.” The textures are so soft and they don’t really feel like powder. For me the color payoff is better on the face than the arms. Any blush brush will work – I’ve used ones from MAC, Chanel, Marc Jacobs and they all work perfectly.
The mattes are the sheerest on my skin. Grisalle is a super soft contour but on the sheer side. It shows up in a noticeable but natural way and it is what I wanted the Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powders to be. Out of the finishes I prefer the shimmers – the pigment is just incredible on the skin and super fine shimmer is very very natural looking.
The quality and finish is excellent but the prices are extremely high for the amount of product you get. That combined with the expensive price point of the compact to house them all is the only thing that has prevented me from buying more and the only reason I bought the ones I did was because of the Sephora sale (from last year and also I was lucky to get an early access last week).
For the ones I picked I think they would only show up on light to medium skin. I do think the shimmers perform better for pigment so if you’re medium tan many of them will probably still show up on you. There are quite a few deeper shades now – I haven’t been able to check them out yet though.
Bottom line excellent quality and beautiful textures but extremely expensive. I’ve found colors that work for me and as I’m getting a bit lighter I can wear most of them now.
The Surratt Beauty Prismatique Lips launched sometime last fall ($36 each for 2.36ml/ 0.08oz.) and I picked up a few shades to try out. I’ve been a huge fan of his Lipsliques and Lip Lustres (Hevyn, Soigne and Gamine swatched here) – they are colors I’ve used up entirely but haven’t repurchased due to the steep price points but I do love the formulas. The quality is excellent with good smooth coverage and a voluptuous soft feel. The Prismatique Lips are sparkly lip sheers that contain Japanese reflective pigments for brilliant shine. Even though they are sparkly, the shimmer is done in a refined way to add the prettiest glimmer to the lips without feeling chunky or overly glittery. I have five shades that I purchased, although in playing with the formula, I have all the shades on my wishlist. The colors are sheer but work well with your natural lip tone to give a youthful glowing look to the lips. The Prismatique Lips come in a slim duochrome shimmering tube. It flashes green or purple depending on the light. These are extremely small in size so I do believe the price per oz is on the steep side.
Nouveau Riche is a shimmering nude
Jolie Laide is a taupe violet shimmer
Chichi is a gorgeous shimmering coral pinky peach
Pailettes is a sparkling cool baby pink
Lili Dorée is a soft shimmering peach
These apply similar to the Chanel Rouge Coco Shines in the sense they are no fuss kinds of colors. They have a sheer transparent quality and on the arms they swatch sheer but the color adheres better once on the lips and gives a healthy glow. The texture is smooth and nourishing. Lasting power is like any glossy finish lipstick. The Surratt Prismatique Lips last a decent amount of time on the lips. They won’t disappear or slide off within a few hours, but lasting power won’t be as long as a full coverage lipstick.
Swatches on bare lips (no primer or liner added):
Bottom line all winners for my neutral lip loving self. These give the lips the prettiest wash of shimmer that I’ve seen. I’m all for shimmering lips but I do tend to avoid glitters. The sparkles are beautiful in these and are visible but not over the top. If I had to pick one favorite it would be Chichi. Given the way these have sheer coverage I suspect some of the brighter color options would also look gorgeous on the lips with the bright but sheer finish they have. For the amount of product you get in all the Surratt Beauty items I do think the prices are extremely high, but the quality is there and I haven’t regretted anything I’ve splurged on from the line. As far as I can tell there’s no detectable scent in the lipsticks.
You can find the Surratt Beauty Lipsliques at Barneys New York, Sephora and Net-a-Porter. If you have a few of these or any other Surratt Beauty items on your list I highly recommend you check out the Barneys Love Yourself Event going on through the 12th of March. Details on the gift in this post here. Since Surratt Beauty items are spendy the gift event is a great time to get something back for spending a significant amount. Plus it’s a nice way to treat yourself 🙂
Today I have a roundup of concealers I’ve been putting to the test. It’s been a year since I last did a concealer rotation. Since my summer trip to Europe back in June I’ve gotten a few shades darker than normal so my go-to favorites Clé de Peau Beauté in Almond and NARS Ginger no longer matched my skin. Several months ago one of my friends asked me about my favorite concealers which include Clé de Peau Beauté, NARS and Edward Bess. Those three brands also happen to be her favorites but she wanted to try something new and so began my hunt for something new that would perform as well if not better than my tried and true. This post has been several months in the making. It took me weeks of testing and swatching with several trips to the counter to find matches. Finding a shade can be tricky depending on what you want to conceal. Also some oxidize in color so a swatch of color that is an exact match might turn out to be too dark after it sets.
I put five new-to-me concealers to the test from Charlotte Tilbury, Bare Minerals, Urban Decay, Make Up For Ever and Chanel. In addition I’ve added a feature on the Surratt Surreal Skin Concealer (I bought this last spring but never reviewed it) and I’ve included the Clé de Peau Beauté and YSL Touche Éclat for swatches in the roundup. Most brands have more than one type of concealer formula. I looked for ones with a creamy texture that blended easily on the skin without emphasizing lines. I prefer medium to full coverage with a smooth looking finish. Ideally I would like something with 100% full coverage but finding an exact match is tricky and I often find full coverage concealers too thick.
Below from left to right:
Surratt Beauty Surreal Skin Concealer ($50 for 0.06 oz) in #5 is the most expensive concealer I’ve tried in the per oz sense. It comes in a twist up stick form and has sheer to medium coverage. I found 5 to be a good match but the coverage is minimal and texture is on the dry side. If you have oily skin or find that you only need a tiny bit of brightening/coverage this one is good, but I wasn’t thrilled with it. I will use it to the end though.
Clé de Peau Beauté Concealer ($70 for 5 g/.17 oz) in Almond is one of my all time favorite concealers. It’s extremely pricey but well worth the splurge. It covers under the eye really well, doesn’t cake, lasts all day and blends really well. The trick is to warm it up with the fingers to apply. If you apply it cold and straight from the tube, it can look thick. A little goes a long way and my tube has lasted forever without going bad (one lasted 2 years).
Charlotte Tilbury The Retoucher Conceal and Treat Stick ($35 for 3.5 ml/0.12 fl oz) in #3 is a new concealer to me. It’s one that’s been on my radar for a long time but I’m usually not a fan of click-type brushes because they seem so unsanitary to me. This is my new favorite. It conceals and brightens dark circles like magic. It blends into a creamy smooth finish. It stays put although you do need to set with powder. It works wonders on spots as well. This has a skincare element to hydrate and plump the skin. I’m in love.
YSL Touche Éclat Radiant Touch Concealer ($42 for 0.1 oz) in 5.5 is a classic I’ve been using on and off. I found it worked under the eyes to brighten and conceal but in a very natural minimal way. Coverage is sheer to medium. If you don’t have a lot you need to cover under the eyes and need just a tad of brightening this is good. For me as I get older I find I need and prefer more coverage (I’m 34 right now). For spot coverage this doesn’t do much.
Bare Minerals bareSkin Concealer ($20 for 6 ml/0.20 fl oz) in Medium-Golden and Tan were both pleasant surprises. I say they surprised me because the color range look liked it skipped my match. Medium-Golden is my current match for under eyes. It covers smoothly and has a thinner texture making it feel truly weightless. Under the eyes it makes the skin look smooth. There’s no caking or emphasizing of lines. It is on the creamy side so if you have super oily skin it might be too dewy for you. It has a slight glow without looking too glowy that makes the face look younger with brightness. It held up well in the high 80 degree heat for me (I set it with Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder).
Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Complete Coverage Concealer ($28 for 5 ml/0.16 fl oz) in Medium Neutral and Med-Dark Warm is something that is raved about by so many. I was matched in store to Med-Dark Warm. It’s one that is a perfect match on my skin but darkens after 5 minutes. In store I tried both the Medium Neutral and Med-Dark Warm, one on each side. The artist who matched me said she thought the darker one was better. I’m actually in between shades for under eyes. I prefer the lighter option for the eye area and the darker one for spot cover. Texture is thin but creamy. It lasts all day without caking, creasing, fading or drying out. I would say the color selection is pretty limited and the colors do oxidize. If you can test this in store – see how it wears throughout the day before picking a color.
Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer ($32 for 15 ml/0.5 fl oz) in 7 and 8 are two shades I picked up from Sephora. I also tested these, one on each side. The artist said she thought 8 was better. The product does darken slightly, but not as much as the Urban Decay. I bought 8 originally and asked my husband what he thought. He thought it looked like an exact match but I felt it made my face look sallow and tired (for under eyes). I ordered 7 which I found to be better for under the eyes and which will be a good match for other areas as I lose my tan. 8 works perfectly for spot coverage. If you want something that covers spots really well and looks seamless by blending into the skin this one is really quite amazing.
Chanel Correcteur Perfection Concealer ($42 for 7.5 g/0.26 oz) in 30 Beige is something I gave a try recently. Chanel concealers seem to have gone through several reformulations over the years. I’ve never really been a huge fan but it’s mainly because I’m always matched to colors that are way too pale for what I should be wearing. I know everyone has their own take on how to match concealer, but I really don’t like having my under eye area 2-3 shades lighter than the rest of my face. In this case I’m again, in between shades. I bought 30 although I really should have passed on this one. The consistency and coverage is really good. Right now 30 is just the slightest bit too dark for under eyes but 20 is definitely too light.
Swatched side by side:
I spent hours researching concealer shades and swatches before going to the counter. Even if a makeup artist offers to match me, I still like to test multiple shades to see how they compare. Half the time I’m mis-matched and researching swatches ahead of time helps me know what to look for. I was able to swatch most of the shades side by side for reference. The only line I skipped was Make Up For Ever because the 3 stores I went to each were missing testers of multiple shades.
Surratt Beauty concealers come in a small twist up tube, there are currently eight shades, each color has a number as the name:
Cle de Peau Beaute comes in a twist-up tube, there are currently 6 shades:
Charlotte Tilbury The Retoucher comes in a brush wand style, you twist the base to click up product (similar to Stila Lip Glazes), there are 10 shades available:
YSL Touche Eclat (unit was missing 1.5) comes with a brush tip that dispenses product when you push the base, there are 10 shades available at Sephora. Some other retailers also have shade #6. The colors swatched side by side seem odd because they don’t appear to go from lightest to darkest. Even after doing a lot of research, making sense of the options, colors and undertones can still be confusing. I took a photo of the display and double checked each pen to make sure they were in the correct slot before swatching in numerical order:
Bare Mienrals bareSkin Concealer comes in a wand with a sponge tip applicator, there are six colors currently available:
Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer comes with a sponge tip applicator in a tube, there are eight shades available, I like that they have neutral and warm options in some of the shades:
Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer comes in a squeeze tube, the formula is really concentrated so a little goes a long way, unfortunately none of the stores I visited had testers of all the colors so I wasn’t able to swatch all the shades. There are 12 shades available, but they some skip numbers, it goes from 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14, 18 to 20.
Chanel Correcteur Perfection comes in a long tube with a sponge tip applicator. This one wins for the prettiest packaging, there are six shades available:
In testing a number of different brands of concealer I have indeed found a few new favorites. To sum up my thoughts:
My top two favorites for under eye are the Charlotte Tilbury Retoucher and Bare Minerals bareSkin concealers, they brighten the face, cover dark circles really well and both last all day on me
Best spot cover product is the Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer
Urban Decay Naked Skin wins for best multi-purpose concealer, but shades darken/oxidize and color selection is pretty limited
Surratt Beauty was the most disappointing for me, mainly because it didn’t have the coverage I was looking for and texture is on the dry side
Chanel would win if the color selection was more diverse (I’m in between shades, and based on my swatches I suspect many of you will fall in between shades or outside of the range completely)
If I had to recommend you check out only one, the Charlotte Tilbury wins for new ones that I’ve tested, but my heart still belongs to Cle de Peau Beaute. The NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer is still a formula that I really like for under the eye and spot treatment, but after looking at all the colors I found the next shades up from Ginger to be either too pink or too dark. (Café Makeup has an amazing post with swatches of all the NARS concealer shades swatched here.)
In case you’re new to any of these brands, I’ve listed some of the retailers where you can find the following brands:
What’s your go-to concealer right now? As always I would love to hear about your favorites or what you’ve been testing right now. Do you use the same for under eye and spots? Or do you have different colors/brands you use?
The Bare Minerals concealers were provided as press samples for review consideration.
I have a monthly favorites roundup today featuring both beauty and grooming products for him and her. My husband had so much fun pulling his favorite things last month he wanted to participate again. We’ve both been experimenting with new products – for me it’s a regular thing since I’m a beauty blogger and constantly trying new things. For him, he’s found out trying new products takes quite a bit of time to figure out how they really perform. There are some things he wanted to toss after one use, but in the interest of giving things a thorough test drive he’s opened up to giving items more than 1-2 uses before writing things off. Our August beauty and grooming favorites this month:
Tom Ford Skin Illuminating Duo in Moodlight (reviewed here) is the must-have highlighter duo this season. It gives the skin the most stunning glow. There seems to be mixed information about whether or not it’s limited-edition. I received an e-mail from the team at Tom Ford confirming that it’s limited-edition. Others report it is permanent. To be safe I bought 2 backups. It’s that good.
R+Co Death Valley Dry Shampoo Spray (Travel Size) is something I picked up a month ago. I’m the type of person who washes her hair daily so I don’t use dry shampoos a lot. There are days though where it’s so hot my hair needs a quick refresh. Many are white in color and leave my black-brown hair looking dusty and grey (even if I brush it out). This one is colorless and smells amazing. A few spritzes absorbs oil and gives the hair texture. I give it a huge thumbs up.
First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser with Red Clay has been a long time favorite. I’ve used this on and off for a year now (I like to switch up my cleansers). I think I’ve gone through 4 tubes. It’s amazing in this hot humid weather at cleaning the skin, unclogs pores and is gentle but really effective.
YSL Pop Water Glossy Stains have been in regular rotation (previously swatched/reviewed here). The colors are summer-perfect. It’s so easy to swipe on the lips and the stain makes the color last long. My two favorites for the last month have been Pink Rain and Wet Nude.
I acquired a few minis of the La Mer Moisturizing Soft Cream and it’s heavenly. I have been rationing three tiny bottles for months now (since around May) and I’ve fallen head over heels. I don’t want to splurge on the full size but there are some deal/value sets. I need to buy soon. It will be one of my biggest skincare splurges but it’s amazing on my skin. It hydrates, feels smooth, doesn’t get greasy and makes my face glow.
Charlotte Tilbury Wonderglow is something I’ve been mixing in with foundation to add a subtle glow. I like that it has a yellowish golden undertone which I find rare in liquid illuminators which are often pinkish/opal.
La Mer Illuminating Eye Gel is something I’ve been using since the spring. It’s a good lightweight product for day and in this hot summer weather it’s just what I need. For a real deep treatment my go-to is still Chanel Sublimage but it’s a bit heavy for day in this super hot weather.
For the longest time my husband has been a loyal Jack Black user, but he opened up to trying some items I brought home from Kiehl’s. He really likes the Facial Fuel Energizing Facewash for Men. It lathers up well and really cleans the skin making it feel refreshed without leaving any film or stripping the face. The entire Facial Fuel line has a good masculine look to the packaging which he finds appealing. I tried this one and have to say it’s pretty darn good. For him, it helps prepare his skin for shaving by making it feel smooth.
Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Heavy Lifting Eye Repair is what he uses under his eyes to try and treat wrinkles and dry skin. This year he’s been keen on researching products and changing his lifestyle to prevent aging (or at least try to delay it). He’s on his second jar of this. He likes it because it hydrates and really helps with his wrinkles.
Clarisonic Alpha Fit Cleansing System for Men is a new device designed specifically for men. My husband had tried my Aria with his own brush heads. He liked the concept but didn’t like the design (he said it looked too girly and felt bulky). I bought this one for him – the video sold it for me. It has a good masculine look and fits in the hands easily. He uses his in the shower daily and finds it gives his skin a deep clean and has made a noticeable difference in texture and preventing blackheads/clogged pores. He has super thick facial hair and this Clarisonic has softened the ends of his hair so when he shaves it feels softer. It’s on the pricey side but he’s really happy with it. It fits on the shelf in our shower without taking up a lot of space.
Nuxe Men Multi-Use Shower Gel is his favorite right now. He likes the way it smells and how it lathers (for him the lather is important). It leaves the skin feeling clean and moisturized. I’m a fan of the way it smells on him too. Review here.
Penhaligon’s Blenheim Bouquet Deodorant is something he bought because he was researching Penhaligon’s shaving products. He decided to give this one a try based on online reviews he read. He likes it because it has a good fresh manly scent and doesn’t make his skin peel.
That wraps it up for our beauty and grooming favorites for the month!
In honor of National Lipstick Day I’ve compiled a mini guide covering my absolute favorite lipsticks. I’m a your-lips-but-better kind of girl when it comes to lip color, but I like playing with all kinds of textures, formulas and finishes. A lot of women ask me what’s the one lipstick I would recommend. My answer is usually, “well, it depends …” The right lipstick really does depend on what you are looking for. Sheer or full-coverage? Matte or glossy? Neutral or bright? The options and types of lipstick available today is mind-blowing. I’ve split my favorites into several different categories. It was really difficult to narrow down my picks – I’ve tested dozens of brands and formulas, many of which are all very good. This is my edited list of tried-and-true.
So many lip products are scented. A lot of my readers are super sensitive to any fragrance in lip products. I too have a sensitive nose but don’t mind certain scents like vanilla, rose (in small doses), fig or mint. I think most lipstick I’ve tried have some kind of scent or another. Finding a fragrance and taste-free lipstick with a smooth hydrating feel is a challenge, but the newly launched Burberry Kisses Hydrating Lip Colors are hands down the best ones I’ve tried. They come in a wide range of colors from nudes, rose pink, plum, coral, reds, brick and berries. There is literally a shade for everyone. The colors are shimmer-free (at least the ones that exist now). They cover the lip entirely and the color is easy to build. Full review + swatches in this post here.
If you’re looking for a full coverage lipstick that has super rich pigment but one that won’t leave the lips looking flat or dull, there are three formulas that I am obsessed with. First is the the NARS Audacious Lipsticks. There is a wide range of colors available. If you love neutral lip colors, there are tons of options. Many look similar but NARS created them with slight variations in undertone so you’re bound to find at least one neutral that will work whether you have pink, yellow, olive undertones. My top picks: Raquel, Anita, Barbara and Julie. Review + swatches on lips here. Note that most of the shades can be found at most NARS counters, however 10 of them are exclusive to narscosmetics.com and Barneys New York (Vanessa, Julie, Carmen, Ingrid, Dominique, Kelly, Sandra, Vivien, Silvia, Marisa).
Charlotte Tilbury K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipsticks also have an amazing rich full coverage finish. They are super pigmented and very rich so they do require some blending or a tiny bit of blotting. She has some amazing neutrals and the perfect 90s pink-brown shades along with really good pinks and nudes. My top two favorites: Confession and Penelope Pink. Swatches of my picks here. Note these do have a vanilla scent.
Marc Jacobs Le Marc Lip Cremes have the most incredible opaque full-coverage formula. The finish is flawless and lasting power is very impressive. The color range is for those who prefer the bold lip. The range contains a lot of bright and deep colors. Swatches of the entire lineup in this post here. My top three picks are Infamous, Boy Gorgeous and Blow.
Above Tom Ford Lip Color Sheers Skinnydip and Rose Soleil
My personal lipstick formula of choice is usually glossy and semi-sheer. I find sheer lipsticks more forgiving on the lips so you don’t need a super precise application. They are easy to swipe when you’re on the go and the sheer glossy finish usually means fading is more gradual and natural. My top four sheer lipstick formulas are with brands that have a lovely shine and sheen with the perfect hint of color.
YSL Rouge Volupté Shines and Volupté Sheer Candy Glossy Balms are a classic staple. The Rouge Volupté Shines have a cushiony feel with a wonderfully soft but sweet grapefruit candy scent. It’s sweet but not overly sweet. Colors have medium lasting power because they are super glossy but have decent pigment for a sheer lipstick. My favorite shades are #8, #9 (swatched here) #22 (shown above third from the left) but really all the shades are amazing.
Volupté Sheer Candy Glossy Balms are super sheer and give the slightest wash of color but leave the lips glossy and pretty. I like the bright ones because they give the lips a nice soft wash of color that is bright but the sheerness tones down the color so it really gives them a natural tint. My top picks are #1, #9, #15-17 (#15 through 17 swatched and reviewed here).
Tom Ford Lip Color Sheers= pure luxury. Four shades were introduced for summer: two repromoted in Paradisio and Sweet Spot and two new shades in Skinnydip and Rose Soleil swatched here. I like these because they have a lot of color even though the formula is sheer. The brights are very bright but the neutrals are just amazing. I brought along Skinnydip and Rose Soleil with me on my month long trip to Europe and they were perfect for the entire trip.
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine always a favorite among my friends. This is the ultimate sleek modern chic lipstick. The formula is lush and glossy. It’s the ultimate swipe and go kind of no-fuss lipstick. There is a shade for everyone in this line. I would be hard pressed to pick just one shade, if I did, I would say for light to tan skintones Boy is a classic.
I don’t usually like liquid lipsticks. I find the finish to be drying or cakey but the one exception is Dior Addict Fluid Sticks. Some may say they are more of a gloss, but others say it’s a lipstick + lipgloss hybrid. I put them in the liquid lipstick category because the coverage and finish is super opaque like a lipstick. They go on like a gloss but it thickens a bit once it dries and has rich coverage like a lip color. There have been a number of shades released for summer and fall. I’m working my way through testing some, but the original shades are amazing. Lip swatches here.
Marc Jacobs New Nudes Sheer Lip Gels have a unique gel formula. They are called sheer but they aren’t really all that sheer. The pigment and coverage is medium to full but you can control coverage easily. My favorite neutral is Role Play but there are a number of great nudes and corals in the line. Swatches + review of all the colors here.
Last but not least, my personal top picks for the ultimate luxury lipstick. I know each person has their own favorite. Edward Bess has been a long time favorite. His lipsticks are perfectly creamy and go on the lips flawlessly. They have a natural shine with rich pigment. Each of his lipsticks contains the most perfect lush fig scent. Rose Demure is the perfect neutral rose. Island Blossom is the best bright peachy coral ever. Pure Impulse is my holy grail nude. (I love Island Blossom + Pure Impulse layered together.)
Tom Ford Lipsticks are amazing in all the formulas. The regular Lip Color is my favorite with Pink Dusk and Spanish Pink being at the top of my list (Pink Dusk is swatched here). The Tom Ford Lipsticks have this super rich super pigmented formula that I find unique. It provides coverage to the entire lip with lasting power that stays put from morning to night. The Lips & Boys from last holiday was pure genius. Most of the colors have sold out but you can still find some online. my personal favorites are Peter, William and Luca. Peter is the prettiest nude shimmer. These are some of the most expensive lipsticks on the market but in my mind they are worth every penny if you can splurge.
Surratt Beauty Lipsliques are something I’ve been accumulating one at a time since they launched at Sephora. I have a review of two shades Gamine and Hevyn here but have added 3-4 more colors over the past few months. Given the size and amount of product you get, these lipsticks are extremely expensive but the formula is phenomenal. It’s a richly pigmented glossy lipstick in a sleek twist-up tube. Gamine is nude peach perfection. Hevyn is nude pink mauve perfection. There’s no tweaking required with these – they are that good.
I hope you enjoyed this roundup of my favorite lipstick formulas. As always I would love to hear about your favorite lipsticks. Do you have a favorite formula or color that you’re obsessed with?
The Marc Jacobs Beauty Lipsticks were provided courtesy of Marc Jacobs Beauty for previous collaborations. All others purchased by me.
I took advantage of the Sephora Beauty Insider sale and used my VIB Rouge discount for a massive haul. I planned on stocking up on skincare and haircare staples, but there seemed to be a wave of new beauty launches too. I ended up placing a couple of orders online. Here is the majority of what I bought. I have one more package coming in the mail but I’ll be out of town when it arrives at my home later this week. Be warned, this list is very long.
1 + 2 + 3 / Surratt Beauty just launched at Sephora, most of what I wanted was already sold out by the time the sale started, but I managed to order three Artistique Blushes in Guimauve, Parfait and Aurelole plus the Large Custom Palette Case. I also bought one Lip Lustre in Coquette.
4 / Urban Decay released the Naked Skin Ultra Definition Powder Foundation in a wide range of colors. Each of the main shades come in Warm, Neutral and Cool. I picked out Medium Light Warm, I hope this is the right color for me, it’s hard to tell in stores.
5 / Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders in Dim Light and Diffused Light come highly recommended by my readers as all over setting powders. I have Dim Light in the Palette Form which I really like but feel it’s easier to dip a large fluffy brush in a larger compact. I’ve been obsessed with Diffused Light after testing it for a few days, it’s the perfect all over setting powder.
7 / Laura Mercier Baked Blush Bronze Compact in Ritual is new for me, but I don’t think it’s a new shade. I have swiped it a couple times on the hand and it looks very dark, but there is a pretty pink glow mixed in. From what I have read, each one has different swirl patterns.
8 / Lavanila is new to me and I usually buy Dove deodorants but the concept of a soft vanilla scent in deodorant seemed really interesting. Fresh Vanilla Lemon is a light vanilla with a hint of citrus.
9 / SK-II Facial Treatment Cleansing Oil has been on my list to try for a long time. I decided to use the discount to save on this since full retail is $70. Review to come as I play with this.
12 / Tatcha Aburatorigami Japanese Beauty Papers Duo is a Sephora exclusive. Review of the full size version here. This duo has a small pack of Evening Papers in a darker color that is purse-sized. I haven’t tried them yet but I couldn’t resist a small one for clutches or small bags.
14 / I’ve loved everything I’ve tried from the Drybar line. These Hold Me Hair Clips are perfect for sectioning hair up when you curl, straighten or blow dry the hair. They are large and angled so they really grip large sections of hair without tugging, pulling or getting tangled without leaving dents.