Prior to last year, I had considered myself to be Not A Lipstick Girl. I have a tendency to bite my lips when I’m nervous or concentrating, and if there was even the chance that food might be involved, I’d go sans lipstick because really, who wants to finish the meal with just a ring of faded color around the outside of their lips?
Then came the innovation that set the beauty blogosphere on fire. The Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Pur Couture Vernis à Lèvres, probably better known as Glossy Stains, hit the market in a big way. After reading blogger after blogger rave about them, I saved my pennies and purchased #4, Mauve Fusain, a raisin-y shade. And I loved it. Then I loved it some more.
When first applied, it has a strange gel-like texture, but that quickly sets into a perma-laquer that does. not. budge.
True facts: I put some on at 8pm. Went to a bar. Had several drinks. Came home. Fell asleep on my couch. Woke up the next morning with this stuff still on. Normal wear time for me is about 7 hours with minimal fading even after the glossy sheen wears off.
In short: It rocks my world.
As much as I would love to have practically every shade in the range, these gems don’t come cheap, at $32-$35 a pop USD. So it wasn’t until the recent Arty Stone release that I picked up a new shade– #29 Rose Forreau.
Rose Forreau is a bit of a shade shifter. It starts out creamy peach/ light coral, then deepens into a coral-y rose shade. It’s the color that ladies in Jane Austen adaptions have on their lips. It’s the heavenly hue that Keira Knightley’s lips seem to naturally be. It’s good stuff.
I am getting some serious mileage out of this one.
“But woe!” you say. “I can’t just drop $34 on a lipstick, no matter now awesome it is!”
Good news, dear reader. L’Oreal has answered the call. Their new Color Caresse Wet Shine Stain (what IS it with these long names?) is the drugstore version of the YSL glossy stains, down to the texture, smell, and petal-shaped wand. The only major difference is that the L’Oreal lippies apply a bit sheerer at first, although color can be built up to full opacity in most cases. Best of all, they’re very affordable. I got mine for $8.50 at Walgreens.
The only major downside to the L’Oreal dupes is that even with a 12-shade color range, the hues present are much less varied and audacious than their high-end cousins. Most are pinks. There are two nude-ish shades, and one lone pinky-red. Affordable though they may be, I will still be lemming YSL’s Rouge Laque until L’Oreal expands their line.
I bought three shades to start. Infinite Fuchsia is a slightly cool bright pink. Lilac On and On is not at all lilac at all, but rather a light mauvey pink, and by far the sheerest of the ones I tried. Endless Red is a cherry red.
All apply wonderfully. I am just getting the hang of swatching staining products, so what looks like patchiness on my lips is not the fault of the product at all– I have no application issues with these in regular use.
To give you a sense of the wear, here’s Infinite Fuchsia at the four hour mark. It withstood several cups of coffee, artichoke quiche, and a chestnut buttercream at my favorite French patisserie.
(Self promo alert: I made the earrings! They’re a new shade of Glitter Wings I just launched at Sihaya Designs.)
I leave you with one final swatch so you can see the colors in all their glory:
If you’re hunting for the perfect lipstick that can withstand dinner and a movie, look no further. YSL & L’Oreal have you covered on any budget.