Last week we had Woman Day, which is a bit like Black Friday and I went a little bit trigger happy on lipsticks. Ahem.
This month saw the release of a collaboration between L’Oreal and fashion house Balmain, resulting in a lipstick collection of 3×4 lipsticks. There’s a black, blue and a green set, although I’m not sure what that’s supposed to signify. I bought three of the green ones, as they had the prettiest packaging and two of the most unusual colors, and one blue and one black lipstick:
left to right: Confession, Legend, Glamazone, Balmain Instinct and Fever. I only really wanted Balmain Instinct as it was the most unusual color (I’m at the point where I just have so many reds, pinks, nudes that I’m just meh at seeing them although the Balmain collection has a very pretty red so if you’re in the market for that check it out), but then I thought you’ll also have to take Fever as they’re so pretty together and then… idk I took the others as well. What I left was a very light and very glittery nude (too light, too gritty), two purples (didn’t seem to be swatching evenly and I have a few purples already), a red (soooo pretty), a blue (pretty color but seemed to swatch unevenly) and a dark brown with red undertone (very dark on my too pale skin but will probably look great on others).
Have swatches of what I did take home with me:
Same order as above: first Confession, which is a satiny coral nude. It is darker than MAC Nicki’s Nude and also darker than Givenchy’s Beige Plume. It’s certainly the most normal color of the whole bunch and among the most wearable ones. I suspect it will sell very well. It should suit more skin tones than the linked MAC lipstick since it’s not so pastel. On me it pulls very corally, but I believe it will pull less coral and more pinkish on darker skintones. Confession applies easily and feels almost hydrating, in the long term it was neither hydrating nor drying. Sadly the creamier finish affected the wear time. It only made it to the three hour mark. Eating destroys it, but with a normal color like that it’s not so huge a problem. Just slap it on again.
Next is Legend from the blue part. Legend is a cool, dark taupe. I was very much on the fence, since I also took Glamazone which seemed so similar. But now that I wore it I am convinced. I think it looks really good when worn and is very wearable for light skin tones, because it is so cool toned. The color is in the realm of MAC Flesh Stone, but so much darker. The finish is matte, which makes it a bit drying long term, but also makes it last better. I got five hours wear time with eating. It wears off with eating though, and sadly more visible on the inside of the lips, so this isn’t what I’d wear to a business lunch or something. Still, really cool color and since I don’t really do business lunches I simply reapply after food.
Glamazone is also a taupe, but lighter and also more transparent. The finish is creamy and it feels hydrating all through the wear. So it is different enough from Legend I guess (the eternal blogger’s song: but this is a different shade of red, don’t you see?). While it seems a bit transparent at first a second coat makes it opaque. The cream finish sacrifices longevity: I got about three hours out of it. It wears off most visibly on the inside of the lip, a lot worse than Legend. Maybe best applied lightly and not opaque and crisp.
Lets go to the pièce de résistance: Balmain Instinct. It’s green, but not any green. It’s olive with golden shimmer and a matte finish. This makes it actually the most wearable green I have ever seen. Despite what it looks like in the bullet you won’t look like a pea. It looks a bit darker on the lips than in the swatch and that makes it more wearable. From far away you could almost mistake it for taupe, but it’s not. This is one of my favorite eye colors and so I own not one, but two eyeliners in this color, which I reappropriated as a lip liner. With lip liner worn all over the lip and then the lisptick added on top it lasts until you take it off again. Worn alone it also lasts well, I got almost five hours out of it! It wore off evenly which helped a lot there (why can’t the other colors do this?) I would have bought this one even if the quality were bad, but luckily it isn’t.
Lastly, Fever: This is a sorta carrotty orange, but it has a good bit of brown which you can see if you put it next to a really orange orange. This one is such an autumnal color. The finish is matte and again, this one was lasting pretty well on my lips, five hours and going. Eating reduced it but didn’t wipe it off competely. If you’re looking for such an orange I can recommend this one.
Now, the reason I bought Fever at all was that it looked so lovely next two Balmain Instinct. At home I was like, oh but how do I wear both at the same time? My lips are too small for such an intense gradient, so I put Fever on the lips… and Balmain Instinct on the eyes. It applied pretty much like any cream shadow of the drier variant. I blended it out with my finger which worked fairly well. On the lid the color was transparent. Then I decided to also use it as an eyeliner and applied it as such straight from the bullet with the tip and it worked so well! (Yes I am aware I own two real eyeliners in this color as well, thank you very much.) The lipstick eyeliner lasted all day and did not smudge either. On my lids it did crease and fade some but my eyelids are notoriously bad with creasing. While this isn’t going to be something I do every day I do like the results of my experiment. And it’s sort of useful to know when I want to do touch ups, as those are far easier done from a bullet than from a pot.
So that was my experience with the new LE from L’Oreal. I’d also like to add that all of the lipsticks have the typical L’Oreal smell and taste which many people hate, so be aware of that. Also while the packaging looks pretty from afar, you can tell that it was cheaply made. The gold coloring is simply not evenly applied and scratches off easily, revealing the color part underneath. The color parts (blue, green, black) also scratch off easily, revealing gold underneath. How does that work? I don’t know but don’t buy these if you want your pretty lipstick packaging unscratched. I never have this sort of problem but I swear I bought them looking mostly good and when I took these pictures a mere half an hour later, they were scratched.
Availability in Austria: you can get the whole collection at Müller. My local Bipa drugstore only had a reduced collection of three colors and none of the really interesting ones. I don’t know if other drugstores get more than that. Also make sure to compare prices because the prices of L’Oreal vary wildly! We’re talking a price difference of up to 33%.
All in all, this is probably the most interesting collection I’ve seen in the drugstore all year. I hope the brands keep up and with some luck, we’ll get similar colors from cheaper brands with less smelly lipsticks.
This post is neither sponsored nor a PR sample – I was actually crazy enough to buy all these. °^°
If you are so inclined, please tune back in on Friday for a review of Sisley Izia.