Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Making Peace with a Former Enemy...

Once upon a time, I loved lipstick - just adored it. I laughed at lip gloss, I thought I was too much of a lady to bother with glossy, juvenile lips. I also thought I was too cool and too much of a badass to be bothered with reapplying every hour, like you would need to with lip gloss. My favorite formula was something with a touch of slip, like a satin finish, but I was mad for MATTE lips. Yup, that's right the drier the better I thought. It was until I embraced gloss and all things moisturizing on my lips I said goodbye to matte. Plus, matte formulas was really doing a number on my lips.

Peeling lips + matte formula = lips that are just not cute to look at!

Many years pass by and I made my way with many glosses. I think I just started to get bored with glosses so I then ventured into the lipstick/gloss hybrids, the lip cremes. But even that started to lose my interest.

I ventured back to lipsticks because I was craving a more intense pigment versus color shock and gloss factor. I was also curious about current matte formulas. If technology is moving at warped speed, then surely the matte lipstick has to have improved just a little since we last met (more than ten years ago).

Glad to say it has and I discovered it in one of my go-to cosmetic brands: NARS.

As you can see, I'm starting a small collection consisting of the Velvet Matte Lip Pencils and the slim Pure Matte Lipstick. Both of these items are unscented.

1. Montego Bay - soft pink
2. Valparaiso - raspberry
3. Cruella - scarlet red
4. Bahama - neutral pink brown
5. Train Bleu - deep aubergine

The Pure Matte Lipstick ($25/USD) wild mango butter to prevent dryness and peeling (two things my lips know very well), enriched with anti-oxidant properties: Vitamin C and acai oil . This is long wearing as mattes are and when it does settle it is not uncomfortable. Gloss is optional and I love them either way.

The Velvet Matte Lip Pencils are like oversized lip liners. NARS encourages the users to layer this with other lipsticks and glosses. I personally like to wear this on it's own, especially if I'm wearing the intense red, Cruella. But I do often reach for a gloss to top off Bahama or Train Bleu (this one especially is dark and needs a gloss to tone down the color). There are sixteen shades offered and yes, I would like to add more to my collection.

For Cruella, click here.
For a look at Train Bleu, click here.
And for Bahama, click here.

I am glad that I let go of my stubborn notion of what I thought matte is and gave these a shot. I now want to try out other matte lipsticks from other brands that I have had great luck with, like Chanel.

Here's another look at the Pure Matte Lipsticks:

I like that Montego Bay look like a soft pink in the case but on my skintone (NC42) it has a bit of a peach tone to it. Valparaiso (part of the Spring/Summer collection) is a bit more on the red side than it is pink. I really love these colors and the formula enough to look at more of the colors that are offered (twelve shades). 

Another reason why I am getting back into pigment saturated pouts? I am a huge fan of this beautiful and fashionable woman: Peony Lim. Her hair also one of the reasons I am darkening my hair back to one solid color again. 


  1. Hey there! I love NARS matte lipstick, have it in Volga-I sometimes top it off with Ellis Faas creamy lips 102 for a more blue tone and goth-inspired look.

    1. Hey Liz!! I need to check out Volga, is it semi-matte? I been meaning to pick up one of those as well - I love Fire Down Below. I need to try out Ellis Fass also, I am hoping it doesn't make my lips itch or scream in pain!

  2. I LOVE Ellis Faas lipsticks, I have 101 (perfect blood red), 102 (plum/goth red) and 103 (mauve/nude). Her eye shadow pens are also wonderful to play with. SpaceNK in Bloomies carries the full range. I think Volga is from their pure matte collection. It does require serious moisturizing though, but well worth the look.

    1. ooh this may require further investigation - thanks!