lipstick

NYX Macaron Lippie in Chambord Review + Swatches

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Color:
NYX just describes this lippie as “black.” That’s certainly not off the mark! Chambord is a semi-matte (as promised) green-based black. This is a true black, not a dark grey, and the pigment is true to what you see in the tube. It’s a twinge sheer in one swipe, but two is perfect for true opacity. While other black lipsticks exist, and there’s definitely a market for them, black is still absent from most major brands’ lines, so it’s great seeing NYX come out with one. 4.75/5)

Wear:
I’m pleased to say Chambord looked fantastic for 5 full hours of wear. It didn’t fade or feather throughout that time. (5/5)

Formula:
Like the other lippies in the Macaron range, Chambord applied smoothly and felt so creamy. It also had bold, strong pigment (that could benefit from the precision of a lip brush). I like that this applied better than some of the others. This was more forgiving on dry lips and didn’t bunch up like Blue Velvet did on dry patches. Also, my lips didn’t feel as dried out after wearing Chambord. However, I had this on for a few moments to photograph, and it had already stained my lips (to the point where I needed a scrub to get the color off all the way). That type of excessive pigment seems to be common with this range of lipsticks. (4/5)

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Packaging:
As I’ve said before, the Macaron Lippie line’s packaging feels markedly cheap. They come in black plastic tubes with a clear band that shows a peek of the color inside. To show that color, the inner tube is clear, which I think looks very low-budget. Also, these have an inexpensive feel (the lipstick can rattle in the tube in some, and I have one where the color was smeared inside the clear tube when I bought it). I don’t think the plastic is dexterous enough to withstand a lot of rough use (drops or travel). However, they’re not too large and store easily. (3.5/5)

Price:
Each Macaron Lippie is $6 USD for 0.16 oz of product. That’s $37.50 per ounce, which is more product for less money than a MAC lipstick ($16 for 0.1 oz), for example. But of course, quality is just as important as face value. Chambord is fantastic not only for the price, but for the line as a whole. (5/5)

Wow Factor:
As I’ve mentioned, black lipsticks are rare and bold, but not unheard of and definitely have their fans. So while the shade was one of the less unique in the range, it’s quality impressed me. I’ve struggled with some of the other lipsticks in the Macaron range, as my lips are chronically dry, but Chambord was more forgiving, which I appreciated greatly. I can see myself getting more use out of Chambord than some of the others for this, alone. (4.5/5)

Overall:
I think Chambord is excellently done. It’s pigment rich, long-wearing, and comfortable to have on the lips. It also has one of the most even applications out of any in the Macaron range that I’ve tried so far. I think it’s fantastic that members of niche cosmetic communities (cosplayers/those with a darker aesthetic) now have access to a superior black lipstick than was previously available, at an inexpensive cost. It also goes without saying that a shade this dark will look bold and dramatic across all skin tones. (4.5) A-

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Availability:
-nyxcosmetics.com
-Target
-Ulta

Useful Information:
-This product was purchased by me.
-The 12 lipsticks in this range all have a nice, faint vanilla scent.
-NYX is cruelty-free.

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NYX Macaron Lippie in Blue Velvet Review + Swatches

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Color:
NYX describes Blue Velvet as “electric blue.” To me, it’s a cool-toned medium dark aqua blue, with the satin matte finish the brand described. I certainly don’t have a shade like this in my collection, and I think blue lippies in general are hard to find, so I appreciate BV’s uniqueness. (5/5)

Wear:
This lipstick wore pretty well, only starting to look a bit sheer (up close) at the 5 hour mark. Throughout wear time, BV was comfortable and didn’t dry my lips out. (4.5/5)

Formula:
This had the same creamy formula as Black Sesame. How smoothly this applies, though, depends on the condition of your lips. Smooth lips = smooth application. My lips were the slightest bit dry when I photographed this, and as you can see below, it caused the lipstick to go on patchy and bunch up in places. I liked that this was fully opaque and dried down more than Black Sesame. It never got tacky, but it didn’t feel too wet, either. Also, this is opaque to a fault. I applied this for just a moment to photograph it, and it left behind a stain and clung to the lips in a ring around the mouth, to the point where a scrub was necessary to remove it. (3/5)

Packaging:
This line of lipsticks skimped on packaging. The black plastic tubes feel cheap, and sometimes the product rattles around inside. Also, the inner tube is clear, which i very low quality looking (as one tube actually somehow had product smeared on the inside of that tube, so I can’t remove it but have to see it). I don’t think the plastic is durable enough to withstand a lot of travel or accidental drops without cracking. They are small enough to store easily, though. (3/5)

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Price:
As I’ve mentioned before, Macaron Lippies are the most cost-effective per-ounce cosmetic product I’ve ever seen! They’re $6 USD each for 0.16 oz of product (just 3 cents per ounce). But quality is an important part of this aspect of rating a product. I think Blue Velvet is wildly pigmented and unique, and if you have the patience to work with it (conditioning your lips, using a brush for extra precision), then it’s worth it. (4.5/5)

Wow Factor:
I don’t know if I’ve said it enough in this post, but I haven’t seen anything like Blue Velvet. The rarity of a bright blue lippie got my attention! This one was nondrying, felt nice going on, and was comfortable to wear without drying my lips out or fading. However, the temperament of this line of lipsticks is very frustrating (your lips have to be FLAWLESS, or else it’s a mess). (4/5)

Overall:
There’s a lot to like about Blue Velvet. It’s comfortable, smooth, non-drying, eye catching and utterly unique. It’s also very affordable and great for niche consumers (like cosplayers, or people looking to do a Kesha tutorial on Youtube). Well-moisturized lips are a must, though, and a lip brush would help this go far. It’s not a bad lipstick, if you’re prepared to make the effort to work with it. (4) B-

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Availability:
-nyxcosmetics.com
-Ulta
-Target

Useful Information:
-This product was purchased by me.
-There’s 12 shades in the Macaron line.
-Macaron Lippies are cruelty free.

Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick in Wolvesmouth Review + Swatches

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Color:
Sephora’s site describes Wolvesmouth as “metallic berry.” My impression was that it’s a cool, midtone metallic burgundy. Needless to say, it’s a fabulous fall color and quickly became my new fave. I own nothing like it. The metallic finish is noticeable without being too intense. (5/5)

Wear:
This lipstick is exactly what I mean when I say “long lasting.” It looked perfect for a full 8 hours, even after a meal. It didn’t even fade in the center of the mouth, the way lippies tend to do as you eat. It stayed on through it all. (5/5)

Formula:
This lipstick applied smoothly and went on rich and even. It didn’t budge, and yet remained comfortable to wear. It didn’t dry my lips out at all. Of the three I’ve tested so far, Wolvesmouth had the smoothest application and the nicest feel. It also has a delicious creme brulee scent. (5/5)

Packaging:
As usual with the Studded Kiss line of lipsticks, Wolvesmouth came in a black studded plastic tube. I think the packaging is fierce and matches the image of the brand. Also, I think it’s dexterous enough to withstand travel. However, the tubes are a bit wide, but I don’t find them difficult to store. These may work better going in a drawer than a stand-up acrylic lipstick holder. (4.5/5)

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Price:
Studded Kiss lipsticks are $21 USD for 0.1 oz of product. That’s $210 an ounce. MAC lipsticks are $16 for the same amount ($160 an ounce), so these aren’t the cheapest lippies on the market. However, I think Wolvesmouth is fantastic quality. It’s a beautiful shade with great texture and staying power, perfect for this time of year. I absolutely, highly recommend it and think it has the quality to back up a $21 price tag. (5/5)

Wow Factor:
Wolvesmouth definitely impressed me. It has a great, subtly metallic finish, rich pigment, easy, smooth application, and top notch staying power. If it’s good enough to trump all my pink lippies and take the place as my favorite lipstick, then it’s definitely got something special! (5/5)

Overall:
Wolvesmouth is fantastic and I highly recommend it. I love the berry color and finish, and it’s exemplary of what a great lipstick should be: rich pigment, great staying power, unique, comfortable to wear, easy to apply. I wish all the lippies in the Studded Kiss line were up to this standard. It’s a fabulous shade. (4.9) A+

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Availability:
-Studded Kiss lipsticks are available exclusively at Sephora

Useful Information:
-This product was purchased by me.
-Kat Von D’s makeup line is cruelty free, but the parent company is not.

Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick in Wonderchilde Review + Swatches

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Color:
Sephora describes the shade as “iridescent neon lilac.” On the lips, its a mid-tone cool fuchsia purple with purple iridescence. I don’t have a shade like this, and haven’t seen a color this rare. It will be hard to dupe! (5/5)

Wear:
This is a surprisingly long-wearing lipstick. It wore well for 5 hours and looked mostly in-tact after a meal. It didn’t fade, bleed, or feather. (5/5)

Formula:
The formula on Wonderchilde is not stellar. The iridescence in this shade felt gritty going on. Also, it needs to be built up, and even then, I can only get it to about 80% opacity. The base color applies smoothly but the iridescence is a little patchy. However, it didn’t dry my lips out. It also has a lovely creme brulee scent. (3.5/5)

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Packaging:
The Studded Kiss Lipstick line has edgy black studded plastic tubes. I think it’s glamorous and fits Kat Von D’s image perfectly. The size is a little large, but I don’t find these lipsticks any more difficult to store than other brands’. The packaging doesn’t feel cheap, which I like at this price point. (5/5)

Price:
These lipsticks sell for $21 USD and contains 0.1 oz of product (for a total of $210 per ounce). A MAC lipstick is $16 for the same amount ($160 an ounce). So Studded Kiss lipsticks aren’t the cheapest lippies around. However, I think the rareness of a shade like Wonderchilde alone will warrant lots of purchases. Also, it’s not a bad quality lipstick. It doesn’t apply perfectly (or totally mask pigmented lips), but it does a fair job, so I think it’s worth it for a shade this unique. (4/5)

Wow Factor:
Of course a shade like this is impressive, because it’s rarely been done before. It’s one of those eye-catching colors as soon as you open the tube. The sparkling effect it has on the lips is interesting as well, like fairy dust. There’s room for improvement, but generally I was impressed. (4/5)

Overall:
I think Wonderchilde is a special lipstick. It’s got a unique, interesting color that I can see people reaching for when they want to stand out, boost their confidence, go to a party, wear with a cosplay, etc. For a shade this twinkly, it’s long lasting as well. It didn’t dry out the lips despite feeling a bit gritty. If the color interests you and you don’t mind the price, I would recommend it. (4.4) B+

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Where to Buy:
-Studded Kiss lipsticks are exclusive to Sephora

Useful Information:
-This product was purchased by me.
-Kat Von D products are cruelty-free, except where mandated by law.
-This lipstick is made without parabens, sulfates, and phthalates.

Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick in Backstage Bambi Review + Swatches + Dupes

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I had been very eager to try Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipsticks since their inception. So when I got the chance, I picked up three (and since holiday collections came out, I’ve scored a bit more!). The first one up for review today is Backstage Bambi, a “matte vivid hot pink.”

Color:
As you all know, I live for pink lipsticks. Backstage Bambi is a bright, midtone pink, just like the brand describes. The color payoff is true to the tube as well. It’s a gorgeous shade, but it doesn’t get any originality points–many have compared it MAC’s Candy Yum Yum, and I found it similar to MAC’s Girl About Town, only matte (GAT is Amplified Creme). 4.5/5

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Wear:
This made it to the 5-hour mark, which is my goal for a lipstick, looking flawless. Backstage Bambi had some extra staying power, though. At 6 hours it looked a bit sheerer and felt more stain-like. Despite this, at the 8-hour mark (and after a meal), this lippie still looked fantastic: bold pigment and even wear. It should be mentioned that this promised 10 hours of wear, but that’s a little ridiculous to me. Having said that, it cut it close! 5/5

Formula:
This lipstick is matte, so it tugged at the lips ever so slightly (but still went on easily, just less creamy). It applied, and wore, opaque and evenly. It had that powdery texture on the mouth that most mattes have (that I don’t dislike) and a wonderful scent that I thought was vanilla, but is technically creme brulee. It lasted well and was comfortable all throughout the wear time. It didn’t dry my lips out, to boot. 5/5

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Packaging:
I’m in love with the packaging on this line! It’s so perfect for Kat Von D–studded, shiny black plastic tubes. They’re edgy and cool looking, without the plastic feeling cheap, which is nice from a brand at this price point. You’ll love taking these with you to reapply in public! The circumference is a bit large, though, so while they’re not cumbersome, they may not be a breeze to store (I lay them on their sides in a drawer). The sticker on the bottom identifying the color name is shaded to match the product, though, so I imagine this could help with organization. 4.5/5

Price:
Each Studded Kiss lipstick is $21 USD for 0.10 oz of product. This isn’t the cheapest on the market (MAC is $5 less for the same product weight), nor is the shade so unique it justifies picking this specific pink, at this price, over all others. However the quality, pigment, and staying power is all there with Backstage Bambi, warranting a high “bang for your buck” score. As always, I leave whether or not expensive products are truly “worth it” to the individual. 4.5/5

Wow Factor:
Again, not the most special shade under the sun. But for a matte? It’s very impressive–easy (enough) application, long wear (post meal), vivid pigment, even fading. Those make for a good lipstick to me! What’s truly remarkable is that Backstage Bambi doesn’t dry the lips out–every matte lipstick lover needs that! 4/5

Overall:
Backstage Bambi is a great lipstick. It delivers on it’s promise of bold pigment and “luxe comfort.” While it didn’t reach the promised 10 hour mark, it made it to 8 looking fantastic. If you’re interested in this lipstick, I wholeheartedly recommend it. 4.6 (A-)

Availability:
-Sephora, Exclusively

Useful Information:
-This product was purchased by me.
-Kat Von D’s makeup line is cruelty free, yet follows the “where mandated by law” animal testing policy.
-This lipstick is made without parabens, sulfates, and phthalates.
-This lipstick also contains vitamins A, C, and E to keep lips moisturized.

October ’14 Huge Sephora Haul

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I noticed that a lot of Sephora Favorites looked really good this year. I wanted to put it off ’til it was closer to my birthday (in November) or the holidays, but after discovering that the Give Me Some Lip set is already sold out online, I decided to pick up the rest before it was too late. I also scored some other goodies I’ve been eyeing for a while. Major splurge? You bet. Early birthday/Christmas presents? Totally. Worth it? 100% percent.

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I’ll start off with the perks. Sephora was having a mascara week it seemed as all the 100-point perks were mascaras. So I indulged in a 250-point perk and grabbed a sample of Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb perfume. I’d heard great things about it and was curious to see what it smelled like. I decided on Clinique and Urban Decay mascaras (the latter of which ended up being foolish, as I coincidentally bought a sample of the same product in the Lash Stash). And finally, I used a promo code to grab a sample of Dior Diorshow, another mascara I’ve heard rave reviews about, as well as Diorshow Maximizer, a lash primer.

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Next is Kat Von D’s Studded Kiss Lipstick in Poe. I originally wanted to grab this back in my September haul, but sadly, it was sold out at the time. So I knew I couldn’t pass it up this time around! Unlike other lippies which look bold in the tube but go on sheer, Poe is a true navy blue. I love the Studded Kiss formula and can’t wait to give this shade a test drive.

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Another product I’ve been lusting over for a long time are Stila’s adorable palettes. I got In the Garden, a palette composed of warm earth tones, because I have hazel eyes and thought these kinds of shades would flatter them. Plus who can resist some good matte neutrals and pops of color? Not to mention it comes with an eyeliner as well. The packaging is sleek and feminine, and I love the shade names.

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Now for the bulk of the haul–the holiday collections! I’ve always wanted to try a palette from Too Faced, and when I saw their seasonal Everything Nice Palette, I knew it had to be mine. Once I opened it, it was so me–pink and girly with bright and edgy shadows as well. It also came with 2 bronzers (one of which is Chocolate Soleil, which I love), 2 blushes, 3 brushes, and a sample of their Better Than Sex Mascara, which I’ve also heard fab things about. It also came with a cute, spacious clutch. This ended up being one of the products I was most excited about!

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Some girls live for eyeliner. While I’m more of a lipstick girl myself, I can’t say no to Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils. So when I saw they were releasing Ten, a set of, you guessed it, 10 liners for the holidays (plus a sharpener), I knew I had to pick it up ASAP. It features nine samples of all-new shades (all of which are gorgeous), plus a full size Perversion, a gorgeous black matte eyeliner. This is another thing I can’t wait to test out!

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And now what prompted me to indulge in this haul in the first place–the Sephora Favorites! I scored all except the one mentioned above, and once I saw them, I was even more bummed out I couldn’t grab Give Me Some Lip, because of the Sephora Favorites I got are great! The first is Meet Your Match, a set of 6 color-coordinated lip products and nail polishes. The purples are Nails Inc. polish in Devonshire Row with Bite Beauty Lush Fruit Lip Gloss in Strangefruit. The nudes are Hourglass Extreme Sheen High Shine Lip Gloss in Child with Formula X Nail Color in Invincible. And lastly, the corals are Deborah Lippmann Nail Lacquer in Girls Just Wanna Have Fun with Tarte Lipsurgence Lip Tint in Elite.

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Next is the Glitz and Glam Party Essentials Sampler. I really loved the metallic silver clutch the products came in. It doesn’t feel cheap and could really function as a nighttime bag. Another great thing about this kit is that it features four full-size products! There are nine total items in the bag. First is Smashbox Be Legendary Lipstick in Infrared Matte. This is one of those full-size items. Next is a deluxe sample of Drybar Detox Dry Shampoo. I love dry shampoos, so I’m definitely happy about this product! Another full-size baby is Deborah Lippmann Nail Lacquer in Good Girl Gone Bad. Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Color in Rose Gold and Stila Magnificent Metals Foil Finish Eyeshadow in Metallic Dusty Rose look like they compliment each other very well. The Sephora Collection False Lashes in Astonish are full size. I love Benefit’s girly packaging and have heard great things about Watt’s Up! Highlighter, so I was excited to see the Luminous Champagne shade included. And lastly, there’s the (just about) full size Lancome Artliner Eyeliner in Noir, another product I’ve heard fabulous things about.

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Draw The Line excited me because no one can deny the effect eyeliner can have on a look. This box gives you six options, one of which is full size. The liners are Sephora Collection Contour Eye Pencil 12 HR Wear in Black Lace, Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner in Dark Brown, Kat Von D Deluxe Tattoo Liner in Trooper, NARS Via Veneto Larger Than Life Long Wear Eyeliner in Black, Deluxe Marc Jacobs Beauty Highliner in Blacquer, and a full size Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Double Ended Eye Pencil in Perversion and Rockstar.

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Super Stars is another one of those interesting variety packs. I like these a bit more than kits with all one kind of product (like the all-eyeliner one above). This kit is very diverse, with 12 different cosmetics, haircare, and fragrance. The products are Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Dark Brown, Benefit POREfessional, Benefit They’re Real! Mascara in Jet Black, Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray, Chloe by Chloe Rollerball, Formula X Nail Color in Ignite, Fresh Sugar Rose Tinted Lip Treatment, Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil, NARS Blush in Orgasm, Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream in Light, Stila Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Intense Black, and Urban Decay Eyeshadow in Sin. Some of these, like the UD shadow, NARS blush, and Chloe Rollerball, are full size.

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As an avid lip product junkie, I couldn’t pass up Give Me More Lip. There’s a little of everything–lipstick, gloss and balm. And there’s plenty to go around–this box contains 17(!) products! The items included are: Bare Minerals Marvelous Moxie Lipstick in Speak Your Mind, Benefit Hydrating Tinted Lip Balm in Posie, Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick in Palomino, Buxom Mini Full Bodied Lipstick in Menace, Fresh Sugar Berry Tinted Lip Treatment, Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick in Icon, Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Outlaw, Laura Mercier Lip Glace in Blush, Laura Mercier Creme Smooth Lip Colour in Red Armour, Make Up For Ever Waterproof Lip Liner Pencil, OCC Lip Tar Test Tube in Black Dahlia, Sephora Collection Rouge Infusion in 10 Red Essence, Stila Stay All Day Vinyl Lip Gloss in Nude Vinyl, Tarte Lipsurgence Lip Tint in Moody, Tarte Lipsurgence Power Pigment in Flush, Too Faced La Creme Color Drenched Lip Cream in Naked Dolly, and Too Faced Melted Liquified Long Wear Lipstick in Fuschia. 

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And finally, the Lash Stash. I first heard about the Sephora Favorites from Elle Fowler reviewing that year’s Lash Stash years ago, and it piqued my interest. Mascara completes a look to me–it can even wake you up when you don’t have time for much else. This kit includes 11 fab lash products: Benefit They’re Real!, Buxom Lash Mascara in Blackest Black, Clinique Dual Ended High Impact Mascara and Lash Primer, Josie Maran Argan Black Oil Mascara, Kat Von D Immortal Lash 24 HR Mascara, Lancome Hypnose Drama Mascara, Sephora Collection Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover, Sephora Collection Outrageous Curl Dramatic Volume and Curl Mascara, Smashbox Full Exposure Mascara in Jet Black, Urban Decay Perversion Mascara, and YSL Mascara Volume Effect Faux Baby Doll.

I’m so excited to try everything out! Naturally, reviews on the individual products as well as the Sephora Collections as a whole as soon as possible. I’m embaressed to admit I’m still posting reviews from last month’s haul! But I have more free time coming up, a large chunk which I can commit to blogging. Stay tuned!

Have you tried any of these products beauties? Tried any of the previous Sephora Collections? Do tell!

NYX Macaron Lippies First Impressions

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A couple months ago, I first heard about NYX’s new line of Macaron Lippies, 12 shades of candy colored (and named) lipsticks. After seeing a review by Sarah from And Beauty Or Something,I knew I had to get my hands on them. Fortunately Ulta had a fantastic 40% off sale, so I was able to grab them all!

The shades are arranged in alphabetical order in the photo above. They are: Black Sesame (grey), Blue Velvet (mermaid blue), Chambord (black), Citron (yellow), Coconut (white), Earl Grey (powder blue), Key Lime (lime green), Lavender (lavender purple), Orange Blossom (orange), Pistachio (teal), Rose (barbie pink), and Violet (Lorde purple). All the colors are pretty bold. Rose, which seems the most wearable, is still vivid. I love me some bright lipsticks, and some of these are daring even to me! So this line is definitely not for the faint-hearted, all-natural kind of girl (some would look fantastic to accentuate Halloween costumes, cosplay, or drag looks).

I was so pleased to see these go on bright and opaque. Too many brands put out lipsticks that look shocking in the tube, but have very sheer, “safe” pigmentation on the mouth. Not these! These are bright and attention-grabbing. They also look true ti the color you see in the tube. They all applied very smooth and felt comfortable on the lips, although they did stain a bit (and that was just during very brief lip swatches).

These have a lovely vanilla scent (think MAC, but less intense). The packaging was a bit of a let down. It feels and looks very cheap, and some shades feel a bit loose. Like, you can shake the tube and feel it rattling around in there. That feels very low quality to me.

Ultimately, I love the look and feel of these lipsticks and can’t wait to try them out. Full reviews to come!