Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Product Review: LipSense

           I want to start off by saying that lipstick really isn't my thing. I got through most of my life without ever wearing it, unless otherwise pressured by my mom for special occasions and whatnot. Those experiences never ended well (lipstick on teeth, smears, fading awkwardly, etc). I bought my first personal lipstick at age 21. I was walking through the mall and spotted a solid color bag in the window of the Vera Bradley store. It was a dark purple-ish pink and I was weirdly drawn to it. I snapped a quick picture and walked four stores down to the MAC counter, flashed the picture, and asked for a lipstick as close to the image as possible. With no hesitation the kind employee (rare breed at that specific MAC) snagged MAC "rebel." I did not know how to apply it, so she did it for me. That was the first time I ever felt awesome in a lipstick.

          Since that moment I developed a love for higher-end lipsticks. While my collection is very small (at less than twenty lipsticks), I am always on the hunt for a great quality lip color. I do not like having excess and I do not like seeing things go to waste. I don't need a variety of any one shade. I like my collection to have one or two good lipsticks of every main color. I have a few liquid lipsticks from brands like Kat Von D, Smashbox, and NYX, which look good/last long but never really feel 100% comfortable due to dryness. I also have a small collection of MAC classic lipsticks which feel great and look great but don't last long.

          When I first saw a video advertising for "LipSense," a product that is supposedly kiss proof, smudge proof, waterproof, and a whole bunch of other things, I was skeptical. Months later at work, one of my coworkers showed up with a large case of LipSense lip colors she sold. She would wear them all day long and, from what I could see, they lasted perfectly. One day she let me sample one of the colors. I picked a nude champagne color with a hint of shimmer. When I put it on I really couldn't see it because the color was so close to my natural lip color. I wore it until that night when I noticed a teeny tiny bit of peeling around the corners of my mouth.

           Fast forward about a year and a beautiful friend offered to send me one of her LipSense products to try out. She sent me a super dark-maroon as requested. I wanted a color that would for sure show up, unlike my first experience, and I wanted something unlike anything I already had. I love my lip colors super-dark because of my lifelong obsession with Disney villains. When the package arrived, I quickly tore it open and attempted to apply to color. It was sticky, sloppy, watery, uneven, and uncomfortable. My lips were stuck together. Embarrassed, I quickly ran to the bathroom to scrub it off along with what felt like the first layer of my skin. Motivated to make it work, about fifteen minutes later I slowly laid out everything from the package: detailed instructions, information, a gloss, and a remover. I read it carefully and decided to try again. I applied the dark maroon product in one swift brush across my lower lip. I have a friend who doesn't like the smell, but I found it to be light and pleasant. It tingles a bit during application due to the cosmetic grade alcohol. It was light and watery, but that is why you're supposed to do multiple coats. By the third, the color was where it needed to be...dark. It was a little uneven in areas but I just need a bit more practice. The top lip was a challenge, but taking it slow made a huge difference. So this is the part I missed the first time around, the GLOSS. I HATE LIPGLOSS. I've avoided it my whole life due to the stickiness, which drives me crazy. I was totally disappointed to see that the gloss is required to seal and protect the color. Once I applied it, the first thing I noticed was the fact that the white felt tip brush stayed perfectly clean the entire time. There was absolutely no color transfer to muck up my gloss tube. The gloss felt awesome. I can't believe I am even saying that. It was shiny, but not like the lipgloss trends of the early 2000s. It was not sticky or slimy and it stayed put comfortably. I was completely relieved and totally shocked by the fact that I loved it so much. I am considering pairing it with other colors I have or just wearing it alone.

                                    Here are some quick facts I've gathered about the product:

1. Lead free
2. Gluten free
3. NOT tested on animals
4. Vegan
5. Wax free
6. Waterproof
7. Transfer proof
8. Feather proof
9. Smudge proof
10. Provides sun protection
11. GMO free
12. Equivalent to four regular lipsticks
14. Lasts all day

           Some of those claims are pretty remarkable, if not unbelievable, so I put it to the test. I decided to try the liquid lipstick "Mulled Wine" for church. I've never made it though all three hours with a perfectly intact color so I doubted it would happen now. I remembered how the application was really difficult the first time around, so I had my remover ready and took it slow. The bottom lip went on perfectly. My hands were really shaky (as usual) so the top lip was a little harder. I initially tried to do the three coats, but it was so uneven and sloppy that I had to scrub it off and try again. This time, I wiped excess color off of the applicator before applying. This made all the difference. It was still slightly splotchy since it's such a dark color, so I cheated by touching up the corners and edges with MAC liner "Vino." It was a perfect match with mulled wine, which only makes sense considering their names coincidentally mean the same thing. I applied the gloss and preceded to take 1000 selfies. I DO NOT take selfies often so this was actually really stressful. I went from room to room to find a flattering light and pose. After that I got in the car to go to church. My mom hates how I wear matte lipsticks almost exclusively, so I figured she would love the glossy wine colored lipstick. All she said after a long blank stare was, "it's bold, I guess." -__- (She doesn't like when I wear dark shades to church) At least I was happy.

           Anyway, during church I had a mild coughing attack, a death sentence to my typical lip colors. I ran to the bathroom to drink water and blow my nose ferociously. The color remained perfectly intact. Through three hours of church my lipstick looked as if it were newly applied. The gloss stayed on and it was truly comfortable. The first thing I heard walking in to teach my Sunday school class was "Miss Brownie your lipgloss is so beautiful!" At least they liked it *cough cough mom*. After church I drank a smoothie and wiped my mouth with a napkin after every sip. A vast majority of the color remained but there was some peeling around the corners of my mouth. That occurred about six hours into my wear and I was NOT gentle on the color in the slightest. I didn't know how to retouch the product smoothly so I finally took it off. I would hardly consider this a bad thing though, based on the fact that any other lip color I own would've been off in an hour. I took it off with the remover that came in the kit and a makeup wipe. It worked very well, but still took a bit of scrubbing.

            In the end, I would choose this product over most all of my others. I never loved lipstick, but I honestly do love this one. I loved how it truly was smudge and transfer proof. I could literally rub my finger on my lips and no trace of the product would show. D gave me a quick kiss and exclaimed, "Oh no! Is it on me?" Nope. Not this time. My favorite thing about the product is how comfortable it is throughout long periods of time. It doesn't dry out, bleed, or crack. Towards the end of my day, with no touch-ups of any sort, it just started to peel a bit on the edges (and I was incredibly rough on them). My least favorite thing is how difficult application was at first. However, that is something I am more than willing to learn with time! A friend of mine chose a lighter color simply because she knew applying the three layers would be so much easier. Don't get frustrated and quit!

           If you have any questions about this amazing product please let me know or contact my friend Sophia through her "Madd Kisses" Facebook group or the information below! There you will find all the information you need to order.

These three products came in my "lip kit." The gloss is necessary to seal and protect the color. You can also choose a matte gloss! 

Make sure to read everything before attempting to apply! 

Here is all the information you need to order a color! Hint: They make great gifts :)

Pretty packaging and significantly more product for the price per ml compared to other brands. P.s. Great hand modeling Mom. 

Here is what the color, "mulled wine," looked like in natural lighting paired with very minimal eye makeup. I totally get 1920s vibes with this glossy maroon!

                          If you've tried LipSense products tell me about it in the comments below!

                                  & thank you Sophia. This product is a total game changer for me! 

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