Oh, liquid lipsticks. How I love thee. Let me count the ways.
By now there's a 90% chance you've tried at least a few liquid lipsticks. But I'm here to give you THE ULTIMATE RANKINGS, with testimonials from myself, close friends, and fellow makeup artists.
This is a super-creamy, demi-matte liquid lipstick that's sheer when first applied and needs to be layered. However, it does feel and smell extremely luxurious, which makes sense with a lofty $28 price tag.
The product moves well with the lip and doesn't piece apart or crack. However, there is a very limited color selection, and the product only lasts three hours max without needing to be touched up. I would say the one redeeming quality is that my lips felt hydrated and smelled like a rose garden in England on a midsummer's afternoon.
Notable colors include: Fuchsia Mauve, Nude Rose, and Rosewood.
So these are only $6 each. SIX. DOLLARS. EACH. And that makes it so much harder to say that this product has very conflicting reviews.
I have friends who purchased handfuls, have worn them once, and then never again because they were so dry it was pretty much painful. BUT I also have friends who own them in every single color and swear by them. In my opinion, because of the price, I think it's worth purchasing at least one to see if your lips are compatible with the formula. Plus, the wide array of color options is astonishing.
Notable colors include: LAX, Solow, and Lumiere 2.
A worthy $7 liquid lipstick. They never dry completely matte, so they're a bit more hydrating and somehow remain long wearing. Definitely worth the $7.
Notable colors include: Vintage, Soft-Spoken, and Stone Fox.
A sensible, matte liquid lipstick. It has pretty long wear and is very pigmented. However, it does pick up around the mouth after eating.
It's a strong product, but pretty standard. It doesn't stand out as much as some others we'll get to. The full size products are $28, but they do have "travel size" versions in Canvas and Icon (which I'm wearing above) for $10 each! Totally worth it if you plan on wearing it for special occasions only.
Notable colors include: Canvas and Icon.
These $24 puppies come with a liquid lipstick and a sealing gloss. Totally perfect for the girl that wants a true long wear with a glossy finish. And they WILL NOT MOVE from the perimeter of the lip.
When you need to reapply, you do have to remove the initial layer and start from scratch, or it'll get a little funky and chunky. And sometimes, they do piece apart at the center of the lips. Still worth the purchase, though, if you want that glossy finish.
Notable colors include: Iconic Red, Rosewood, and Pink.
In my opinion, they're standard. Not my fave, but they work. They tend to be a bit on the dryer side for me, but they do last. $24 and easy to apply.
Notable colors include: Fiery, Carina, and Patina.
The definition of a problematic fave.
The Velvetines introduced me to the wonderful world of liquid lips. I remember when Lime Crime came out with the first six colors, and I owned them all. Being a unicorn myself, I was obsessed with the essence of the brand. However, I definitely took a step back after their controversies. I have not personally purchased anything from them since, but I do believe in second chances, so I'm going to review the products for what they are, separate from the drama.
The Velvetines are long-lasting, but very difficult to reapply. Like Aqua Rouge, they get chunky when you try to layer hours after the initial application. At $20 each, the bottles do run out quite fast. In the span of two years, I ran out of Red Velvet twice, whereas my Kat von D Lolita, which I wear much more frequently (more on that below), lasted nearly three times as long. The packaging and smell are a unicorny dream, though, and the color options are so unique.
I'd say read up on the brand and decide for yourself whether to purchase.
Notable colors include: Red Velvet, Wicked, Cashmere, Salem, and Bleached.
A classic matte liquid lip at $17 a bottle. They have some awesome metallic colors, and the wear is very long lasting.
The only drawback is the packaging. It doesn't match the elegance of the formulas. But this product is definitely still worth purchasing.
Notable colors include: 24Seven, Fame, Marshmallow, Sugar, and Rockstar.
These I consider more of a semi-matte liquid lipstick, because they are not 100% transfer-resistant and dry. BUT because they aren't as matte, they are muchhhhh more hydrating on the lips. They also make my lips feel super plump, full, and smooth (which I attribute to the thicker consistency of the product). At $16, definitely worth having at least one for when your lips need a break from those drying mattes.
Notable colors include: Ruby Luster, Orchid Luster, Lilac Luster, Fig Luster, and Deep Plum Luster.
These $20 fully matte liquid lipsticks are NO JOKE. Even the darker colors cling to the lip for dear life.
I wore Paint, the blue pictured above, to work recently and got compliments from every single person I came into contact with. Because they have a lot of staying power, they can dye the lip and the skin quite a bit. They also can piece up a bit at the center of the lip after extended wear, but that's to be expected. Definitely impressed with these.
Notable colors include: Pure Hollywood, Sad Girl, Milkshake, Potion, Vamp, Vintage, and Heathers.
A straight up melted lipstick in a tube. SLAY.
Jerrod Blandino, creator of Too Faced with whom I'm obsessed, was walking through his magical makeup factory in Fairyland one day and saw unstable melted lipstick in a vat and insisted upon making it into a stable product. And so it was done.
These are certainly more glossy, but soooo hydrating and highly pigmented. A little baby pea size amount goes for days. A $21 bottle will last you 4-eva! And they smell so ridiculously good, you may just want to eat them all. The Metallic versions are not my fave because they're a bit more sheer, but that's just personal preference. But I cannot WAIT to try the Melted Matte plumping versions. I'm sure they're dreamy.
Notable colors include: Melted Chihuahua, Melted Fig (Ariana Grande's MUA's fave), Melted Peony, Melted Jelly Doughnut, Melted Villain, Melted Chocolate Cherries.
So, as you know, the self-proclaimed "king" of lips came out with a lip kit. Is it worth the $29 price tag? The answer is a resounding HELL YES! If you can get your hands on it.
I don't own the product personally (along with the majority of the country), but under $30 for a liquid lipstick AND a liner?! SIGN ME UP! One of my close MUA friends, @theboyandhismakeup, has one and he is OBSESSED with it. It smells like cupcakes and is just as velvety as one. It also has beautiful long wear and is easy to touch up.
The only drawback is that the lip liner for some of the colors is a bit lighter than the liquid lipstick, which, ironically, makes it harder to overdraw the lips. But I say buy it anyway and use the liner for other lipsticks if you must. She also has a wiiiiiiiide array of nude shades, unlike many of the other brands.
Notable colors include: Mary Jo K, True Brown K, and Dolce K.
Jeffree, candy-colored makeup icon and friend of Kat Von D (she even has an Everlasting Liquid Lipstick named after him) has been slaying the game with his liquid lipstick. They're soft, velvety, highly saturated, and have extremely long wear. AND, if you're thrifty like me, you can use a thin brush and apply them as eyeliners as well. Not to mention he has a plethora of nudes and naturals, as well as vivid brights like Jawbreaker, a bright sky blue, and Breakfast at Tiffany's, which is Tiffany blue, of course. Nothing bad to say about these $18 beauties.
Notable colors include: Androgyny, Celebrity Skin, Posh Spice, Prom Night, and Queen Supreme.
I'm proud to say my Queen's makeup line is fabulous and hardcore, just like the lady herself. And her liquid lipsticks are no joke. They're my go-to when working because I only have to touch them up maybe once after eating.
Now, some colors are a bit more effective than others. The more natural, the longer it lasts. The deeper the color, the more likely it is to piece up throughout the day in the center of the lip. It's a bit drying for those with chapped lips (it would tingle when I applied in on my dry lips on the winter), but if you're putting a sheer layer of balm on first, or a primer, you should be fine.
Lolita has been my go-to for over two and a half years. I wear it at least three times a week, and I'm only NOW running out of the product. At $20 each, it's definitely worth it. I know a lot of people have an obsession with Bow N Arrow, but in my opinion, it's all hype. It's a nice color, but not as truly special as the others.
Notable colors include: Requiem, Lolita II, Double Dare, Outlaw, Santa Sangre, Exorcism, and Vampira.
These, believe it or not, are my #1. They dry matte, but they're still a bit more creamy than the other brands. So if your lips are super-dry and flaky, these will help to smooth them out. I've purchased them for multiple friends in the past as gifts (since they're only $14 each), and EVERY friend, without solicitation, has sent me pictures of the lipstick wear at the end of their day, insisting that it's pretty much the same as when they first applied.
The only drawback is that the color selection is limited, especially when it comes to nudes.
Notable colors include: Marvelous Mauve, Always Red, and Blackberry Sorbet.
And there you go, ladies and gents — my ultimate liquid lipstick countdown. Hopefully, my obsession helped to make your makeup decisions a bit easier.
- What are your favorite liquid lip products?
- What other types of product countdowns would you be into?