Mad About Matte

Matte lip color has been around for a while, but it’s gained hype recently with several low and high end brands producing their own versions. In this this post, the word “mad” refers to a mix of good and not so good experiences with the products I chose to try. For the record, matte products are no stranger to me. I do own a few eye shadows, nail color, and lipsticks with this finish.

Beginning in late January, I had tapered myself off my beloved lip glosses to experiment with other lip colors. The first one I tried was the Foxy Ultra Matte mini set from Colourpop ($19.99 USD).

Of the 5 shades in this set (from left to right), I liked the first two. The third was a bit too dark and the last two were too bright. The consistency was thin, almost runny. They’re highly pigmented, so I recommend using a good quality makeup remover with them. I had to use a bit of elbow grease with Garnier’s Micellar Water to take them off my arm after swatching.

I already owned NYX’s Soft Matte Lip Creme in Cannes prior to this little experiment. The texture is slightly thicker, with good color payoff. Plus it felt comfortable on my lips. When their store in San Jose opened, I grabbed another one in the shade Rome, plus a few of their Lip Lingerie colors. The latter has a mousse-like consistency. It felt slightly tacky after it dried down, but not enough to bother me. Both formulas had good wear time and were easy to remove with either micellar water or makeup remover. I grabbed 2 more shades of the Lip Lingerie from a local Ulta a few weeks later. Both products are priced under $10 USD. What can I say? Neutral cravings happen!

Wearing Cannes on the left pic

Wearing Lip Lingerie in Exotic

The most recent product that I tested was tarte’s Tarteist Creamy Matte Lip Paint ($20 USD) during a visit to Sephora. This too had a mousse-like texture and was comfortable for the most part. Unfortunately after about an hour, the inside of my lower lip felt a bit chapped. Boo. Not what I expected from a high end product.

Wearing Tarteist Lip Paint in Tbt

So here are my overall thoughts on my experiment:


  • Option for a lip look sans shine
  • Lightweight in texture/formula
  • Highly pigmented



  • Can be drying to the lips. Exfoliating them beforehand is highly recommended.
  • Difficult to remove depending on the brand
  • Can bleed on the lips. Using a lip liner as a base prior to application may help prevent/lessen it.
  • Lip balm could be used before application, but can affect how long the product lasts during wear.
  • When testing/swatching colors before purchasing, let the product fully dry before deciding if the color is something you’d like. I had to find out the hard way with some of these that what you see from just looking at the tube isn’t always the end result.

It might not matter to some, but for me the process of using mattes requires more steps than using a non-matte lipstick or gloss. It’s not something I’d consider during my regular work week. I’ve happily gone back to using gloss after just over a month. However, I’ll still rock a matte lip when I’m in the mood for it.





2 thoughts on “Mad About Matte

  1. stashmatters March 10, 2016 / 5:06 pm

    I just can’t do mattes! I NEED some slip to my lip products. I guess it’s a bad habit but I like to press my lips together (smacking my lips is the term?) and I prefer a smooth / creamy surface. I know if I get a matte lip product, I will just immediately put balm / gloss over top, defeating the whole purpose! 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    • RCubed March 10, 2016 / 5:20 pm

      YES, girl! I tried another product not listed in my post and just wasn’t feeling the color. I slapped a darker gloss on top of it and it looked better. I actually do the lip smacking thing more than usual when I have a matte color on because of how dry they feel. Blah!


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