Monday, May 30, 2011

Review: CoverGirl Lip Perfection Lipstick

I have always preferred lip gloss over lipstick. But lately I find myself preferring lipstick. I couldn't begin to pinpoint why my preferences are changing, but regardless it's set me on a search for the perfect lipstick. For ME, that means a "my lips but better" sort of color. You know, a color that so closely resembles your natural lip color that you could swipe some lipstick on and nobody would guess you were wearing lipstick. (I know some of you feel like "what's the point then?" for such a color, but the key here is that little phrase of "my lips but better" - it's not exactly your natural lip color, it's an enhanced but still completely natural looking version of that color.) It has to be cream, not shimmery. And the finish must be natural - not glossy and definitely not matte! This is quite a tall order to fill, really... or so it seems that way.

Granted I have also been on the hunt for the perfect red lipstick for my skin tone for some time now as well. And I do like trying to find other shades that I like. So far nothing comes remotely close to being that elusive "my lips but better" shade I'm so desperate to find.

I don't know why exactly I felt so compelled to try CoverGirl's new Lip Perfection line. I've never had much success with any of their products. Except for a certain shade of blush way back in the early 90's that was discontinued so very long ago, I have never been happy with the money I've spent on their products and I am always left wishing I had either just saved my money or spent it on something else. But for whatever reason I was sucked into buying SIX tubes of this lipstick - all but one shade were recommended by the color matcher on the CoverGirl web site. And sadly, after spending nearly $40 on these things (I was oh so very bad and broke my budget big time for these...) I am not really happy with any of them.

The formula is nice. I actually really like it. It's lightweight but, for the most part the colors are nice and opaque. A couple are sheer, but overall one swipe will give you full coverage. They have a natural finish that I love, and they don't leave my lips feeling (or looking!) dry at all. They have decent staying power - but then again this is coming from someone used to lipgloss so make of that what you will. To someone who wears lipstick more, I don't know what the staying power would be like.

But a good formula can only take a lipstick so far... first complaint I have? The colors on the exterior of the tubes. (This is what is pictured above.) These are supposed to show you what the color is to make choosing which one(s) to buy easier, right? Well... not so much. It's a lovely thought but it truly doesn't work so may as well skip this nonsense and stick to simpler packaging and lower the price a bit without that excess effort going into the packaging. None of the colors actually look like the tube color once applied. (You'll see in a minute.) 

Worse still, though, is the fact that except for one shade (Delish) they all start to turn after a while and then leave the lips stained fuchsia. So not acceptable! If I wanted my lips to be stained fuchsia, I would buy a fuchsia colored lip stain, not a pink or red lipstick! The one shade that does not do this is the one that was not recommended from the CG color matcher - Delish. Hot leaves a slightly more red stain than fuchsia, but it is still quite an intense stain leaning too close to fuchsia for my tastes.

* Please note that I do not apply lipsticks over a lip base so I cannot tell you if staining would be a problem over a base or not, or if a base may improve the color quality at all. A good lip base is on my wish list, but for now my experiences are based on applying lip color directly to the lips.

Overall, I am so unhappy with myself for spending SO much money on lipsticks that overall I am really not happy with. I will find ways to make all these work for me, whether by layering with other lippies or incorporating them into my homemade lip balms to add a hint of color (I know they'll all leave my lips fuchsia *groan* but if I only use a tiny bit in each batch it won't be too bad) but it's not likely I will be using most of them as-is. Delight and Heavenly would be my favorites if not for the turning/staining fuchsia. They are otherwise so very pretty immediately after being applied. Sweetheart is entirely too frosty - it reminds me of the 80's. It's ok if you dab a tiny bit on the center of your lips over top of another color though to make your lips look a little fuller. If I really had to pick one of these - just one - to say it's my favorite of the bunch, it would be Hot. It can be dabbed lightly on for a hint of red color, or applied full-on for bold lips. It's actually quite a nice shade of red for my skin tone and the fuchsia problem is not as bad with this one as it is with the other shades.

Here are swatches of each of the colors, including what the actual stick looks like versus what it looks like once applied. All pictures were taken outdoors in natural light in the shade, and no flash was used.

I almost don't want to share these swatches because they're so misleading... they look like lovely shades in the swatches. *SMH* If they didn't turn and stain fuchsia I would seriously love these lipsticks. But because of that issue, I really don't like these and also would not recommend them unless of course you don't mind having fuchsia lips after wearing your lipstick. I would guess the brown/nude shades would not have that problem, though... at least I would hope not. If you like brown lipsticks then these may be worth looking in to. But if, like me, you are a fan of pinks/reds I'd say to spend your money on something else. Anything else.

I so want to love CoverGirl... but I just can't. The next time I feel tempted by one of their products I am going to pinch myself very hard and keep walking past the display to a different brand. This is just not a brand that I can use with any degree of success.

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