WHAT IT IS
For years after my ’90s Goth- grunge phase, when I hung up my Doc Marts and traded in ox blood coloured lipstick for a minimalist noughties look, I thrived on lip gloss as a mainstay for dressing up my puckers for several reasons: You don’t need skills nor particularly steady hands to slick them on, not even a mirror.
But my secret reason was always that lip-glosses, being sheer and moisturising, are also eternally youth enhancing. Until growing out my hair way past the shoulders had me almost always unsuccessfully trying to unstuck my strands from my sweetly-coloured albeit sticky lips on particularly windy days.
Back then I did not like the look of the ponytail, and braids were still so secondary school, and there was no such thing as a doughnut to help you make a ballerina top knot, so there… out went the lip glosses, in came … nothing. I simply stopped wearing lip colour and focused on my eyes instead. Hello eyeliner and eyelash extensions!
Ironically, just over three months ago, I let lip colour creep back into my life. Not just translucent nudes and see-through pinks, but shades that can only be described as deep, intense, and unapologetically racy.
So I jumped on the sexy red lipstick-as-face-accessory-du-jour bandwagon. So call me a fashion victim …
But it looks like things are about to change again with this new twist of lip makeup called The Maybelline New York Lip Polish by Color Sensational. In 10 juicy shades – they’re named Glam 1, 2, 4, 5, 9, 12, 14, 15 and Pop 5 and 6 – and at $19.90 a pop, this product may just be the thing to bring the minimalist glamour of the ’90s back – a huge trend for Spring 2014 by the way. Maybelline New York calls its Lip Polish by Color Sensational “glide-on-glamour” and a “3-in-1 elixir”, as it’s part lipstick, part balm, and part gloss.
The Maybelline New York Lip Polish by Color Sensational is what’s called liquid lipstick. It’s unlike traditional lipstick that comprises a heavy wax, or a silicone gloss, which, though lightweight, can be extremely adhesive.
Liquid lipstick such as the Maybelline New York Lip Polish by Color Sensational has none of the heaviness of lipstick, yet claims to not be as sticky on the lips. This new genre of lip makeup has recently taken the beauty market by storm. Its popularity is largely due to its ease of application and intensity of colour.
The major “unique selling point” or USP of the Maybelline New York Lip Polish by Color Sensational is also the leaf-shaped angora brush applicator – a plus point of the product, and I strongly suspect, will be the other feature of this liquid lipstick that’ll have users hooked on it.
WHAT WE THINK ABOUT …
The simple silver and transparent square-shaped barrel of Maybelline New York’s Lip Polish by Color Sensational is nothing to shout about aesthetically. It may not wow your first-date when you whip it out post-dessert, but it’s practical and it works. You can drop it and let it clunk around in among your other makeup stash and you won’t feel the pinch.
As far as liquid lipstick packaging goes, it’s not the most slender either, but not so chunky and fat that it will have dainty hands struggling. The silver cap twists open easily and remains secure when twisted shut. I also like that that opening allows room for the brush applicator to be eased in and out of the tube unencumbered, leaving no messy product spillage on the rims.
You can also gauge the colour you’re buying from the shade of the very realistic-looking faux lipstick inner tube, well sort of. Admittedly I was fooled into thinking I’d be trying on a lipstick because of the packaging – brownie points for trick-of-the-eye wit!
By virtue of its technologically advanced formulation, Maybelline New York’s Lip Polish by Color Sensational glides smoothly onto lips whether in a thick or thinner, more sheer layer. Application is a no-brainer. It’s generally not as sticky as conventional lip-glosses, but I still wouldn’t wear it on non-top-knot days.
Maybelline New York’s Lip Polish by Color Sensational feels comfortable as only a balm or lip salve can feel on one’s puckers, the comfort quotient being brought even higher by the feel of the angora-tip applicator, which also gives the wearer better application control.
I’m fussy about how lip makeup smells and tastes, as I’m sure most wearers are too, so I’m impressed by the fact that Maybelline New York’s Lip Polish by Color Sensational has no smell or taste to it.
Colours from Maybelline New York’s Lip Polish by Color Sensational appear more translucent and see-through on the lips than on the packaging. So if you’re looking for rich, creamy colour, you won’t find it here.
The pigments are not as deep, nor as intense as I’d expected, but Maybelline New York’s Lip Polish by Color Sensational strikes the right balance of colour and translucence. I really like the look of soft, modern glamour it gives, especially in the ruddier colours like Glam 12 and Pop 6, which are perfect for parties and night gigs.
I especially like Glam 2 for the day as it comes on super glossy but fades into a subtle patina. I’m not giving up sexy siren red lips just yet, but I’m honestly quite thrilled to have rediscovered the casual cool of a lip-gloss through this liquid lipstick. Sensational.
Total Score: 20/25
Maybelline New York Lip Polish by Color Sensational retails at $19.90 each and is available at Watson’s, Guardian, Sasa, major supermarkets and hypermarts. Limited edition colours Pop 1, Pop 4, Glam 3 and Glam 7 will be available from January 2014.