The Freedom & Vanity Lip Product Manifesto 2015: Part 1 – Lipsticks

Getting ready to start. Coffee was required.

Lately, I’ve been on a huge lipstick bent. I go through phases, and this is the current one. I am still not sure that dividing them up by type is the way to go. The issue with by brand is that some brands only have 1 or 2 pieces in them so I think this is the best way. As always I would love your feedback because after this will be eyeshadow.

All the products I don’t use much anymore or don’t like as much as I once did have gone into the sell/giveaway box so these are all products I like, to varying degrees. I am going to start with the ones I like the least, which is to say that I very much like them – just not as much as the others.

You will notice that I lean towards reds and pinks. This is because my lips are extremely pigmented already, so anything that’s too brown or nude makes me look very strange! Especially anything on the lighter end of the colour scale. Sigh. I do have a couple of pinky/peachy nude colours though. On with it!

Make Up For Ever “Rouge Artist Intense” Lipsticks

I love this brand. Their HD Translucent Loose Powder is my absolute holy grail loose powder of life. So I wasn’t surprised at all that these lipsticks are rather lovely. They’re very creamy, but not too glossy like overly “wet” lipsticks can be – for lack of a better word. I started out with 32 and I liked it so much I bought another couple. I wear these pretty regularly, particularly 32 which is a really nice neutral pink – probably the best neutral pink I own. They are a satin finish – they’re not matte but they’re not a glossy finish either. The line contains multiple different finishes but I only have these three:

Make Up For Ever Rouge Artist Intense lipsticks (note: finally got rid of the watermarks after this lot!)

Pros: Amazing colour range, very easy application, highly pigmented, not too wet or dry, decent lasting power.

Cons: Smell may put some off (it’s a kind of floral/powdery scent that seems unnecessarily strong to me. Reminds me of old ladies), on the pricey side.

Cost: $35

Lipstick Queen “Sinner” Lipstick 

Lipstick Queen is the new brand from Australian lipstick guru Poppy King. I must say, I rather like it quite a lot! This is one of three products I own from this brand and when I can swatch more easily (ie, when I get to the USA probably) you can rest assured I’ll be buying more of these glorious lipsticks. The Sinner range is very highly pigmented. There is another range called Saint which is quite sheer. I haven’t tried this, because that’s not super appealing to me. When I wear lipstick I really like to WEAR it, you know? Anyway, here’s the one I have. The shade is called “Peachy Nude Sinner” but looking on the site shows me that it may just be “Sinner Nude” now because I can’t see mine there even as a sold out shade.  As you can see, it’s a lot peachier than the previous nude which is more of a pink. I got a LOT of compliments when I wore this for the first time, it’s really very much a go-to easy-wear lipstick for me.

Lipstick Queen “Sinner” Lipstick in Peachy Nude Sinner

Finally got around to removing those pesky watermarks, sorry about that. Best $1.49 ever spent.

Pros: Beautiful consistency, highly pigmented, easy-wear, satin-matte finish, great lasting power, well priced.

Cons: I literally can’t think of any. Some people might consider them pricey but I don’t agree.

Cost: $27

It’s worth noting that I have only tried this one plus the Medieval lip stain & Invisible Liner so I have very little experience with the range, really!

MAC Lipsticks

Let it be known that as far as MAC lipstick collections go, mine is pretty small. I have had a couple of others that I’ve ditched for a various reasons, but what I do have I like very much.

Lipsticks are what MAC does best, in my opinion. I don’t think much of their foundations for me personally. Their eyeshadows are very good but not their standout product line. It’s obviously their lipsticks. Errybody know dat. They come in different finishes – I have three of them in my collection. The finishes I have are Matte, Retro Matte and Amplified. Let’s talk about them in order, pros and cons included.

Matte: As the name suggests, there’s no shimmer or shine or glitter or anything like that. They are bone dry. They are EXTREMELY opaque and pigmented. They take some work to put on because of how dry they are, but once they’re on, they are ON! Hardly any reapplication is required. Lips should be well exfoliated and hydrated before these go on because after a few hours, they can start “chunking” up especially on the inner part of the lips.

Retro Matte: Basically the same as above – great opacity, matte as heck – but even more drying, therefore even more long-wearing and a little harder to put on. Again – hydrate hydrate hydrate people!

Amplified: Much more comfortable to wear, more of a satin finish than a matte. Great pigmentation, still quite opaque but not as much as the mattes. They don’t come in a huge range of colours which can be a drawback but I do love this colour!

L – R: Honey Love (Matte), Impassioned (Amplified), All Fired Up (Retro Matte), Lady Danger (Matte), Ruby Woo (Retro Matte)

Let’s have a look at some swatches.


Honey Love is a browny neutral nude (it’s my wedding lipstick!), Impassioned is a very bright true pink, All Fired Up is a reddish-pink, Lady Danger is an orange-red and Ruby Woo is a blue-red. RW is really the classic for me. The first MAC lipstick I ever bought was Russian Red which is a little deeper/darker but Ruby Woo is where my love affair started. I mean, look at it. It’s me on a stick. It’s bright, it’s classic, it’s vintage, it’s a really proper true red. I love it. It is VERY drying. I don’t wear this one as an all day colour, which I realise seems silly because it’s so long-wearing, but the truth is that by lunchtime or not much later, I just want to remove it and re-apply with more lip balm. I do have naturally dry lips so that’s a factor to consider as well.

Pros / Cons in description above (too hard to do separate things for each finish). On the whole, they are fantastic lipsticks with an immense colour range and great staying power. They are on the pricey side of things but well worth it, IMO.

Cost: $36

NARS Audacious Lipsticks

Holy grail time, people. These are THE GD BUSINESS, let me tell you. These are a new revelation for me, I did actually hold off for a long time before I bought these but when I finally cracked and bought one, another two followed swiftly after. They are DREAMY. They’re super pigmented, super creamy, super long lasted, the packaging OWNS, the colour range is fantastic.. I just really can’t say anything bad about them (but for one thing – more on that later).

I mean, just look at this packaging. LOOK AT IT.

It’s so magnificent..

Get this. The packaging is MAGNETIC. The lid snaps back onto the body of the lipstick packaging when it’s aligned properly, the lipstick cases themselves snap together IN ORDER (see above) when you have them facing the correct way, oh man I just love it. It’s so immensely satisfying. Funny story: I showed my husband these and he’s in love with the packaging. He just told me we “definitely need another one” to complete the set and make it spell the full brand name. This is why I love him.  ….. Aaaaanyway, onto the COLOURS!

L – R: Rita, Greta, Lana

The colours are absolutely amazing. Rita is a darkish, blueish red similar to Ruby Woo by MAC. Greta is a bright, fuchsia pink and Lana is a fantastic bright orange-red. I truly love them all. You would think that because they are so creamy that they’d wear off fast but they just don’t. They’re not as long-wearing as the MAC Mattes but they’re NOWHERE NEAR as uncomfortable to wear. They’re just glorious. Let’s have a look at them on the skin.


These are ONE SWIPE swatches. No doubling over them like I have for others. ONE swipe each. They’re so incredibly pigmented and opaque. They are a satin finish, which is my favourite finish I think (might be a different story if I didn’t have such dry lips). The ONLY bad thing I can say about them is that the bullet itself is HUGE. I find them tricky to apply from the bullet which is annoying because putting them on with a lip brush isn’t something I always want to muck around with. If you have thin lips and hate applying with a lip brush, just be aware of the bullet’s size. It’s only the edges of my lips that are thin (like most people, but I hate that overdrawn/painted edge Kylie Jenner look).

These are my ultimate favourite lipsticks ever. Even though they’re new I feel fully confident making that call.

Pros: Super pigmented, super opaque, long-lasting, creamy, easy to apply, incredibly comfortable, spectacular packaging.

Cons: Overly large bullet which makes them somewhat tricky to apply, fairly expensive (but worth every penny in my opinion) – the most expensive of the lot by $8.

Cost: $44

Whew! That was a lot of things to talk about and took me basically all day to write up and take pictures of etc. I had a break for lunch with my husband.

The next part of this series will be in relation to liquid lipsticks, because those are my jam. I love them and have quite a few, I feel that they warrant a whole different post so that’s what I’ll do. I have some balms, stains and glosses as well which I will probably do in a further third post.

Thanks for reading! As always, I’m super keen to hear your feedback. I’m in this blog game for the long haul and I want to make sure I get it as right as possible so I don’t lose your attention!

Have a great Sunday. Peace!

One thought on “The Freedom & Vanity Lip Product Manifesto 2015: Part 1 – Lipsticks

  1. Arielle says:

    I love your blog, your posts are beautiful! I just followed you, it would be great if we can support each other 🙂 I am so glad I got to discover you ❤


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