I'm a serial lipstick dater. So many lip products slide onto my desk. Some I double-tap and have all the heart eyes for. Others I ghost and leave on seen. This is #BigLipstickEnergy, an honest breakdown of how I feel about the latest lip launches. Read on for the three lipstick flings I'm keeping in rotation for now. Next week, I'll have a new roster.
AJ Crimson, a legendary makeup artist who counts celebrities like Missy Elliot, Angela Bassett and Brandy as his clients, has forged his own path in the industry for over 20 years. Seeing a gap in the beauty industry, he launched his own line: "I felt like there was an absolute need to bring products to women of color that actually worked and didn’t oxidize or change," Crimson states on his website. "I wanted to create a product inclusive of women of all ethnicities, a product all women could find ownership in and believe in." That's where this lustrous gloss comes in. The highly-pigmented purple can stand alone or be layered on top of a matte lipstick as a topper.
WHY I'M OBSESSED:
I usually shy away from bright and vivid lipgloss shades. Shocking, I know—considering this is coming from a girl who loves a bright matte lipstick. For some reason, I'm a bit more boring when it comes to gloss and usually stick to my same ol' neutrals. That is, until AJ Crimson gave me the gloss that changed everything. It's a super high-shine, light-catching formula that makes my lips look so damn lustrous—and it lasts. The pearlescent specks give this a galaxy-like effect, which makes for a gorgeous sheen over a matte plum. And when I feel like doing the most with the least, I apply it on my bare lips.
Before clean beauty was everywhere, those in the know turned to the Lip Bar. The brand was created in 2012 by Melissa Butler who wasn't afraid to ask the hard questions, as noted on her website: "Why were most cosmetics filled with unnecessary chemicals? Why did lipsticks only come in a limited range of colors? And more importantly, why was the depiction of beauty so damn linear?" The Lip Bar has since become one of the most popular clean beauty brands to date, offering amazing products with color pay-off that keeps all complexions in mind. This lipstick, for instance, is a complete game-changer and suits all skin tones—here's proof.
WHY I'M OBSESSED:
At first glance, this shade reminded me of beloved Lady Danger from MAC. However, after a closer look the unique blend of bright red and orange tones put this lipstick in a league of its own. It reads neon and the fiery shade is not for the faint of heart, which I'm completely cool with—I love a loud lip. That said, the texture is outright matte, so be sure to exfoliate your lips beforehand with a scrub to avoid flakes. According to its name and product description, this shade is surely a good time.
Founder Chichi Eburu created Juvia's Place with the beautiful Kings and Queens of past African Kingdoms top of mind. From the unique packaging to the rich pigments, each product was made to honor the endless beauty of Africa. Whether you're an eyeshadow fanatic or a lipstick lover, you won't be disappointed. This liquid lipstick duo (which is on sale for half-off right now!) is the best of both worlds: one matte and one metallic shade, to match with whatever mood you're in.
WHY I'M OBSESSED:
I'm an indecisive Libra, so I like options. Two lipsticks for the price of one gets an automatic A in my book. Plus, this plum shade stands out so beautifully against my deep brown skin tone. It's only right that I have it in two textures. And because I'm extra, I love doubling up: I apply the matte color all over and then swipe a bit of the metallic in the center of my lips for added dimension. (It's a superb trick for selfies).
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