Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Glosswatch 2011: Like Whoa

Before I begin: The MAC Foundation Finder says that I might be an NC42, but I can't be sure of that until I haul myself out to the nearest MAC counter. Not that you can tell from the judiciously-cropped picture shown below, though.

Taken right before going to work, while the lighting's still good.
In other news, my hair really needs to get its act together soon.
So, on to Glosswatch 2011!

The gloss: Buxom Lips Full Color ($18) in Roxanne. [Note: The Buxom brand is brought to you by the folks at Bare Escentuals, who are also responsible for BareMinerals.]

Sephora says: "Bare Escentuals BareMinerals Buxom Big & Healthy Full-Color Lip Polish naturally creates a fuller, more voluptuous lip-look. This mineral-infused polish imparts intense sheen and color opacity with no sticky or tacky feeling [...] A deep infusion of antioxidant vitamins A and E helps keep lips soft, smooth, and protected, while the tingly, cooling sensation reminds you that your lips are getting an immediate boost."

Chloe Buxom Big & Healthy Full-Color Lip PolishFirst impressions: Something about the way it looks in the tube registers as "copper bronze," which makes it out of place among the reds and pinks in the box set. The Bare Escentuals site calls this one "a pink raspberry shade," while Sephora calls it a "berry rose." (Users on both sites, however, agree that the shade descriptions given by both BE and Sephora are wildly inaccurate, since most of the colors are warmer and more orange-y in person than they are as advertised.) But how could I resist it otherwise?

Color saturation: Smooth, creamy, and opaque. Personally, I think that the shade itself is a bit of a chameleon: depending on the lighting conditions and wear time, it can be anywhere from a pinkish-berry, to straight-up bronze, to even a pleasant peachy nude. That chameleonic quality to Roxanne also reminds me of MAC's "O" lipstick, which has a darker base than Roxanne but shares the same aspects of opacity and golden sheen.

That said, a frosting-like product like this deserves a more efficient applicator than the mop-like brush that came with this tube, which did not exactly do a good job of spreading the gloss efficiently. Thankfully for the rest of us, newer tubes of Buxom Full Color are now made with felt doe-foot applicators (like the ones featured here, and here, as pictured on Karen's Makeup and Beauty Blog) so it should be much easier to get a smooth, even application every time.

Minty-fresh factor:  I totally get that this is supposed to be a lip-plumping product, and thus designed to blow up my lips with a little, shall we say, minor irritation. The mintiness in the Buxom formula, on the other hand... good Lord, we're talking toothpaste-level mintiness right here. I once tried to touch this one up, and ended up with a minty, plumped-out mouth for the rest of the day... which is pretty nice if you're into that sort of thing, except that it didn't wear off even after dinner. (I should also note that the weather had been quite cold in our side of the boonies while I was testing this, which makes the cold mintiness even more annoying.) I did get over the tingling sensation, though, so I was still able to make the rest of the product work for me.

Lip inflation/ Hydration capacity: I don't ask for much when it comes to lip plumpers, so I already know that this product is not going to turn me into Angelina Jolie. Still, I'm pleasantly surprised by how this product has made my lips quite plump in a natural-looking way, and I also love the way left my lips smooth and moisturized.

This gloss will remind you of: Candied ginger - especially if it's homemade, and still has that strong burn that most of us get from biting a big chunk of ginger root. (Start with Alton Brown's recipe - or this organic variation from Healthy Green Kitchen - if you want to make your own.)

Photo credit: Healthy Green Kitchen

The person you'd want to smooch while wearing this is... possibly playing the buttoned-up hero from that British drama series you've been following, on whichever channel you've been using to watch them.

Someone like, say, Rupert Penry-Jones.

Or - speaking of candied ginger - Damian Lewis.

Or, if none of them work for you, may we suggest a generous serving of Richard Armitage?

Your mileage will vary, of course. But you get where we're going with this.

My recommendations: Reservations aside - especially with the tingliness and the applicator - I honestly think that the folks at Buxom made a good call with the Full Color formula; it's so rich and creamy that you might as well skip lipstick and liner altogether. This is one of those products that are impossible to hate once you get over all the issues you may have on your first application, though, so I would not recommend this for folks looking for instant makeup gratification. Also, if that tingliness is a problem for you, I'd definitely recommend wearing this once the weather starts warming up. Other than that, it's more than worth the hype; it's a keeper!

One final note: As much as I hate referring to Buxom's lip glosses as actual "girls," as many Bare Escentuals fanatics do, I just couldn't end this entry without mentioning one of Roxanne's sisters in the Full Color line...

You read that right, folks: Meimei has a Buxom namesake. And if I ever come across her - that is, once I get myself anywhere near a Bare Escentuals store in the near future - we might even get along after all! 

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