This is not a sponsored post and nobody paid me to review anything- I purchased with my own money and am reviewing here because HOLY CARP THIS STUFF IS AMAZING.
Katy from Plays Well with Coffee is a blogger I met originally through a Chaotic Goddess Swap (I think it was the Local Flavor swap?). It turned out we have a ton in common, despite pretty different lives in very different areas.
I enjoy supporting my blog friends who also have small businesses, so when Katy mentioned that she’s a LipSense distributor (and avid user of it), I didn’t hesitate to try it. I lick and chew on my lips a lot, so usually my lip color is gone before lunch (or I have that nasty-looking ring of lip color on the edges only). I’m also a fan of soft, non-chapped lips. I also want to wear more full-face makeup (including lippy).
LipSense is made by SeneGence (who make a variety of other beauty products) and it’s touted as a totally smudge-proof, kiss-proof, fade-proof lip color, that is also lead-free, wax-free, gluten-free, made in the US and cruelty free. Check out the details on Katy’s LipSense Facebook page.
How it Works
They have colorants (which aren’t stains) that you apply in three layers. Then “seal” it with a hydrating gloss. And they have a specialty remover because it’s so budge-proof. And, of course, there’s a huge variety of lip colorants and shades/texture of the glosses, which you can mix and match for a custom color. Here’s an awesome post a scientist made about the science behind how LipSense works.
I’m indecisive, so I bought three different colorant shades (which they nicely divide into warm and cool tone shades, mattes/shimmers/frosts). You can see a variety of different users wearing each of the colors which really helped me get an idea of how they would look on me. Plus, Katy combed through all of the resources she has access to, and made her own recommendations for me (thanks, Katy!).
All three of these are warm, yellow-based colors (I’m always looking for lip shade that goes with my olive skin and ruddy cheeks, even though science has it I’m a cool tone). I might maybe should’ve listened to science? These colors looked differently on me than on everyone in the photos (a common problem I have with cosmetics).
They were not flattering for my coloring, but until I try three more, I’m not making a judgement call on whether this is the color not being consistent, or my coloring judgement being flawed. Thankfully, there’s a 100% money-back guarantee, so I can keep picking and trying colors until I find the one (or two, five, whatever).
The Staying Power
This is after application, in natural early morning indirect light. I inadvertently put on three thick layers, being a newbie. APPLY THIN LAYERS!
This is about 4 hours after application. You can see a tiny bit of transference to my coffee mug (bits of color near the top there). I kissed the back of my hand and while some of the gloss transferred, none of the color did. This is the most color transference that happened on anything, all day.
This is after 10 hours of wear, with no re-application of gloss (not recommended). This is also under that nasty yellow indoor lighting. So the color hasn’t bled or smudged, and the only fading that has happened is a bit less intensity. The color is still definitely there, and definitely noticeable.
And here I am after 11 hours of wear AND SHOWERING, including scrubbing my face (including my lips). The color is still there. There’s no gloss, of course, but there wasn’t even fading of color intensity. It’s a bit frightening how much this color stayed put, to be honest.
(Note: It took trial and error, but I discovered the best way to remove the color is either using Neutrogena basic face soap bar, or using the Oops! Remover but rubbing lips together constantly for a full minute before wiping it off).
The colorant tingles a bit when I apply the first layer. But it was weightless, aside from the gloss, and each layer dried in about 6 seconds.
The gloss itself is a bit tacky/sticky, at least initially. I expected it to come off easily, but although it DOES remove if you wipe, kiss, etc., it’s in a smaller amount than you’d expect. I can kiss Stace without him immediately wiping his mouth and grimacing, so it must feel like a small amount that transfers.
There’s a scent with the colorant. It’s slightly herbaceous with a hint of citrus (makes sense, as LipSense contains essential oils of Japonicus leaf/stalk, St. John’s Wort, peony tree, lime flower, citronello, and oranges).
The color is a-little-goes-a-long-way, for sure. I think one tube will last many, many months. The gloss, on the other hand, being applied often throughout the day, is probably going to last me 1-2 months, tops.
I do recommend the starter kit (the Oops! Remover is good for correcting errors, since this stuff dried to quickly to wipe off if you color outside the lines).
Given how many shades you can custom-create, combining each color in different layer amounts (e.g., 3 shades gets you 12+ possible colors), I estimate I’ll be investing $20/month for a comfortable years’ worth of different colors and gloss.
The Last Word
Overall, for the amazing wear and long-term lip hydration benefits, this is worth the money.
Plus, right now Katy is running a giveaway- join her LipSense Facebook page to enter:
Have you tried LipSense? Got a favorite color? Tell me in the comments! 🙂
I’m a coffee-fueled, hobby-addicted bibliophage who makes cruelty-free mineral eye shadows (inspired by novels). I’m usually in front of a screen (writing, reading, or gaming), but I’ve been known to emerge for geekery, good food, and dark chocolate.