Thursday, March 27, 2014

City Color Cosmetics: City Chic and Matte Lipstick Review

I have a confession: I'm truly addicted to lipstick. It's the one thing in my makeup collection that I feel like I never have enough of! There was a time when I wore almost exclusively glosses, but when I finally took the plunge and started to ease myself into lipstick, I now find myself favoring them over glosses!

I've been looking for a new cosmetics brand that is low-cost, but high quality, as I really enjoy having a large amount of color selection to choose from. City Color Cosmetics has been featured a couple of times in past Ipsy bags, and I found that the products I tried were really nice quality! I was so happy to have the opportunity to try some of their lipsticks!

City Chic Lipstick in "French Kiss" ($3.99)
City Chic Lipstick is our new signature creamy lipstick line that is fitting for all occasions. Its advanced formula gives your lips a hydrating and long-lasting wear throughout the day. Comes in 30 flawless, richly pigmented shades. From luxurious nudes to vibrant berry hues, these velvety lipsticks are ideal for any classic City Chic look.
 This shade is called, "French Kiss", and it is a gorgeous red wine shade. I naturally gravitate toward purple-red tones on my lips, especially in the colder months! I find that this shade is still very wearable, even now that Spring is finally here! 

The packaging of these lipsticks is very chic! I love the little City Color heart logos embossed on the lipstick itself and on the top of the tube. I also love that the shade is clearly visible at the bottom of the tube. If you own quite a few lipsticks from the same brand, it can be incredibly difficult to find which one you're looking for if there's no shade indicator. This lipstick also twists up easily, but stays in place firmly when applying. A problem I find with a lot of lipsticks (even some high-end ones!)  is that the base is a bit wobbly, and the product wiggles a bit when applying. Not the case with this one at all! 

This lipstick is extremely creamy and soft. I would even describe the texture to be a bit on the thinner side, so it's very easy to apply, but also easy to make a mistake if you don't apply it carefully. A shade this deep can sometimes look wonky if you don't apply with a lip brush or a steady hand. A red liner would also help. I didn't wear a lip liner in the photo, so you can see a bit around the top of my lips how the color bled out just a bit.

WOW. Pigment for the Gods! This stuff slides on just as deep and intense as the photos. Depending on the lighting and the natural pigment of your lips, it may lean more red or more purple, but it's absolutely stunning either way! 

Staying Power
At first I was a little unsure of the staying power of this lipstick. I found the formula to be pretty thin once it was applied. I left it alone for about an hour and went about my day. It seemed to still look pretty fresh after an hour or so, although it came right off on my coffee mug shortly after. I did notice that there is a slight staining effect on the lips. If you gently blot the shininess away from the lips, it will leave a deep wine-colored stain that will stay for hours! 
While this lipstick probably would need to be re-applied every 3-4 hours to keep that fresh, shiny look, I love a lipstick that will leave color behind once it has worn off, as it helps to not have to reapply constantly!

Overall Thoughts
 This lipstick is moisturizing, and super pigmented! The formula is on the thinner side, which can be nice if you don't like a lot of "goop" on your lips, however it doesn't help the staying power. This lipstick probably lasts about 3-4 hours on it's own before needing re-apply. Definitely worth the $3.99 price tag, especially if you're in the market for a few different shades to fill holes in your collection!

Matte Lipstick in "Berry" ($2.99)
Matte Lipstick is every girl's must-have secret. Its rich formula is highly pigmented and enhanced for a long-lasting color. In 18 stunning shades, your lips will never feel dry and maintain the perfect shade throughout your day.
This shade is called, "Berry", however I don't think it's really berry shade at all! It looks incredibly bright pink in the tube, but comes out a bit more muted once on the lips! I don't have many matte lipsticks so I was really excited to see how this one performed!

The packaging on the Matte Lipstick is a much different from the City Chic. These are not in a conventional lipstick tube, but instead have a square-shaped base with a clear cover. Again, loving the see-through cover as it makes my life easier when I'm grabbing for a certain shade! The packaging is also very sturdy and well made. I feel like I could toss this into my makeup bag in my purse without the cover cracking or coming off.

The formulation of the matte lipsticks is much different from the City Chic line. This formula is a lot dryer and thicker, but not uncomfortable on the lips. Matte lipsticks are rarely "creamy", or it would take away from the overall matte appearance. It does tug a bit at the lips and takes a little bit of extra effort to get the product to apply smoothly and evenly, but not so much where it would deter me from using the product overall. 

This lipstick has fabulous pigmentation! The swatch on my hand is about 2 swipes. You can see that it appears a lot more matte on the back of my hand than it does on my lips. I noticed before I even applied the shade that it had a bit of a sheen to it, which doesn't make much sense if it's in a line of matte lipsticks. Even so, it's a LOT less shiny than most of my regular lipsticks, and I think that without the flash and in natural light, this would come off a lot more matte than it does in the picture. 

Staying Power
Like most other matte lipsticks, this stuff stays forever! I left it on without eating/drinking for about a little over an hour, and it looked just as good as when I first applied it. Eating and drinking did cause some of the product to wear off, however it was still going strong hours later! I think this is a great long-wearing formula and definitely would feel comfortable recommending this to anyone looking for a lip product that will stay all-day and is very low maintenance.

Overall Thoughts
While I don't think that this lipstick is 100% matte, I do think that the dry, yet pigmented formula makes for less shine, and longer wear. This is a great option for anyone who wants low maintenance color, or a more muted/natural finish to your lipstick!

For my first foray into City Color Cosmetics lip products, I have to say I am pretty impressed! The price tags on these lipsticks alone make them worth it for me. While these lipsticks aren't perfect, they more than exceed my expectations, and perform better than even some of my high end products. I can't say that the matte lipsticks will be 100% matte, although the sheen in the "Berry" shade may just be a one-off issue. 

(All products in this review were provided complimentary for review/consideration. All opinions stated in his review are honest, and my own.)

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