Review: ColourPop Blotted Lips in Candyfloss, On A Stick, and Sucker

Posted on August 24, 2017 under Reviews

ColourPop Blotted Lips

ColourPop got me again, dammit. Perhaps it’s time to admit that I’ll never be fully immune from their almighty hype machine. Their $50 free shipping minimum is dangerous, too – shipping to Canada is otherwise around ~$12, so I feel like I have to hit that $50 (USD) mark to make it worth it to order cheap things. Alison’s review and general love of ColourPop’s new-ish sheer matte lipsticks, the Blotted Lips, drove me to make an order. Of course, I couldn’t just order three Blotted Lips. I also had to order one of the Ultra Blotted Lips (to compare it to the Ultra Matte Lips and Ultra Satin Lips), three of the pressed eyeshadows, and a Lippie Stix. Yes.

I tried to be fairly intelligent when selecting which Blotted Lips shades to go for. I’ve fallen into the rut in the past of buying new lip formulas in whatever colour I’m most into at the moment (most likely fuchsia or magenta) and then having way too many similar colours. (Of course, I don’t have any sheer mattes, so some colour overlap is forgivable. Of course.) I ended up going with Candyfloss, an earthy terracotta, On A Stick, a bright coral, and Sucker, a bright peach.

Before Glossier released their Generation G lipsticks, I’d never even considered the possibility of a sheer matte. Sheer lipsticks always seemed to be glossy and hydrating, mattes full coverage. Though I obviously love a good bold lipstick more than most things in life, I can appreciate a sheer lipstick for lowkey days. However, I much prefer matte to shine finishes, so this type of product seemed like something I needed in my life.

Before we get into the review, here’s how all of the colours look on me (and some swatches):

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Candyfloss

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Candyfloss

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Candyfloss

Candyfloss is a terracotta. I actually thought that it would be a caramel brown, but I don’t think we can deny that this is definitely orange. (ColourPop describes it as a terracotta on their website, so I’m not sure what I was thinking…) Man, I never thought I would like this type of shade on myself, but my love for Buxom Covert Affair and Realgar from the Modern Renaissance palette have persuaded me otherwise.

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Candyfloss Swatches

L-R: One swipe of Candyfloss, Candyfloss built up to full opacity, Buxom Covert Affair, Buxom Hush Hush, Maybelline Touch of Spice

I made these swatches when I was still thinking Candyfloss would be brown, which is why I compared it to Hush Hush and Touch of Spice, which both have quite a bit of brown in them. However, upon swatching it was immediately obvious that this is an orange lipstick, which was only solidified when I actually wore it.

ColourPop Blotted Lips in On A Stick

ColourPop Blotted Lips in On A Stick

ColourPop Blotted Lips in On A Stick

On A Stick is a bright, warm coral. Because I needed to buy another one of those, of course. (Absurdly, I also ordered the Lippie Stix in Trixie, which is a near-perfect dupe for Rimmel Kate Moss 06, and I totally forgot about it and then bought Marc Jacobs So Sofia. So… I could have saved the 38 bucks, really, but I love So Sofia so I guess I’ll survive.)

ColourPop Blotted Lips in On A Stick Swatches

L-R: One swipe of On A Stick, On A Stick built up, Marc Jacobs So Sofia, Charlotte Tilbury Electric Poppy, YSL #57

Though tonally similar to So Sofia, On A Stick is less vibrant, and, of course, less opaque. (It’s a slightly less intimidating way of wearing such an attention-grabbing colour.) It’s a little warmer than Electric Poppy and YSL #57, which both end up being a hair too pink for me to comfortably call coral. (They pull more coral on my arm, but my lips turn them pink.)

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Sucker

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Sucker

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Sucker

Sucker is a bright peach bordering on coral, though compared to On A Stick it’s obviously far more muted. Generally more neon peaches don’t suit me, but somehow Sucker works. I think this gives the popsicle stained look the best out of all three.

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Sucker Swatches

L-R: One swipe of Sucker, Sucker built up, NARS Brigitte

Brigitte is the only other peach I have in my collection, though in retrospect I could have swatched Sucker next to some corals as well. Ah, well – you can see that it is a lot brighter than Brigitte and that it makes the brown in Brigitte more obvious.

As you would imagine, the Blotted Lips go on pretty sheer but can be built up to a medium opacity. With a lot of layers they still give that popsicle effect on the lips, but they probably wouldn’t read as sheer from a distance, at least the more saturated colours. They wear about the way you’d expect any sheer lipstick to: they need to be touched up after a few hours, and definitely after eating or drinking. They layer on themselves well, with no patchiness or bunching up of product. They’re a tiny bit drying, but nothing major. I don’t feel any discomfort until about hour 4 or 5 of wear, and after 8-9 hours I do feel the need for some lip balm. However, unlike with a lot of liquid lipsticks I don’t feel like my lips have to be in especially good shape to wear them, nor does the drying effect linger after removal. I really like the way they look on my lips (though they’re certainly matte they don’t appear unflatteringly dry), and the formula is just what I expected. I don’t mind touching up my lipstick throughout the day, so a formula that doesn’t wear terribly long is fine by me as long as it doesn’t pretend to be longwearing.

Here’s Candyfloss after 8 hours of wear, which included two meals and a drink with no touching up:

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Candyfloss wear

It’s very faint, almost a peach, but it fades gracefully and I could walk around like this without feeling like I looked silly. In fact, I did, because I wore it to my driving test (which I passed, by the way) and had many other things on my mind besides my lipstick.

And here’s Sucker after about 5 hours. When I took these pictures I did have a meal (sushi, yum), but I reapplied and took this picture approximately 2 hours later. I did talk a lot and drink a bit in those two hours.

ColourPop Blotted Lips in Sucker wear

My only complaint has to do with the packaging. In general, I think the packaging is fine – though I tend to think white looks a little cheap, the matte finish makes the tubes cute. I like that the inside of the tube matches the colour of the bullet as well. Besides the fact that I’m sure the lettering will wear off, I’m most annoyed by how difficult it is to close the Blotted Lips tubes smoothly. They always stop just shy of closed, and need an extra little push to close fully. Not a dealbreaker, but not exactly ideal. I haven’t seen anyone else mention this, but all three of my tubes do it so I’m hesitant to call this an anomaly.

ColourPop Blotted Lips packaging

Now, it’s clear that ColourPop got some inspiration from Glossier: the tubes are strikingly similar, not to mention the relatively unusual concept. But ColourPop not only offered their products at a much lower price point (which is to be expected, of course), crucially, they ship worldwide. Though Glossier started shipping to Canada last month, the Blotted Lips came out before that and are still way more widely available than Glossier. I understand that international shipping is a complicated matter, but Glossier is really dropping the ball here to my eye, and ColourPop is totally capitalizing on that. What’s more, the Blotted Lips are good, so anyone who tries this formula because it’s the one they can get shipped to their country is unlikely to go, “Hey, let’s spend $14 more on something similar” if and when Glossier starts shipping internationally. At least, I know I won’t.

The ColourPop Blotted Lips retail for $5 USD ($6.26 CAD) for 1.0 grams of product, which puts them at an easy-to-calculate $5 USD/$6.26 CAD per gram. (That’s 0.035oz, or $142.86 USD/$178.86 CAD per oz.)

Pre-moving declutter, part I: Clothing

Posted on August 17, 2017 under Declutter

I’ve been in Toronto for over a year now, which is the longest I’ve been in one place in five years. I’ve become very good at moving all my earthly possessions via plane, car, and Megabus, on average once every four to eight months since 2012. As many of you know, in just a few weeks I’ll be making a big move again – back to Glasgow, Scotland, where I spent 7 months in 2014 and 2015. Of course, moving across an ocean comes with major restrictions as to what I can bring – namely, whatever I can cram into two checked backs and two carry-ons. This impending move has inspired a necessary round of decluttering. Today I bring to you a recap of some recent clothing decluttering. A makeup declutter is soon to follow!

As I go through my clothes, I’ve been keeping three criteria in mind:

  1. Do I like this? Basically, the $1000 Marie Kondo question. This is an obvious one, but I have been hanging onto items which simply don’t spark joy (as Kondo puts it). I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to move four suitcases through three airports, but it requires every bit of physical and emotional strength a person can possibly possess and there’s no point expending that energy on things I don’t actually like.
  2. Do I wear this? A “no” is a good indictor that I shouldn’t keep the item, though it’s not 100% damning. I did keep some items which in my current life as a fulltime retail employee with a strict dress code I have not been wearing, but which may fit into my grad student life a little more easily.
  3. Will I wear this? This is the question that naturally follows from “Do I wear this?” Not only are there items that I have not been getting much use out of lately that I think I will wear in the upcoming months, there are also pieces that I wear constantly now which I don’t think will be useful to me in the UK. This question encompasses a lot of smaller questions. Will this fit into my lifestyle? Is this a comfortable article of clothing or just one which I like the look of? Can I envision how I will wear this? Is this appropriate for the Scottish climate? I’m lucky in that I’ve lived in Glasgow before, so I have some insight into what will be useful and appropriate for me to keep.

Going through my clothes piece by piece I found that what I got rid of fit into 4 categories:

  1. Things that don’t fit. You know when you order something online and it doesn’t fit right or isn’t comfortable but you don’t want to pack it up and trudge to the post office so you convince yourself you will actually wear it but of course you never actually do? Yeah. I had a few of these pieces in my closet, and they were among the first to go.
  2. Things that I don’t love. I have a lot of pieces that I’ve kept around because I think they’re useful: a comfy grey cardigan, a red v-necked t-shirt. Certainly these are practical and versatile items, but I just don’t reach for them over my other clothing options.
  3. Vestiges of a former life. Clothes I bought at 19 when I was in my undergrad are not necessarily clothes that are relevant to my current lifestyle.
  4. Work clothes. For work, I have to wear black dress pants and a black shirt. I have a lot of black shirts. Granted, I like some of them because black is a colour I tend to buy a lot of anyway. But there were definitely shirts I was holding onto simply for work purposes that I wouldn’t ever reach for in any other context, and so I gleefully said goodbye to them.

When I was finished, I discovered that what I had left was very formulaic: shades of grey and black and lots of jewel tones; black and white striped items; skater skirts and fit and flare dresses; patterned button-downs; sweaters. Yep, I have a type.

Here’s (most of) what I got rid of:

As always, getting rid of stuff feels so good that after I donated all this I ended up going through everything again and getting rid of more. I would say in total it would fill about a garbage bag and a half, which is a significant amount of space saved in my suitcase.

Highlights of my purge:

Lots of crop tops! They were great when I was 19 but just aren’t something that I have room for in my current life, for the most part. I decided to keep one for nights out and ended up getting rid of the other four (obviously, only two are pictured).

Some dresses which I bought with no occasion to wear and have worn very few times. All of these are from H&M. I wore the blue one to my high school graduation so it has some sentimental value, but I have a very similar dress that I wore to my university graduation which I kept instead. The others have all been worn to various occasions (birthday parties, NYE, funerals…) but I don’t wear them enough to keep them around.

Skintight miniskirts that don’t fit anymore and actually just shouldn’t be a part of my life at this point. I just can’t deal with having to tug my skirt down every 3 seconds anymore!

Two black purses which were too big for me to carry on a daily basis. I favour small (but not tiny) purses, and now I have one that I’m really happy with. These ones are in good condition, so hopefully someone is walking around the city getting use out of them now.

Impractical shoes. I bought the 72-inch black wedges with Christmas money when I was 18. I have worn these twice because I can’t walk in them and will never be able to. The open-toe shoes I did actually wear a few times – including to my graduation last year – but they’re not very comfortable. They were Forever 21, so the expenditure wasn’t too immense. I wear heels extremely rarely and am more likely to go with a pair of heeled ankle boots when I want some extra height. And if I want to wear heels, it’s definitely not going to be these:

I mean, REALLY. My eighteen-year-old hubris is astounding.

My favourite combat boots in the world. I love these boots so much and I am heartbroken that they are as destroyed as they are. They’ve been beat up for quite some time, and then I dropped a bottle of Essie Bahama Mama on the floor and it splattered on them, which horrified the employee who was helping me but which I loved. I think it really adds to their charm. I mean, they’re combat boots. If they’re pristine they don’t look right. I have another pair from the same brand, but the plaid is teal and blue and the boots themselves are a bit more bulky – I like them, but not as much. However, I think my mom will personally kill me herself if I take nail polish-splattered combat boots that are detaching from their soles overseas. Really, if I were moving to a climate where it didn’t rain daily I might consider it anyway. But walking around in the rain with holes in your boots is not the most practical idea.

A lot of work clothes! Most of these are hand-me-downs from my mom. I wear a lot of black in my day-to-day life anyway, but I’m getting rid of a lot of pieces that aren’t really my style but that I kept for the sake of work. A few of these items are also just worse for the wear and not worth hauling overseas.

In all, I decluttered 5 cardigans, 4 crop tops, 9 blouses, 3 blazers, 4 t-shirts, 7 pairs of pants, 1 pair of leggings, 3 pair of shorts, 4 skirts, 5 dresses, 1 pair of PJs, 1 athletic top, 1 beach cover-up, 2 bags, 4 pair of socks, 3 pairs of tights, and 4 pairs of shoes. 61 items gone total, which is a lot more than I was expecting. Good job, me!

(P.S. I’m taking my driving test tomorrow afternoon, so wish me luck!)

Inventory: Eyeliner

Posted on August 10, 2017 under Inventory

Let’s quickly run through this. Even I have limits when it comes to discussing eyeliner.

Liquid Liner

A staple in my eyeliner life since forever (aka 2013), I think I will always have Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Intense Black on hand. This eyeliner has never done me dirty in four years, which is why I have a backup. (I keep expecting this one to run out because I bought it in June 2016, but somehow it has managed to surpass its usual lifespan of 10 months.) I also have the same product in Snow and Indigo.

I’ve come to realize that almost every NYX product I’ve tried has disappointed me and thus ended up being destashed, but the Vivid Brights Eyeliner in Sapphire is legit. I rarely find a liquid liner formula that my eyelids don’t swallow, and this is one of them. Plus, well, cobalt blue is my colour.

Finally, a third liquid liner formula that actually works for me: Lancôme Grandiôse Eyeliner in Cerulean and Fuchsia*. Sadly these two beautiful colours were limited edition in the winter, but I love them. They’re so much fun and wear beautifully. I wish Lancôme would come out with more fun colours in this line and make them permanent, because the formula of this liner is bomb.

L-R: Stila Intense Black, Stila Snow, Stila Indigo, NYX Sapphire, Lancôme Cerulean, Lancôme Fuchsia

Pencil Liners

I use black pencils exclusively to tightline. Clarins Waterproof Eye Pencil in Noir is okay, but not the most transfer-proof. I got this as a gift from a friend and I’d never pay $27 for it! The Marc Jacobs Highliner in Blacquer (last year’s Sephora birthday gift) lasts a lot better, though it’s also overpriced.

In terms of browns, I have two of these Stila Smudge Sticks, in Damsel (a matte dark brown) and Lionfish (a lighter, warmer brown with some shimmer). These Smudge Sticks seem to multiply of their own accord; I’ve never actually bought one, but somehow have four (and that’s after decluttering at least two). Two more: Halfmoon and Purple Tang, a matte grey and a sparkly purple, respectively.

Clinique Quickliner for Eyes Intense in Black Honey is a really nice warm brown that complements warmer eye looks very well. I probably don’t need it since I already have two brown liners, but I like it.

NYX Wonder Pencil in Light is a classic nude to pop in the waterline to brighten tired eyes. I like it! I’m usually a twist-up pencil kind of gal because I’m lazy, but it’s a soft, creamy pencil that sets nicely. I love that they make this in different shades of nude, too.

Finally, two blues: Lise Watier Waterproof Eyeliner in Marin, a navy, and Annabelle Kohl Eyeliner in Lapis, a beautiful cobalt. Lise Watier and Annabelle are both Canadian brands owned by another Canadian brand, Marcelle, and of the two I vastly prefer Lise Watier. The Annabelle eye pencils come in a really great array of colours, but they’re drier and stiffer. The Lise Watier liners are creamy to apply but budgeproof once they set. Of course, they’re also about twice as expensive.

L-R: Clarins Noir, Marc Jacobs Blacquer, Stila Damsel, Stila Lionfish, Stila Halfmoon, Stila Purple Tang, Clinique Black Honey, NYX Light, Lise Watier Marin, Annabelle Lapis

Eyeshadow Sticks

I don’t know why I decided to put these in this post instead of with the single eyeshadows, but what’s done is done. These live in the same cup as all my liners, so that’s probably why.

If you were involved in the Reddit makeup world in 2013, then you probably either bought a NYX Jumbo Pencil in Milk or coveted this product mightily. This was back in the days of savagery when NYX was not available in Canada, so I had to get my mom to pick these pencils up in New York for me. This product does not work as an eyeshadow base for me whatsoever: it creases terribly, even over a primer. I also don’t like it in the waterline because it’s too stark. I used up quite a bit of one pencil on Halloween 2015 when I used it as makeshift face paint on three people. The other one is untouched.

Lise Watier 24 Hours Glam Cream Eyeshadow in Satin Glam is a beautiful, shimmery champagne shadow stick. I’m not big on eyeshadow sticks, but this has a great formula. I mostly use it in my inner corner for an intense highlight.

L-R: NYX Milk, Lise Watier Satin Glam

I also have a gel eyeliner by Essence which I neglected to photograph but which you can see in action here.

There we go – I breezed through that batch of products pretty quickly, huh?