Because a big kit can be so back breaking to lug around, I try to be very selective about what I use and I try to choose products that can be multi-purpose. I keep primarily matte lipsticks in my kit because: A) mattes photograph beautifully and B) they can easily be turned into creams or glosses by adding clear balms and glosses! This way, with one root product I can create whichever finish I want. (Creams can be matted with powder, but the finish isn’t as perfect and pigmented as I like it to be).
SO! Why these mattes? Well…
1. The finish is pigmented, deep, rich and velvety. Perfect, in other words. They are not cakey in any way. The finish is so natural that the color translates as a stain, without actually staining the lips and with much more depth.
2. They don’t dry out lips! The last thing I need is cracked, chapped lips on my models (or me or you). It ruins the finish and it makes it uncomfortable for the model to model (she needs to be able to laugh and smile and snarl and play!). This product is extremely comfortable to wear.
3. They glide on effortlessly! To do a perfect dark lip can take some time. Not with these beauties. It’s as if they have a built-in homing device to stay exactly within the line of the lips.
4. The colors are extremely well curated. They are always a perfect range of classic, au courant, and universal.
5. Absolute favorites: Walkyrie & Dolce Vita. Dolce Vita is basically “lip color”– natural, flushed, not too red, not too brown, not too blue, not too orange…a classic! Walkyrie is in the same natural and flushed looking vein of Dolce Vita, but more russet, without being too orange. It looks amazing on EVERYONE: tan, pale, black, white, brown, yellow, golden, pink, olive, blue, red and every skin tone in between! STUNNING.
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Tip: When using mattes that aren’t so moist, or if your lips are just generally very dry, pre-treat lips with Shea Butter and then blot gently before applying lipstick. Shea Butter is deeply moisturizing (and safely edible) without being glossy so you can still achieve a matte finish.
Other great mattes for perfect red lips: MAC Ruby Woo, Diva & Lady Danger. MAC’s entire line of matte reds are incredible and iconic. Absolutely the best of the best. Comparatively I’d say MAC’s matte lipsticks are bit thicker feeling on the lips than the NARS pencils.