A friend mentioned to me in passing the other day that she’s on the lookout for a good royal blue/purple lipstick.
The timing was excellent, because it just so happens that I’m on the same hunt right now. At the risk of looking like some kind of absurd Joker, with my current green hair, a cool blue-toned purple lip is a perfect pre-holiday boost and bright spot to get me through winter.
Please keep in mind that I haven’t personally tried any of these lipsticks at this point, but I thought rounding them up and comparing shade variations and formulas was useful. I know some people don’t, but I do strongly believe in beauty shopping on the internet. The incredible amount of research that beauty bloggers and vloggers do to give shoppers a precise sense of shade, opacity, texture, application, and wear is sooooooo useful.
These are the ones I wanna try out.
By Starlight by Melt Cosmetics
By Starlight is the royal purple I’d been planning to buy. I have Melt’s forest green lipstick, Blow, and the formula is amazing. The colour is rich, the texture is truly matte, it wears forever and resists coming off even while I drink gimlets all night, and the cool and deep green shade is totally bewitching.
However, for as long as Melt Cosmetics have been on my radar, By Starlight has been out of stock at their webstore. I understand they’re a small company and make products on a small, batch-by-batch basis, but I’m pretty ready to take my business elsewhere at this point.
You can understand my dilemma, though, right? It’s the truest, purest, most satisfying purple.
Kontrol by Illamasqua
Here’s a slightly different proposition. Illamasqua’s Kontrol has some of those same purple tones, tempered by a generous dash of blue, made interesting by a subdued grey tone that I keep being drawn to.
It’s like a cool, unusual mauve – I know it sounds weird, but I think it would look amazing on a wide range of skin tones – definitely people with very pale or yellow-based complexions.
This shade is in Illamasqua’s matte formula, which I’m not familiar with. Swatch photos I’ve perused give me the impression it has a slightly more moisturizing, lustrous finish than, for example, Melt’s formula, which can be drying.
Be-Dazzled by ColourPop Cosmetics
ColourPop is another brand I haven’t personally used but have read so many amazing things about. The important things are: the price, the formulas, the shades. Incredible quality and colour range for the price point. Their signature ultra-matte lip product is $6 a pop. Yes, that’s US dollars, but even with exchange and shipping I’m inclined to say it’s worth the risk. And yes, they do ship to Canada. Hey, they’re American but they spell ‘colour’ with a ‘u’ – they’re just that classy.
Anyway, LOOK. AT. THIS. PURPLE. This is the purple of royalty and the tastiest grape candy and probably Prince himself, I won’t rule it out.
It’s a liquid-to-matte formula, so it goes on with a doe-foot wand and dries to a bold and durable finish. For best results, they advise exfoliating your lips first and ensuring your mouth is dry and bare before application. I’d argue that this is good to do anytime you’re using a deep lip shade in a matte formula, but for liquid-to-matte formulas it’s especially important.
I’m Royalty by Jeffree Star
Jeffree Star’s velour liquid lipstick is another liquid-to-matte formula. This one, called I’m Royalty, reminds me of Be-Dazzled, above, but cooler in tone and even more matte in texture. Because of the formula, the same guidelines apply for lip prep and application – you don’t want this one clinging to dry wintery lip skin and then flaking off.
The product’s creator is, of course, Jeffree Star: a musician and glamaholic from back in Myspace’s heyday. He made his name as a sort of internet-era club kid, and has been doing makeup for the rich and famous since before he did music. His makeup range is his most recent venture, and by all accounts, it’s a huge success.
If you’re into the blue tone of this colour, and want something slightly further in that direction, the brand’s Blue Velvet shade is an intriguing option.
Amethyst by NYX
A slightly different take on the liquid-to-matte lipstick, NYX emphasizes the cream aspect of their liquid suede cream lipstick. I see it as something that fits alongside liquid lipsticks and the soft matte lip creams that NYX is known for in formula and purpose.
The product line has been praised for its rich pigmentation and staying power. There’s not a ton of colours to choose from, but Amethyst hits the mark with its cool pure purple.
The best news? NYX recently launched their Canadian webstore. Most of their line has been available in Rexall drugstores for years, but there are limited edition items that are only available online, and which excluded Canadians – until now.
Immortal by NYX
Here’s the outlier of the bunch – a shimmery blue-purple lipstick that’s lustrous, glossy, and full of sparkle. Part of NYX’s Wicked Lippies collection, the shade Immortal lies right between a royal purple and a cobalt blue. The base colour skews violet, but there’s tons of electric blue shimmer thrown in. It’s got a dimensionality that’s really fun, especially given the trend (and demand!) for matte, long-wearing lip products.
If the shade appeals, there are lots of beauty bloggers and vloggers who’ve covered formula and wear. People who’ve reviewed it like it a lot – the opacity and wear are excellent for the price as well as for a shimmer lipstick…it’s never going to perform like a matte, and that’s to be expected.
Among the Wicked Lippies range, if your taste runs more toward the pure, deep purples, there’s a beauty called Betrayal that looks amazing. If pure cobalt is what you’re looking for, check out the shade called Envy.