Thursday, November 28, 2013

A matte lip crayon I like much better than Revlon's (Be A Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn)

I'd say that 90% of the blog reviews of the Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balm crayon that I've read have been raves. A couple have found some shades patchy, but were cool with it, but most of them are just big fans. Obviously that's not how I felt, and it kind of makes me feel like I was being unreasonable or doing something wrong.

But I recently got a matte jumbo lip crayon in my Ipsy bag that I prefer a whole fucking lot. It's the Be A Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn. They describe it as "glossy," but it's definitely not. It's matte. It seems to have a few specks of shimmer (?) in it, but they don't show up at all on the lips. You can sort of see them in the macro shot, but they are completely invisible from a normal distance. Even in the swatch photo below, you can't really see the shimmer. (Judging from swatches, some of the other shades seem to have more shimmer.)
Be A Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn
Be A Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn
How it compares to the Revlon matte balm: The Be a Bombshell crayon has a thicker, stiffer texture. The Revlon feels almost buttery - actually kind of like frosting. For me, the Be a Bombshell texture works much better, because you can go back and forth over your lips to build up the color without it getting patchy. It stays in place really well, unlike the Revlon matte balm, which had a tendency to smear and wear off in an ugly way. After I put enough on my lips to make it really opaque, and then blotted, very little came off on the tissue. I tend to worry about wearing bright/opaque lip colors, because they always smear and look messy on me eventually. I think this one has solved that problem. It's going to be my go-to red. It wears very evenly and leaves a nice stain. It doesn't emphasize dryness and lines like the Revlon one does. It also doesn't have a minty scent or tingle, which was something I didn't like about the Revlon. I don't find it drying, either - no more so than not wearing anything on my lips. Basically, this is everything I was hoping the Revlon matte balm would be but wasn't.
Below is what it looked like after wearing it for two hours and drinking a cup of tea, for comparison with less wear time for the red Revlon matte balm. I know that's not a particularly long time, but get this: last night I had this on for about 5 hours and then I ate some really oily gnocchi. The Gorgonzola stuff from Trader Joe's. (Have you tried it? So fucking good. And it comes in a package that is clearly not meant to be eaten by a single person, because if you eat enough to be full, there's not enough left to reasonably save, but if you eat it all, YOU WILL DIE. I guess you are supposed to be a normal person and eat this as a side with other foods, but that's not what I buy frozen TJ's food for.) Anyway, it's oily and messy and yet it didn't take this lipstick off! That's pretty damned amazing. Unfortunately it was nighttime, and my shitty camera couldn't get a good shot.
Be A Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn after two hours and a cup of tea:
A slightly thinner layer? The difference is negligible.
Here's how the color compares to some other reds I have - it's closest to Wet N Wild Megalast Lipstick in Red Velvet:
Swatches from left to right: Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balm in Striking, Be a Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn,  Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Romantic, Wet N Wild Megalast Lipstick in Red Velvet,  NYX Matte Lipstick in Perfect Red
Swatches from left to right: Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balm in Striking, Be a Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn,
Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Romantic, Wet N Wild Megalast Lipstick in Red Velvet, NYX Matte Lipstick in Perfect Red
It happens to be a really flattering red on me. I'm not going to say that it's "universally flattering," because I always wonder how many people have been surveyed when someone claims that. When I wear some red lipsticks, they make it look like I have terrible dark circles under my eyes. Worse than usual. Sometimes that's a little sexy? But mostly not. This one doesn't make me look like death. I'd say it's mostly blue based, but warmer than some reds, and quite bright. It also doesn't make my teeth look yellow. I don't know how helpful that description is, which is why I provided the comparison swatches.

Downside: The packaging is slightly shitty. The product is a little loose in the tube, and so it tends to lean and hit against the edge. Annoying, but not a big problem so far.

Also, these are $14 for 2.5 g, while the Revlon ones are $7-9 for 2.7 g, depending where you buy them. There are a few ways around this. For one, Be A Bombshell is having a 50% off everything Black Friday sale tomorrow. The code is BLACK50. If you miss that, there's usually a discount code on Ipsy. Right now it's 40% off any purchase, and you get a free lip gloss with your order (code: IPSY40). (FYI: Their blush in Sweet Cheeks is also gorgeous, and so is the gloss in Hot Mess. They both look a little bright and intimidating in the package but are really flattering and pretty - on me, at least. I think I got them both from Ipsy too, though one or the other might have come from Birchbox way back when. Generally, I think their products are overpriced, but they have 50% off sales every few months which makes them pretty reasonable.)

A third option is to sign up for Ipsy and see if they send one of these out again. They do tend to include items from brands like this in multiple months for people who didn't get them the first time around. You might get this along with 4 other things for $10. Or you might not, so you probably shouldn't sign up unless you have other reasons for doing so. (If you do want to sign up, and you'd like to use my invite link, that'd be cool.)

Like I said, I can't tell you if all of the shades are matte (and I don't think that they are), but Hot Damn certainly is. If you're looking for a super-opaque matte red lip crayon with amazing wear, it's worth checking out.

Oh and happy Thanksgiving to all you Americans. Even though I live in the US, I'm not American, and so I have opted to not participate in your lovely festivities. Instead I am going to try to finish a major project I've been working on. I'm thankful for the day off, though.

UPDATE: I took another photo after wearing this a few more hours and eating lunch. It was cheesy rice with chicken and broccoli, in case that's useful information for you. You can see that there is a little fading toward the center of my lips, but nowhere near enough that I feel like I need to reapply. See, not shitting you!
Be A Bombshell Lip Crayon in Hot Damn after several hours and lunch.



    From the pictures, this could be a slightly less expensive dupe of NARS Dragon Girl.

    Also, about "universally flattering" bullshit:

    With red lipstick in particular, "universally flattering" means "red with a blue undertone". Cool reds are a more flattering shade for a more diverse range of skintones. Orangey reds can really clash with more yellow-toned skin, and can emphasize yellowing teeth. Cool cherry reds, like Hot Damn, Ruby Woo, and Dragon Girl are considered the most flattering because darker blue-toned reds can look more vampy on pale skin (and evidently there are people out there that don't want to look vampy)

    1. So I hear! (About blue-toned reds.) But then the NYX one up there is bluer than this Be a Bombshell crayon, and it definitely gives me the Uncle Fester eyes. Maybe that fits in the darker category you mention? But yes, it seems that the bluer ones are more likely to work for more people, but I don't want to say that just because this one suits me perfectly, it will do that for everyone.

      I'd like to try the NARS, but I don't envision them having a 50% off sale any time soon. Sigh.


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