Friday, June 27, 2014

Two $3 Essence lip thingies

Disclosure: This post contains an affiliate link.
Wow, two actual reviews in a row, rather than just posts ruminating on my weird behavior. Don't worry, it's not in me to stop ruminating, but maybe you'd like to hear about some makeup that you could pick up as a cheap treat. One is good, and the other is potentially good for people who aren't me.
Essence Stay With Me Longlasting Lipgloss in Choose Me! and Essence Stay Matt Lip Cream in Smooth Berry
Essence Stay With Me Longlasting Lipgloss in Choose Me! and Essence Stay Matt Lip Cream in Smooth Berry
The first of the two products is Essence Stay With Me Longlasting Lipgloss in Choose Me! The color of this gloss is difficult to categorize. In the tube, it looks like a sort of plummy or burgundy shade with pinkish shimmer. On the lips, the shimmer is pretty much invisible other than to add a bit to the shine, and it's sheer enough that it just sort of deepens my natural lip color and adds some warmth and sheen. It makes my lips more rosy, but not at all vampy, like you might expect from looking at the tube. It doesn't settle into lines as much as it might appear from the photo - that's just the nature of closeups of sheer things, in my experience. It's a very wearable, everyday color. Flattering, too, at least on me. (I hope I've never claimed that something is "universally" flattering, because I've been disappointed by recommendations that made the promise before.)

Swatch of Essence Stay With Me Longlasting Lipgloss in Choose Me!
Essence Stay With Me Longlasting Lipgloss in Choose Me!

It has a fruity scent that isn't strong enough to be annoying. I like it. As for being long-wearing, I would say that considering it's not sticky, and it feels really light and smooth, it is longer-wearing than you would typically expect from a gloss. I'm not sure that it's moisturizing, but it's definitely not drying at all. It feels great. For $3, this is an excellent gloss - I haven't tried a more expensive one that I liked better. I have no complaints.

On the downside . . . I can't find this for sale online anywhere now, though I got it from ULTA less than a year ago (and the pink color is available on Amazon). Womp womp. But based on my experience with this stuff, I'd be willing to try out other glosses from Essence. If you see it in a store, it's worth grabbing. Walgreens apparently sells Essence now too, so you might have luck there.

The other product I've only had for a couple of months. It's Essence Stay Matt [sic] Lip Cream in Smooth Berry. I had my eye on it since reading this review from Beauty Reductionista, especially since it's different from most matte lip creams, which I can't wear. The ones that set to a dry finish are not my friends. They don't tolerate lip licking or lip rubbing or whatever the hell else it is that I do with my mouth all day when I'm not paying attention. I always end up with a gross ring around the edges of my lips in about an hour. But this Essence lip cream stays creamy and malleable (can a cream be malleable?), so I had hopes that I might not be able to fuck it up.

Swatch of Essence Stay Matt Lip Cream in Smooth Berry
Essence Stay Matt Lip Cream in Smooth Berry
Sadly, no lip cream is immune to my fuckery. Though it does, in fact, allow me to press my lips together with no ill effects, I can't seem to master application. It has a typical doe-foot applicator, and it's just too creamy and slippery for me to apply it that way. I can't color inside the lines. The photo above is the result of painstaking application with a lip brush, and there is still something to be desired. Maybe it it wasn't so damned (or wonderfully?) bright and pigmented, my mess wouldn't be so obvious.

It is really bright! And it's not super matte, though the photo above makes it look shinier than it actually is. It's more like a creamy texture. Again, I have trouble describing the color, but I feel like I should say something about it, because it is definitely not what I would call a berry, despite the name. It's more like something I would expect to be labeled watermelon - or maybe strawberry, if I'm being fair, but "berry" to me usually means a little purple, and there's none of that. It's like some kind of fuschia-rose deal. How's that? Helpful?

It stays creamy, yes. Too creamy. I have found mysterious smears on my face when I wear this. That doesn't happen to me with regular creamy lipstick. This is just too slick for me, I guess.

It has a light vanilla scent that is very similar to the NYX lip creams, if you've ever tried those. It has no flavor, and the scent disappears quickly.

I think this is beautiful and would be great for someone more competent than myself, but it's not for my fellow messes. You know that I have no problem saying that something is crap: I don't think that this is crap. I just think it's a little above my paygrade. I do really love the color, so I think I will try to find something in a similar shade and pass this particular product along to someone who can handle it. If you want to try it out, you might be able to find it at ULTA or Walgreens (though not on their websites, apparently?) or, in Canada, at Shopper's, which is where I got it.


  1. Eeep, I'm so sorry you don't like the lip cream. I ended up giving mine away to a friend but only because I'm keeping an eye on all my liquid lip products and decided I'd rather not have the Shiseido lacquers go bad. But I still think about picking up more of this anyway! For what it's worth, I think it looks great on you - but I hear you on the colour being quite strong. It may help if you use a lip liner under and pat this on top? I don't always do so well with liquid lip products either, especially because my bottom lip is weirdly undefined and sometimes I don't know where to LITERALLY draw the line.

    1. Not your fault! I really think it's purely my incompetence that's the problem with this one. It is beautiful. My smearing it all over myself is the main problem. I might try to do it lightly over liner, but I'd usually rather just slap something on in one step. But yeah, the margins of my lips are not very distinct at all either, as you can probably see in the gloss photo, so sometimes I think I'm getting it right and then when I pull back to look, it either looks like I've gone too far inside or outside the line. Bah!

  2. Essence products can also be found at Fred Meyer/Kroger here in the US. I love their nail polish, haven't tried the other products yet, but will definitely try the lip glosses first. Thanks for the review, it was very helpful.

    1. Good to know, thanks! I'm at Kroger much more often than Walgreens (and I'm not sure my tiny nearby Walgreens has Essence).


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