Sunday, August 21, 2016

Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipsticks | Swatches, Demo, Dupes, & Review | ChaiTimewithMeesha

When you have quite a few liquid lipsticks lined up on your dresser, but the Smashbox Always On is the one you can’t take your eyes off of… “Call it magic or call it true…”

Availability and Price
The Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipsticks are available on Smashbox’s website and at other Smashbox retailers, such as Sephora, Nordstrom, and Macy’s.  These liquid lipsticks are a smidge higher in price ($24/0.13oz) than some of the other mid-range high-end liquid lipsticks, like Kat Von D ($20/0.22oz) or Anastasia Beverly Hills ($20/0.11oz). 

Personally, I don’t pay much attention to product quantity.  Of course the lipstick price has to be within my budget and that is why I wait to make my purchases during sales and promotions.  I purchased my Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipsticks during their Friends and Family sale event (25% off for a purchase over “x” amount). 

I care more about quality than quantity.  I would rather have one excellent quality lipstick costing $20 rather than four $5 lipsticks that are not as good or don’t meet my standards/expectations from a lipstick. 

The Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipsticks (*6 of the 8 shades I tried) are richly pigmented and have excellent full-coverage color-payoff in one swipe across the top and bottom lip.  This is demonstrated in “Part 1: Demo and Swatches” portion of my video. 

*I did find that the shades Thrill Seeker and Girl Gang applied sheer and appeared less creamy (more watery) in comparison to the other six shades I own.  I layered Girl Gang three times and was able to do so as long as I applied each layer patiently and gently.  However, Girl Gang felt too heavy once it dried down to the extent that I did not feel comfortable wearing it for longer than half an hour or so.  Thrill Seeker is not as sheer as Girl Gang, but it also did not layer well. 

Grade: Stepping Out (5/5), Driver’s Seat (5/5), Out Loud (5/5), Thrill Seeker (4/5), Big Spender (5/5), Girl Gang (3.5/5), Shockaholic (4.5/5), and True Grit (5/5) 

Application and Texture
The Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipsticks (*5 of the 8 shades I tried) applied beautifully.  These lipsticks are creamy, yet lightweight.  They don’t feel thick and heavy or thin and watery.  A little amount of this product goes a long way and knowing this is key to a clean and effortless application. 

These lipsticks set quickly so it is a good thing that you only need a single swipe of product, but feel free to layer them if you need to tweak or perfect any areas because I found that applying a second layer once the first layer has set does not disturb the first layer. 

*The only three shades that did not apply evenly and required a lot of patience and manipulation to look opaque and somewhat presentable were Thrill Seeker (I completely gave up on this one), Girl Gang, and Shockaholic (listed in the order of most troublesome to slightly troublesome).  Thrill Seeker appeared patchy and streaky, uneven, and settled into my natural lip lines.  I would not recommend this shade for people who do not have fully plump smooth baby lips.  Girl Gang on the other hand is not streaky, but it is sheer and need layering, which can make it look patchy if one is not meticulous with the layering process.  Shockaholic is opaque and does not need layering, but it settles into and exaggerates the lip lines significantly once it dries down to a matte finish.  Shockaholic doesn’t look patchy or streaky per se, rather it breaks down into the lip lines and clings onto any dryness or natural texture on the lips. 

The applicator has a user-friendly, cupped tear drop shade.  The teardrop applicator’s pointed tip is great to navigate across the curvature and shape of lips. However, one major point I want to highlight about this applicator is that it picks up more product than you need (or at least that I need) for a single application so be sure to wipe some of the product back into the tube if you’re worried that it will go to waste.  If I end up with too much product on my lips I use my finger to smoothen it out.  While we are on the subject on the applicator, lets talk about the packaging as it is connected to the functionality of the applicator.  Also, see the Comfort and Longevity section below to know more about the Texture aspect. 

Grade: Stepping Out (4.5/5), Driver’s Seat (4.5/5), Out Loud (5/5), Thrill Seeker (0/5), Big Spender (5/5), Girl Gang (2/5), Shockaholic (3.5/5), and True Grit (5/5) 

Although the outer design of the Smashbox liquid lipsticks is aesthetically pleasing –simple, sleek, petite, and chic – the opening of the tube is the part that I have a slight issue with.  However, I do understand the intention behind the design of the opening.  The opening of the tube is “small” meaning that when I put the applicator back into the tube sometimes the applicator gets stuck, slightly bent, and I have to use slight pressure to push the applicator back into the tube.  As I mentioned above in the Application and Texture section, the applicator picks up more product than what I need so as I am putting the applicator back into the tube, the excess product coats the tube opening and eventually collects in that area.  Now I know putting product back into a tube like that (after being exposed to my lips and air) seems unsanitary even though I cleanse my lips before applying my lip products and don’t share my liquid lipsticks, especially using its own applicator, with anyone for hygienic reasons. I am sort of in a dilemma! I don’t want to waste the excess amount that the applicator draws out so I have started wiping the excess off and pushing it back into the tube before I put any of the product on my lips. 

Grade: 4/5

One of the reasons why the Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipstick formula is my current absolute favorite liquid lipstick formula is because of how comfortable they feel on the lips.  As I mentioned above, only a few shades felt uncomfortable, either because of the way they dried down or needed more than a couple of light layers.  This liquid lipstick formula sets to fully dry (non-drying) matte finish quickly, like within a few seconds.  In fact it dried down to a matte finish so quickly that I wasn’t able to film a segment demonstrating how the lipstick looks when its “freshly applied” as in still wet or in the process of setting.  

The Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipsticks set to a fully dry matte finish and yes your lips may look a bit extra “pouty” to put it delicately with the lighter and brighter shades, but what I mean to say is that ultra matte liquid lipsticks, especially lighter and brighter shades, do show your lip lines if you have them.  But! But! Wait for it… They DO NOT make your lips look parched or dehydrated or unnaturally dry or unattractively wrinkly if you know what I mean. 

Grade: Stepping Out (5/5), Driver’s Seat (5/5), Out Loud (5/5), Thrill Seeker (0/5), Big Spender (5/5), Girl Gang (3/5), Shockaholic (3.5/5), and True Grit (4.5/5) 

This formula is transfer-proof and kiss-proof as I show you in my video towards the end while I am modeling the shade True Grit.  Of course if you are consuming something greasy, oily, and liquid and your lips are in constant contact with something greasy, oily, and/or liquid, the product will break down and begin to wear off in the area of immediate contact (i.e., the inner center part of your bottom lip).  

Grade*: Stepping Out (5/5), Driver’s Seat (5/5), Out Loud (5/5), Big Spender (5/5), and True Grit (4.5/5) 
*I did not mention the other shades because I did not wear those long enough to test them for their staying power.  I docked .5 from True Grit only because it is a very dark color so it does not wear off as “elegantly” as it lighter mates, but I will note that it is easy to reapply/fix-up.  None of the shades I tested budged off my lips unless I consumed a proper non-dry meal (like Indian or Thai food) and reapplication/touch-up is easy. 

Overall: I recommend! If Smashbox were to expand the already beautiful shade range of the Always On Liquid Lipsticks, I would be more than ecstatic to explore more shades. 
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Yours Truly,
The Lipsticks-Ninja

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