Does this title sound like click bait? Because that is honestly and unironically what this post is about. (It’s more likely than you think!)
I’ve been struggling with the Day Job more than usual lately. And I mean that very genuinely in the “crafted my two weeks notice before I left last Friday and have it queued up and ready to go the next time I’m faced with bullshit” kind of way. Unfortunately, I don’t have a patron that would support me if I just up and left with no backup in place (though applications are open for that coveted position!), so I’ve had to rely on other ways to get me though my hopefully numbered days at Day Job. Of course, because it’s me, that means lipstick.
Makeup gives me joy and as I’ve mentioned before a bright blush and lipstick gives me joy most of all, since I don’t even have to worry about blending it or winging it evenly or anything else complicated. Here are some of my fave bright and happy lipsticks that allow me to fake it until I make it, so to speak:
Left to Right: Besame “American Beauty,” Clinique Pop Lip Color+Primer “Cherry Pop,” Revlon Super Lustrous “Fire and Ice,” LA Colors “Cherry Red,” ELF Tinted Lip Balm “XO Red” (d/c?), Clinique Chubby Stick “Chunky Cherry“
The Clinique Cherry Pop (don’t think I don’t see what you did there, Clinique) and Besame American Beauty are my standouts in terms of color + formula, since I usually prefer cooler/berry reds anyway. That ELF one is a straight up lipstick though — that’s one light swipe shown there. Don’t let the name fool you. If you’re looking for sheer, the Clinique Chubby Stick or one of the Revlon Kiss Balms (I think the red one is Cherry or Apple something?) would be better.
Left to Right: J.Cat Beauty 24/7 Hydrating Lip Stain “Hikilicious,” Korres Liquid Lipstick “Raspberry” (d/c, but I think you can still find this one here), Soap and Glory Sexy Motherpucker “Pommie Girl,” Revlon Lip Butter “Lollipop” (d/c), Colourpop Ultra Glossy “Kink” (d/c), Almay Liquid Lip Balm “Pink Pout,” Revlon Kiss Balm “Fresh Strawberry“
For some reason, the Soap and Glory Pommie Girl and the J. Cat Hikilicious both photographed darker and a bit more brown than they are in real life, no matter what I tried with my limited lighting and photography skills. Pommie Girl is definitely a rosy, deeper pink, but is absolutely lighter and brighter than the swatch above. Same for Hikilicious, which is a peachy-pink color in real life (think those peachy-orange roses in the grocery store, then up the saturation level by about 50 points. You can see it in action here). I love both of these formulas though; the Soap and Glory matte formula is a drugstore sleeper cell, and Pommie Girl and Cinnamon Kiss are “oh shit” makeup bag staples.
Left to Right: Colourpop “Crystal Ball” (d/c), Sephora Colorful Glass Balm “Adjust Your Tiara,” Sephora Colorful Gloss Balm “Peek a Blue,” NYX High Voltage Lipstick “Twisted,” (Now rebranded as “Turnt Up”? NYX what?) NYX Round Lipstick “Haute Melon,” Revlon Kissable Balm Stain “Rendezvous“
I will buy Rendezvous until they stop making it, and when that happens I will cry many rivers. I think it’s actually the only lipstick I have ever fully run through and repurchased. The Sephora glosses are sheer enough to get away with in most work settings — you can tell, especially with the blue, that a little something is going on, but it’s not like Crystal Ball, which is full on green goodness and not something I could wear to a meeting with my boss’ boss, but can bust out on a Friday when no one is there to see me giving them the cosmetic middle finger anyway. (Fair warning, the blue can go into “been drunk-slurping a Burger King Ic-ee” real quick if you goop on too much).
Some days, of course, there is no other option but to show who I am inside:
Left to Right: J.Cat Beauty 24/7 Hydrating Lip Stain “Fantasy Dreamer,” Besame “Noir Red,” BITE Beauty “Liquorice,” The Balm Meet Matt(e) Hughes “Charming,” Colourpop Ultra Glossy “Furry” (d/c)
Charming pulls deeper and much more plum on my lips, as seen in this unfortunate drunk snapchat:
But I know on others it stays more true to the nudey-rosewood color seen above. The darker colors of that J. Cat stain can be a bit finnicky, but when I can be assed to take the time to apply it properly it is beautiful. Both the Bite and Besame lipsticks are beautiful and luxurious feeling, as well, (Besame wins for longevity, if that matters to you), and “Furry” is one of my favorite Colourpop purchases of all time. All of these are good eggs, is what I’m saying.
I haven’t busted out my only remaining black lipstick yet, but maybe I’ll wear it when I’m going out in a blaze of glory?
I know lipstick isn’t for everyone, and this might not help you deal with your employment hell if that’s the case. My only other suggestion would be:
The birthday cake flavor is real good, too.
How do you motivate yourself in our capitalist prison? 🙂