Monday, January 11, 2016

NYX High Voltage Lipstick Review

Last year I was all about matte lipstick. I can't help it! I'm kind of a sucker when it comes to mattes. That being said, they're not the most comfortable to wear all the time (even though I wanted to). It's always nice having more comfortable formulas in one's collection - to get you through those times when you just can't do mattes, but you want lipstick - do you know what I mean?

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm going to be talking about the NYX High Voltage lipsticks, and they're not a matte formula.

The packaging isn't anything special. The bullet size is thinner than normal, as is the size of the tubes - they're more slender than traditional lipsticks. The top half of the packaging that is colored corresponds to the shade of the lipstick rather well, I'd say. My only gripe with this is that the bullet itself doesn't retract fully into the tube (only for some shades, not all - indicating a quality control issue) and so you have to be careful when closing as the cap can nick the bullet.

Also, and I'm not sure how this happens, but the transparent cap tends to get smeared with lipstick (simple enough to clean with a Q-tip but I'd really rather not have to do that, you know?).

I have seven shades in total - a couple I bought and a few were gifted to me - and the wide range of shades allowed me to test the formula better, I think.

The shades I have are:

Stone - this is a cool toned pink nude with a grey undertone. It has the accomplishment of being the only lipstick in my collection that makes me look like a corpse when I wear it (by itself, at least. If paired with a brown lip liner the effect isn't as bad).

Flutter Kiss - this is a light-medium neutral pink nude. I was hoping that this would work as a my-lips-but-better shade on me, or at least as a good everyday shade, but alas, it's a little too light. It's not a bad shade, I just need to pair it with a lip liner to make it better and most days I'm too lazy for all that work).

Sweet 16 - this is a light-medium warm-toned pink-coral. I was hoping for an everyday pink shade, but nope. I feel like this shade is quite stark against my skin tone and it's more on the pastel side and definitely isn't the most flattering on me. On lighter skins though, this will look really nice. (Again, I can make it work by pairing it with a red lip liner, but again, work, augh).

Twisted - this is a bright amethyst purple shade. It's a very in-your-face color, and I surprisingly kind of like it. I mean, I have to pair it with the right makeup, and I'll probably never wear this color outside the house, but I've worn this more often than I'd expected at home. The surprise twist is that this leaves a very deep pink stain behind as it wears away! I was certainly not expecting that.

Rock Star - this is a warm toned orange-red. This is definitely a red that flatters my skin tone! It brightens up my face, and I'm looking forward to pulling it out during summer.

Wine & Dine - this is a reddish berry shade with plum-purple undertones. I look at it in the tube and think of it as a common shade, but when I wear it, it's definitely not your typical berry shade. As it wears off though, the stain it leaves behind is more plummy-red.

Feline - this is a deep plum-burgundy with reddish-brown undertones.  It's a great vampy shade, and I can see this looking different on everyone. On my warm skin, the brown undertones seem to pull through more. The stain this leaves behind is a little lighter than the lipstick color.

The formula on all of these is very creamy (you can see the sheen they have in the swatches above) and this makes them very comfortable to wear. They don't dry out my lips - as a matter of fact when I wore them on somewhat dry lips, I felt that my lips felt a little more moisturized after having these on. They're kind of forgiving of fine lines and dry patches (if you have flake-y, peeling areas on your lips however these will catch on those places). The slim bullet I like because it allows me to be more precise during application, especially around the cupid's bow. All the shades wear off uniformly for the most part, and the deeper shades leave a stain behind. I also didn't notice any bleeding around the edges.

However, I've noticed that despite the name, these are on the sheerer side as far as pigmentation goes. The lighter shades were less pigmented than the deeper ones. I'd call them semi-opaque on a single pass, but you can build them up to full opacity. And of course, because of the formula, they are neither transfer-proof nor are they very long lasting. I get about one and a half hours wear on the lighter shades (with light drinking, and no snacking) and the deeper shades last longer (three hours) because they leave a stain behind. (The stain comes off easily with micellar water, though). The lighter shades also had a tendency to settle into lip lines after about an hour.

Here's how they all look on me:

If you're not a fan of matte, or you prefer more creamy, less drying formulas these are great (as long as you don't mind reapplying). If you're deeper skinned, I would avoid the lighter shades and stick to the deeper ones, I haven't found the lighter shades to be flattering.

I was surprised by the fact that I rather liked the formula on the whole, but I think it these would be more of a cooler weather choice. I can't see them wearing very well during summer (it would get quite slippery I think).

Personal picks: Wine & Dine and Rock Star (and Twisted, if you're looking for a fun color).

BGMM Rating: Stone - B-
                     Flutter Kiss - B
                     Sweet 16 - B-
                     Twisted - B+
                     Rock Star - B+
                     Wine & Dine - B+
                     Feline - B+


  1. Rock Star and Feline look beautiful on you. Great review!