5 April 2011

Lip Stains: A Comparison

I wrote on Twitter the other day that I was so happy the British high street seem to have finally hopped on board the lip stain train, so I snapped up four to compare and show you.  In the last month, Max Factor, Revlon and Gosh (available only in Superdrug) have released these lip stains, which look a bit like felt tips.  I am comparing four, one from Revlon, one from Gosh and two from Max Factor.  I'll be basing my comparison on the following factors:

Colour range
Colour on lips
Feel and longevity (of wear)

First of all, here they all are:

Top to bottom: Gosh Long Lasting Lip Marker in 003 Berry; Max Factor Lipfinity Lasting Lip Tint in 03; Max Factor Lipfinity Lasting Lip Tint in 06; Revlon Just Bitten Lip Stain + Balm in Twilight.

Swatches, in the same order from top to bottom:

Colour range:

Gosh: Four shades, which you can see here, all pinks and reds but all bright pinks and reds.

Max Factor: Again, four shades, which you can see here, and again all of which are in the pink/red spectrum but are slightly more muted than the Gosh shade range.

Revlon: The winner, with ten shades to choose from, which you can see here.  Obviously influenced by the recent obsession with Pattinson & Co, all shades (and the product name) give the vampire theme a nod.


Gosh: £4.99

Max Factor: £7.99

Revlon: £7.99

Please bear in mind that I bought all of these as soon as they were released so these may be introductory prices.

And here I am modelling them all for you:

First up, Gosh:

This is a lovely fuschia colour.  You can build it up, so if you wanted it less bright, just do one application.  This glides on evenly, and doesn't dry immediately so you can blend it quite easily to get the finish you want.

Second:  Max Factor in 03:

On me, this is really natural with just a hint of colour.  Unfortunately, it's the most difficult one to apply.  I don't know if I just picked up a dud one but it seems quite dry already and I really have to push the pen into my lips (which, frankly, hurts) to get a colour payoff.  But when I do, I really like it.

Third: Max Factor 06:

This one is a bright berry shade, kind of like I've been eating blackberries like a messy child.  Which occasionally does happen.  It applies quite well but does streak and dry quickly so you need to go over it a couple of times to get an even finish.

And finally: Revlon in Twilight:

As befits the name, this is quite a gothic, vampy red.  It is ok to apply, especially if you use the balm on the other end first, but the colour tends to gather towards the middle of my lips, making the centre darker.  Not necessarily a bad thing, but worth noting.  The colour is great - not something I'd often go for but in this finish it's fine.


They are all equally long lasting - they actually stay on until you remove them, but they do fade.  For me, this isn't a problem, especially with the Max Factor in 03 as it looks like my normal lip colour when it fades.  The Gosh one takes the longest to dry and occasionally transfers onto a glass when you drink.  Because of the colour, the Gosh and the Max Factor 06 are the most noticeable when they fade so just keep an eye on them throughout the day/night.  None are overly drying, but I usually apply a small amount of lip balm over the top when I apply just because I'm already prone to very dry lips.

Overall, I think the Revlon is my favourite.  I applies well and I think the colour is sophisticated and nice to wear with minimal eye and face make up.  I also like that for your money, you get a lip balm at the other end.

Have you tried any lip stains yet, and, if so, do you have a favourite?


  1. Ive given you a blog award http://thisissultryred.blogspot.com/2011/04/stylish-blogger-award.html


  2. Great post! I was giving the Max Factor ones a miss after initial lust as the colours on inspection are a bit boring! I bought that GOSH one after really being impressed with the swatch in the shop, but think I got a dud one, would you recommend a repurchase? Loved the colour, but my one was almost totally dry after one wear, which I thought was weird when the tester in the shop was fab!

    c0louredlights.blogspot.com xxx

  3. I would try a Revlon rather than repurchase a Gosh, purely because the choice of colours is better. I also think the Revlon one lasts better on the lips than Gosh.

    Let me know how you get on!

    Kathrine x

  4. I'm also a lip stain fan, and my go-to stain was discontinued. To find a replacement I tested 5 brands including a Channel and $27 YSL stain the Sephora girl "swore" by. Revlon (the 5th purchase) was my "winner" as well. It was the most true to color, dries quickly and lasted a full work day. Cost was $12.99.

    Wish I would have seen your blog 4 weeks ago :)

    Thanks, Nadia.