Monday, January 3, 2011

Ruby Red Lips

I'm wearing Lip Ink Energy Red in this photo

I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been a long-time fan of Lip Ink liquid lipstick, and Riika’s comment on another post inspired me to write a full-fledged review about it.

I’ve been a loyal user of Lip Ink for three years, and it is pretty much the only lipstick I wear anymore. Though I do adore Besame’s lipstick (Red Hot Red is my fave shade), and though I admit to the occasional impulse purchase tubes of ‘regular’ lipstick (just bought Revlon’s vintage-style tube of Fire n’Ice), I almost always reach for my Lip Ink! I love not worrying about my lipstick smearing, bleeding, or transferring to my coffee cup (and of course my Sweetie appreciates the fact that he can kiss me and not end up wearing lipstick too!) Over the years I had tried a number of indelible lipsticks—Cover Girl Outlast, MAC Pro Longwear, Revlon Colorstay—and was never very pleased with any of them. For one thing, they felt like I’d just applied a thick layer of lacquer to my lips. They also cracked, peeled, and dried to a lighter shade (and for someone who is addicted to bright red lipstick, having your color fade to a dull shade of red just won’t do.) On a whim I tried Lip Ink, and found it to be a true stain—but one that was comfortable to wear. The color stays true, it doesn’t crack or fade, and it’s non-drying as well (I find it actually heals dry lips.) I also find that it photographs like regular lipstick (instead of looking like you’ve applied a coat of paint to your lips), and so I wear it for nearly all of my photo shoots and fashion shows (it’s fantastic to not have to worry about smearing your lipstick on your clothing.) My favorite shade is Energy Red, a rich 1940s shade that I think of as very “Hedy Lamarr”, though I am also fond of Red (a bright pink-based red), Hot Pink (a shocking pink shade), Fuchsia (a deep raspberry shade), and Coral (a bright, true coral shade).

Lip Ink is a two-product lipstick—you apply a layer of color, let it dry for a few moments, and then top with a coat of their Lip Shine gloss. If you decide to try Lip Ink, I do recommend picking up a tube of Lip Shine as well—I love the LemonMint flavor—but unlike the other type of long-wearing lipsticks, you don’t need to reply it multiple times over the day to keep the color from cracking off. It just moisturizes and adds a nice shine to the lips. Lip Ink also sells a remover for their product, as most cleansers won’t take it off—but I discovered that plain ol’ rubbing alcohol removes it with ease. I realize that this sounds very unglamorous and drying to boot, but as I said above, there is something in the color that keeps my lips nice and soft (and my lips definitely are on the dry side to begin with), and I’d rather save my pennies for another tube of color or shine.
Lipsense Blu-Red

Now, I will say that it appears as though Lip Ink has changed their formula slightly, as the lipstick isn’t quite as indelible as it was when I first started wearing it. I still prefer it to regular lipstick hands down, but I do wish they would go back to the old formula! This led me to another product though, a similar liquid lip color made by Lipsense. I ordered a tube of Blu-Red over the holidays to compare (I read that this is Christina Aguilera’s favorite), and I find that in terms of staying power, Lipsense beats Lip Ink soundly. Applied once in the morning, I don’t need to touch it up all day, though I do refresh the gloss after lunch. There are two things that I don’t like as well though—the smell/taste (a horrid fakey rose scent that unfortunately lingers), and the finish (it dries to a very tacky finish, though the gloss remedies this fairly easily.) But on the whole I’ve been very pleased and will most likely purchase this again (I’d like to try the Cranberry shade next, I think.)

Lip Ink Red

So, that’s my two cents on this subject—I’d highly recommend either of these products to anyone on the hunt for a long-wearing red lipstick!

Amanda Lee


  1. You look very pretty! Wish I could wear red lipstick too. Happy new year from Norway

  2. Thank you very much for the informative post! I put in an order for Lip Ink Energy Red just a few days back, thank you for the recommendation. Can't wait to get my hands on it. :)

  3. Thanks so much for this post! My favorite long-wear lipstick has just been discontinued and I've been wondering what to try next.

  4. Love your post and your pics are captivating!
    I agree with you and am somewhat biased because I am a LipSense Distributor however a very educated consumer. Having tried all of the long lipsticks that you mentioned, I believe hands down LipSense wins on two counts. First, it last longer than any of the others and the red selections are much better than the others.
    You should take a look at Crimson Red because it suits your very fun & playful retro style.

  5. Thanks! I normally use Covergirl Outlast, but I have the same complaints as you. I'll have to check around for both those brands.

  6. Thank you, VildesVerden! I always say that there's a shade of red for everyone, so do keep trying if you haven't found the right one yet :-)

    I hope you like it as well as I do, Riika! Let us know what you think of it :-)

    Gabriella--what long-wearing lipstick were you wearing? If you try either of these, let me know how they work for you!

    Carol--thank you for the sweet comment! I'll have to try Crimson Red next :-)

    Kir--Lip Ink and Lipsense feel and wear so much better--I think you'd be very pleased with either.

  7. Do you have any ideas as to where carries them? I've live in a very small town and we really only have Shoppers Drug Mart and Walmart in terms of makeup. If not there, I'll have to check when I go to the city on Friday. :)
    Oh also, I forgot to ask, what's the price range? Is it the same in stores as it is on the website? More? Less?

  8. i'm totally going to try lip ink! my husband hates kissing me with my red lips!

  9. Kir--I order both brands online. You can find them on eBay or order directly from the Web site; you might also see if there is a local distributor in your area :-) They run about $16-18 a tube, so they're not as inexpensive as some brands, but they're not the most expensive lipstick either. A tube of lip shine lasts me about 4-6 months, and the lip color lasts me about two months (I'll report back on how long it takes me to finish a tube of Lipsense; I suspect it will last me longer than the Lip Ink.)

    Let me know what you think, Mama Grubbs!

  10. Great post! I just bought one of the retro Revlon Fire 'n Ice lipsticks too, and while I like the shade, it seems to wear off pretty quickly (as most do with me). I was thinking of researching lipsticks with staying power, but it seems you've done the work for me :)

  11. I agree with brittany, I recenlty found fire and ice i got the nail polish and lipstick, it too seems to wear off (never tryed lipink) but i would love to...