For years, I’ve been on a quest for dramatic lipstick. Not just any dramatic lipstick, mind you, but one that doesn’t make me look like a clown. I’m pale with an otherwise-ruddy complexion, and every red lipstick I try basically makes me look like Ronald McDonald with long hair – not a good look.
So when I saw these Revlon Colorburst matte balms, I snapped up two whose packages made them look like they might work with my skin tone: Sultry and standout. After swatching them and wearing each for a day, I’m not entirely sure how I feel about these as colors, but I’m definitely a fan of the formula.
I started with Sultry, which, oddly, is no longer listed on Revlon’s website. Nevertheless, it exists! I know, because I bought it. Sultry is a pinky plum with a little bit of iridescence to it. Here it is on my lips, freshly-applied:
Standout is a dramatic red:
Both applied smoothly, though I found myself struggling at the edges of my lips, where both went just slightly skip-y. A lip liner would probably help with this for most people, but as we already know, I’m lip-liner-incompetent, so that would probably only have made things worse for me.
Despite the name, these are not “balms” in the sense I would expect: they’re not sheer, they’re not glossy, and they’re not particularly moisturizing. Basically they’re opaque, mostly-matte lipstick crayons. They’re certainly less glossy than a typical gloss or lipstick, but there’s definitely a little bit of shine still there at times, especially when they’re newly applied.
These balms have a menthol feel to them; upon application, they tingle a bit. They also stain quite well; I left Sultry on overnight and, when I swiped a tissue over my lips the next morning, there was still color coming off. Neither was immune to the passage of time or food, however. You’ll definitely want to re-apply after lunch. Overall, though, these lasted much better than I expected them to. I’m impressed!
As far as how Sultry and Standout flatter my skin tone, that’s a tougher question. Here’s how each looks on me:
Standout is a bit bright for my comfort, I think, though the more I stare at the picture the more I wonder what the problem is. So basically I’m punting on Standout. I want to like it, but I’m not sure I would ever have the courage to wear it out as part of a look.
Sultry is definitely wearable for me, but only if I pair it with a dark-ish eyeshadow; without eyes to balance it, it looks like I’m a prettily made-up corpse.
For both of these, I felt like I needed something more in my cheek area to bring the whole look together. Not necessarily blush – I’ve got enough redness going on as it is – but something to make “oh hey, sudden bright lip color!” not quite so jarring to the eye. My cheeks are really the last makeup frontier for me; I still haven’t quite figured out what goes there or how to use elements there bring out what I want to bring out on my face.
So, final feelings? I’m not sure I love either of these colors; I suspect each needs to be part of a complete “look” to read quite right on my skin. I do love the formula of these balms, however, and I’m probably going to be perusing the other colors in the line next time I’m at CVS.