Tonight, I need your sweet Caresse
Gabbie Tatad (The Philippine Star) - October 1, 2015 - 10:00am

MANILA, Philippines - When I lie down at night, I don’t have discreet fantasies about Chris Hemsworth or Robert Downey Jr.—primarily because I don’t need to be halfway to Bedfordshire to do so. Instead, I dream of the perfect lipstick. I dream about breaking certain lipstick conventions, like the commonly acknowledged statement that if it’s a matte finish, it’s meant to dry your lips out a bit. (Or a ton.)

Recently, L’Oreal introduced the Tint Caresse, the brand’s first ever powder lipstick, which has been a serious game changer. Yup, take a minute, because I did say “powder.” That’s just the start of the many reasons why this product, so thoughtfully engineered from the outside in, deserves a spot in your makeup bag.

First of all, the Tint Caresse is packaged in a seemingly common pen-type cylinder, with a few key differences. The actual product is pressed down into a little chamber inside the cap. Similar to what a few Japanese brands have been doing with two-way brow products, the “pen” part has a sponge-tip applicator, with Tint Caresse’s being tulip shaped for extra definition. However, this product’s applicator is spring-loaded, allowing the it to retract into the cap with a small bit of force each time it’s closed, meaning you start each use with a perfectly measured amount of product. It’s a beauty geek’s dream come true.

The product itself is the fruit of technological innovation—a formula blending emollient oils, silky touch powder, and elastomeric silicon, among other things, to bring together a powder we’ve never seen before. Tint Caresse adheres like a lipstick should, sits lightly on lips like air, gives a matte finish without being in any way drying, and lasts until you need it to come off.

The color selection is also something to be commended, because with eight launching colors, it already runs the spectrum from red to pink to nude to peach to orchid to plum. But the really beautiful thing about this is that all the colors are rather sophisticated in tone, and I’m unsure if it’s because of the fact that it’s a powder, but it delivers a host of variety and boldness without ever being vulgar.

A reason for that may also be because it’s being marketed as a great tool for the gradient lip—the look of post-cherry popsicle consumption, with darker concentrated color in the center of the lip, blending outward. And yet, to leave it at that would be a truly grave mistake, because this is a serious, full-coverage product that works on its own. (Not-so pro tip: it’s an incredible treat with a sharp lip liner round the edges, because the product both blends in with and sets the defining liner at the same time.)

One tiny thing here, though, is that it claims to be transfer proof. I don’t find this to be a hundred percent true. I think the nature of the product being what it is, it’s built to adhere to skin, so it tends to kiss off minimally on say, the back of your hand. On a tissue or on other surfaces, though, it stands strong. So while you can rejoice at the prospect of eating a burger without leaving that dreaded lipstick ring around the bun, perhaps look in another direction for a more make out-friendly lip color. And at 500 pesos a pop for a seriously excellent product, I think we can afford to be a little less nitpicky.

The beauty market is oversaturated with so-called variations on the same old products, constantly throwing around the term “revolutionary” and “brand new.” In its midst, the Tint Caresse stands out as something that is not only seriously unique, but delivers on fronts where its predecessors failed to do so. (I’m looking at you, prune-esque inducing matte lipsticks of yesteryear.) It has not only managed to tick all the boxes of what you ever wanted in one product, but its managed to be that thing you didn’t even know you were dreaming of. Which, in terms of any product development, has every right to be called revolutionary.

So now that we’ve found powder lipstick, it’s inevitably on to the perfect mascara.

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