Sunday, April 13, 2014

Clinique Almost Lipstick Part II

I tried Clinique Almost Lipstick Black Honey way back when it first came out and made a big splash. Didn't like it then, so when a bunch more colors came out in 2012, I didn't bother a look. I was still in Japan at the time, and wouldn't have been able to get it anyway. Then last year Clinique came out with an Almost Lipstick Pink Ribbon 2013, I finally caved and picked up both the limited edition 99 Pink Ribbon Honey as well as 37 Luscious Honey. And while at it, I thought I'd give the original Black Honey a second try too, since it's free and all ^.^ Who knows, people change.

Clinique Almost Lipstick Black Honey GWP (far right), 37 Luscious Honey (middle), and Pink Ribbon 2013 limited edition 99 Pink Ribbon Honey (left). All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

The texture of these Almost Lipsticks changed a bit from what I remember. It's a lot more balmy now than buttery, thinner and a bit waxy in fact, though not enough to bother me. And being unscented having no artificial fragrance mask, it even smells waxy a like an old fashioned lipstick, which doesn't bother me either. Likewise the color is more of a translucent tint than a stain, and it leaves a sheen but nothing I would call glossy.

These Almost Lipsticks do keep my lips pretty comfortable, but they're also wax based so I don't get that "ahh" soothing feeling like I do with an oil based lip balm that's more slick. Still, they have decent lasting power. I would even say these are thinner, better lasting version of the L'Oreal Colour Riche Balms, with a bit more color and less of sheen. And turns out I like them a lot better now, even the color Black Honey I didn't click with so much then ^.^ Neat how that happens, huh? The take away lesson is that "never" and "always" may not be never or always. If I don't like something now, I'll try it again some time later down the road.

- Black Honey: not as violet as I remember, perhaps my lip color changed as I got older? Anyway, it's more of a translucent and shimmer-free red wine now and it turns even more red on my lips. Interesting, hmm? May be my lips were pinkier back then, which added that violet undertone that made me look poisoned. Not anymore, thank goodness ^.^

When I bought these online via Clinique USA last year, 37 Luscious Honey was only one that left next to Black Honey, and it's gone now, with only Black Honey left. The full size is housed in a brushed aluminum body and shiny metal cap, and being in a long and thin tube the empty aluminum bottom half is much lighter than the metal top half filled with the product. This weight imbalance means the lipstick tends to fall over at the slightest disturb when I stand it up, which means it's prone to breakage. But other than that I like this packaging a lot! So nice and slim and feels good in the hand. The cap shuts tight too.

37 Luscious Honey: a translucent and juicy blush pink with very fine gold, pink, and reddish shimmers that don't show. Applies more red and pigmented on my lips than swatched.

I do like that Clinique gives out a freebie pouch with their limited Pink Ribbon release each year. The Pink Ribbon 2012 release was a Chubby Stick in the color Plumped Up Pink, and it came with a round zipper pouch to store Chubby Sticks with, which I now carry in my bag with several at-the-moment lippies. For 2013, the Pink Ribbon release was an Almost Lipstick and a padded zipper pouch, which became my travel touch-up pouch. Oh, and the packaging for this Almost Lipstick is lovely too, being a simple all-metal tube with a pink ribbon at the bottom and a metallic band of pink! The all metal actually distributes the weight a little better than the metal-aluminum packaging, and this tube feels even better and weightier in my hands than the regular full size packaging. Can't wait to see what Clinique will release for Pink Ribbon 2014, hopefully another Almost Lipstick in a different limited edition color ^.^

99 Pink Ribbon Honey: a sheer and translucent carnation pink with whitish shimmers that are sparse and not as dense as those in 37 Luscious Honey. This color goes on a lovely sheer wash of pink, although the pink turns a bit brighter on my lips than swatched.

From left to right: Black Honey, 37 Luscious Honey, and 99 Pink Ribbon Honey.

See my previous Clinique Almost Lipstick post.

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