The Balm Cosmetics Meet Matt(e) Hughes Liquid Lipstick in Devoted.

As someone who has been obsessed with The Balm Cosmetics ever since discovering The Mary Lou Manizer Highlighter, it is with shock that I admit this is the first product I have ever owned from, let’s face it – basically my dream Makeup Brand!

The Balm is a must buy for any Vintage Girl out there – it’s up there with, Besamé and Benefit Cosmetics – beyond aesthetically appealing with it’s retro, old soul vibe and ultimately – authentic! Therefore, when I finally came to face to face with this beyond gorgeous brand for the first time, I simply had to purchase one of their beautiful products! Thanks to the modern world of technology, I had already discovered their beautiful liquid lipsticks and as this is my favourite beauty product, we all know which item I was going to buy.

After procrastinating between three shades; Devoted, Sentimental and Loyal – I decided to go with my first instinct and chose the original choice, Devoted. This colour is once again,  my signature favourite shade to wear which is a deep, vibrant, blue toned ruby red and I can one hundred percent confirm, this colour does not disappoint! This is the first time I have worn the lipstick and I can honestly say I will probably be applying this all week. The shade looks exactly as advertised and I feel like I’ve stepped out of a 1950s Technicolour Movie.

If you’re not really a red lipstick kinda girl,  you’ll be happy to know that The Balm have just released six, yes, six, (!) new liquid lipstick shades so you now have eighteen colours to choose from! Just promise me one thing, if you do end up buying them all then please, try not to blame me.

When applying the lipstick I noticed a unique mint scent coming from the product and honestly, it was quite refreshing to smell something different! Don’t get me wrong, I adore the sweet ingredients that are often used in lipsticks, but this fragrance further contributes to The Balm’s products standing out and being memorable. Plus, if you don’t like the mint aroma, there’s really no need to be put off from buying them, as it fades once it’s dried!

Furthermore, the packaging is so detailed and unique! I really appreciate when Brands take the time to not only make a good quality product but, also create something beautiful and classy, which you want to have pride of place on your Vanity Table. I think the majority of makeup lovers would agree that The Balm have truly outdone themselves with packaging and they definitely stand out from other Brands. I think the whole concept behind the product is so witty, very eye catching and most importantly – something different!

Cost wise, The Balm Cosmetics products are in the mid price range, with their liquid lipsticks being, £13.49 in stores and £14.99 online – strange, right? I’ve found that it’s usually the other way around, so I don’t really know why this is the case however, there is a silver lining! Superdrug currently have a 3 for 2 on a lot of their Brands in stores, (I’m not sure about online sadly) and The Balm is one of them, so remember that when you’re next browsing.

The only downside I can think of with The Balm Cosmetics is they are not stocked in every Superdrug, I’ve not yet to come across one in my hometown, (holds back the tears) so, if you’re someone who likes to buy beauty products in store only, this could be a problem. However, as I said previously, the products are just like advertised, so fear not! Debenhams also stock The Balm Cosmetics, so if you’re lucky your local store may have one and if not, it’s only a click away online.

I simply can’t emphasize enough how in love I am with this Brand, all of the products are so beautiful and are pretty much works of art and not just the liquid lipsticks – literally every single item! I can assure you when the sad day comes and my liquid lipstick runs out, I will most definitely be keeping the packaging and yes, maybe that’s too much, but for me? I think not. I may have waited years to finally own something from The Balm – but they most definitely met my dream expectations!

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MAC Ruby Woo Shadescents Lipstick.

For red lipstick lovers, Ruby Woo is without doubt known as the ultimate crimson shade to wear. It has been one of MAC’s best selling products for years and has celebrities like Dita Von Teese name it as one of her favourite colours to wear. As shocking as it sounds, I’ve never actually owned my own Ruby Woo, that is until now!

I knew that it was finally time I bought Ruby Woo when I saw that they were releasing a new Collection Called MAC Shadescents. Six of their most popular colours have been specially repackaged to shade-match each lipstick – with a unique perfume available too.

I absolutely adore the special packaging and design, it is just beautiful and MAC have truly outdone themselves. I know a lot of people like the simple, sleek original design of their lipsticks but I much prefer this, it’s so mesmerizing! I’m actually tempted to buy the other shades in the Shadescents Collection just to have more of these beautiful products, however I like to think that even I’m not that frivolous!

I really hate to say this, but one big downfall of the Shadescent Ruby Woo is that the finish is different to the original lipstick! I bought this thinking I’d be getting the iconic matte texture, but for some reason this special edition is a retro matte instead. As much as I’d love to embrace the retro format, being a huge vintage lover myself, I much prefer matte. I find the retro matte finish to be a lot harsher to apply and feel and look pretty drying. My friend actually has an original Ruby Woo and I swatched both on my hand, the colour slightly varied and hers was a lot more glossy than mine. I am honestly so disappointed that for whatever reason MAC felt the need to change the format for the special edition, why try and fix something when it’s already perfect?

In all fairness, I did contact MAC with my issue and they offered to send me a new one, but I’d have to give my Shadescents back to them, although I’m pretty sure you can’t resell lipstick? I decided against this as I’d rather be able to repurchase it in the store and make sure it’s a matte finish and not a retro matte. I have a lot of MAC lipsticks, I’m guessing around 20, so I’m a huge fan of the Brand, but this is definitely something I was ultimately pretty disappointed with.

To emphasize how much retro matte isn’t for me, I only have one other lipstick with this finish – Relentlessly Red, which ironically I purchased because of the texture! I’ve checked the other shades in the collection and as far as I’m aware they all match the original finishes, it’s just Ruby Woo that was changed for some strange reason.

Ultimately, I’m pretty happy to have this in my collection, simply because it is extra beautiful with the special packaging. Who knows, maybe the retro matte format will grow on me the more I try and get used to it? Ironically enough, after wearing it again for this post today, I did actually quite like the retro matte texture! But I do definitely recommend putting on a good few layers with a lipstick brush first as like I said before, I found it to be quite harsh to apply without. I’ve noticed that I do seem to use a lot more product with a retro matte finish lipstick, compared to the matte textures.

Overall I have not lost faith in MAC, I just like to be as honest and authentic to others as I can be. I wouldn’t want others to buy the Shadescents Ruby Woo for the packaging and get a different format like I did. I love the colour and I’ll just make sure I purchase  the original whenever I can.

All I have to say to MAC is, if it’s not broke – don’t fix it!

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MAC So Good For You Nutcracker Sweet Lipstick.

As soon as I saw the Christmas Collection MAC were releasing  entitled Nutcracker Sweet, I knew that I simply had to have one of the lipsticks. Ironically enough my mum loved one of the shades and bought Saucy Little Darling, (I will review this one at some point also) so ultimately, I ended up with two out of the five! Sadly, that lipstick and the other three shades are now no longer available on MAC’s website – however, my favourite out of the five and the one I’m reviewing – So Good For You, is still available! What’s even better is it’s also reduced to just £11.50 compared to the usual £17.50, which is a couple of pounds higher because of it being a limited edition.

So Good For You is described as an, “intense cool red” with a matte finish. The term cool red simply means that the shade is a blue tone which is usually suited to paler skin tones compared to a orange shade which often compliments warmer tones. If you’ve been reading my blog posts for a while then you’ll definitely know how much I love red lipsticks and this one definitely passes the test! It’s so vibrant and bold with an almost cherry red pinkish undertone, simply timeless! I must add, the colour on the website looks significantly different to the actual shade as you will see by my photos and their website picture. It looks so warm, almost an orange neon red online and it most definitely is not that shade.

The packaging is ever so beautiful and of course I will be keeping the box as well – I can’t throw away something that pretty! The pink, purple and gold shades are eye catching, vibrant and compliment each other perfectly. As I’ve said before, this collection is definitely my favourite that MAC have released so far and I honestly don’t know how they can improve on their designing, but I’m sure I’ll eat my words when the next one comes out!


As with all MAC products I have tried, the lipstick is a quality formula and lasts all day, only wearing slightly on the edges of my lips from eating – so I can’t really complain! Also, the matte finish is so creamy and doesn’t dry or feel unpleasant to wear, it stays looking presentable and in place. Even now, as I’m writing this twelve hours later you can still make out the overall shade left on my lips – that’s pretty good going if you ask me!

If you’re a red lipstick lover like myself then I would definitely hurry over to MAC and pick up So Good For You before it’s no longer available! I’m even tempted to buy another one as I hate to think about it running out and no longer having one in my makeup collection. The great thing about the Nutcracker Sweet products is that the shades are simply timeless and can be worn all year around, they’re not just specifically wearable for the Holiday Season!

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Bésame Cosmetics Classic Colour Lipstick in Red Hot Red.

As soon as I discovered Bésame Cosmetics, I realized my dream Brand had been created and if you’re a vintage lover like myself – then I’m sure you’ll feel the same too. Bésame’s products are all inspired from actual vintage makeup which existed in the 1920s up to the 1960s and the packaging is also replicated to perfection. The historical research and dedication that has been used in creating all of the products is  absolutely astounding and from lipstick to face powder they are each a work of art. Not only that, the brand is also cruelty free, which is just wonderful.

Therefore, when I discovered that Bésame was now being stocked on the UK website, cultbeauty, I knew that I had to add this amazing brand to my ever growing makeup collection. When I was looking through their lipsticks, I noticed each shade was named after a year, inspired by the shades released around that time, something so unique and such a wonderful idea. I was instantly drawn to, “1959 Red Hot Red” a lipstick which just so happened to be inspired by my absolute favourite – Marilyn!


This shade is described online as a, “bold, brazen warm red” and I would definitely agree with that statement. However, looking through the inspiration for this shade – photos of Marilyn in Some Like It Hot (1959) – I noticed that she continued to wear her cold blue tone reds which complimented her fair skin. Although, on some pictures the shade did look slightly warmer and as the film is in black and white, I’m only basing my opinion colour photos.


Ultimately, I’m very happy to have this shade in my collection as it is the only Marilyn, “inspired” lipstick so far, but I feel it doesn’t suit me as well as cooler toned reds. However, I still absolutely love the colour, you really can’t go wrong with a bold red. I think if I could choose another shade to buy it would definitely be, “1945 American Beauty” which is described as a, “cool berry red” although the shade looks slightly darker on the swatch photo. However, I’ve seen the lipstick on Pin Up Blogger Ashlyn Coco  and it looks so beautiful on her, so it most definitely has my approval and is on my to buy list!

As I previously mentioned, the packaging for each lipstick is simply beyond beautiful, it’s chic, timeless and effortlessly glamorous. Their products are without doubt some of the most aesthetically pleasing available and so unique and committed to continuing the vintage style. Furthermore, the lipsticks are even created like the classic products from the Golden Age of Hollywood and the tip is perfect for applying the perfect cupids bow shaped lip. Not only is the lipstick an absolute dream for your eyes, just as much precision and design has gone into the making of the box. It truly feels like I own an authentic vintage lipstick and for a retro girl at heart – it’s absolutely wonderful!

The matte finish is long lasting and very pigmented so not a lot of product is needed to created your perfect pout. However, what harm can an extra layer do, right? After all, you can never have enough lipstick! Also, as red was the most popular shade in the vintage era, the majority of the lipsticks in the collection are different shades of, you guessed it -red! As a modern day vintage lover, Bésame is definitely the brand for me! Not to worry though, there are a few pink, plum and darker shades available – but ultimately not a huge variety of colours, apart from red. Therefore, if you’re after wild stand out neon shades, then these probably aren’t the lipsticks for you.

At £18 each, these lipsticks are in the mid to high end brand range, so if you’re not as passionate about vintage and makeup like I am, then you can probably live without buying one as there are lots of amazing red lipsticks for much more affordable prices. However, if you’re after a quality, long lasting, incredibly aesthetically pleasing lipstick – then Bésame is a must add to the collection! I look forward to trying all of their other products at some point and I must say, it’s so refreshing how quite a few brands are being inspired by the vintage look! Soap and Glory, Benefit, The Balm – I could go on! It just goes to show how timeless and iconic Classic Hollywood is and if it’s not broke – don’t fix it.

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