Color-changing lipsticks are nice in theory—a lipstick that adjusts to your body’s unique pH!—but most of them usually just end up making your lips look like you just made out with a cherry popsicle. Lipstick Queen is one of the few brands I’ve tried that makes color-changing lip products that aren’t gimmicky, but actually flattering. Its Hello Sailor and Frog Prince lip and cheek products have developed a cult following since their launch, and for good reason: they give a subtle hint of color and look good on all skin tones. Plus, there’s just something so satisfying (and mesmerizing) about smearing a green, yellow or blue lipstick on your lips and watching it turn into a flattering pink, coral, or berry tint. Thus, when the brand announced it would be adding three more shades to their color-changing arsenal, I knew I had to test them out.
L to R: Highway 66, Old Flame, Venetian Masquerade
The best thing about Lipstick Queen's color-changing lipsticks is the formula, which feels more like a balm than a lipstick. They're supremely hydrating when you apply and a few extra swipes will give you a gloss-like shine. Above, you can see the three shades swatched on my arm. Highway 66 is a yellow-green that turns into a peachy tint, Old Flame is an orange that turns into a reddish coral, and Venetian Masquerade is purple that adjusts to a vibrant raspberry.
I'd definitely use Highway 66 (a pale green balm that turns into a light peach) as an everyday lip balm—you can swipe it on without a mirror, which is a requirement I now have for all of my lip balms since moving to New York. (I'll never forget the first time I whipped out a compact to apply lipstick on the subway and everyone acted like I had flashed them—never again). Out of all three of the lipsticks, this one was my favorite. What can I say? I like my tinted lip balms how I like my DM slides: low-key, but impactful.
I normally try to avoid any lipsticks in the bright-orange category due to the fact they make me look like I have jaundice, but this was an exception to the rule. Old Flame looks bright orange in the tube but actually morphs into a surprisingly flattering coral.
If you're going for a more subtle look, one swipe of berry lipstick adds the sheerest purple tint to your lips. If looking to go bolder, try a few more swipes for the color to build into a vibrant fuchsia shade.
I’ve given my beloved berry lipstick collection a rest ever since I went platinum—with the new hair, they just look too severe on me. Venetian Masquerade allows me to dip my toe back into the berry bandwagon. This is the perfect entry product for anyone curious about berry lipstick but not quite ready for a matte, full-coverage formula.