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Saturday, 22 March 2014

Visée Creamy Lipstick PK804 and RD401

Visée is a Japanese drugstore under the Kosé umbrella; its relaunch in Autumn 2013 caught my attention, and having been impressed with their eyeshadows in the past, I couldn't resist the urge to dabble. Just a bit. As the haul was on the *cough* epic, I'm-being-comprehensive-for-Science! side, I'll be splitting up the reviews into three categories:
1. Visée, Vis-nay. :(
2. Visée, Vis-yay! :)
and 3. Visée, Vis-eh... :|

Spoiler: today's is a Vis-nay.

To recap / as a teaser, here's the haul, thanks to a colleague travelling to Japan, whom I persuaded to raid a drugstore:
clockwise from left: Lip Balm and Gloss OR20,  Smoky Rich Eyes GY-7, Glossy Rich Eyes PK-3,
 Nudy Rich Eyes BE-5, Blend Colour Cheeks OR-6
To which were then added, thanks to the lovely Liz, Creamy Lipstick in shades PK804 (a limited edition release for this spring) and RD401 (part of the core range):
It's always a bit laughable for this compulsive depotter to talk about packaging, but I really do appreciate the sleek, black-on-black stuff in which these products are clothed. It's plastic but not at all flimsy or cheap-feeling (the lipstick cases and blush palette in particular have impressive heft and shut with a very posh click indeed) and I like that the lace details vary between each range of products while still creating a unified feminine-but-not-tooth-achingly-girly aesthetic for the brand.

Enough lip service, let's move on to the actual lipsticks. (See what I did thar.)

Wondegondigo's rave review sparked a frenzy on makeupalley, and many others on my blogroll have succumbed, including Project Swatch, Swatcharama!, and The Consolations of Vanity. Unfortunately, I part ways with my pals on these: the high-slip, almost liquefying-upon-application formula sinks into my liplines and brings up flakes I could've sworn I'd exfoliated away. Despite being so slick that even a very thin coat creates a gloopy line between my lips whenever my mouth is closed, it's also very drying, leaving my lips painfully chapped, cracked, and peeling off in sheets within a few hours, even worn over balm. Even Creamy Lipstick's excellent pigmentation and scent-free qualities can't redeem a product that inflicts actual physical pain and bleeding, and requires days of no-lip-colour purgatory recovery time after a wearing.

Bitterest of ironies -- both PK804 and RD401 are wonderful, so-hard-to-find-in-Japanese-lines brights. One swipe swatches on bare skin:
indirect sunlight
These formulas are similar but not quite identical -- PK804 has a lighter texture and even more slip than the already very slick RD401: this seems to translate into 'will catch on even baby-fine hairs like craaaazy'. Seriously, does it not look like I'm cultivating that one particular strip of armhair as some sort of postmodern radical fashion statement?

On my lips, it's a case of (sorry, Byron) all that's worst of creamy and dry: gooping where my lips meet, and exhibiting a desire to wander outside my lip contour, but also worsening the appearance of every line, bump, and flake, and already starting to look patchy at the edges as it sucks all the moisture from my skin.
one coat of Visée PK804 in (overcast) natural light

Sun came out for full-face shots:
eyes: Visée Smoky Rich Eyes GY-7  |  cheeks: Canmake CL04 Clear Pink Joy

Comparison swatches with some of my bright, cooler pinks: Addiction Amazing cheekstick is more blue, Laneige Serum Intense LR08 Flare Magenta is warmer, rosier and sits on a clear base, Guerlain Rouge Allure Reflex is brighter and warmer.


RD401 is slightly better in appearance (both because it has slightly less slip and because it lacks PK804's white base, which always tends to make textural faults more visible), but unfortunately kicks off the same cracking-peeling-bleeding-pain cycle. I also want to point out another quirk of this lipstick formula: it photographs really well -- deceptively well, in fact, looking far smoother and more even in pictures than it does to my naked eye. So please don't think I'm crazy for complaining about faults that are very much minimised in photos! I hope you can still see in this shot that RD401 also exhibits a tendency to wander outside my lip contours, goop between lips, and sink into every vertical lip line, and can extrapolate:
Visée RD401 in  angled sunlight

In the minutes it took for me to transition to full-face shots, RD401 also begins to exhibit unevenness of pigmentation (darkening in patches on my lower lip), as the apocalyptic drying process begins in earnest:
eyes: Visée Nudy Rich Eyes BE-5  |  cheeks: Canmake CL01 Clear Red Heart

The full-face shot is a bit more true-to-colour (i.e. deeper and more muted) for the lipstick as it wears: while bright in the grand scheme of lipsticks, RD401 looks noticeably softer and less vibrant than some of my favourite cool red lipsticks: Suqqu Creamy Glow 18 Karakurenai, Guerlain Rouge G Gala, YSL Rouge Volupte 34 Rose Asarine:

I think the difference between the Visée and YSL is subtlest but especially notable -- even though the YSL shade is both lighter and less saturated, it's got a clarity and brightness that just glows against my skin, while the Visée's subtle mutedness dims and sits slightly apart in a slightly jarring rather than 'popping' way. It looks much more face-brightening on Belly (whose Suqqu red preferences are also diametrically opposed to mine) and Lisa, with slightly darker, more muted skintones than mine -- and I wonder if any readers have thoughts about these minute undertonal distinctions and preferences :)

48 comments:

  1. It's a pity these didn't work for you! I don't find them drying in the slightest, but I rarely find any lip products drying - so I am clearly not a good judge of that.

    I wonder what it is about my undertones or lip pigmentation that turns things pinker - to my eye, RD401 is much pinker on my lips than on yours / Belly's / Lisa's. This is par for the course for me - many, perhaps most, bright reds and pinky-reds turn pink on me (though deep reds tend to stay red). If anyone knows why that is, I'd love to hear it!

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    1. Ah, it was Emi's swatches which ignited my lemming for these! :)

      Yes, RD401 looks decidedly more pink on you. I am not sure whether my lighting also muted the colour on me. I'll have to try and take another look, and perhaps apply fewer layers this time round.

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  2. I find almost all lip products drying, but usually have better luck with Japanese brands. And these had come so highly recommended ;)
    It is so interesting -- I think this one stays true on me because it's just soooo pigmented my cool lips can't do anything do the colour. But your bright vs deep distinction is interesting -- maybe whatever the deepening element is (usually brown, in my experience), it's acting as a preemptive corrective to the pinkification process?

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  3. Hey Kate, so sorry to hear you're not loving these! I haven't tried these so I can't really tell. They do LOOK spectacular on you, but I totally understand that sometimes a formula just doesn't FEEL right.

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    1. Or feels WRONG! RONG RONG RONG *cries salt tears* :)

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  4. We must sit all together and each try on the same lipstick and ooh and ahh. It's quite amazing how the same color appears so different on each of us.
    It is such a shame bc RD401 does look amazing in your pictures. I still struggle with Karakurenai when I wear it thinking it wears me more than I wear it. Must wrestle it down into submission though - I accidentally smooched my cap into the bullet the other day. :D

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    1. Oh and Kate, I have such Visee on my brain. I lurrrve them.

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    2. Sounds like a partay :D If it includes chimek with which to remove said lipsticks between testings >.>
      You evil tyrant of creamy glows! D: Ruling with a mailed fist etc. To be fair, Karakurenai looks better on you than Ichijiku on me! Think poop. Literally.

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  5. What a shame these were a nay, they look beautiful on you. Cant wait to read your yays!

    That Laneige is really close to the Guerlain, must have a looksie in person!

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    1. It does look similar in swatches, but applies quite different on lips :) *scratches head* I think because the Laneige has a clear base vs Reflex's white one. I prefer the colour of L by far!

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  6. I was waiting for your Visee reviews like a mad person! But now I'm a little sad after hearing how bad the lipsticks were to you...now I'm scared if you do a JS post seeing how everything you say seems to have a huge impact on my bank account, if you talk-god forbid-trash about JS I might love the brand a lil less!!! :( i hope you like their lipsticks. Have you had time to go check them out at the counters? They're coming out with a summer collex in HK sooner than japan!! I can't wait to ask my friend for the whole collex again, seeing how the packaging is PINK this time, I might order everything in doubles lol

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    1. lol, different strokes and all that. Most JS stuff doesn't work for me! But I did receive one of the spring lipsticks, and really enjoy it :D

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  7. Pity to hear they're not quite it.. though they look great on you on the photos. I've not tried anything from Visée yet, only read about their eyeshadows. Congrats anyway on your lovely haul, with hopefully a lot of Vis-yay.

    Btw I love your header. You didn't only give me the how-to of deodorizing lipsticks (didn't try it yet though) but also of forcing lots of my mineral eyeshadow samples to share pans.
    Such a simple idea and I've been pressing minerals for years, but somehow I never did it this way. During the last few days I filled a whole palette with duo- and trio-pans; a wonderful help to organize everlasting but small samples and use them more often!

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    1. I was perversely trying to nail (accurate) BAD photos of these! It's much harder than it sounds :D

      Thank you :D I hope you enjoy getting reacquainted with your destinked and repressed makeup :)

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  8. Both of them look wonderful on you! but the red one is my favorite as in my eyes with the pink one in the close up the rim of your lips looks a little bit to purplish/
    Blueish is it because of the drying? With the red in the picture the unevenness make your lips look more voluptuous :D

    I'm so tempted (even with the Suqqu debacle) both of them are cool colors! But I think I will try first with the Guerlain and YSL reds as I can swatch them and see how they look on me in real life and maybe take the risk with Addiction as a pink lipstick is a necessity for me! I need some cool pink on my life!!!

    But first because I' more wiser now, I will wait for you Visée, Vis-yay! :) and Visée, Vis-eh... :| posts :D

    I'm trying to find the closest colors to my Suqqu collection ( Ex 15,16,17 and Three
    I only have Star Guitar) in nail polish, as if I can use them on my face I will use them on my nails!! With no luck at the moment as the colors are so complexed! :(

    If you know of some please tell me.

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    1. Ann -- I think it's my natural lip colour (light blueish pink -- think corpse!) showing through on the paler shade. I hate hate hate overdrawn lips so even the flattering red makes me shudder D: :)

      It must be so tough having skin that really skews colours dramatically :( I've fallen out of love with nail polish acquisition so am not sure about finding ones similar to those shadows, but the idea is wonderful! Do keep me posted as to your future discoveries.

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  9. Is the some lipstick shades which you can't pull off? Lol seriously... Both look great on you, wished I had a friend who would be traveling to Japan. That would be very bad for her ;-)

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    1. haha, Sara, I've deleted many a white-based apricot picture from my camera / my memory lately D: They always tempt me from the racks in Korean brand displays. Always a mistake.

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  10. Bah, Byron would still kiss those lips anyway. Shame that they didn't work for you because the colours are gorgeous and you still look amazing. I can't wait for the yay list entry!

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    1. But I don't want to be kissed by Byron! He seems halitosis-y, no? :) Plus, syphilis DNW.

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  11. So sad that these are a Vis-nay :-( but I can relate to one of those lipsticks that are too melt-y, almost become oil that got soaked by bits and pieces of dry lips and fry them to perfection (Aerin Lips & Cheeks comes in mind right away), so maybe.. repurpose them for blush? That's kinda my default for faulty lipsticks.
    Anyhow, yes, agree, those colors look lovely on you. Re. RD401, how fascinating, three ladies, with three different skin tone, wearing the same color. I think on Lisa, right away I can see her skin tone is pulling a bit yellow, so the lipstick's cool tone just shows up (also making it look pinker). With Belly & you, both of you are more neutral in tone, and thus the red. But it's really hard to judge based on lighting etc.
    Speaking of reds turning pinks/fuschia, I do have the same problem for some lipsticks. I still don't know why. I once read that it has something to do with the level of carmine in the lipstick pigment. Carmine tends to stay true whereas other synthetic red colorant can be slightly modulated by pH. I wish I can find that article, if anyone out there do, please share it with us.

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    1. Yessss! You get me, Claire! I would definitely try these as blush except that I really don't want my cheeks to crack and bleed, either. Really, many formulas are drying on my lips, but few as bad as these!

      I really wish we could all sit down in the same shot to capture the differences. One of my favourite things to do is to try my makeup on friends -- strong yellow tones seem to do the most dramatic things to the formulas/shades I own. Recently had to curtail makeover on a very yellow-olive girlfriend because nothing I owned look remotely related to the pan colour on her. We ended up going shopping for new stuff instead.

      You make an excellent point re ingredients! I've read that certain pigments react strongly to hormones, or oils, as well as to pH: red 40 and red 7 are supposed to be most affected by pH. Also hope to hear more on this :D

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    2. LOL I guess these Vis-nay just can't win.. not only lip-crackers but cheek-crackers as well, bfft! My 2x, onward with my search for the perfect lipstick formulation. I thought this one is a big contender. I wish there's an ingredient list somewhere for these lipsticks to compare/contrast.

      Ah, so, I guess I am NOT hearing voices in my head that certain red pigment is affected by pH (another LOL), because that was the first thing that came into my mind when I thought about reds & turning fuchsias. I shall try to find the original article that I found it from (may even be from Makeupalley a long time ago).

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    3. Thank you :D The tricky thing is, makeup ingreds lists will be the same across a formula and with the pigments listed in the (+/-) section at the end, so you can't really tell which colouring is in which shade!

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  12. I'm sorry these didn't work for you... I really wanted to buy some lipsticks with my haul, but couldn't justify them (seriously, I do not need another lip product), and now I'm glad I didn't!

    Are the eyeshadows a yay? I'm mixed on mine - love some, eh on some - but they look great on you in the little I can see here! Can't wait for the post!

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    1. I think only spooky and I find these drying, so maybe worth a shot next time you 'need' another lip product :)
      1/2 yay 1/2 eh for me, I think. In general I love the textures, though I struggle to find more colour combos I would like from the range. Which are you particularly fond of / not ?

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    2. If ever :)

      I've been a bit meh on PU-4 (or is it PU-3? The one with the browns and purple, same series as PK-3) but I've been loving the Nudy Rich BE-5. It's neutral with lovely textures and it just works for me!

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    3. I love BE-5 too :) Just editing swatches and its textures meld SO beautifully :D Perfectly pitched neutrals on our skintone too I think :D
      Y'know, I was hesitating over that PU palette, since I love my PK-3 but decided the purple might be too sheer/lacking, and not really stand up to the browns enough. Is that what you find?

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    4. They really do. It's not particularly unique, although having all the shades in one palette is super convenient, and for that quality, I have no problem having similar dupes. It reminds me a little of my Burberry shades; how is that a bad thing? I pried the plastic piece out of the palette partly because the packaging isn't my thing, but then I SAVED the packaging because I might want to travel with it. That's how much I like this palette :)

      It IS sheer. I haven't tried it with a squirrel round brush - Haku G5528 specifically - so maybe that will improve pigmentation. (OH. Been meaning to tell you how annoyed I am at you for my Suqqu M lemming :D Holding off with the Haku for now. And I just bought two Chiku face brushes, so... yeah, not buying brushes for a while.) ANYWAY. The light silvery browny not-quite-taupe shade in the upper right is pretty unique, I find, even though the darker brown is less unique on the eye (not enough of the shimmer transfers, unfortunately). So far I'm keeping it for that one shade, and because I really haven't tested it in full. I plan to, though! Might try to swatch if I have time one night, get it up on MUA.

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    5. looool. I quite agree re the non-uniqueness but utter usability. I'm actually relying on BE-5 to slow my use of my rapidly depleting Star Guitar and Shu Prestigious Bordeaux :)

      Awaiting swatches of your tricksy PU! Don't smack me, but have you also tried using the inclosed sponge applicators to pack on colour? Often does the trick with sheerer J formulas.

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  13. The look amazing on you, but seriously, how do you pull of every single look? I am personally a no pink lip girl. I stick to reds, oranges and plums. I just find the contrast with my chocolate skin makes me look, for lack of a better word "hookerish."

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    1. LOL, oh Daisy. I do feel a little tween-prostitute-Barbie in the first pink :P

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  14. I've been aggressively acquiring lipsticks with colour, and I FINALLY understand what you guys mean when you say a lipstick formula causes your lips to peel. :P The lightbulb moment was so tremendous that I was more excited than upset that the lipstick I was trying (Kanebo Sensai Intense Lasting) was a fail.

    I have the PK804 and RD400. Haven't worn the PK804 for a full day yet, but the RD400 is fine. Better than my one Suqqu CG. *depressedface* I agree with you about the Visee creamy formula though--it's like wearing schmaltz on the lips!

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    1. Hah :P I also had a moment of heavens-parting-angelic-chorus when I first experienced eyeshadow creasing (Illamasqua molten metals) and muddying/desaturation (a Kevyn Aucoin quint).

      So much YMMVs :( WHY this so unreasonably hard. Makes so little sense, too. I usually adore schmaltzy formulas -- they settle down to nicely creamy on me. USUALLY. >:C

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  15. I was rubbing my lip and nodding seriously to your comparison with YSL RPC. Hahaha.

    I definitely see what you mean about the lipstick fail! *rushes to put on RD401* I am going to check for goopiness now too. I swear in my picture I had taken about two or three swipes of the stuff as well!

    So sorry that the formula doesn't agree well with your lips. :( Looking forward to the Visyays!

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    1. lol I do adore my new-gen Rouge Volupte, though :) As always, YMMV :( I'm sad I can't join this particular club with you hotties *paws at window*

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  16. These all look great on you! Too bad they didn't work as well :-( I'm having lazy moments at the moment, just tired all the time, but I always look forward to your posts!!

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    1. *smooch* Thank you for dropping in, dearest Lily.

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  17. I have been DYING to try these new/repackaged Visee products but I couldn't justify it with the lack of reviews (and my student budget). I AM SO GLAD you will be reviewing some of these products and I'm especially looking forward to the Visyay's :D! YAY!

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    1. Some of the yays are real YAYS :D I'll try to get them posted promptly!

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  18. It's totally,almost completely, impossible to get Visse here... so reading this post helps to kill lemming created by Belly :P
    yet, it's terrible that they didn't work since they look totally adorable on you paired with those taupe-y eyes

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    1. De poder conseguilos si los puedes conseguir en Ichibankao o con Mylollypop (mexicana viviendo en Japon) vas a llorar por los precios pero si se puede! :)


      If you want them you can find them in Ichibankao or with Mylollypop( Mexican living in Japan) you will cry for the prices but yes you can! :)

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    3. Acabo de entrar a Mylollypop... si estoy llorando de la emoción :p!!!!! Muchas gracias por compartilo, luego también se pueden conseguir cosas en Manzanastik en Facebook. Saludos!!!!

      (translation: I just got into Mylollypop and now I'm crying of excitement!!!! :P Thanks a lot for sharing and I remember you can also get stuff from Manzanastik in Facebook . Hugs!!!)

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    4. hehe, I sense danger for Anne's bank account ahead :)

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  19. Just to tell you that Jungsaemmool have just put a makeup vid of your girls Spica

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