Another day, another brand claiming their lipstick is transfer-proof. Sometimes that’s true, as long as you apply the exact right amount and don’t eat or drink, and sometimes it doesn’t even dry down completely with one light application, begging me to wonder ‘transfer-proof in what universe?!’ I can only assume that a person’s body chemistry can affect this issue, because as we know a product may be perfect for one person and completely fail on another, but still, when I came across 3INA and their The Longwear Lipstick recently I had high hopes. Their claims are on par with the other leading liquid lipsticks out there, and the customer reviews on LookFantastic were great, so I ordered 3 shades hoping I had just found a lipstick even more incredible than my favourite, Maybelline’s Super Stay Matte Inks.
THE RUN DOWN
3INA (pronounced (mee-nah) is a vegan and cruelty free brand, which offers ‘premium products, made in Europe,’ with a focus on colour that is designed to suit every skin tone. Their The Longwear liquid lipsticks, available in 17 shades, claim to be a 12hr long-wearing formula filled with hyaluronic acid spheres that keep this lipstick feeling comfortable and non-drying all day, and is transfer-proof and matte after drying.
3INA are newly available from Superdrug, on whose website is where I first spotted this lipstick. They had a big video on Superdrug’s 3INA brand page dedicated to promoting The Longwear Lipstick…and yet, somehow, said lipstick isn’t actually shoppable anywhere on their website? I got mine instead from LookFantastic, which had an offer on for 22% off. With said high hopes based off the raving customers reviews I read there, I bought 3 shades, expecting this to be a new favourite.
In a matte opaque packaging with a clear plastic end that allows you to see through to the formula, the packaging gives you a pretty accurate representation of the shade inside. The applicator is a doe’s foot wand, which is shaped well for precise and easy application. 3INA’s own website states you should apply their lip balm, then their lip primer, then lip liner before you apply this lipstick, but I never take those steps before applying a liquid lipstick so I treated this product as I would any other like it, applying it directly onto bare lips.
The formula when applying feels slightly whipped, almost like it’s a middle ground between Bourjois’s very plush mousse feeling Velvet Inks and Maybelline’s thick liquid consistency of their Super Stay Matte Inks. After a few minutes the formula dries down to a true matte. It feels soft and light on the lips, not as dry as Maybelline’s Matte Inks, nor as heavy—also notably more matte, because despite their name they have always dried with a slight satin on my lips. (Is that just me??)
226 is a coral pink, brighter when wet, before drying down with a little more subtlety.
334 is a medium raspberry pink.
244 is a blue toned classic red.
So how does this lipstick perform? Um, kind of like most others, which disappointed me. I think a key with this formula is not to over apply it because if you layer it too much upon application then you will immediately get some slight transfer, even before eating and drinking comes into play. In my experience liquid lipsticks react in one of three ways when eating or drinking: flaking off, wearing away in the centre, or softening completely so that the way you consume nourishment entirely dictates how much of the product survives. The reason the Maybelline Matte Inks are my Holy Grail is because for me they’re an option two product, wearing away in the centre and allowing reapplication without becoming stiff, crumbly or patchy. These 3INA Longwear Lipsticks on me broke down in my least favourite way—the complete softening.
I hate that most of all because I’m a lazy person with deep behavioural habits who will not/does not remember to eat teeth-first when wearing lipstick, and as such my lipsticks take a mouthy beating. I like hand held carbs (Sandwiches! Burgers! Doughnuts!) and that’s why I eat such items when I perform a lipstick wear test because in all likelihood I am going to consume something akin to those foods at some point while I wear a lipstick, and I need to know if a particular lipstick is going to fail me in that instance.
THE WEAR TEST
As you can see below, this lipstick was worn down in the middle by a crunchy snack and an accompanying drink, but once hot food and more lip friction came into play it softened into an easily smudgeable mess all over. I touched it up after that first snack and drink–a process that needed a bit of care because the 226 can be a little patchy in re-application–and after that I experienced light transferring anytime something touched my mouth. I think that was because the lipstick was already then too thickly applied to dry all the way through, creating transfer, but to me not being able to handle a touch up makes it fairly useless as a longwear lipstick. Other liquid lipsticks have performed this way for me, so it’s no great shock, but all those customer reviews really had me convinced my Holy Grail lippie was going to be replaced. Alas, I now have 3 lipsticks I will only wear when I don’t expect to eat, nor drink extensively (so, for blog photos, or trips like shopping, etc.)
1.) After eating a packet of crisps/chips as a snack with a glass of water drunk through a straw.
2.) Reapplied after said snacking and drinking.
3.) An hour after photo 2, with no further eating or drinking, becoming patchier.
4.) After eating a veggie burger with another glass of water drunk via straw, including the classic ‘burger chin,’ as I call it.
In summation, do I love these lipsticks? Personally they aren’t worth the £15 because I can’t wear them for a full day’s wear without having to consciously alter what I eat and how I eat it, and if I’m doing that I may as well just use a £5 creamy bullet lipstick I can easily wipe off and fully reapply. If you already alter your consumption habits when you wear lipsticks then this product may serve you as well as any other does. If you don’t like the Maybelline Matte Inks because they’re too thick/drying for you, or because they don’t perform for you like they seem to for everyone else, then perhaps this lipstick will work well for you. If, like me, your Matte Inks have yet to be out-performed by any other lipstick, you can probably save your money by skipping these.