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I am a big fan of the lipstick/lip gloss/lip balm hybrid formula, so when I learned about the new Lip Lover collection from Lancôme, I was ecstatic! Didn't help that Lily Collins (the new face of Lancôme) looks absolutely gorgeous wearing one of them. And if I'm not mistaken, I think she was wearing the same shade that I am reviewing today, too! :D
What I have is the deluxe sample size I received from Sephora in shade 355 Framboise Etoile. I'm a little sad that the packaging of the sample size is just a plain tube with a screw cap instead of the push-to-release button of the full size. At least it has the same clear window design on the tube and the same type of applicator (doe-foot, tapered on both sides). The formula has a really faint floral smell to it that if you are not paying attention, you won't probably notice it.
Framboise Etoile is described as a berry pink and it looks that way on Lily Collins' lips. However, on my pigmented lips, it reads more vibrant cherry red than anything. To get its truer color to show up, I usually apply it on top of a lip primer that would neutralize the pigment on my lips first, then apply the Lip Lover. There are a total of 14 shades available on Sephora and 18 on Nordstrom. Framboise Etoile is one of the brighter, more pigmented shades and does not contain any shimmer.
Lip Lover has a balmy texture of a thick lip balm, a glossy high shine of a lip gloss, and a saturated color of a lipstick. The formula is lightweight, extremely hydrating and applies with a cushiony feel. It glides on smoothly and provides an incredibly shiny finish without being sticky. I love how it instantly makes my lips feel so soft, plump, and moisturized, in just one quick pass.
The color payoff of Framboise Etoile isn't quite intense like a true lipstick but it's much more pigmented than a regular lip gloss/tinted lip balm. It goes on slightly sheer but the color is easily buildable to a more opaque red after multiple layers. I noticed that it settles into lip lines just a little bit when looking up close, but from afar, you can't really tell. In fact, I find that Lip Lover makes my lips appear plush, smooth, and oh-so-dewy! :)
The glossy appearance doesn't stay on long, unfortunately. Like most lip glosses, it fades quickly within the first couple hours. I'm not sure if the paler shades stain or not but Framboise Etoile definitely does leave a soft red stain on my lips once the shine is gone. The good thing is it's not the type of stain that leaves your lips feeling dry/parched, but rather, it continues to keep lips fairly moisturized until you remove it.
Overall, I really do like the Lip Lover. Framboise Etoile wouldn't be a shade I'd pick up but I'm still thankful to receive a sample to test out the formula. The consistency is undoubtedly very comparable to the Maybelline Color Elixir Liquid Color Balm. In fact, I swatched them side-by-side and I couldn't tell a difference. It is said to also be very similar to the new L'Oréal Colour Riche Extraordinary Lip Color but I can't confirm this since I don't own any. Similarities aside, I still want to buy more of the Lancôme Lip Lover since there are some colors that I like that I don't see being available from either Maybelline or L'Oréal. Plus, I really want to play with the click to release button thing! :)
Will you be picking up the Lip Lover? Are you excited to try it?