The Best Lipstick

Posted on 6 June 2022

After 16 hours of research and testing 13 currently popular products, we have determined that Maybelline’s Superstay Matte Ink meets the important criteria to be the best lipstick.

This comparison is certified 100% impartial and follows our selection process.

Our choice, Best budget

Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink

Superstay Matte Ink is a popular choice in the beauty world if you are looking for a matte lipstick that will not budge during the day. In liquid form, it is easy to apply.

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If it is the only liquid lipstick in our selection, it is above all the one with the most impressive lasting power – as users point out and as our tests have confirmed. Without transfer, it resists effectively to drinks, meals or kisses and keeps a beautiful pigmentation. Its arrow-shaped applicator allows you to outline the lips with precision, all without applying too much product – otherwise the result will be less homogeneous and a little sticky. In short, it is ideal for going out or for long days. However, its composition can be improved.

 

 

Best mid-range

MAC Retro Matte Lipstick

It seduces with its intense matte formula and impressive lasting power for a lipstick in a stick form. The iconic Ruby Woo shade is considered one of the most universally flattering lipsticks.

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It stood out in its price range for its intensely matte finish, deep pigmentation and long lasting. While it is true that our tests showed that its texture was a little drier, the finish and comfort on the lips is still convincing – especially if you remember to apply a lip balm before makeup. Moreover, the Ruby Woo shade is a classic, must-have lipstick that can enhance any skin tone. It is a pity that the range only offers a limited number of shades, and that the composition of the product is a bit disappointing.

 

Best high-end

Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick

This high-end lipstick stand out not only thanks to its ultra-pigmented and comfortable matte formula, but also by its eye-catching pink-gold packaging and an original stick shape for an easy application.

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It is one of the favourite matte formulas on the market. Indeed, the texture of the lipstick ensures a matte finish while remaining creamy, and is therefore not drying. During our tests, it also showed a very decent lasting and an undeniable comfort on the lips. The colours are vibrant and well pigmented. The little extras? The chic packaging is very appealing, as is the special shape of the stick which makes it easy to apply. However, we regret the presence of a suspected endocrine disruptor in its composition.

 

Budget alternative

Avril Le Rouge

This lipstick is the only organic product in our selection and is characterised by an exemplary composition, but not at the expense of efficiency: very covering, comfortable and easy to apply, it has a decent lasting.

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Simple but effective, this lipstick is at first sight rather basic, but in fact stands out thanks to its impeccable certified organic composition. Its creamy texture is easy to apply and comfortable on the lips thanks to the presence of vegetable oils, its lasting is decent for a lipstick that does not claim to be long-lasting or transfer-free, and its pigmentation is enough to make conventional products blush. As for the curved stick, it fits the lips perfectly, and the range offers no less than 17 colours – which is not bad at all, especially for a small organic brand. In short, if you do not mind having to reapply a little product after your meals, we highly recommend it.

 

Our selection

Our choice, Best budgetBest mid-rangeBest high-endBudget alternative
Maybelline Superstay Matte InkMAC Retro Matte LipstickCharlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution LipstickAvril Le Rouge
Maybelline SuperstayMAC Retro Matte LipstickCharlotte Tilbury MatteAvril Le Rouge
Superstay Matte Ink is a popular choice in the beauty world if you are looking for a matte lipstick that will not budge during the day. In liquid form, it is easy to apply.It seduces with its intense matte formula and impressive lasting power for a lipstick. The iconic Ruby Woo shade is considered one of the most universally flattering lipsticks.This high-end lipstick stand out not only thanks to its ultra-pigmented and comfortable matte formula, but also by its eye-catching pink-gold packaging and an original stick shape for an easy application.This lipstick is the only organic product in our selection and is characterised by an exemplary composition, but not at the expense of efficiency: very covering, comfortable and easy to apply, it has a decent lasting.
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Honorable mentions

Maybelline Color Sensational (£3.89 upon publication): cheap but with less lasting power. The popular Color Sensational range offers a wide variety of finishes and colours, with matte lipsticks being the most popular. They are particularly appealing because of their intense colours and creamy texture that feels good on the lips. On the other hand, our tests have determined that they are far from transfer-free and do not have a very long lasting. However, if you do not mind reapplying your lipstick during the day, they still offer a good price-quality ratio. 

Revlon Super Lustrous Matte (£5.46 upon publication): the third choice of basic products. During our tests, we were impressed by the formula of this lipstick. It is intensely pigmented and perfectly even, leaving a slightly velvety matte finish on the lips. Enriched with moisturising ingredients, it does not dry out the lips and is really comfortable to wear. It is also surprisingly long-lasting (and survives coffee and nibbles for us). 

Dior Rouge Couleur Couture (£28.56 upon publication): a glossy alternative. If you think matte finishes are overrated and are looking for a luxurious lipstick with a glossy effect, this Rouge Couleur Couture is a great alternative. Comfortable, moisturising, intense and luminous, it is really easy to apply thanks to its texture that glides on the lips. Of course, its lasting is rather limited, but touch-ups are really easy. The 999 shade is THE emblematic red of Dior. 

 

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How to choose your lipstick?

True essential in the make-up bag, the lipstick has always been a sign of femininity par excellence. Nowadays, it comes in so many textures, finishes, packaging and colours that it can be easy to get lost in the maze of shelves or internet pages full of these famous coloured sticks. But the good news is that there is something for everyone.

Ensemble des rouges à lèvres
There are two types of lipstick, the stick and the liquid format. | Source: Selectos

To help you make the right choice, we have listed the criteria to which you should pay particular attention during your search:

  • Type of lipstick: by ‘type’ we mean lipsticks in stick form or in liquid form. The former, classic, are within everyone’s reach and are clearly a must-have. In general, the liquid formulas require a little more practice and dexterity for the best application. You should also know that the preservation liquid lipsticks is often more limited in time.
  • Finish: cream, matte, semi-matte, glossy, satin, metallic… The finishes can be as numerous as the imagination of the designers is abundant. There are no rules here: it is up to you to determine which finish appeals to you most. However, it is true that this choice often influences how long your lipstick will last.
  • Lasting: often, the more matte the lipstick, the longer it is likely to last. Indeed, this type of texture dries more efficiently on the mouth. However, some long-lasting formulas are actually too dry, and end up marking and cracking the lips. If the lasting power is important to you, the ideal is to opt for a transfer-free formula guaranteed. Otherwise, opt for a lipstick that is simply easy to reapply.
  • Pigmentation: as with finishes, there is a bit of everything on the market today. While intense, full coverage lipsticks are still the norm, today’s fashion is for more transparent formulas that give lips a light, yet discreet colour. In short, everyone has their own preferences! The important thing is that the pigments provide an even coverage.
Swatch des rouges à lèvres
It is important that the pigmentation is even. The intensity depends on your personal taste. | Source: Selectos
  • Application: if its ease depends partly on the texture of the lipstick (the creamier it is, the more it ‘glides’ on the lips), it also depends on the ergonomics of its stick or its applicator. A pointed tip or clean edges generally allow you to draw the contour of your lips more precisely. However, if you have difficulty, you can always use a lip brush and/or a pencil.
  • Shades: at the risk of sounding repetitive, we can only point out that there is, once again, something for everyone. Generally speaking, if you have a small mouth, darker colours tend to accentuate this characteristic – and vice versa. And, of course, the same colour can differ quite significantly from one person to another, depending on skin colour, undertones, natural lip pigmentation… That said, some shades remain fairly universal.
  • Packaging: for many, it is purely aesthetic – the pleasure of buying a lipstick also depends on the attractiveness of its packaging. Moreover, it is important that the cap closes properly, otherwise the lipstick will dry out quickly. Some tubes are equipped with a magnetic closure for this purpose (which is particularly satisfactory).
  • Composition: as with any cosmetic product, it is worth taking a look at the composition of your lipstick, especially if the product is likely to be swallowed in small quantities and/or if it is a product you wear every day. For the record, most conventional lipsticks are formulated with mineral oils. If you are vegan, note that one of the most common colourants, carmine (which appears under the name CI 75470 in the INCI list), is still often obtained from cochineal.
Application des rouges à lèvres
The ease of application depends as much on the texture of the lipstick as on the shape of the applicator. | Source: Selectos

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