I have no idea when they launched, though I can tell you they retail for $13 in the US and at varying exchange rates in Sephoras across the world. For the price, these are a steal - their performance is comparable to high-end lipcolours. I feel the term "cream" doesn't suit here, though - the Sephora stains dry to a non-creamy, matte finish and are nothing like NYX Matte Lip Creams and last longer. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Here's the review and swatches of the Sephora Cream Lip Stains.
Packaging of Sephora Cream Lip StainsA no-nonsense tube. The body is transparent so you can see the colour, and the glossy black cap has "Sephora" printed on it in silver ink. No fuss at all. There is no external box.
Formula of Sephora Cream Lip StainsThese are incredibly opaque and super-pigmented in just one swipe. No feathering or bleeding. They apply creamy and dry to a matte finish. Some people may find these very drying, so a gloss on top or a lip balm would be a good idea. While they spread nicely on the lips, working fast before the product dries is a good idea.
here and the links on that page, if you are new to the Lime Crime drama :)
No parabens in the ingredients - there's avocado oil and vitamin E to provide some TLC for the lips.
Swatches of Sephora Cream Lip StainsThere are 10 shades in all, but the latter four come in other finishes (shimmery) while the first six are matte and are easily available in all Sephoras around the world, so I've got the first five to show you.
01 Always Red: Sephora calls it a "matte bold classic red".
02 Classic Beige: "Matte pinkish deep beige", according to Sephora. This is a very good neutral for everyday wear. It's more a beige-brown-based neutral than a pink-based one. I fail to spot the pink here.
03 Strawberry Kissed: "Matte bright pinky red", says Sephora. Spot on.
04 Endless Purple: "Matte mauve plum", according to Sephora. We have a problem here - read about it after the picture below.
05 Infinite Rose: Sephora calls it a "satin golden peach". I find it unsuitable for medium skintones unless you want your lips to disappear altogether.
06 Forever Fuchsia: Sephora calls it a "satin electric fuchsia" but it is more hot pink to me.
The bad news is that 04 Endless Purple used to be a fuchsia-magenta-based purple shade and now they've made it an ashy deep violet with grey undertones. Yes, grey, you read that right. And it looks way too deep for my liking on the lips. The change was made in the second half of 2013. Here are the swatches of the older shade to the left, and the new, ashy violet to the left. You can see a picture of both old and new applicators above. The difference may be mild, but it is definitely visible, especially on the lips.
These aren't for everyone, especially not for those who don't like matte-finish lip products. But for those in search of an affordable long-staying highly pigmented lip colour, Sephora Cream Lip Stains are the answer.
An important request to each reader: My blog was shortlisted for an award for Indian bloggers, though voting is open to all! I would really appreciate it if you could please vote for me by liking, tweeting and commenting on the link below (scroll down once it opens). Sorry about the shameless canvassing - 80% is jury points and 20% votes. I may not win, but don't want to come in last. Every vote counts, so please, please do help me out! Click here to vote for me by liking, tweeting and commenting. Thanks very much!
Disclaimer: My own money. If I do review a PR sample, I'll shout it out from the rooftops.