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Reading (and Primping) Are Fundamental — Check out the “Look of Love” By Lipstick Queen Lipstick Library Vol 2

Time to hit the books, beauty lovers! But fear not — there will be no pop quizzes, 10-paged essays, or dissertations following this trip to the library. See, Poppy King, founder of makeup brand Lipstick Queen, has followed up her  New York-inspired Liptropolis Lipstick Library, consisting of three New York-inspired creamy lipsticks packaged inside a book-shaped case with a cover resembling that of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis movie poster, with a second makeup anthology: the Lipstick Queen” Look of Love” Lipstick Library Vol. 2 ($39.75 at QVC.com). As with the Liptropolis Lipstick Library Vol. 1, the imaginatively packaged Look of Love Lipstick Library Vol. 2  features three lip products tucked inside a case that resembles a small hardcover book, its front cover printed with the words “Look of Love” in large block letters against a carnation pink backdrop and its back cover featuring an illustration of a veritable mountain of beakers, flasks, and test tubes emitting a gas consisting of floating hearts, perhaps alluding to the love potion being created inside this secret lab. When you flip open the top cover, much as you would do with any tome, you’ll find three products to help you achieve a demure, sophisticated, but playful and feminine look.

The Look of Love Lipstick Library Vol. 2, then, includes two lipsticks and one multi-purpose cream color that can be dabbed onto cheeks and blended in for a natural-looking flushed look or patted onto lips for a stained effect. The three products in this set  are: the Saint Pinky Nude Lipstick, an ultra creamy, glaze-like salmon pink color that strikes an appealing balance between a neutral hue and a peachy pink shade; the Butterfly Ball Lipstick in Smitten, a sheer, pink-tinged tawny color with a glossy finish; and the Oxymoron Honest Politician Lip Gloss, a near-matte, medium coral pink cream color with a hint of golden sheen packaged inside a round compact and which can be applied to lips as a base to smooth them and give them a stained look, blended onto cheeks for a natural-looking glow, or smoothed atop the other colors for an added bit of sheen.

Typically, I gravitate towards Lipstick Queen’s range of Sinner Lipsticks, since they offer full-coverage, an intense pigment pay-off, and a sophisticated matte finish, and the three lip products in this particular collection all tend to be rather dainty and understated. That being said, I found these shades delightful in their romantic simplicity, there “is-she-wearing-makeup-or-isn’t-she?” quality. And, of course, I appreciate that they can be worn independently or mixed, matched, and layered to create a lip look that’s as intense, as creamy or glossy, as matte, or as dewy and fresh as desired.

In terms of texture, both the lipsticks are moisturizing, creamy, and soft on lips but the Oxymoron Honest Politician Lip Gloss is a bit tackier, stickier, and slightly harsher on lips, its texture a bit unnerving initially. I would actually recommend using this product after moisturizing lips thoroughly and dabbing it onto the pout as a base, pressing the color gently onto lips with one’s fingertips until the color adheres and creates a stained effect. I’d then follow with the Saint Pinky Nude and, if some sheen is necessary, layer the Smitten hue above it. Once the Oxymoron Honest Politician is applied as the base, your final lip color will last significantly longer so that, even some of your lip color fades throughout the day, you’re never left with a bare mouth.

Sure, this isn’t a set for those who always covet a bold lip, but it’s perfect for minimalist beauty lovers and can also work nicely to balance some of the bolder eye looks this season (such as the cobalt lids we’re seeing for Spring 2013). And, of course, the packaging is so adorable that this makes for the perfect gift!

Below, you’ll find swatches of all three lip colors in the set:

Next, check out a photo of yours truly wearing all three lip colors in this set. I started by dabbing the Oxymoron Honest Politician color atop my lips, pressing it on using my fingertips and using a careful dabbing motion. I then followed up with the Pink Saint Nude color, tracing the outline of my lips and filling them in, and lastly applied a touch of the Butterfly Ball Lipstick in Smitten for a golden sheen. As you can see, the final result is a fleshy pink that’s creamy and natural-looking but has quite a bit of staying power.

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