A product’s price tag doesn’t always indicate its quality. Sometimes budget-friendly brands cut corners in the right places to keep costs low without sacrificing quality, whereas some more expensive brands keep prices high for exclusivity and profit.
That said, you can’t only use cost as an indicator of a lipstick’s quality. The reality is that you can purchase couture quality lipstick without having to empty your pockets.
Instead of being influenced by a lipstick’s price tag, try a sample and use these specific factors to help you identify its quality — and if it’s worth the dollars attached:
Check the pliability of your lipstick. If it is crumbly or greasy, chances are it’s not high quality. A good lipstick will be firm, but also pliable. Look for products that are oily, stiff and slick – a balance that ensures comfortable wear, easy application and durability.
When you buy a lipstick, you want it to be adequately pigmented so that it is true to colour – this is often described as “colour payoff.” After all, when you use a poorly pigmented lipstick, you need to use more to get your desired coverage and colour, and you need to apply it more often. This makes the product cheap and less cost-effective in the long run.
Ingredients & Formula
A lipstick’s formula is an indicator of its quality. Is it luxurious and creamy, or is it dry and leaving creases on your lips? That said, beware of the ingredients that may cause a product to feel good, but not be as good for your health.
Some lipsticks (not all) are made with harsh chemicals to maintain their structure and provide a soothing sensation upon application. Look for high-quality lipsticks made with natural ingredients that suit the same purpose, but without the associated health risks.
It’s important, however, to be aware of the harmful ingredients that can show up in both high and low-end lip products like lead. Lead, for one, is not indicated on a product’s ingredient list and is found in a wide range of lipsticks. Organic lip products that are made with natural ingredients may be pricier, but don’t come with the same health risks.
A good rule of thumb is to avoid products with the most common harsh ingredients, which include parabens, alcohols and sulfates.
If your lip shade wears off fast, the chances are that its formula is not the best quality. A lipstick should provide full coverage throughout the day – without consistent application. A high-quality product will be pigmented with a good colour payoff to help you stay looking fresh and put together throughout the day.
While some of these hacks come with a bit more trial and error, use them as a guideline to weigh the difference between a few different lipsticks. After comparing your products based on these factors, you’ll be able to identify the best quality lipstick that will also suit your unique needs and preferences.
The best way to feel comfortable with a price tag – whether you suspect it is too low or too high – is to take the time to understand if your sacrificing quality for dollar, or vice versa.