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I Found a Lip Gloss That’s Actually Perfect

Do you ever look in the mirror and feel like your face isn’t complete? You can’t put your finger on why — your under-eye bags are in check, your cheeks are rather rosy, you washed your face, you moisturized it, you’re pretty sure you’re not dehydrated — but for whatever reason, something feels undone.

This happens to me all the time. Lately, I’ve even started setting up controls: drink alcohol the night before, don’t drink alcohol the night before; see what it does to my face. Drink a liter of water upon waking, don’t drink a liter; see what happens to my face. It is dramatic and distracting and sometimes I can’t believe I am this person. I was so sure I would never be the kind of woman who cares so much about, frankly, anything, but incidentally, I am not immune to the nuances of early onset aging. This is fine, I think, so long as I accept it and feel okay with it. But I digress!

I have another question: Can you pinpoint what is different about how I look in the above before-and-after shots?

It recently occurred to me that maybe the reason I believe my face to look incomplete from time to time is because of my lips. Obviously, when they’re dry, they’re dry. They require some balm or gloss and boom: problem solved. But other times, they’re not dry at all. On the contrary, they’re quite moist. But for whatever reason, they maintain this lifeless color that makes me look…not sick, but not not sick either.

I have historically sucked at makeup, and used to think the only variety of lipstick worth acknowledging was red. I’d buy boatloads of different shades, but found that I only really liked how it looked after I wiped it off my lips, when it left just a slight trace of color over the surface area of my mouth. Then I discovered a lip tint from Nars’ collaboration with Charlotte Gainsbourg called Éphélide. It is perfect if you’re the kind of person who is lazy about makeup, but does not want to sacrifice looking (and therefore feeling) super kül. If I had to describe the color, it’s like a dusty plum — which is not the color I’d pick to make my lips look their most natural, but like I said: I have historically sucked at makeup. Apparently this is what it takes.

Leandra M. Cohen

Leandra M. Cohen is the founder of Man Repeller.

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