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If you're looking for a perfect-for-brunch lip colour formula, this fits the bill. But don't mess with the application.
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Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink in Artist

Woweeee, it's been a minute since I last did a lipstick-diary post. Fitting that this one connects in more than one way to the first one I posted back in 2010.

I can’t remember the last time I wore a vivid lipstick all by itself, no other makeup. No brows, no mascara, no concealer, nothing. else. 

Without naturally full brows or lashes or a strong bone structure, I’ve always felt that my face is kind of blah without makeup, and that defining one feature just makes the rest fade away even more. That doesn’t mean I haven’t left the house bare-faced more often than not – it’s not the sort of thing that should stop one living a life, obviously. I’m just 99% less likely to appear in a photo. But a bold lip and nothing else IS a look, and a striking one (when I met her in 2010, Danish makeup artist Charlotte Willer rocked exactly that look), whether you’ve got strong features or not. And the more I snap these no-brow, no-lash selfies, the less those things give me pause. After all, I’m not the one that has to see the lack, and frankly, no one else cares in the least. So there. *grin*

Hope you followed that Charlotte Willer link, because that's the first lipstick-diary post that appeared on Beautygeeks, more than nine years ago. At the time, Charlotte was the global makeup artist for Maybelline, and her nothing-but-bold-red-lipstick approach to beauty was the inspiration for my lipstick life.

about maybelline superstay matte ink

Lauren wears Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink in Self-Starter

Lauren wears Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink in Self-Starter

I didn't plan a Maybelline connection for this post, but in the opening image I'm wearing Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink in Artist, and in this photo, niece Lauren (who just turned 14) is wearing Superstay Matte Ink in Self-Starter.

Nor did I plan a post about wearing bold lip colour without any other makeup. I was actually just trying the formula because I'd been impressed by its lasts-through-lunch staying power on Lauren.

Superstay Matte Ink ($9.96 CAD at and $9.49 USD at isn't new, but somehow I'd managed to miss giving it a test drive, although Maybelline had kindly sent me samples of the City Edition collection a while back. The formula boasts incredible pigment that goes on bare lips smoothly and the longwear finish lives effortlessly up to its Superstay name. When applied properly (see below), it creates an even coat of saturated colour that, once set, doesn't transfer to the rim of your glass or coffee mug. And, unlike some other budge-proof lippies, it's quite easy to touch up seamlessly if need be.

what not to do with superstay matte ink

Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink in Artist... and in Self-Starter

Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink in Artist... and in Self-Starter

If you're not familiar with this lip stuff, don't worry, Superstay Matte Ink application isn't complicated at all. The formula glides on without any fuss. There is at least one thing you need to know, however, and it's related to this next point: Superstay Matte Ink can feel a bit dry on the lips after a few hours, or sooner if you aren't used to feeling your lip colour as you wear it. Chronically dry lips won't like it. 

SUPER IMPORTANT: Superstay Matte Ink is not a formula you can put on over lip balm or a thin layer of lanolin – disaster. The next time I wore it (a super-bright red called Dancer), I forgot to remove my lip salve before the application, and yikes! First, it was a pain to try to get it on evenly. Second, it wouldn't stay even – just moving my lips disturbed the pigment, never mind sipping water or having a nibble of an hors d'oeuvres. Third, it doesn't just get patchy, it gets super patchy. I nearly shrieked when I saw the result in a mirror: half-bare lips with streaks of shocking red. Should have photographed it, but the compulsion to remove it, STAT, was far stronger. Once my lips were clean, Matte Ink applied like a dream and stayed put through the rest of my day, which included lunch.

Actually, removal can be a bit of a trick too, because when applied properly, the formula is stubborn. I used Lano Golden Dry Skin Salve (I've been wearing it as lip balm) to take it all off. Upside: nicely conditioned lips afterward.

Have you tried Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink? And if you could wear only one makeup item, what would it be?

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