(Trial Run)

A Beauty Writer’s Honest Thoughts About Rare Beauty’s New Lipstick & Liner

It’s not a want, but a need.

Originally Published: 
Vanese Maddix
vanese maddix wearing rare beauty lipstick and liner
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In our series Trial Run, TZR editors and writers put the buzziest new beauty products to the test and share their honest reviews. This week, our beauty writer is testing the new Rare Beauty Kind Words Matte Lipstick & Lip Liner.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Rare Beauty has fast become one of my favorite beauty brands to date. My makeup bag went from featuring a variety of beauty brands to predominantly starring Selena Gomez’s line, from the Stay Vulnerable Glossy Lip Balm for a nourishing pop of color on the lips that lasts all day to the Positive Light Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 20 Sunscreen for an instant hit of glowy coverage (perfect for those last-minute, after-work plans).

Despite the many product offerings that Rare Beauty has so kindly graced us with, it was inevitable that I would immediately want to get my hands on any and every new launch. Enter: Kind Words Matte Lipstick & Lip Liner. A collection of 10 pigment-rich and super long-lasting matte lipsticks with 10 corresponding creamy lip liners.

With high hopes for both the lipstick and lip liner, I spent the past few days eating, drinking, and getting my pout on to see if the formula was really as long-lasting as it claims and whether my makeup bag would be welcoming a few new additions. Here’s what happened when I put Rare Beauty’s newest launch to the test.

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Fast Facts

  • Price: Lipstick $20/Lip Liner $15
  • Best for: Anyone! It’s a lip color that can take you from day to night and works with sensitive skin.
  • Your rating: 4.5/5
  • Clean/Cruelty-Free? Yes
  • What we like: Easy to use packaging, inclusive shades and a creamy formula.
  • What we don’t like: Slight color difference between a few shades online vs in real life.

What I Look For In A Matte Lipstick

While I was once exclusively a matte kind of girl, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve become more open to all lipstick formulas and finishes. I am always on the hunt for one with hydrating properties that won’t bleed or dry my lips out. Formulas with skin-loving ingredients such as vitamin E are great as they add moisture to dry or cracked lips.

The Kind Words Lipstick & Lip Liner

Similar in price to the brand’s already well-loved dewy lip balm, glossy lip balm, and soufflé matte lip cream, the Kind Words Lipstick is priced at $20 and $15 for the Kind Words Lip Liner. Each lipstick has a made-to-match lip liner in the exact same shade. According to Rare Beauty, the former boasts a weightless feel and a "soft matte color in one swipe,” as does the liner, along with a “smooth, balm-like glide” that applies evenly to the lips. Both products are suitable for sensitive skin and are vegan and cruelty-free.

Vanese Maddix

My First Impressions Of The Kind Words Matte Lipstick & Lip Liner

Surprisingly, I had very mixed feelings when it came to unboxing the three shades I would be testing. While the formula of both the lipstick and lip liner was just as creamy as I’d hoped and the color stayed put, I found that some of the shades looked different than they appeared online.

It’s a given, especially when it comes to makeup, that this can happen when you see a product in person; however, I've found this to be more of a problem when it comes to foundation and concealer, which is why I’ll usually go in-store for these kinds of products. That said, I’ve never had much of a problem with buying lipstick online until now, so it was a bit of a surprise, and two out of three shades looked much lighter on my lips than the swatches on the Rare Beauty website.

On a different note, I was really impressed with the packaging. From the very beginning, Rare Beauty has talked about wanting to be as accessible and inclusive as possible, as we can see from not only the shade ranges but the easy-to-open packaging, too. Rather than having to deal with any fiddly lids, you simply press down on the lipstick end to take it out or to push it back in. The lip liner lid slides off with ease (even while using one hand). The liners easily twist up when you want to get to the product and go down without getting your liner on the cap (we’ve all been there). You’ll even find a small sharpener on the end for convenient sharpening.

How I Used The Kind Words Matte Lipstick & Lip Liner

When testing each shade I made sure to follow the advice of makeup artist Dominic Skinner by “hydrating the lips with a product like a lip mask before going in with an exfoliator.” He adds that, “once you've removed the exfoliator, go in with a lip primer for a minute or two so it can dry. Your lips will take better to the matte lipstick and make it smoother, cleaner, and easier by prepping.” I tested out the three different lipstick and liner combinations (two in the same shade, and one in contrasting colors) to see how they fared throughout the day.

My Results: Lipstick & Liner Combo 1

This was the color combo that wasn’t made-to-match. I started by applying the Kind Words Lip Liner in Wise, a warm brown that glided onto my lips effortlessly and made them appear more even than ever before. I’ve been a big fan of wearing lip liner over the whole lip, rather than just on the outer corners for a few years now, and this brown shade works great as an all-over lip product.

Now, the Kind Words Lipstick in shade Worthy is described as a muted mauve but when swatched on my hand it looked more like a light dusky pink. Once I applied it to my lips, it was a bit lighter than my complexion which wasn’t the vibe I was going for. Had I tried pairing a clear lip gloss over the top there’s a good chance I would have liked it more. While the color wasn’t a hit, the formula was just as creamy as described with a matte finish without being drying.

My Results With The Kind Words Lipstick In Shade Worthy & Lip Liner In Shade WiseVanese Maddix

My Results: Lipstick & Liner Combo 2

Next up, I tried the lipstick and lip liner in shade, Humble, which is described as a rose mauve, which I feel is true to its online description. I was really impressed with just how complementary it looked with my complexion. The shade is the perfect everyday color without looking too intense. I was surprised at how it held up after a meal — it didn’t look exactly as it did when first applied but in no way did it need to be topped up.

My Results With The Kind Words Lipstick & Lip Liner In Shade HumbleVanese Maddix

My Results: Lipstick & Liner Combo 3

Lastly, I tried the lipstick and liner in the shade, Bold, which is described as a deep berry rose and resembles the previous shade I tried, Humble, but with more of a red tone to it. It’s a color that I genuinely don't have in my current lipstick stash, and I was pretty pleased with how the two looked on me.

My Results With The Kind Words Lipstick & Lip Liner In Shade BoldVanese Maddix

Are The Kind Words Matte Lipstick & Lip Liner Worth It?

Absolutely! I wasn’t too sure what to expect at first as I already have a ton of lipsticks that I rotate and I feel pretty spoiled for choice as it is. However, Rare Beauty has somehow managed to tick boxes that I didn’t even know I needed, such as creating a super creamy formula that feels hydrating on the lips without drying or budging. At $20 and $15 respectively, they’re a bit pricier than the average drugstore lipstick and liner, but not as high as some luxury brands, and for the staying power and comfortable feel, they both hold their value and then some.

It’s been so long since a range of lip products has really shaken up the beauty realm with inclusive shades, vegan and cruelty-free formulas, and a finish that I think all skin types can get behind. I also like that the lipstick and lip liner don’t automatically come in a lip kit for double the price as I personally preferred using the lipstick and lip liner separately than both together.

While the Worthy lipstick wasn’t the best match for me, there are plenty of other shades that are a better fit. It looks like another trip to the drugstore for me! All in all, I would genuinely recommend anyone to consider trying out Rare Beauty’s new lip offerings as the formulas and unique shades alone are enough to pique some interest.

BDG product reviews and recommendations are written and conducted by writers and editors with expertise in their fields. Testers often have specific experience with the situation or product at hand, and/or their review or recommendation is provided in consultation with experts. You can learn more about our standards here.

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