Sunday, October 23, 2016

Kat Von D Everlasting Mini Liquid Lipstick Set - Swatch & Review!

When I first saw that Kat Von D was going to come out with a mini set of Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks for the holidays, I was super excited. I really like Kat Von D (KVD) as a brand, I've always heard good things about her liquid lipsticks, and I've enjoyed using the few that I have (I've never owned a full size, but I have a couple minis). I purchased this kit the day it launched at Sephora online and, at $49 for eight minis, the kit is a great deal (each mini is about half the size of a full size lipstick, which retail for $20 each).
I was feeling oddly apprehensive about this purchase while it was shipping and, while I do still think this is a good kit for people who love KVD and the Evelasting Liquid Lipsticks, it fell a little short for me and, spoiler alert, I ended up exchanging it.

First off, I want to apologize for the poor photo quality in this post; I was in a bit of a rush to take these pictures and, as I no longer have this kit, I unfortunately can't retake any.
Because I ordered my kit online, I got three free foil packet samples; I'm actually starting to get overwhelmed by these packet samples since I never seem to reach for them. You can opt out of getting them, but then I feel like I am missing out on something...
I also had a code for a special three-piece deluxe sampler set from Caudalie; you have to spend a little more to get these sets ($35+ instead of the $25+ for regular deluxe freebies) and I'm pretty sure you have to be at least a VIB to  get them. I really like these deluxe samplers, and I wish Sephora would come out with new ones more often.
Alright, on to the main event! As I said above, this is an eight-piece set of mini Everlasting Liquid lipsticks. Six of the colors are part of the permanent line and two of the colors, Plath and Roxy, are special sneak peeks of upcoming colors. Each mini has 3mL of product and is a little less than half the size of a full size lipstick, which has 6.6mL of product. The overall value of this set is approximately $72, which is slightly less than the $80 listed value. For $49, you definitely get your money's worth, but only if you're going to use more than three shades consistently. When this set first arrived, I was actually kind of surprised at how cheap the box felt; I know it doesn't matter in the long run and most people are going to throw the box away anyway, but it felt really thin and flimsy (it was slightly crushed during shipping, even with all the padding that Sephora stuffs in their boxes) and I was expecting a little more luxury from a $50 kit.
There was also a printing error on one of my products; as you can see in the photo above (and the photo of all the minis), the KVD logo is both off-center and upside down on my Echo mini. I'm not sure if this is an isolated issue with my kit (or maybe a smaller batch), or if this is a problem across all the kits. Like the box, this misprint doesn't have any affect on the product itself, but it's another thing that takes away from my sense of value with this kit; it makes it feel like these minis were manufactured quickly and with little care, which seems to be a theme this year for holiday kits.
I don't have a full size Everlasting Liquid Lipstick to compare these to, so I don't know if there are any differences between them. I can compare them to my other minis, however, and they are exactly the same. These minis have slanted, flocked doe-foot applicators; very standard for a liquid lip product. They also have a very subtle vanilla scent, which I find pleasant and not overwhelming.
First up is Plath, one of the new sneak peek colors. Plath is described as a 'deep russet red' and it's rather pretty!
This is one of the colors I'd be interested in picking up in the full size when it releases in 2017 (I think these are supposed to be out in the spring). I'll have a group swatch at the end, but I found that the lighter pinks/nudes and more red shades in this kit, like Plath, performed better then the darker shades. KVD subtly organizes this kit with the reds/nudes in the first half, and the bold and dark colors in the second half, so there is a noticeable change in performance halfway through.
Next is Santa Sangre, a 'poison apple', which is kind of a vague description. To me, this is a bright, orange-toned red--more tomato than apple.
Wow, I don't know what even happened to the label picture... I liked this color and I thought that it performed well, but I already have some lipsticks in a similar color, including Gold Blooded from the KVD mini lipstick kit from last year, so it felt redundant in my collection.
Next up is Mother, a 'dusty mauve pink'.
This is another great color performance-wise (see what I mean about the lighter colors?), and another color that I would consider purchasing the full size of.
The forth shade in this kit is Lovesick, a 'mauve nude'. In my haste to take pictures of this kit, I somehow skipped taking one of the name of this shade. Hmm. This color is like a lighter, more nude version of Mother and, like Mother, this is a shade that performs well (good wear time and color opacity) and one that I may purchase the full size of sometime in the future.

At this point, there starts to be shift in the performance of these shades. While I have heard mostly good things about these lipsticks, the one complaint that I hear again and again is that the performance really varies with the color. This is true of many liquid lipsticks, and nine times out of ten, the darker or more neon a shade is, the patchier it applies. I think one of the reasons why I ended up exchanging this kit is that I had really high expectations for these lipsticks, based on my experience with only a handful of the colors; I love bright, bold lip colors, and, while I do need to add more nudes to my collection, I was most excited for the bolder colors in this kit and was disappointed when they did not live up to my expectations.
This is Backstage Bambi, a 'vivid hot pink'. I own some very bright fuchsia lipstick, but I don't have anything this hot pink in my collection, so I was really hoping I would love it.
Overall it's good, but it is a bit streaky and difficult to get fully opaque. Honestly, it's not all the noticeable unless you're right up close, but when I'm wearing such a bright, bold color, I don't want to worry about it being streaky or imperfect. Because of the bright pigment, it was also slightly chalky looking when it was completely dry (this happens with most things with neon/bright pigments, including nail polishes). Neons are very difficult to get perfect, and one of the reasons why there aren't a lot of hot pink lipsticks like this is that they are hard to do, so I commend KVD for making one that does perform moderately well.
Next is L.U.V., a 'rich violet'. This is kind of like the purple/fuchsia version of Backstage Bambi. Surprisingly, I already have a couple lipsticks in a similar color already; I guess bright fuchsia/violet is a lot more popular than hot pink.
Like Backstage Bambi, this color had some issues with opacity as well and, again like Backstage Bambi, while it was streaky, it wasn't super noticeable unless you got up close.
This is Roxy, the other new shade that was being previewed in this kit. Roxy is described as a 'bright grape' and it is indeed and very bright, but still deep, purple.
Out of all the shades in this collection, Roxy was the most disappointing. It was really hard to get opaque and, since it's both a bright and deep color, it was very noticeable. One thing that I really like about these lipsticks is that it's pretty easy to layer them, either to touch them up, build intensity, or to create an ombre effect, but this color never ended up looking even.
Last up is Echo. Echo is described as a 'satin navy blue' and, for such a dark, unnatural color, it performed fairly well on me (based on some swatches I had seen, I was expecting it be similar to Roxy). It was still patchy and uneven, but it wasn't horrible looking.
I really like the color variety that KVD included in this set: you get nudes, some reds, some pinks, some bolds, and one very unique color. I especially like getting these more unique, not-quite-so-everyday types of colors in mini sizes since I'm pretty sure there's no way I'm going to go through a full size.
Here's everything swatched: left to right is Plath, Santa Sangre, Mother, Lovesick, Backstage Bambi, L.U.V., Roxy, and Echo. These are still-wet swatches; these lipsticks do dry down fairly quickly, but it probably takes like a minute for them to dry completely. Even wet, you can see the patchy application of the last four (plus you can see what I mean by the patchiness of Backstage Bambi and L.U.V. being less noticeable than the patchiness of Roxy and Echo).

Would I suggest this kit? As you already know, I ended up exchanging it because for me, the $49 value wasn't there; the packaging didn't feel like anything special and I ended up only really liking three out of the eight colors, so I wasn't saving much by getting this kit versus the full sized lipsticks. Plus, there are so many other lip kits out there right now that this one doesn't really stand out to me (I actually ended up exchanging it for one of Sephora Favorites lip kits); the Mi Vida Loca mini lipstick set last year felt a lot more valuable--it was a bit cheaper in price and one of the items was full sized and only available in that set.

That being said, I would not have known what colors I liked and didn't like if I had not purchased this kit and was able to try all eight of them myself, so it's a bit of a catch-22. If this kit had been a little cheaper, like $35 or so, I would have been very happy with it and most likely would not have felt compelled to exchange it. As far as the lipsticks go, I think overall they're as good as people say, but, also like people say, the quality of the pigmentation can vary greatly from color to color. If you're a fan of KVD products and/or liquid lipsticks, this is a great way to try eight different colors at once for the price of two and half full size lipsticks, but only if you know you're going to get use out of at least four of the colors (if not, it's probably better to just buy the full sizes of the ones you like).

Thanks for reading! <3

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