Shu Uemura Tint in Gelato ($28) is a creamy, super-pigmented liquid intended as a lip and cheek color. I’ve only used them as lipsticks since I’m generally not too skilled with liquid blushes.
Lovely Indya at Bella Noir Beauty gave me AT 02 Sugar Plum and BG 01 Puffy Chocolate (the shades are inspired by gelato) and will be helping me swatch and demonstrate the colors. Sugar Plum is a rich, strong, cool-toned pink with a touch of purple. Puffy Chocolate is a tan beige, not nearly as dark as its name suggests.
Shu Uemura says that the finish can be adjusted based on how much is applied: “Fresh and creamy gelato-like unique formula magically changes from a thick to a thin layer for variations of finish: from intense dewy to soft matte finish.”
They apply smoothly with a creamy, moist slip–almost like silicone. When applying, I dab on just the smallest amount to start and then pat and spread it on with my fingers. Seriously, so much pigment! An opaque look is easily achievable.
Shu Uemura is right about the variable finishes. When patted on in a light layer, the result is a soft matte stain. When applied thickly, the color settles into a creamy (not flat and not-quite-but-almost matte) finish. To get an “intense dewy” finish though, I fear you’d have to apply so much that you’d be wiping lipstick off your teeth for the rest of the day.
The formula doesn’t shrivel up lips the way a lot of liquid lipsticks do, which is probably because it’s not meant to be one of those long-wearing ones. They do come off easily when eating or drinking, but I find that–especially with Sugar Plum–a slight stain is left behind and so the fading in the center of the lips doesn’t look too obvious. Touch-ups are easy (no need to take off all the lip color first). And if it does start looking dry, refreshing with some lip balm (I use Dior Lip Glow) works well.
Puffy Chocolate is a little harder to wear. It’s not very flattering on me (browns tend not to be), and Indya thinks it looks corpselike on her. Maybe it’d be a good nude on someone with a medium skintone. However, I’ve discovered that it makes a great base for a gradient lip because a light dab can cover up your natural color.
Pros: Full coverage. Finish can be creamy or soft matte. Non-drying and reapplies easily. Slight staining and smooth fading means it wears off well.
Cons: Comes off easily when eating or drinking. Ends up on teeth upon initial application.