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Lip Service: New gloss sticks for spring

January 7, 2011 |  2:00 pm

Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm TR Shot - INTL Woppin Watermelon, Mega Melon, Super Strawberry Subtly stained lips are in for spring, and a few companies are making the look a whole lot easier to get with their crayon-like gloss sticks.

Nars Cosmetics is releasing its Velvet Gloss Lip Pencils in February (just in time to draw on a perfect pout for a Valentine’s Day date). The pencil looks exactly like the Velvet Matte lip pencil that came out in the fall but slides on similar to a gloss, sans that sticky, drippy shine. The formula contains vitamin E and A to keep lips moisturized and comes in six shades. A fave is New Lover, which is described by the company as a “strawberry pink, laced with gold that mimics the look of overly-kissed lips.”  Yes, please!

Skeptical about how a pencil could also be a gloss, I tested the Nars version and thought it felt more like a balm than a gloss. The color is very subtle and gives lips a sheer blush that looks really natural. The color fades gradually over a few hours, but without getting clumpy or dry.

Clinique’s Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm, which is just landing in stores now, has a similar effect as the Nars stick and comes in eight bright and girly shades. The pink-red color of the Chunky Cherry pencil took me back to my childhood when I had an obsession with Hawaiian Punch and the syrupy soda stained my mouth. A more neutral Richer Raisin is a versatile pink-brown that would look good on almost any skin tone. Like Nars, the stain is subtle, sheer and glides on easily due to the shea butter and jojoba seed oil in the formula. But after it starts to fade, my lips were left a bit dry and feathery. Something gloss from a tube trends not to do.2451forbidden_red

Most of us are tethered to our favorite tubes of traditional lip gloss formula, but if it’s the more natural, “no lipstick-lipstick” look you’re going for this spring, gloss pencils are your beauty must-have.

Nars Cosmetics Velvet Gloss Lips Pencil, $24, available Feb. 1 at

Clinique Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm, $15, at Clinique counters nationwide.

-- Melissa Magsaysay

Photo (top): Clinique Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm. Credit: Clinique

Photo (bottom): Nars Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil. Credit: Nars