I have a lot of beauty resolutions this year (lose weight, look younger, wash my face every night, yada yada yada), but one of the more colorful and fun ones is to learn to love lipstick, finally. I’ve been a lip gloss wearer all my life for the simple reason that it’s easy, low maintenance and not really intimidating. Lipstick has always seemed to be more complicated and probably not the smartest thing to apply if you don’t have a mirror at hand. But, the downside of lip gloss is that the color fades quickly and if you’re not wearing a lot of other makeup, then you look Plain Jane pretty quickly. And the more brightly colored lips I see on the red carpet, the more inspired I am to experiment with something a little more bold, a little more polished.
As luck would have it, divine intervention came to me in the form of an invitation by Dior to go to Paris to experience a Dior Beauty makeover, including an exclusive preview of their new Dior Addict Extreme Lipstick ($30, sephora.com). Oui! Oui! Could I ask for a more chic way to adopt le rouge å levres? Non!
It was a fairytale day to be treated like a princess and pampered from head to toe. The makeover took place in Christian Dior’s original Salon on Avenue Montaigne, which was decorated so meticulously it looked like a movie scene. The hallways were flanked by dozens of historical couture dresses, and tables were flowing over with jewelry, sunglasses, hats, furs, scarves, and any other type of accessory you could imagine.
But first things first: the makeup. The new Dior Addict Extreme collection has four main color families, each one containing a star shade: 1) Plaza, a refined mauve inspired by the socialites who stay at the famed Plaza Athenee Hotel that’s across the street from the Salon and Boutique, 2) Lucky, a bold dazzling pink inspired by the collection’s face, Kate Moss, 3) Riviera, a fresh coral shade that’s perfect for the bronzed St. Tropez belle and 4) Incognito, a chic discreet greige that’s reminiscent of the minimalist chic of Parisian women. I went for Incognito. I felt it best to ease into this, and after all, it was only 9 a.m.
“Mr. Dior used to say, what you don’t see is just as important as what you do see,” said the makeup artist as he blended a glowy golden foundation onto my forehead, chin, and the bridge of my nose to create a natural looking radiance. Then he moved onto my eyes, using a palette of shimmery brown eye shadows to create a soft smoky eye. One tip I picked up: Since I have light eyes, I should be wearing a darker brown around my lash lines to create more contrast. I usually just swipe on a shimmery shadow and consider it done, but the brown eyeliner really did make my eyes pop without looking too overdone. He then used some nude colored blushes and bronzer to bring some color into my face.
Finally, we got to the lipstick. First, he lined my lips with a nude lip “to just give the look a little more depth,” he said. Then he used a lip brush to apply the Dior Addict Extreme Lipstick in Incognito on my lips. It felt really light, moisturizing and creamy. Not at all what I expected. And for a nude color, it looked elegant and polished, as opposed to muddy and corpse like. The formula contains a combination of four waxes, hyaluronic acid spheres and shine-boosting oils, which truly made the texture feel light, moisturizing and almost like lip gloss without the sticky factor.
Of course, the Dior makeover really wasn’t complete until I got to snag a few accessories from the table to complete my look, then have a French photographer capture the moment. I grabbed a grey fur wrap and a big chunky gold necklace and went for it! When else would I ever get this chance again? I channeled by best inner Charlize Theron (though, my mom said I look more like Sigourney Weaver. Huh?) and struck a pose, and another pose, and another pose…until they practically had to pry me off the set.
Though I had to (reluctantly) give back all of the accessories, I did get to keep the new lipsticks. And by the evening, I was so in love with the more glamorous life of a lipstick wearer, I had the guts to slick on Lucky, the hot pink. It was the perfect pop of color for my all black outfit, and I owned it. It was exactly that bright lip I was longing for, but it looked fresh, light and I barely felt like I was even wearing lipstick.
Now I can honestly say that I’ve made one resolution happen. On to the rest of them…