Let’s Chat! What’s Your Makeup Comfort Zone?

Published in: Guest Post, Just For Fun, Lips, Makeup

MAC x Halsey Lipstick

MAC x Halsey Lipstick

Call me crazy, but I have a habit of thinking about habits.

Is that weird? Like, I notice things about myself, and then I spend a fair amount of time pondering whether it’s just me, or whether everyone else has the same quirks, and because I have a job that involves a lot of long-term quiet focus, my mind inevitably wanders…

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“Am I the only one who does [INSERT QUIRK HERE]?” Or, “I wonder how she feels about [INSERT PONDERABLE TOPIC HERE]?” Or, “Why would the writers of The Walking Dead play with my emotions like that?!”

Of course, because I totally adore makeup, I most often find myself thinking about what’s hot now, or how we wear what we wear, or why we wear what we wear. For instance, where do the trends come from?? It’s sort of a chicken/egg situation, right? Because I think you could argue that sometimes the trends come directly from cosmetics companies (color correcting), and sometimes they come from us (strobing).

Anyway…now that I’m here helping Karen (and Tabs, who’s a real taskmaster, BTW!) on Makeup and Beauty Blog, I want to chat with you about something that’s been rolling around in my noggin.

Here’s my question: What’s your “beauty comfort zone,” so to speak, when it comes to lipstick colors?

My makeup comfort zone is pretty big where lipstick is concerned!

My makeup comfort zone is pretty big where lipstick is concerned!

And I don’t just mean traditional lipstick. I’m also talking gloss, glitter, liquid lipstick (because it seems like errbody is talking about liquid lipstick right now) — you name it.

MAC x Halsey, that masterpiece of a grey lipstick, got me on this subject, because as wearable as it is for a grey lipstick, my brain automatically said, “Nope, that is not something you can wear everyday.”

Later after I thought about it some more, I wondered…why? Where was the girl who at 15 decided “I’m going to wear bright red lipstick to high school!” and did it fearlessly (despite the whispers in the hallway)?

Where was the girl who decided that bright purple lipstick was totally okay in the office on a Tuesday, just because?

My ultimate neon coral, MAC's Giambattista Valli Margherita (LE).

My ultimate neon coral, MAC’s Giambattista Valli Margherita (LE).

When I want bruised plum, I always turn to Giorgio Armani Plum 609.

When I want bruised plum, I always turn to Giorgio Armani Plum 609.

A favorite "purple-pink," YSL Rouge Volupté Shine 19 Fuchsia in Rage.

A favorite “purple-pink,” YSL Rouge Volupté Shine 19 Fuchsia in Rage.

We’re always told that one of the best things about makeup is that there “are no rules,” and while this is totally true, I think that rules do often come from inside ourselves, more than from anywhere else…at least where I’m concerned.

NYX released a totally fabulous lipstick called Amethyst, and I want that baby bad, but the same little voice inside me that said that MAC x Halsey isn’t wearable is now telling me that I shouldn’t buy Amethyst.

The irony here is that I consider myself to be incredibly open-minded where lipstick is concerned!

I love bright pops of neon coral, deep blackened plums and neon purples. I love looking at how the vastly different hues change the way my overall makeup looks and brighten up an otherwise simple outfit.

So what’s so different about grey…or even indigo?

(Left to Right): MAC x Halsey (LE), MAC Giambattista Valli Margherita (LE), MAC Giambattista Valli Eugenie (LE), MAC Alluring Aquatic Goddess of the Sea (LE), Giorgio Armani Plum 609, YSL Rouge Volupté Shine 19 Fuchsia in Rage, Pop Beauty Matte Velvet Lipstick Cozy Crimson

(Left to Right): MAC x Halsey (LE), MAC Giambattista Valli Margherita (LE), MAC Giambattista Valli Eugenie (LE), MAC Alluring Aquatic Goddess of the Sea (LE), Giorgio Armani Plum 609, YSL Rouge Volupté Shine 19 Fuchsia in Rage, Pop Beauty Matte Velvet Lipstick Cozy Crimson

So, ladies, now it’s your turn. I love writing about (and commenting on!) things like this, because what might be “risky territory” for me could be something you’re incredibly at ease with.

Or, you might know of a way to make a color that I’m frightened by totally approachable for day-to-day wear.

Let’s chat about it. Meet you in the comments. 🙂


Jessica Revitte


Jessica is a Project Manager by day and a mommy, soon to be wife, avid reader and makeup lover in the in between times that really count. You may remember her from her former beauty blog, Getting Cheeky. Jessica is stepping out of beauty blogging “retirement” as a creative outlet and is eager to write about makeup, once again bringing her signature cultural, literary and historical twist to the table. See what she’s been up to these days, with and without makeup, on Instagram.

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  1. Rachel R. says:

    I like all the colors you have swatched, and the ones you’re wearing all look amazing on you. (That Armani Plum is stunning on you! Work it.)

    I don’t have a lip color comfort zone. I will wear any color, any finish, any form, no matter how “crazy.” Yes, I wear them out in public to the grocery store, to schools, everywhere. I don’t see how bright purple, turquoise blue, or black lipstick is any less natural than the socially accepted bright red. How many people have matte, fire-engine red lips? Red has just been around for millenia, so people are used to it.

    That being said, to weddings or funerals/memorial services, I do stick to more conventional colors or neutrals out of respect. Those types of events should not be about me and my makeup, IMO, so unconventional colors are out outside my comfort zone in those situations.

    • Jaclyn levy says:

      I agree, the plum is simply stunning on her!

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Thank you, Rachel!

      You are so awesome, I think I need to borrow a little bit of your spirit. This is what perplexes me about my own habits because I’ve NEVER been afraid to rock fire engine red which will get you as many looks as purple, for instance.

      There is totally a time and a place … but I’m thinking I may wear deep purple to the office and see what happens. Why the heck not? 🙂

      Jessica

      • Rachel R. says:

        Jessica, you’re too sweet. Go for the dark purple. The worst that can happen is they’d ask you to remove it. I’m betting if you keep your look professional, they won’t say anything. Let me know how it goes. 🙂 Have a great weekend.

  2. Jaclyn levy says:

    This is a super fun post! Ever since I was pregnant with my first and couldn’t experiment with clothes as easily I turned to lipstick and the obsession hasn’t stopped. I bought NYX stone fox (a gray similar to the MAC) and really liked how it looked and how I felt in it. My mom HATED it which made me only like it more. I also love a matte rich red. I wear red when I need a confidence boost or when I want to stand out even if I’m just going to the grocery store. Red makes me feel put together. I also love stormy darks and browns. I use those to reflect my mood, or in protest, like on an effing cold spring day and I’m mad its so cold. They also act as a “don’t mess with me” shield. Interestingly, neutrals and pinks are outside my comfort zone. My lower lip has a weird border that’s hard to define in light colors. It either looks like I didn’t fill in my whole lip or I overdrew the lines depending on how I apply it. That’s why I like darks and bold colors better. It’s easier to define my lips. Anyway. Fun post!

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Thank you, Jaclyn!

      So interesting! I’ve been eyeing NYX Stone Fox that came out in their new liquid lipstick range. Loving Amethyst (I finally did buy it, if you’re wondering) I just haven’t worked up the courage to wear it out yet.

      I completely agree that makeup can act as a “don’t mess with me” shield. And interestingly, I wear it as much as I can to work because I am a project manager in a male dominated field. Some would shy away from bright lipstick, but I think bold red shows that I’m confident and not easily intimidated. 🙂

      Jessica

  3. Christine says:

    I was involved in a photo shoot last weekend and was DYING to use one of the models’ Lime Crime lipsticks that was a dark, sparkly emerald! SO intense and beautiful. And if you want to see some really “unorthodox” lipstick colors, check out what Lime Crime has on offer.

    Sadly, I have no opportunity or actually desire to wear any of the unorthodox colors because many just wouldn’t look good on me.

    I can appreciate all of the various colors to put on the lips. Red eyeliner, blue lips, why not? (maybe not at the same time O__o)

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Lime Crime colors do look AMAZING (as do some of their shadow palettes, to be honest). I think the liquid lipstick trend is pushing some of these unconventional colors into the conventional range. It’s fun to watch.

      I’m sure 20 years from now we’ll all be wondering why we wore grey lipstick, but c’est la vie!

      Jessica

  4. Carly says:

    Ha! It’s kind of funny because I’m either wearing a MLBB/nude color OR a crazy dark shade like grey or black. You won’t catch me dead in a bright pink. It’s bizarre how people are wired towards different shades that other people won’t touch.
    Carly recently posted … Sephora Spring Sale Products Worth Buying

  5. susan says:

    Great post! I am more conservative in my makeup style, but I’ve always admired red lipstick on others. I think it has to do with the fact that I’d decided early on that my eyes are my better feature and I enjoy playing them up. Now, I mostly wear MLBB colors, pink/light coral/lilac, but I will occasionally wear red or red-orange. And any non-traditional color is definitely off my list. But I agree different things appeal to different people, and it’s interesting to observe different styles!

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Love this comment! I adore lilac lipsticks, there is something very slightly “different” about them without really jumping out too much.

      Jessica

  6. Efrain says:

    I don’t know how much gender has to do with it but for me using a MLBB or nude color is like feeling so reckless, and while I’d love to wear a really bright lip I’m afraid of all the consequences it could bring in a place rather conservative.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      I understand your concerns. I feel that much like clothing, makeup has a time and a place. While we shouldn’t be afraid to be ourselves and push against “expectations,” there are also times that it’s best to be observant of customs to avoid offending.

      Jessica

      • Efrain says:

        I know right? It’s a shame but sometimes it’s easier and better to avoid problems with people. I’m crossing my fingers things change quickly (you’ll see me with my red bright lip).

  7. breyerchic04 says:

    My lipstick range is pretty wide. MAC Heroine and Nice To Meet you are two faves but I also love some dark plums and more subtle colors. I can’t get around beige tones or most oranges.
    I’m a lot more limited in eyeshadows, I don’t go too dark, and I don’t like a lot of brights, so the naked thing suits me.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      I’m horribly limited in eye shadows, hence this post about lipsticks. 🙂 Almost all my shadows are nudes and shades of brown. I do tend to like pops of color, but mostly as liner or on the lower lash line!

      Love me some MAC Heroine, it’s a classic!
      Jessica

  8. Kwmechelle says:

    Oh, such a good post. At one time, I thought that reds & fuschias were big no-no(s) for me because I have a deep complexion. But enter WnW Stoplight Red (a supposed dupe for MAC Ruby Woo, though I don’t think they’re that similar) and that was a game changer. Now, I’ll rock bold & neon orange and pinks and berries and purples and reds in a hot second. I even bought MAC Rihanna 2, which looks like a metallic grey with hints of purple on me, and a lipglass on top to make it more wearable. It’s my fierce IDGA$&& color. Feel like a total bad a$$ in it. The only color I’ve yet to rock but would love to have is black. Now, it’s not office friendly & totally takes a walk on the wild side. Hopefully, one day I’ll find my black lipstick soul mate. All in all, I’d say I’m pretty daring. Of course, where I’m going makes all the difference. 🙂

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Thank you!

      Awesome comment, I love it! MAC Rihanna 2 is SUCH a stunner. I was considering it, but it didn’t pull quite right against my complexion. I’ve been looking for a black too, but destination totally plays a role in lip shade as you say and I can’t see my baby son *not* screaming if he were to see me in something that out there. 🙂

      Jessica

  9. Shannon says:

    Hi Jessica! I lurv me some dark and/or bold lips. I love reds, purples, bold pinks… I’m actually with Jaclyn, I’m most uncomfortable with nudes! I just haven’t been able to find a shade that works for my (presumably very average/white) skin tone. Last time I wore a nude to work, my boss asked me if I was feeling okay because I looked so pale. Sigh! That’s a sure sign you’re wearing the wrong color. :/
    However, I find that bold lips (probably including even grays/blues/greens) are doable if you’re wearing the right outfit, and if you keep the rest of your makeup simple. Sometimes I’ll even skip mascara with a bold lip look! I do wear glasses though… The perma-accessory that always needs balancing.
    I hella wanna check out that Halsey lipstick. It looks so amazing! And surprisingly wearable.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Oh no! Definitely not the intended impact of a nude lip. Do you mind if I ask if your boss is a man or a woman? I wore neon orange once and my former boss (who was a man) asked if I was going hunting … *sigh*

      I also wear glasses on a day to day, but I stick with black frames so no matter what I wear matches.

      I think you’d love Halsey. It’s an insanely wearable grey and I lur-ve it!

      Jessica

      • Shannon says:

        My boss is a man, but tends to notice little things more than most. He sounded like he was concerned for my well-being, honestly – and when I went to the bathroom, I noticed that I did look kind of like I was about to pass out, lol! Forever on the search for nudes I can wear…

        I ordered Halsey! I’m supposed to get it on Monday. Can’t. Freaking. Wait.

  10. jessica says:

    I wore black lippie (kat von d) for the Walking Dead season finale…..black everything. clothes, eyeshadow, lippie.

    And it was appropriate. 🙁
    jessica recently posted … Mad: Finished

  11. Erin says:

    I’ll do just about any lipstick. Eyes are tricky. I have cool skin and green eyes and very little lid space. If I had warmed toned skin and bigger lid space I’d wear everything 🙂

  12. Marcella Yakalis says:

    I definitely have a comfort zone. I stick mostly with reds when I want a bolder look and sometimes range into pinks in the summertime, when I’m feeling more sunny.

    I’ve never worn any MAC lipsticks and since I keep seeing how much you praise it I keep wanting to try Heroine. It’s just the punch of color I think I can manage.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      I LOVE Heroine! If you want to ease into it MAC actually makes a Heroine gloss that I also love. If you apply it lightly it creates that “popsicle lip” look everyone is always raving about. 🙂

      Jessica

  13. Anitaa says:

    I definitely have a comfort zone – which would be easy to tell if you could see my red and pink collection of lip products!
    I’ve no interest in greys, nutrals make me look like the corpse bride, and bright funky just isn’t for me. I HAVE been wanting to try a plum so I may take one small baby step towards a sheer version soon.
    Interesting post and question!

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Thank you, Anitaa! MAC makes a gloss version of their lipsticks in Heroine and Rebel and I highly recommend them if you’re looking to ease into a color as they can be sheered out. I usually apply a layer of MAC Rebel and then another layer of a milky shade over top (like Buxom White Russian) and it creates a unique, but wearable shade.

      Jessica

  14. Hello fellow bandit! Fancy seeing your gorgeous face here! Love all those lip colours on you. I quit my full time job when I had my 3rd baby and I find that I toned down on my makeup a lot. Quite minimal and mainly neutrals. It would be out of my comfort zone to wear dark purple lipstick for example, with 3 kids in tow,at a supermarket. Lol!
    But blogging gives me the opportunity to do that. I just remove it after taking the photos 🙂
    Lily ChloeAsh recently posted … Face Primers for Drier Skin / Base

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Hey lady, I was thinking about the Lipstick Bandits when I wrote this post!! Fond memories. 🙂

      Sometimes I wear neon lipsticks around the house just ‘cuz, but you’re totally right. It’s hard to get away with neons when you’re busier focusing on getting the kiddos out the door to run errands. (Your cuties are adorable by the way, and so big!)

      Jessica

  15. As long as I like it, I’ll wear any color, but there definitely are shades I tend to reserve for the nighttime.
    For example, I’ll wear an orange, bright fuchsia, or even dark plum lipstick during the day, but red for some reason I tend to only wear at night.
    Carolina Braina recently posted … L’Occitane Almond Milk Concentrate: A Body Moisturizer Worth Waiting 10 Years For

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      I am the same with plums, Carolina! I’ll wear any number of neons at noon, but even during the autumn and winter I reserve ultra vampy shades for an evening out.

      Jessica

  16. When it comes to eye make-up I’m quite adventurous. I’ll try and wear pretty much anything. Pink eyeliner, acid green eyeshadow, black and red smokey eyes,…

    But I play it much safer when it comes to lip colors. I have a few bold and unconventional colors in my collection, but truth is that 99% of the time I reach for my trusted coral and peachy pinks or warm nudes.
    Kiss & Make-up recently posted … Review | MAC Tattoo My Heart Versicolour Stain

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      So interesting, I am the total opposite. I love shadow but I keep it fairly boring and neutral whereas I let my lips do the talking (literally ha)! I think I’d be more willing to experiment with liner–I’ve seen people using some of these eye safe liquid lipsticks for that application.

      Jessica

  17. Miradan says:

    I thought of this post this morning as I put on purple lipstick for a quiet Wednesday at my office job 🙂 Purple lipstick is about as adventerous as I get, but I also love nice deep reds. I’ve started to get on the brown lipstick bandwagon, very gingerly, and have found a few that work for me.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Yay, you go girl! I haven’t yet found my ideal brown, but I’m on the hunt. Some of the deep plums I have verge on brown so it’s not too far out of my current repertoire.

      Jessica

  18. Elizabeth says:

    I have NOOOOOOO comfort zone. I’ll wear anything! I wore MAC Lady Danger pretty often in high school. Now my jam is OCC Technopagan or the lavender and plum Star WarsxCovergirl lipsticks. The only thing I can’t really see myself wearing is very purple-leaning fuschias or true browns, but I’m willing to try! One of my best friends absolutely KILLS IT with brown so she’s got me wanting to try it. And I really really want to pick up TF Unicorn Tears. That has got “casual lip color for Elizabeth to wear to class” written all over it.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Awesome, Elizabeth!! I’ve been dying to pick up TF Unicorn Tears because I think it would layer really well with other shades given that it’s fairly sheer. It looks like a transformer which has me very interested!

      Jessica

  19. kellly says:

    I work in a fairly conservative industry and I’m more into mostly natural looking lip colors, altho I have been known to wear reds sometimes. But mostly I stick with colors that aren’t too far from my natural lip color, or at least not too far from natural lip colors in general. I like warmer tones and mostly nothing that aren’t too big a contrast with a natural look.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      Hi Kelly! The office atmosphere can totally impact the choices we make cosmetically, I’m totally with you. I’ve had jobs where I’ve always kept it more subdued and others where I go all out. 🙂

      Jessica

  20. Jackie says:

    My beauty comfort zone when it comes to lipstick is wearing a lot of bright colors–I really like all shades of coral, orange, fuchsia, as well as any combination of those. I feel like wearing bright lipsticks really liven up my face. Conversely, wearing pale, neutral, or nude shades don’t really do much for me and are out of my comfort zone. I think others can really rock a nude lip though and not look lifeless or dull.

    • Jessica Revitte says:

      I’m totally with you. I love nudes on others, but they aren’t really my thing. Love the way a good bold lip can brighten the face!

      Jessica

  21. Selina says:

    I can’t really wear eye make up because my eyes itch and I wear glasses. Mascara and eyeliner are evil to me and I hate the thought of all of that gunk crowding my eyes. So bare eyes, concealer, brow gel/clear mascara and bold lipstick is my everyday makeup look, even in the evening. Sometimes I wear a little bronze and dusky pink eyeshadow. I wear it everyday and only own 1 nude, a beautiful pinky brown but I don’t wear it often because it feels too plain and neutral. If I’m wearing a muted colour, it has to be strongly pigmented. I love bright red, burgundy/wine, bright deep pink, berry and spice brown shades. While I’m not a fan of black (which I tried once), blue and green lipsticks, I think they can look good for a night out. Lilac, foundation shade, pale white pink and grey doesn’t look good on anyone. I’m not a fan of coral either but I’m trying out slightly more orange toned colours as well as pinky purple grape shades and I’m liking those. Basically I’m known as the lipstick queen and the day I stop wearing it, the world will end 😛 I’ll wear it whenever I leave the house, even if it’s just going for a walk around the block and especially grocery shopping because why not? I just love lipstick and can justify having 40 lip colours because I use them all up. It’s one of the best accessories for me and my favourite decorative cosmetic

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