So you guys already are probably aware my love for Nudestix is strong. Their products are hella cute, super convenient, and never slouch on performance. It all started with the Lip + Cheek Pencil in Ripe (which I’ve been reaching for a ton this spring) and has only taken off since then. About a month or two ago I was perusing the “Just Arrived” section of the Sephora website (cause really, when am I not?) and was thrilled to discover a new Nudestix product had launched. From the second I laid eyes on them, I knew the Gel Color Lip + Cheek Balm was going to be boss, and I also knew I needed to have them in my life.
Now, full disclosure, because you guys know I’m all about honesty in these parts. My genuine enthusiasm for Nudestix landed me on their PR list, which means that from time to time they’ll send me their products for free. I’m never asked to write a review, nor say anything positive about whatever I’m sent on social media or otherwise. Basically they’re just trusting that their products are great, and if people like them, they’ll want to share them with their audiences. Nudestix is in no way compensating me for talking about their products, however I AM a Sephora affiliate, which means if you go out and buy these lovely pencils using one of the links from this post, I can earn a small commission from your purchase. So if that’s something you aren’t cool with, I totally respect that.
Phew, all right, now that we’ve gotten the formalities out of the way, let’s get back to talking makeup. These pencils looked pretty legit, and I was incredibly thrilled to be sent three to try. Want to know more? Yeah you do!
Unlike the original Lip + Cheek Pencils, which have more of a matte to satin finish, this gel formula is designed to be intensely glossy and moisturizing. Formulated with 30% plant-derived lipids and vitamin E, they’ll leave your lips feeling ultra-hydrated and smooth. They’re available in 8 shades, from pinks and nudes, to a sick looking deep wine, and retail for $24 each. The cherry on top of this lippie sundae? Nudestix products are also cruelty-free, and nothing in this formula is animal derived.
Now, I’ve been using these pencils a fair amount since I’ve gotten them. We’ll get into swatching the individual shades in a moment, but I have a few thoughts to share overall. First of all, I LOVE the formula of these pencils, but I could also appreciate that they might not be for everyone. The texture is a bit thicker and stickier than a normal lip balm, so if you’re one of those people that absolutely can’t stand the feeling of a tacky lip product, I would opt for the original Lip + Cheek instead.
For me, though, I don’t mind the way these feel on the lips. It doesn’t venture into goopy lip gloss territory and stays very comfortable for hours. On that note, these lip pencils are crazy long wearing, especially for being labeled as a balm. They don’t ever dry down, nor do they get gross and weird over time. They keep your lips feeling hydrated, and as the color does begin to fade, it fades very evenly.
Pigmentation-wise I would call this a buildable formula. You can dab on a thin layer for a sheer wash of color, or build it up to full opacity. The end result is beautifully glossy and natural looking. The color will hold up for several hours sans eating or drinking, but they are definitely not transfer proof. Aka, if you’re planning on diving into a burger, prepare to reapply.
Now, I will also note that these are Gel Color Lip AND Cheek Balms. I absolutely love the way the original Lip + Cheek Pencils work as blushes, but I am a little bit more skeptical about these. They do blend out really beautifully, but the sticky finish is a little less appealing to me on my cheeks. If you love that dewy skin look, you might actually enjoy these as blushes, but for me personally I prefer them exclusively on my lips.
So lets get into the three shades that I was sent. Swatched above from left to right are Haven, Rebel, and Pulse. As you can see, these are definitely not as pigmented as a traditional lipstick, but they are no where near as sheer as many other balms and glosses I’ve seen.
Haven might just be my perfect nude. It lightens my lips without making them look dead or chalky, and has just the right undertone. I am o-b-s-e-s-s-e-d with this color. Obsessed.
Rebel is your classic, cool-toned, spring-y pink. I truthfully don’t reach for this type of color very often, but it’s still pretty.
Pulse is a deep mauvey-nude that would be flattering on just about anyone. You could wear it with a serious smokey eye, or a more casual daytime look.
Final verdict? If you’re on the hunt for a new summer lippie, I highly recommend checking these out. They’re very forgiving and easy to apply on-the-go, and the color selection is gorgeous. I’ve currently got my eye on the shade Luxe, which looks like it’d be right up my alley, although Wicked looks pretty fantastic as well.