At first, I was excited with my new tube of Burt’s Bees new, purply-sheer tube lipgloss called “Smooch.” It’s got that fragrance that reminds you of cherry cough-syrup, and lays down the slightest Persephone-ish pomegranate shine on the lips, a little like Clinique’s “Black Honey” (a major binge-product for me, in its tiny celadon pot, and my party-parched BFFS in the 90s).
But here’s the thing. That gloss, like most, gets everywhere, and I feel like I’m leaving my slippery snail-trail around the world. It’s on glasses, cups, the handle of my toothbrush. My husband remarked the other day that our cat was “looking a little greasy.” Guess what? I had slimed her. So wrong. Her plush marshmallow bunny-ness was sticky with my “Smooch”, requiring an immediate towel-down. Speaking of obsessive compulsive, read on.
Especially as Earth Day approaches, I choose vegan organic products for my face, especially my lips, whenever possible, since we’ve all read the random “fact” that every woman literally devours–eats– and entire lipstick per year (i.e. you put on lip product, you bite into rosewater macaron, lipstick is transferred to macaron, you swallow macaron, consuming lip product as well as macaron. Repeat 50-60 x, and that’s my morning).
I know. Vegan, ew. But you are so wrong, sunshine. I am in an official Spring tizzy over Obessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar in easter egg colors: Narcissus (flamingo-pink, matte), Digitalis (means foxglove flower, btw, more of a lavender-pink, matte), Ophelia (flesh-pink with a blush of coral, non-matte), and Hush (light terra-cotta, matte).
These gorgeously Paschal shades, like all Obsessive Compulsive Lip Tars, are accompanied by a professional lip brush. The bristles of the brush are high-quality synthetic, versus pussycat whiskers or puppydog tails, since the company is vegan and cruelty-free.
Obsessive Compulsive is also a paraben free makeup. This becomes more and more of a real obsession for me, as I read about the omnipresence of preservatives known as parabens (yes, they’re in food, too, as well as cleaning products) and their effects on women’s health. Many studies say that parabens imitate estrogen. I know, ew again. Some experts link raised estrogen levels to cancer.
Back to the brush. You need it for Lip Tar because this is a super-pigmented product. It’s dense, saturated, opaque color. Unlike a gloss, you can’t just splooge it on randomly in the car while you’re texting with the other hand, then go out in public. The crew behind OCC are all professional makeup artists who work on editorial, meaning high-def photo print shoots, as well as runway, big screen, little screen, theatre and the occasional drag queen ball. Oops, I mean party. So that Lip Tar needs to be applied with precision and kept in its place with a firm hand.
And it stays there. Easily eight hours, maybe more, depending upon how much you use your lips during a given day. Lip Tar is known by professional makeup artists as “versatility in a tube”, so you can use it on cheeks, as contour and highlighter as well as on lips. The product has a whiff of Peppermint essential oil, not recommended for use around the eye area, so let’s not get carried away.
If you just cannot break on through to pink lips this spring, OCC brand manager and creative director Courtney Tichman says, “The new black is black — only sheer.” While she recommends Lip Tar in a color called Sebastian, edged with a Cosmetic Colour Pencil called Sybil for a chocolate-y lip, Courtney says that her personal go-to is a lighter-weight product, Little Black Dress Stained Gloss, defined by a Cosmetic Colour Pencil called Tarred. “It creates definition without washing you out,” she says.
PHOTO: OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE COSMETICS Launches Spring Collection, “Plastic Passion” at Sephora at Highland Center, Hollywood.
From Left: Courtney Tichman , OCC Brand Manager and Director of Product Development, Deven Green, comedienne, campaign spokesmodel and inspiration for new Plastic Passion Deven Green nail lacquer, David Klasfeld, OCC Founder and Creative Director
PHOTO BY DAVID PHELPS FOR OCC
–Reporting by Victoria Thomas