You know how a lot of lipstick lines have the same, predictable colours? There's always a classic red. A nude. A fuchsia. A ballet pink. Maybe a coral.
Well, the NARS Audacious Lipsticks aren't like that.
I thought they would be, which is why it's taken me so long to get around to testing 'em—these babies came out in the fall. But I was wrong! (Thank you to Tracy from Beauty Reflections for the encouragement.) There are 30 shades, and the bolder, brighter ones in particular are really quite unique. You just don't see tones like this very often from other brands.
But they're not so different that they cease to be flattering, in a Kat Von D sort of way. (For example, had to pass on her Studded Kiss Lipsticks completely... there's not a single shade I would feel comfortable wearing.)
Take a look and tell me if you're not salivating already:
The formula itself is extremely creamy and smooth, depositing tons of pigment in one swipe with no building required. (I'd actually recommend applying with a lip brush, especially the more intense shades, to get nice precise edges. I didn't do that here because, well, I don't have 10 different lip brushes.) The colour lasts ages, even if you blot it down to a stain.
NARS sent me 10 shades to try and here they are on mah lips:
Okay, the first two shades I have to show you aren't brights, but in case you're interested... Anita is an antique rose. It's a little '90s; like a deeper version of my own natural lip colour. It's never my first instinct to reach for colours like this, but when I look at the photo, I really really like it.
I don't know what kind of weirdo expression I'm making here. Probably because this is my least favourite shade of the bunch. Raquel is a pink beige, and on me it's just too light and borderline chalky... it reminds me of what a Kardashian would wear. I had issues trying to cover up the edges of my own (darker) lip tone, and the colour didn't stick well on the inner edge of my lower lip—dontcha just hate when that happens?
Now this is more like it! Claudia is a true cool pink, along the lines of Barbie or, say, Nicki Minaj. I think it's too cool-toned for my complexion (I always need a hint of warmth), but if you can pull it off, it's fabulous. It has a slight tendency toward patchiness, so you might need to smooth things out with a fingertip.
Here's my absolute favourite, called Natalie. I'm freaking over this new-to-me shade, which is described as "flamingo." I think it's less pink than flamingos look, actually. I'd maybe call it a yellow-pink? Whatever it is, you'll be able to find it on my lips non-stop from now on.
And I love this one, too! Vera is a bright raspberry and it's so much more interesting than straight red, am I right? Out of all the shades here, this one had the dreamiest application... just so smooth and full coverage! Yet it doesn't look heavy on the lips at all.
Second most favourite here. Grace is a bright pink coral—and again, I find it a way cooler spin on the expected classic red mouth. It reminds me of something you'd see on Betty Draper, early Mad Men. Very 1950s!
And here's the hot pink. Actually, they describe Michiyo as "shocking pink," and it is, because of the extremely cool undertone. This is one to wear when you want to be noticed.
I didn't expect to like Rita, a scarlet that looks like a brick red in the tube. But once it's on—hubba hubba! The very slight brownishness gives it a more modern feel, and does it ever look seksi when applied with a brush, just slightly outside your lip edges. New love for evening dressy times!
I'm getting into oranges in a big way lately, and that now includes Lana, a vivid orange-red. This is a really good orange, if you're just starting to dabble with them and not sure you can pull one off. The red keeps things wearable (and doesn't make your teeth look discoloured), but there's enough warmth to play up any golden tones in your skin and hair.
Last up is Annabella, a poppy red... but you probably own something like this already. I know I do. It's still pretty, though!
The bottom line? It's (almost) summer, a.k.a. bright lipstick season—and these couldn't be a more perfect choice for your seasonal lip look! Let me know what you think?
Where To Buy
Here's where to find NARS Audacious Lipsticks:
- Canada: Sephora, Hudson's Bay, Nordstrom, NARS
- USA: Sephora, Nordstrom, Barneys, Saks Fifth Avenue, Violet Grey, NARS
- UK: Selfridges
Have Your Say
Have you tried this lipstick yet? Which shade is your favourite?