Pop Lip Shadow Cushion Matte Lip Powder
Clinique's Pop Lip Shadow Cushion Matte Lip Powder is an interesting product that, while somewhat gimmicky, works exactly as advertised.
The pen-like packaging for this fragrance-free lip color is different from Clinique's other offerings: It includes a sponge-tipped applicator that you dip into the product's twist-off cap. Inside the cap is a powder-cream combination lipstick that adheres to the sponge, which you smooth across lips to apply.
This isn't a concept unique to Clinique—it's been around in Korea for a little while now—but from what we've seen, it is the first major U.S. brand to have this type of product.
The application might sound complicated, but don't worry: it's a straightforward process that yields good results. You get bold, true matte lip color in only a couple of swipes.
As the name implies, this has a powder-like feel to it, but it isn't overly drying; in fact, it only starts to feel dry towards the end of its wear time, which is about four hours (less if you eat or drink something). Clinique recommends using a lip balm in conjunction with the lip powder; that's fine to do, but the lip powder also works well on its own.
This lip color wears remarkably well, with no bleeding or feathering. It also fades to an attractive stain rather than wearing off unevenly. The range of shades is small but dependable, offering deep orange- and pink-based reds and bright pinks.
- Bold, matte lip color in a couple of swipes.
- Doesn't feel overly drying through most of its wear time.
- Doesn't feather or bleed.
- Fragrance free.
- A bit drying toward the end of its wear time.
Strengths: A few excellent moisturizers and serums; excellent sunscreens; very good cleansers and eye makeup removers; unique mattifying products; impressive selection of foundations, good concealers; some remarkable mascaras; much-improved eyeshadows, lip colors and blush formulas.
Weaknesses: Bar soaps (which can clog pores and dull skin); alcohol-based toners; unfortunate choice of jar packaging for antioxidant-loaded moisturizers.
Estee Lauder-owned Clinique launched the concept of cosmetics being "allergy-tested," "hypoallergenic," "100% fragrance-free," and "dermatologist tested." Of those marketing claims, the only one with significance is "100% fragrance-free," which, for the most part, Clinique maintains (although it does add some fragrant extracts to a few products). Unfortunately, terms like hypoallergenic and dermatologist tested aren't regulated by the FDA and can mean anything, thus, you still need to rely on the ingredient list to tell you whether their product contains any ingredients with the potential to irritate skin.
That inconvenient fact aside, Clinique is leading the way with cutting-edge, state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums, plus some formidable makeup and more than a few excellent sunscreens. While Clinique has some products that we see as missteps for reasons discussed in their reviews, more than ever, what they offer is quite good (just have realistic expectations, as some of their claims go beyond what their products are capable of).
Turning to makeup, Clinique continues to offer a vast palette of colors and textures, especially with their enormous selection of foundations, many of which feature effective sunscreens. Without a doubt, the numerous formulas offer something for every skin type and almost every skin color, though the blushes, eye makeup and lip colors are frequently not pigmented enough for deeper skin tones.
The bottom line is that, despite a few shortcomings, Clinique is one of the most comprehensive (and comparably affordable) department-store makeup lines, and it is completely understandable why they enjoy such broad appeal.
Note: Clinique is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Clinique does not conduct animal testing for their products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brands state that they dont test on animals unless required by law. Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Beautypedia Team.
For more information about Clinique, call (800) 419-4041 or visit www.clinique.com.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.