Last year, the pop culture and lifestyle site Popsugar launched their own cosmetics line, Beauty by Popsugar. We took a look at some of the first launches back in April, but since then I hadn’t really heard all that much buzz about the line on the web.
Beauty by Popsugar launched to cruelty-free, skin friendly and easy-to-use products to beauty lovers that are tapped in to the latest trends. The prices were what threw me off, personally. There were definitely products that I liked, and still use to this day, but I’d probably never pay retail for them and can find very similar products from budget-friendly brands. For me, I thought the entire brand was out of left field and to charge the prices that they do is a bit bold.
Nevertheless, the newest launch from Beauty by Popsugar found its way across my desk and I really liked the look of them. The Gem Sticks Lipsticks are sleek and slender lipsticks that deliver a shimmer finish in three trendy shades. The tip of the lipstick bullet is carved out to look like a cut gemstone, which is a nice touch. The formula is supposed to deliver high-impact color but with the comfort of a lip balm made with ingredients like Blueberry extract for the antioxidants, Green Tea extract for skin protection, Hibiscus Flower Extract Oil to help fight free radicals, and Pomegranate Sterols for increasing moisture levels.
Let’s take a look at the shades.
First, we have Precious Pink, which is a nice warm petal color with pink and purple fine glitter particles in the mix. They don’t translate as strongly on camera as they look in person, but they definitely catch the light as you speak and add a shimmery statement. When I first put this lipstick on, I felt like the shade was a bit like kid makeup, but then it started growing on me. It’s like a neutral shade with a secret— when you look closely enough and see the glitter, it really is special.
I absolutely love Ruby Rising, a hot red shade full of gold glitter. This shade had the most glitter in it, and the glitter particles were noticeably larger than the other two— in fact, the formula feels a bit granular when rubbing your lips together. But it’s no means uncomfortable when applied and I think it makes for a beautiful reflective finish.
Lastly we have Gosh Garnet, which is a faded berry shade with the same fine glitter as Precious Pink. I feel that the shimmer is a lot less noticeable in this particular color, though.
The Gem Sticks have a pretty thin formula but they definitely go on with solid color. It’s a shiny and comfortable finish that definitely feels balmy and hydrating on my dry lips this season.
As I was trying on the Beauty by Popsugar Gem Sticks, I couldn’t help but keep thinking that they reminded me so much of the e.l.f. Beauty Shield Lipsticks. Not so much the shades per say, but moreso how they feel on the lips, the pigmentation and the benefits of the formula. The Beauty Shield Lipsticks are made with key antioxidants, Sunflower Seed Oil, Pomegranate Seed Oil, and Vitamins B and E which help protect the lips against the environment as well as hydrate and minimize the appearance of fine lines.
Even the packaging is pretty similar— they both come in very slender tubes. But the price difference is pretty dramatic! The Beauty by Popsugar Gem Sticks will run you $22, while the e.l.f. Beauty Shield Lipsticks are only $6. There is also only .01 oz of product difference between the two.
Like I said, there are no shade dupes between the two by any means, but the Beauty Shield Lipsticks are also incredibly pigmented and balmy while also offering protection and antioxidants. Here are the two shades available:
Rose Shield is a dusty rose that leans a bit purple in my eye. It’s a satin-matte finish that stays moisturizing yet doesn’t have a lot of shine to it.
Red Siren Screen is one of my favorite red lipsticks right now, because the pigmentation is out of this world and the formula just makes my lips look so smooth and healthy. You get a classic satin finish on this and the neutral undertones make it flattering on many skin tones.
So what’s the point of this comparison if there aren’t actual dupe shades available? If you’re looking at the Beauty by Popsugar Gem Sticks specifically for the shades, then by all means go for it. They’re gorgeous, comfortable, and great for nourishing lips. But If you’re just looking for a comfortable and hydrating pigmented lipstick that will do your lips good while you wear it, the e.l.f. Beauty Shield Lipsticks have you covered at a far cheaper price point.