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Make-Up Notes
Is this £4.99 lip-liner a dupe for Charlotte Tilbury?
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I’ve always been a bit suspicious of lip liner. I blame it on the 90s. I just cannot get on board with sporting a dark line around a light lip. Since then lip liners have been bit-players in the big beauty story.

Until now. Lip liners are back. And in a big way. Thankfully, they no longer conjure up horror stories and the formulas are better than ever. One standout is Charlotte Tilbury’s Lip Cheat lip liner in Pillow Talk. It has a legion of fans and it’s CH’s best-selling shade. However, I’d heard that L’Oreal’s Lip Liner Couture in Beige A Nu was a good match for Tilbury’s . But is it as good? I put them both to the test for you…

The best nude lip liner

Blow-the-budget buy: Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Lip Liner in Pillow Talk, £16

Colour: Another pinky/beige hybrid that’s very flattering and not overly obvious on the lips. This one is definitely more pink than beige and made my lips look polished, but not overly done up.

Formula: It has a tacky feeling on the lips, which wasn’t particularly annoying or noticeable, only if I smacked my lips together. It has a matte finish and is very pigmented – if you make a mistake with this, you can’t really blend it out.

Lasting Power: Thanks to the tacky formula, this lip liner is indestructible. I wore this on its own for afternoon tea and it was still going strong after copious amount of cake. When worn with lipstick, it really clings on to it and makes it go the distance.

 

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Bargain buy: L’Oreal Paris Lip Liner Couture in Beige A Nu, £4.99

Colour: This is a classic ‘pinky beige’ that looks very subtle on your lips – think your natural lip colour, but better. It leans more towards the beige side than the pink, but it steers well clear of brown territory.

Formula: Very creamy. Glides on and is forgiving if you make a blunder. It feels comfortable on your lips and has a mostly matte finish, but the creaminess gives it a little luminosity.

Lasting Power: On its own, it put up a good fight, but I could see that it had faded after my lunchtime sushi. However, it did give my lipstick an extra boost.

 

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The verdict:

From afar, you really can’t tell the difference between these two. Up close, however, the L’Oreal one has much more of a dusty pink appearance, whereas the Charlotte Tilbury one is darker and more of a true pink. On colour alone, the Beige A Nue isn’t a bad match, but any die-hard Pillow Talk fans will spot the difference a mile off.

In terms of durability, I decided to give them once last test by swatching both on the back of my hand and rubbing them vigorously. L’Oreal’s blended away, but to my amazement, Charlotte Tilbury’s stuck and Did. Not. Budge.

If you’re a lip liner enthusiast, and staying power is a must, then stick with Charlotte Tilbury’s Lip Cheat. Not only is the colour really flattering on all skin types, but it sticks around all day. If lip liner isn’t a staple in your make-up bag, opt for L’Oreal’s Lip Liner Couture – it’s cheaper, the colour isn’t far off and is more forgiving if you mess up.

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