The cardboard box is so familiar: that iconic silver logo set across a print of pastel green and yellow foliage. I’ve been opening these boxes since my freshman year in high school when I received my very first tube of Black Honey lipstick. But this Clinique lipstick box was different. Because inside I didn’t find a pretty mauve or a reliable sheer. Instead, I found a bold magenta color I’d sooner expect from a brand like Anastasia Beverly Hills. Or Make Up For Ever. Maybe even Pat McGrath Labs. You know, a brand that’s edgy and Instagram-y. (No offense Clinique: I’d take reliable over edgy any day of the week.) Anyhow, the shade name Shock Pop pretty much sums up my reaction when I slipped the cap off the tube. Here's why.
The color is a perfectly balanced magenta. Full opaque coverage. With a semimatte finish. You can tap it on with your fingertip or apply it precisely, straight from the bullet. Either way, you are going to get color payoff that is no joke. It goes on smooth (thanks to silicones that act like a lip primer) and bold and sticks around for hours. It’s also supremely versatile — a good thing considering you’ll have it on your lips through at least two meals. I’ve worn Shock Pop lips to the beach with cutoffs, a white one-piece, and gold hoops. I’ve worn the shade to a black-tie wedding with a black Saint Laurent gown and a slick bun. And I’ve worn it with leggings and a sports bra to a SoulCycle class — but that was just because after eight hours of vibrant color, I was curious whether profuse sweating would take it off. (For the record: It didn’t.) When the color does eventually fade, though, my lips are left soft and moisturized.