Many years ago, I had the chance to visit a lacquerware factory when visiting Vietnam. I saw first-hand how Vietnamese lacquerware was made, and I was told that the best way to get the high glossy shine associated with good quality lacquerware, was to polish the products by hand. No machine could measure up to the shine and sheen that could only be brought forth by hand.
Which explains why high quality lacquer ware is expensive, and due to the materials used and effort and skills, lacquerware is primarily decorative these days instead of used for practical purposes.
But it is that glossy shine of a high quality lacquer product that inspired Shu Uemura’s Laque Supreme lip colours.
Shu Uemura Laque Supreme RD02
Inspired by Japanese lacquerware, Shu Uemura offers a lip colour that is lightweight, glossy, shiny and pigmented. I like the black tubes it comes in, because that is very in keeping with the theme, and there is a nice window of colour so you know which ones you have.
I won’t classify these as lip glosses. They are much more pigmented, so I’d place them in the category of liquid lipstick, but the liquid texture allows you to dial back on colour and pigment as you see fit. Since I love lip colours, how do you think these fared for me? I can tell you that a quick online search will yield you mostly raves; that this is the best thing since sliced bread!
Like what you get from Dior, these Laque Supreme lip colours from Shu Uemura are huge on colour. They are incredibly pigmented and give you a lovely glossy lip on top of the colour you get. It’s like lipglosses on steroids.
The doe foot sponge tipped wand is an innovative design that fits your lip and holds colour well, so you don’t have to double dip. I do find that wiping off some of the colour as you remove the wand out of the tube allows you better control when applying it to your lips. Otherwise, it can get a little goopy.
I also find that layering on thin layers of product gives you better longevity and depth of colour, as opposed to applying it in one thick swipe of product. The pigment is strong, so you can easily gauge the depth of colour you need based on your comfort level.
The texture is a lightweight, water based texture that does not feel heavy nor goopy on your lips, and the colour is fairly long lasting once applied. I received 3 colours a few months ago, so here are the swatches on arm, on lips and in a quick FOTD so you have an idea of what they look like when worn.
- BG01 – A nude-beige toned lipstick, that has a warm, slightly orangy undertone. This goes best with stronger eye makeup, although I liked that unlike many nude lip colours, this did not leave me looking washed out and sick. Just enough colour to look human. This also has the sheerest texture
- PK01 – A bright pink that is fresh and refreshing, and is pretty flattering for those with fair or light skintones.
- RD02 – A straight red with slightly warm base that is punchy and pretty much in your face! This has the most opaque texture among the 3 featured.
You may notice how in the arm swatches, the middle looks fairly sheer. I noticed that when swatching on my arm, but for some reason, when you do the same swatch on your lips, you get a much stronger tone. I think it’s to do with the wand. The curve hugs your lips just right, and deposits just the right amount of colour.
All the lip swatches were done with 2 thin layers of product. You see a nice shine, but it isn’t super glossy to the extent of being greasy, like you just ate a bowl of oily laksa or dug into a box of fried chicken. It gives your lips a nice, flattering shine.
I’ve got the same lip swatches in a simple FOTD to show you just how it looks in a full face of makeup. I thought it interesting that BG01 was fairly flattering for me. It would be nice to dig this out for a simple swipe of colour without having to be too careful about whether I colour in the lines, the same way I have to be for RD02. BG01 was also more sheer than RD02 with PK01 falling somewhere in the middle. It appears to be true that the deeper the shade, the more opaque it is in one swipe and vice versa.
Also, if you are the type who hates how products like these can fade and leave a weird ring around your lips, fear not. I find that they have a slight stain effect, so as the colour wears off, it leaves behind a nice stain of colour on your lips that makes it easy to touch up.
However, as much as I love the intensity of colour, I’m not crazy about the Laque Supremes. They aren’t as tacky as Dior Addict Fluid Sticks and yet have the same beautiful intensity of colour and shine. But there is a strange chemical scent that I can’t get over.
I’ve noticed that no one mentions it so I don’t know if it’s just me and my sensitive nose or just that no one wants to mention it, but it’s there. I am bugged by strong floral scents or sweet scents in lip products, because you wear them so close to your nose, but chemical scents irk me more than a floral scent does. I mean, I realise that these are an amalgamation of chemicals anyway, yet when I get that sharp scent, my brain spasms and I go “Why does my lipstick smell like it’s radioactive?!”*
So that’s the fly in my Laque Supreme ointment. I love a lot about it, but that smell. I can’t get over it 🙁
IN A NUTSHELL
The Shu Uemura Lacque Supreme liquid lip colours have a lovely lightweight texture and an incredible intensity of colour. I suggest using thin layers to build up the colour as it looks best that way, and you can build them up from sheer to opaque in just about 2 layers. The product also operates as a stain so you get good longevity as well. All in all, as a lip colour, it’s an amazing product. However, I find that there is a chemical scent to them that I’m not crazy about so as a result, I can’t say I’m a fan.
PROS: Pigmented and intense colour, Easy to layer, Feels comfortable on lips without feeling tacky, Lightweight texture
CONS: Chemical scent puts me off
WHO WILL LIKE THIS: Anyone who enjoys using liquid lip colours, Anyone who wants a pigmented and glossy lip colour with fairly good longevity, Anyone who likes using lip gloss and wants a product with more colour
Since I mentioned the Dior Fluid Stick and these Laque Supremes above within this post, you may be wondering which I prefer between the two. I’d pick the Laque Supreme for the texture and colour, despite the chemical scent. It’s because I can’t stand the texture of the Fluid Stick (I know there are a lot of fans and I apologise… actually no I don’t apologise, but it’s just a me thing 😛 ) I won’t even include Lancome’s Lip Lover because that one I’m not a fan of 😛
Have you tried these Laque Supreme lip colours? Are you a fan of liquid lipsticks?
I’m on the fence about liquid lipsticks. I like how they tend to have a more transparent quality and better shine than a regular stick lipstick, but I don’t like fiddling about with lip wands. It’s the same way I rarely wear lip gloss. I like the gloss, I don’t like the application mechanism. What say you? Fan of them? 🙂
* I don’t know what ‘radioactive’ smells like and I’m not saying these are radioactive but every time I get that sharp metallic scent of chemicals, I think “Man! That smells radioactive!”
Shu Uemura Laque Supreme Lip Colours come in 15 shades Price: RM90 Availability: Shu Uemura counters and boutiques