In order of preference, liquid cheek stains are always top of my blush list, cream blushes come only second. I’ve seen lots of naturally formulated cream blush before. I even recently reviewed Silk Naturals Cream Blush in Candy Apple. But I think I’ve only seen a naturally formulated liquid cheek stain once or twice. Venus and Mars Liquor in a Pump was one of them so discovering it got me so excited I felt like doing a somersault with my ponytails.
Ingredients Not Fully Listed
I doubt that the full list of ingredients was listed because the list didn’t even mention the dyes used. I’m also doubtful that this mostly oil-based product will mix smoothly with Aloe Vera without any emulsifier (ingredient used to combine water and oil). However, the V&M Liquor in a Pump comes in a perfectly held together light gel — this goes against everything I know about chemistry 101. Oil and water don’t mix on their own, right?
Ingredients: Emu Oil, Vitamin E, Aloe Vera, VCO, Almond Oil
Staying Power, Colors and Blending
Although I was extremely excited to try this product, I didn’t expect it to perform just as well as Body Shop’s Lip & Cheek Stain which was my first love. And yes, it didn’t. I find that V&M Liquor in a Pump doesn’t absorb well and fast enough into the skin. I had to apply lots of it which makes blending quite messy. The trick is to spread it on the desired areas and leave it to settle for at least 10 counts before blending. If left longer, it’ll form a nasty map on your face. I got Luscious Tart (cool skin tone) and Cherry Crush (warm skin tone). Cherry crush looks more natural on my lips than on my cheeks. Luscious Tart, however, was just too dark for me–might as well punch and bruise myself.
Weird, weird Smell
I was able to overcome the blending and tinting hassles after a while. But what bothered me the most up to the very last time I used this product was the weird smell. It’s not difficult to imagine how a live Emu bird might smell like using this stain on my cheeks and lips, just inches away from my nostrils. Kidding aside, most likely, the weird smell might be due to the aloe vera.
Keep or Toss?
As of now, I don’t have plans of purchasing this again. I just can’t get over the weird smell and the colors don’t really match my skin too well. Since Venus and Mars is based in the Philippines, I had to settle for special shipping arrangements to Singapore. The V&M Liquor in a Pump Lip and Cheek Stain retails for around SGD$12 or PHP415. It’s not exactly cheap if you factor in the shipping fees which is around SGD$38 for the first 2 kilos!
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