REVIEW: L’Oreal x Balmain Lipstick Collection

In September 2017, L’Oreal launched a lipstick line in collaboration with fashion brand Balmain. So I’m pretty late to the game on this review, because you know, life gets in the way.

Anyhow, I bought these lipsticks mainly because it was in collaboration with Balmain—it might be the closest I can get to buying makeup from a luxury brand, haha.

I purchased the shades Domination and Power for PHP499 each.

Domination is part of the Couture Tribe collection, whereas Power is from the Rock Tribe one. I wanted to try something from the Glamazone Tribe so I could get a better idea of how consistent the lipsticks were across the board, but I didn’t see a shade I liked.

As you can see, the packaging is beautiful.

balmain loreal lipsticks in power and domination

I am especially in love with the Rock Tribe design: that marbled bright blue with gold “hardware” just screams designer to me. The black tube of the Couture Tribe is classic and sophisticated, but not as striking.

Still, they don’t look or feel cheap unlike other drugstore products, which is good considering the image of Balmain is high-end.


The website of L’Oreal describes these two shades as follows.

Domination: You can’t go wrong with red lipstick. After all, it’s a classic. This crimson shade is no exception. Just match it to your fiery spirit.

I love this shade. I don’t think I have anything like this in my collection of red lipsticks. Wearing this color makes me feel powerful—it makes me feel like I’m being bold, but not over the top.

balmain loreal lipstick swatches of power and domination

Power: When you need to feel fearless, wear this brown shade. The best part? It looks striking no matter your skin tone.

I wore this color when I felt more adventurous. I wasn’t the biggest fan of this true brown shade since I don’t see it having a lot of dimension. Like, it’s literally just brown. Yawn. I prefer the Colourpop Lux Lipstick in 27.

Texture and Performance

These are not creamy mattes like Maybelline’s formula. These are really matte to the point that they cause tugging at the lips during application.

Power is the worse offender in this scenario. It is patchy and does not apply evenly, despite exfoliating my lips and applying lip balm beforehand. Wearing this shade is high-maintenance because it quickly fades in the inner part of my lips. The fading is uneven, and reapplication doesn’t make it look much better because it emphasized dry patches on my lips.

I’ve since decluttered this, though I was sorry to see it go simply because of the packaging.

Domination is relatively creamier, and it applies more evenly. It doesn’t require as much reapplication as Power, though it has the same problem of clinging to dry patches. It wears well since it’s a drier matte formula. It fades after eating and drinking, but not terribly so.

Bottom line

Based on my experience using these two, and swatching the rest in stores, I’d say the collection is hit or miss. I suggest you swatch them before deciding to purchase.

Ela is a twentysomething who is constantly getting stuck in self-destructive behavior and bouts of low self-esteem. She struggles with depression and writes to relieve herself of her feelings. Sometimes she even blogs about other things like makeup and positivity. One of her pieces was published in the Inquirer Young Blood in October 2017. She likes cats, dogs, and sometimes even people.

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