You've (Really) Never Seen Lipstick Like This Before

With brightly pigmented hues, cool application, and impressive staying power, lip powder is about to become your new favorite thing.

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As the adage goes, everything old is new again. The relatively recent development of the lipstick tube (it arrived early in the 20th century) made it easier than ever to add a swipe of classic red, dark purple, or virtually any other color to the lips. But lip color wasn't always applied this way. As far back as ancient Mesopotamian times, lip tint was made from crushed gems and pigments and patted onto the lips. Now that lip powder is slowly making its way into the cosmetics aisle, we seem to be going back to our cosmetic roots.

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Ultra Summer or Barbie Pink? It's a tough choice between two vibrant shades.

Lip powder has become one of the biggest cosmetic hits in Korea, with brands like RiRe and even the Korean division of L'Oréal offering tinted powders in applicators that make it easy to perfect your pout. Now, CLE Cosmetics is offering the latest in K-beauty to an American market, with its own melting lip powders, available in four colors: Barbie Pink, Milk Choco, Red Cherry, and Ultra Summer.

Red Cherry + Barbie Pink = the perfect bright pink. Photo courtesy of CLE Cosmetics
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To apply, simply use the applicator wand to swipe on the color. The lip powder gives off a cooling sensation and feels unexpectedly hydrating. The matte finish is less opaque than what you might get from a traditional lipstick, and it has a softer, more natural look than a liquid lipstick. The melting powder also has serious staying powder, hardly requiring a touch-up after eating lunch.

When Team Sweet tried out the lip powders, we were initially overwhelmed by the sheer novelty of the powder's melting effect, but then sold on the vividness of CLE's colors.

So fresh! So easy! Photo courtesy of CLE Cosmetics

With four wearable colors, Melting Lip Powder is easy to incorporate into your beauty routine—don't be surprised if it becomes your new go-to.

Red Cherry's slightly pinkish red is a subtle shift from the classic scarlet.
Milk Choco is great light nude for pairing with more dramatic eye makeup.
For a my-lips-but-better hue, choose Barbie Pink.
If you're in denial about the end of summer, Ultra Summer is the bright orange shade for you.

Melting Lip Powders, $20, available at

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