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Here at T&C, we pride ourselves on our discerning eye for quality. With Tried & True, our editors will give you an inside look at the pieces they simply cannot live without.
Beauty lovers of a certain age will remember a time when every It Girl worth her teen magazine cred swore by Clinique's Almost Lipstick in Black Honey—it's sheer berry stain a badge of honor that marked you as someone in the know. Of course, as with everything, trends come and go, and sometimes come again. One need look no further than the recent resurgence of late '90s and early '00s fashion and beauty trends for proof of that. And while I'm not going to be trading in for a pair of low-rise jeans or plucking my eyebrows pencil-thin anytime soon, there is one renaissance I can get behind: the return fo the sheer, effortlessly cool, your-lips-but-better lip.
I was reintroduced to my love of the look when Hourglass debuted their latest lip product, the Phantom Volumizing Glossy Balm, this spring. Packed into a slim, ultra-chic gold tube, it lives up to its name by serving up both the silky-smooth, lip-softening feel of a balm with the shine of a gloss, and the ideal dose of sheer color for that "is it lipstick or are her lips just that good?" effect. AKA: Just what you want from your easy, breezy, summer beauty look; elegant enough to swipe on for a summer soiree, so subdued you won't look overdone wearing it to a casual picnic or beach day.
Available in 8 shades, from subtle beige to searing fuchsia, Lure, a rich berry tone that has definitely Black Honey vibes, has become my uncontested favorite of the season for its ability to amp up the natural color of your lips in a way that's flattering for any skintone and goes with any outfit. Better yet, its specialty "conditioning complex" makes my perpetually dry lips feel supple and soft, but without the hair-grabbing stickiness of glosses of old.
In fact, I'd say there's only obstacle left to making it my look of the summer—snapping up a tube for all of my travel bags before all of the It Girls get their hands on it.
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