Makeup: NYX Matte Lipstick in Pure Red

Yep, I’m back to buying red lipsticks again. But, you see, now I have some motivation – my wedding! I’ve known for a while that if I got married I’d wear red on my wedding day, but I want the right shade, for it to be matte and, crucially, as kiss-proof and long-lasting as possible! I’m just not there yet…
I found my ideal shade of red in the Bourjois liquid matte, but the more I used that one, the more frustrated I became because the application was just so difficult due to its weird thin consistency that needs layers upon layers for decent colour. It’s so easy to go wrong with it – it’s too high maintenance for my wedding day for sure. And then I lost the bottle, so won’t be wearing that again soon!
Then I came across NYX Cosmetics earlier this year. It’s a brand that hasn’t been in the UK that long, so I couldn’t resist scoping out their lipsticks. To my delight, there were four red contenders in their matte range and reviews online indicated that one could be the colour I’d been searching for: that bright, pillar-box red that didn’t lean too warm or cool. Step up, Pure Red.
This lipstick is inexpensive as they go, so I wasn’t expecting to be blown away, but for the price I’m impressed. This is the only red lipstick I’ve ever put on and B has – unprompted, and we know how rare unprompted is – said ‘I really like that lipstick!’. (To my irritation, he always compliments every coral, nude or pink I ever wear, but has never seemed to like the reds on me.) So in terms of colour, we do have a winner… It’s bright and it really is red. Not orange-red, not brown-red, not blue-red; red-red.


NYX matte lipstick in Pure Red review


NYX matte lipstick in Pure Red review
(And yes, this is another pair of the lovely vintage earrings Jessica sent me last year that I’ve since sadly lost one of, as it fell off without me realising 🙁 )
  • The colour – this is as close as I’ve come to finding the red I’ve long pictured in a lipstick, other than the Bourjois
  • The price – it’s £6.50 and for what you get I think it’s a bargain
  • It’s not remotely drying. I was really expecting to have flaky lips as it’s cheap, but having worn it several times now it’s never happened!
  • The other thing I was expecting was patchy/weaker colour but nope, this is pigmentation power! One swipe and you’re there
  • The packaging is cheap looking, yep, but that’s never what I care about. I care if it looks the same as all my other lipsticks so I can’t tell them apart without opening them. It’s cheap, but you can see the bullet through the side (see first photo), so thumbs up
  • One of the worst things about this lipstick, which is why it simply can’t be an absolute favourite, is the transfer. This lipstick gets everywhere. Probably even places you haven’t been, it’s that transfer-y. If B does kiss me while wearing it, he looks like he’s applied it directly straight after
  • As you can see from these photos, my light is causing a shine, which is because this is definitely not a true matte. I wouldn’t mind, but the name kinda implies otherwise!
  • It’s my belief that a really good lipstick will have a constitency that means you forget you have it on. This has a very slight ‘feel’ to it, which is worth mentioning but it doesn’t bug me at all actually
  • It’s a bit ‘slippery’ – i.e. it’s really easy to smudge it outside of your lines without a lip pencil helping (and even with)
If you’re in the UK and haven’t tried these yet, they’re worth the few £s to have a go if you find a shade you like and don’t mind the transfer thing, because otherwise for the price I can’t really fault it. I’ve tried worse that cost a lot more!
Ultimately, though, this isn’t The One. I’m definitely accepting recommendations for a matte lipstick that lasts in a neutral, bright red, if you have them… And I’ve got a couple more I’m road testing but still not there yet, I don’t think…


  1. June 12, 2016 / 9:51 am

    Goooood morning! Your hair is looking particularly lovely here, have you been at the rockin' rollers?! I've been using them more recently, as my hair needs a cut and looks a bit rubbish dead straight. I was all for rushing out and buying one of these lippies, but then you mentioned the transfer issue, and I just can't cope with that, you basically need a day of not eating or kissing or drinking. I wore the Besame red lippy yesterday and got it all over my falafel, and then it was smeared all over Chris's face when we had a smooch. So, not recommending that one either for your wedding as there's bound to be a load of smooching!! I can see this hunt becoming a lifelong pursuit?! xx

    • June 12, 2016 / 11:51 am

      Actually this hair is a cheat – as it's waves not real curls – and was performed using a styling wand! I love the rockin' rollers, but I don't like going about my day with unwashed hair, so it puts me off using them…

      I can't cope with the transfer issue either – it's so irritating. I don't find Besame that bad – not one of the best, but not as bad as lippies like this one, for sure! I wish this didn't feel like it was going to be a lifelong pursuit, but you may be right >:( xx

    • June 15, 2016 / 8:35 am

      I find my Besame Red lipstick the best one I have as it lasts forever and will stay in place no matter what I drink or eat. Also doesn't require lip pencil, BUT it does transfer. There will be lipstick everywhere, but as long as it stays on my lips, I'm good. 🙂

      But I do hope you'll find a good lipstick that is actually kiss-proof.

    • June 16, 2016 / 12:08 pm

      I'd agree – Besame is great but it does go everywhere!! I've got two more lipsticks on my list to try, so I'm not out of options yet…

  2. Erin
    June 12, 2016 / 1:48 pm

    They're pretty expensive, but the Jeffree Star liquid lipstick in Red Rum might be a good fit? I recently bought Rich Blood (my first Jeffree Star product) and I love it, but it's definitely a blue red.

    • June 16, 2016 / 12:08 pm

      Yes, I've noticed that one! It's on my maybe list, the only thing that's putting me off is it seems quite similar to Stila Beso, which I've just bought and is too dark and blue for me…

  3. June 12, 2016 / 1:49 pm

    Such a lovely shade!!! The transferring is one of my biggest pet peeves! I use stilla for my red lipstick and I'm in love! Once it's dried it doesn't budge an inch!

    xx Chelsea

    • June 16, 2016 / 12:09 pm

      I've literally just bought Stila Beso and I do really like the finish and wear, but the colour isn't great for me. I find it really hard to get anything to work with my pale yellowish skin 🙁 xx

  4. June 12, 2016 / 6:52 pm

    I have this exact lipstick in this shade too 🙂 I have also that dark burgundy (or violet) "Syren" shade, and NYX Cosmetics have become my favourite brand so far:) This matte lipstick dryed very quickly and I haven't had to apply it many times during the day. Love it!

    • June 16, 2016 / 12:09 pm

      I'm trying their liquid matte lipstick as I type and it's good, but it wears off way too quickly 🙁

  5. June 13, 2016 / 3:11 am

    Nyx has so many great lip products! I usually buy them when they're on sale for buy one get one 50% off and then it's really a bargain. I've heard a ton of great things about their line of matte lipsticks and haven't actually bought one yet. This red is awesome on you though! You can't go wrong with a true red!

    Jamie |

    • June 16, 2016 / 12:10 pm

      As long as you don't expect them to actually be matte, you'll probably like them!

  6. June 13, 2016 / 6:07 am

    That shade is so nice, I would love to try their lipsticks! Your hair looks so gorgeous!! x

  7. June 14, 2016 / 12:43 am

    I really love NYX! You might want to try the creme matte liquid lipsticks, if you have them there. The texture is really nice, if a bit drying, and it doesn't have the same issues with transferring. I really like this shade of red on you, though – it really is like the platonic idea of a red lipstick, isn't it?

    • June 15, 2016 / 8:37 am

      I have the creme matte lip cream from Nyx and whereas it doesn't transfer, it doesn't stay on particularly well either. My nude shade just completely disappears after a drink (which is ok, because it's nude) and the red one… well, it looks like I had lined my lips but there's nothing in between 😀

    • June 16, 2016 / 12:11 pm

      I'd agree – having just bought one of these this week and I'm amazed how something can not transfer yet come off so quickly… it seems a total contradiction!

  8. June 14, 2016 / 11:16 am

    Such a shame that it transfers!!! Total deal breaker! You are looking gorgeous though!!!

  9. June 15, 2016 / 12:15 am

    Ugh- I hate lipstick smudges 🙁 I don't know if it's available in the UK or if it is the colour you are looking for, but my sister got the Burt's Bees Lip Crayon in the colour Napa Vineyard (they have other colours too) and she loves it. She said once she blotted it, it is great and it doesn't smudge.
    The Artyologist

    • June 16, 2016 / 12:11 pm

      Never heard of that one – thanks for the recommendation. Will look it up!

  10. June 16, 2016 / 6:27 pm

    Such a classic, gorgeous shade! I've never dabbled in them myself, so can't speak to their effectiveness, but I've seen lipstick sealers/sealants like the one (just off the top of my head) that the brand Model in a Bottle makes toted on many a beauty blog and YouTube channel for a few years now. Perhaps such could help this colour stay put.

    Big hugs & joyful mid-June wishes,
    ♥ Jessica

  11. June 18, 2016 / 4:58 am

    Do you have Kat Von D there? I have had great luck with it. Also the Rimmel liquid lipsticks…they all seem to last nicely.

  12. June 18, 2016 / 8:14 pm

    It is a gorgeous shade on you! Sorry though that ultimately this isn't the one. I forget, have you tried Besame yet? I'm not a lipstick person but have bought a couple of sampler sets by them and were immediately impressed by how well they go on (so much coverage with just a little bit of lipstick), it doesn't have a super annoying feel when it's on, and also it seems to last a long time (which I've never experienced in my life!). Of course, as I mentioned, I'm not a lipstick person so I have very little to compare it to but compared to the little bit of experience and the fact that I'm not a lipstick person because I usually hate the feel and fuss of lipstick, I have I have to say I am impressed!

  13. June 23, 2016 / 3:29 pm

    I have a Burt's Bees lip crayon in a gorgeous red. It's the first red lipstick that I will wear out of the house and not have to worry about, because once you put it on and blot it, it seriously WILL NOT move. I was surprised at how well it stay put, and it's very matte. I have the Napa Vineyard colour, but they have several different colours as well.

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