As a make-up artist, I insist on having this one lipstick in my kit—here's why

It's my make-up must-have

A model with red hair wearing Lancôme L'Absolu Rouge Lipstick
(Image credit: Vicky Lawton)

It all started for me with one lipstick—Lancôme’s L’Absolu Rouge Cream Lipstick, to be specific. The shade was Mademoiselle Amanda, and it was a sort of caramel nude which was sheeny but not shiny and gave a good amount of colour without making my lips look like they were dripping in product. Things escalated from there, and I went and bought no fewer than a further ten to test for my make-up kit, which, yes, was no insignificant investment, but as a make-up artist, it’s vital to have the best kit possible.

Next, I decided to try the Lancôme L’Absolu Rouge Drama Matte, just to see if I liked it. Reader, I loved it. It gave a seriously intense whammy of colour that was, as the name suggests, completely matte—but not drying. Again, I decided to buy in, and furnished my kit with five of these. 

I’ve been using them now for a while, sometimes on me, but more often on clients, so I’ve seen how they perform on lots of different faces, and here’s why I think they're some of the best formulas around...

1. The colour payoff is great

While Lancôme L’Absolu Rouge Drama Matte has a more colour-saturated effect, you still get a really good amount of colour with the Lancôme L’Absolu Rouge Cream Lipstick, too. One or two swipes is enough to fully load up. Quick tip: if using the matte one and you want to line your lips, turn the bullet round so the pointy end is on the outside of your lips to use it as a liner of sorts, or use a small make-up brush and pick up the product with it to use as a liner.

2. You can customise the finish

If you want to apply just a stain, both finishes offer that—all you do is dab it on with your fingers or press the lipstick lightly to your lips, as if you were kissing it. The matte one also looks great when mixed with lip gloss or a shiny balm if you love a vinyl finish.

3. They read well on all lip shades

This is something not all lipsticks can boast, but these really show up on all lip colours, and the shades are really flattering across the board. 

Shop Lancôme L'Absolu Rouge Lipsticks

Madeleine Spencer

Madeleine Spencer is a journalist and broadcaster who has contributed to titles including Grazia, Glamour, InStyle, The Independent, The Evening Standard, and Stylist, as well as offering commentary for the BBC, Sky News, and ITV.

She is keen on exploring the significance beauty rituals, products, and memories have on people from different walks of life, and enters into conversation on the topic with guests on her podcast, Beauty Full Lives.