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I’m quite picky when it comes to lip products. You won’t catch me applying just any random balm. Some irritate my pout, others dry out my lips and a lot of them have super strong flavors or scents. While I usually reach for my tried-and-true Aquaphor, lately, I’ve been reaching for something completely different. It’s the Shade Slick Gelée that Merit Beauty just launched.
I’m already a fan of the brand’s O.G. Shade Slick tinted lip oil, so I was overjoyed to discover the good news about this new sheer formula. Merit is all about minimalist beauty and a natural, dewy look, so it makes total sense why it created a sheer lip oil that provides a barely-there finish and pop of color.
Highly pigmented formulas that require precision (and a mirror) are not usually my cup of tea, so I had a feeling I’d get hooked on the Shade Slick Gelée (spoiler alert: I am). I simply dab a little on my top and bottom lips, rub the two together and voila! A juicy, glossy, supple, lightly-tinted pout.
I also absolutely love how the oil feels on my lips. That’s all thanks to plant-derived squalane and quinoa seed oil in the formula. Squalane helps quench dry skin, which is why it’s commonly incorporated in skincare products to moisturize, according to this study. On top of that, quinoa seed oil is known for its skin-replenishing effects, per this study. It also aids in restoring the skin’s natural barrier function, protecting your skin from potentially harmful environmental aggressors.
I know that’s a lot of science-y jargon, but I’ve certainly felt the Shade Slick Gelée working its magic on my lips. Upon application and even hours later, my pout feels hydrated and nourished. I don’t have to reapply too often and have found the tint of color to last. And might I add that this lip oil does not create a sticky, gooey mess when the wind blows your hair or while you’re eating? Just another reason why I love the Shade Slick Gelée for everyday, comfy wear.
Especially with summer ahead, you’re going to want a lip oil that doesn’t feel heavy and doesn’t cling to everything it touches. Merit’s new sheer tinted lip oil costs $24 a pop, which is well worth it if you ask me. Oh, and don’t let me forget to mention that you get a complimentary makeup bag with your first order and free shipping on your purchase of $40 or more.
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Thanks to the Y2K renaissance that has yet to wane, juicy lip glosses are making a comeback. And that’s exactly where Merit drew inspiration from when creating this new product. “As a brand that often references the ’90s, the 2000s can feel like a departure — but the truth is, we’ve always been nostalgic for the era. It was a decade defined by late-night clubs, going-out tops, and lip glosses that were too heavy and too sticky to feel like an everyday essential,” per the brand’s website.
The four sheer shades are also colors that might remind you of the 2000s. There’s Jeté, a light neutral, and Les Deux, a bright pink. My faves are Maraschino, a bold red, and Mapleton, a deep red-brown (I swear it’s not as dark as you’d expect). Mapleton reminds me of the classic Shade Slick in Sangria, another go-to in my makeup bag.
“This is the first time I tried the Merit lip oils and I am absolutely loving them. I love how they are hydrating and not sticky. I think they have a great range of shades too. I love [how] they enhance your natural lip color and make them shine,” wrote one five-star shopper. “They make my lips look glossed and naturally pink! Literally obsessed!”
Another one wrote, “They aren’t sticky at all and make my lips perfectly shiny but not overly slick. After application and wear, my lips were noticeably softer! I have a feeling these are going to be a makeup staple for me.”
Well, what are you waiting for? Drop these babies right into your shopping cart. I recommend Maraschino and Mapleton, but you honestly can’t go wrong with any of the four summer-ready shades. And if you’re down to splurge a little, why not check out with all four? That’s what I’d do!