Poppy King, the self-proclaimed Lipstick Queen, is debuting a new lipstick this September. It is fancy-looking and also expensive, but 100 percent worth its sticker price. The Velvet Rope Collection, which will retail at $50 for each gilded bullet, is something that’s long been in the works for King. Inspired by and modeled after her vast collection of golden vintage minaudières, the Australian lip-color fiend was determined to whip up a lipstick that matched the glamour of Old Hollywood, where no look was complete without a slick of velvety, matte red lips.
Over the course of eighteen months, King tested and fiddled with various formulations until she achieved the modern counterpart of yesteryear’s red lip. The color payoff is rich and dense, but lips are left feeling soft and hydrated (thanks to vitamin E and apricot oil). The finish is smooth (owing to silicone) and slips over the mouth without any drag or friction. Meanwhile, the grooved, gold case was modeled directly after one of King’s favorite minaudières. A magnet enclosure within the bullet allows for a satisfying snap and its weighty feel will only add to the luxuriousness of the lipstick’s formula.
While each of the five colors offered are meant to be universally flattering, King ensured that Private Party (a bold pink) had yellowish undertones to better match more skin tones. I opted for Black Tie — an intense, deep red. The application process is just as the Queen promises; it glides on easily and feels comfortable on the mouth. Sometimes I layered it over a light dab of lip balm, but the texture felt hydrating and lovely on its own. The pigment will hold on and grip your lips through a meal, and though it might fade a little with each bite or napkin swipe, these lip colors were built to last. The formula also includes a dose of peppermint oil, but the subtle minty-fresh scent dissipates soon after your application.