Matte and Moisturising? Nars Pure Matte Lipstick; Swatches& Review

I think it’s been too long since I’ve featured Nars, so here it is – the new Nars Pure Matte Lipsticks.

There are 6 colours in the range, each lipstick containing mango butter, vitamin e and acai oil to provide hydration and a highly pigment finish.

So let’s take a look…

Vesuvio (sounds like a car): A full bodied red


Every lipstick collection needs a decent red and Vesuvio is it. Neither too pink or too blue, I found this red remarkably flattering. It is as pigmented and as creamy as they say as this is just a one layered swatch:


On the lips – (I’ve done about 40 lip swatches in a day so my lips are quite sore!). I think it’s a pretty good red:#alttext#

Wearing red makes me nervous so I’m happy to have a matte red lipstick because it’s less likely to slide about and look like you’ve just had some hanky panky with a man friend. On the lips, one layer:


Volga: Deep Aubergine


So the least likely to be my kind of shade is a deep vampy aubergine purple. I can imagine how gorgeous this would look with a pale eye – it reminds me of crushed blackcurrants (from the Ribena adverts, that is):

#alttext# (Note: Image is slightly warm – as I wasn’t with my usual lights when arm swatching).

On the lips – it’s a purple alright but not nearly as unwearable as I thought. Still an evening shade, like, but actually quite nice on the lips:


On the face:


Terre De Feau: Black Cherry


Another dark lipstick is Terre De Feau a dark cherry which when swatched, looks a lot like Volga, but remember Volga, she is ultimately an Aubergine and she will never be a cherry no matter how hard she tries:


This is more wearable than Volga although I’d say they were quite similar. Once again, for some reason the dark shades look good on the lips:


The finish might I add, is Matte, but more of a soft matte. On the face:


And then we move on to the more neutral shades.

Bangkok: Soft Rose


Bangkok is a soft rose with some shimmers to it. This is one I would be most likely to buy blind but actually it’s my least favourite. It wears quite pale and made my lips look dry – perhaps because of the shimmer bits.



Would like it if it was a tad darker and I usually love nudes!

The lip swatch is uninspiring because I just couldn’t get it to look undry. Hmm you need lips in good condition to wear this one:


It doesn’t look bad on overall though. I think this could work for paler ladies to be honest:


Tashkent: Nude Beige


So this is the shade that I thought would be right up my street because it’s a perfect beige nude and reminds me of other famous Nars nudes like Honolulu Honey. It seems to have a touch of peach to it.



This is really really light. I mean really light. I guess if you were going for the extremes (dark eyes and pale, pale lips) this could look really retro. But as a day to day nude, for me it’s a no because it’s just too pale.


These lighter shades I think, also are more likely to look cakey on the lips.

Whole face:


You have to excuse my lack of other make up, it was like 5am!

Last but not least…

Tonkin: Cinnamon Plum


This is the most meh shade to me to look at – or so I thought. Cinnamon and plum are not my friends. It also swatches a bit brown *shudder*


But this has turned out to be my favourite lip colour! It’s wearable and on my warm skintone it’s flattering and the closest to a tasteful nude. It also looks quite healthy on the lips:


On the face:



The Pure Matte Lipsticks from Nars are very nice indeed; they deliver what they say in terms of pigmentation and aren’t too drying at all. I do naturally have lips that dry out constantly so mattes are hard for me to wear, and I’d say these did pretty well.

I think the finish of these lipsticks are a soft matte as opposed to a hardcore matte – you can see the softness in the photographs and a slight sheen.

The shade selection is decent, but a little extreme (very dramatic or very pale) but it does cover all the basic colour groups with 3 bolds and 3 naturals. Of them all surprisingly, I didn’t like the nudes too much instead preferring Tonkin, the cinnamon plum for natural wear and Vesuvio for a full bodied red.

The Nars Pure Matte Lipstick launches on the 1st September exclusively in Selfridges then in other stores on 01st October. Priced at £18 each.

What do you think of these lipsticks?

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  1. Vesuvio looks great on you :) wish I could carry off a full bold red like that!

  2. thank you x

  3. baby in a corner says:

    Volga looks lovely on you! Its very nice

  4. Terre De Feau is striking on you! i can’t wait for these products to debut

  5. Great swatches! Vesuvio and Tonkin look gorgeous on u, and love Volga too!!!


  6. Tonkin looks great on you! By the way, just wanted to say that I like it when you zoom out to show how the lip colour looks overall- it gives the swatch more perspective- sorry if that didnt make sense!

  7. These are really the best online swatches of the complete NARS Pure Matte Lipstick range! They show so well how the colours and textures come out differently from the tube and on the lips. It helped me a lot choosing the colours for my order (Bangkok and Tonkin). So thank you very much!

  8. I was really excited about the Tashkent after seeing it on you because that’s the exact color I’ve been looking for in a matte lipstick. I do the retro dark eye makeup with pale lips daily. I ordered the lipstick, and while I do like the color, it doesn’t look as pale as I had expected. I have naturally red lips so the Tashkent turns to an almost orange-nude on me. Did you do anything to prep your lips before applying the Tashkent color? I would love to achieve the look that you did with this lipstick.

  9. lol, Vesuvio is a very famous mountain in Naples, South Italy. The dark aubergine is great for fall :)

  10. great post thankyou!

  11. wow! you have incredible lips. you are very lucky! thanks for showing different colours although i realise they will look different on everyone dep on skintone and natural colour of lip.

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