The past year has seen makeup break out of its “serious-looking” shell, with brands and artists alike passing on minimalist chic for colorful makeup that makes a stand. Halsey, the latest celebrity to launch a makeup line (called About Face), offers the boldest choice yet.
There’s nothing wrong with a little red lip, defined brows, and a rosy blush, but sometimes we crave something more expressive. Vegan and cruelty-free, About Face debuted with a collection of shades that are unapologetically striking (no pastels over here), lending easily for a cute daytime makeup look to a more moodier situation. Most important, they’re really fun to play with.
What drew me to makeup in the first place was the sheer creativity of it all. I was—and still am—amazed by how a couple strokes here and there can bring what I’m feeling to the surface, the side of me I want to present to the world that day. It’s the punchy eye paints and space-age highlighters, and the very intentional messaging of having fun and not striving for perfection, that makes About Face such an exciting newcomer. It’s bringing back the feeling that attracted most of us to makeup in the first place—the excitement of seeing your creativity play out in the mirror before you—minus all the background noise of feeling the need to look a certain way.
After playing around with the collection, I’m sharing my thoughts on the products that I loved the most. If you’re curious whether Halsey’s makeup debut is worth the hype—and your money—read on.
Once I felt the texture of this pencil on my face, I couldn’t help but to start drawing cute, little daisies over my cheek. The Shadowstick really does feel like a coloring pencil for the makeup-loving adult. Unlike an actual pencil, it goes on smooth—no tugging at all, thanks to the hydrating beeswax and castor oil—and blends easily. But because of that, I’d recommend applying the Shadowstick as the last part of your eye makeup if you’re planning to add it on top of the Matte Fluid Eye Paint so that the individual colors don’t dilute.
Light Lock Stick
My skin has been on the drier side this winter as a result of the cooler weather and frequent mask wearing. Out of the three highlighting formulas (a gloss, a powder, and a liquid), I opted for the stick because it has a creamy consistency that melts into your skin instead of just sitting on top or drying out over every rough patch. This stick is, simply put, really pretty. My favorite shade, Reluctance, gives off a soft glow after one swipe that is only slightly sparkly. You could definitely wear it out for a minimal makeup look or layer it if you want a more pronounced shimmer. I tend to go for the “barely there” look when it comes to highlighter, but it’s nice to have the option for a more dramatic affair when I want it.
Matte Fluid Eye Paint
The eye paint, a liquid shadow that comes in rich hues like midnight blue and terra-cotta, is seriously matte. Very much like a small tube of paint, it goes on evenly, with one swipe delivering a generous dose of pigment, and it blends well. However, once it dries, there is no budge, which is worth mentioning if you like to add on layers to blend sporadically during your makeup routine.
I felt compelled to add a little bit of paint on top of the dried layers as I was wrapping up my eyes and realized the first coats weren’t going to melt into the gradient effect I was going for. That said, if you’re looking for eye color that has staying power, meet your match. Hours later, the pigment was just as vibrant as when I first applied it.
Matte Fix Lip Pencil
This is a pretty solid lip pencil. The color payoff is great, and the pencil itself is easy to guide. As with the eye paint, the creamy, matte formula will lock into place once it’s dried down (about 30 to 60 seconds after application), so if you aren’t going for a pronounced lined lip, be sure to blend it in immediately.
Light Lock Lip Gloss
Remember those glittery glosses from childhood that had a sweet minty scent to them? The light lock lip gloss is like that but a bit more grown-up. Infused with coconut, lavender, and peppermint oils, it glides on smooth, layering nicely with each application, and the shimmer is noticeable but not overtly distracting. Payton, a golden brown, is disco fever in a tube that keeps my lips buttery soft, making it easily my favorite shade.
Matte Fix Spray
Who doesn’t like makeup that treats your skin underneath? This setting spray includes soothing aloe vera, which has antibacterial properties that are great for reducing acne. While I love playing with makeup, I’m a firm believer that nourishing and protecting your skin underneath is the first priority. A two-in-one, the Matte Fix spray takes care of your skin and keeps your makeup in place with just a few spritzes.
Michella Oré is a beauty assistant at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @michellaor