I really, really, really didn't want to turn this review into a L'Oreal vs. Revlon "Battle of the tinted lip butters", but since both lines came out at roughly the same time, how could I NOT do a compare/contrast? At this point many people seem to have their feet firmly planted in the Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter Camp or the L'Oreal Color Riche Balm Camp, so read on to see if I'm Team L'Oreal or Team Revlon in this debate:
L'Oreal Color Riche Balm SPF15 in Plush Plum
(retail: $5.99, 0.10 oz)
Luckily for me, this compare-and-contrast will be a bit easier since I opted to purchase the shade Plush Plum when I spotted these at my local Bed Bath and Beyond a while back. Later on in this post, I'll be comparing Plush Plum to the comparable shade in the Revlon Lip Butter line: Sugar Plum.
Like the Revlon Lip Butters, these fully retract into their casing, which is always nice.
The ingredients were broken up into four parts on the tiny label on the side of the tube, so here are the best photos I could get:
So here we go with the comparison:
Top: L'Oreal Color Rich Balm in Plush Plum
Bottom: Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in Sugar Plum
In terms of product, you get a bit more in the L'Oreal Balm (0.10 oz vs. 0.90 oz in the Revlon Lip Butter) and the price of the L'Oreal Balm is less ($5.99 vs. $7.49 for Revlon).
Value: L'Oreal wins.
But I would like to add that there are eight shades in the L'Oreal Balm range, while there are 20 shades in the Revlon Lip Butter range.
Looking at the image above, you can see that the actual stick of the Revlon Lip Butter is a bit wider than the L'Oreal stick, although the L'Oreal case is a bit longer.
There's an obvious difference in the inner case color (gold vs. silver) and looking at the colors in the tubes, the L'Oreal shade contains a lot more visible gold sparkle and looks much warmer in tone (more on THAT in a bit).
I've heard people say they think the L'Oreal packaging looks more elegant, which I can totally understand. But for me personally, the Revlon case wins because of one simple feature:
See that tiny groove where the base and the lid have to "lock" into place? This has always annoyed me in the Color Riche lipsticks, and I wish they wouldn't have brought it over to the Balms too. I'm ALWAYS in a hurry when I'm applying lip color and I simply don't like to have to look down and make sure things are lined up correctly in order to close my lipstick case. I like to open and slam my lipsticks shut without even thinking about it, and I can't tell you how many times I haven't had this groove aligned properly and tried to force it closed.
Packaging: Revlon wins.
I should note that I do like the narrow stick of the L'Oreal Balms because it feels like application is more precise vs. the wider stick on the Revlon Lip Butters, but that groove in the packaging trumps more precise application.
Here are some pics of both shades swatched on my arm. I used one swipe of each shade with the same level of pressure for both colors:
Remember the pic I showed you above of these colors in the tube and how much warmer L'Oreal Plush Plum looked next to Revlon Sugar Plum? SURPRISE! On the skin, Plush Plum is MUCH cooler than Sugar Plum. How weird is that? I'm looking at both shades here at my desk right now and I promise you, I did not get these swatches mixed up.
One swatch of each shade does yield very similar results, so there's no clear winner here in terms of pigmentation. BUT, I do know for a fact that other Revlon Lip Butter shades (Red Velvet, for instance) have much better pigmentation than the two shades in this post. I don't know for sure if other L'Oreal Balm shades have better pigmentation than Plush Plum, because I only own Plush Plum. However I can tell you that I've heard from several readers who believe that the L'Oreal Balms are more sheer and less pigmented than Revlon Lip Butters. On the other end of the spectrum, not all Revlon Lip Butters are created equally and some shades are more heavily pigmented than others.
Color (Plush Plum vs. Sugar Plum): tie
When it comes specifically to Plush Plum, I found no problems at all with building for better pigmentation.
L'Oreal Plush Plum on my lips:
And from my original Revlon Lip Butter Review, Revlon Sugar Plum:
In person, there's more visible sparkle in the L'Oreal shade, which is also darker and cooler than Revlon Sugar Plum. On my lips, Plush Plum looks more like a cool berry-raisin shade, while Revlon Sugar Plum is more of a "My Lips But Better" type of shade that's more of a mauvish-brownish-berry rather than a true plum. So for color, I'd say it's a tie. Both shades are deceiving and it really depends on what you prefer: a warmer, brownish-berry shade, or a cooler, deeper, berry-raisin shade.
Now let's talk about texture. This is obviously completely dependent on your personal taste and I know PLENTY of people who prefer the L'Oreal Balms. But I personally find that the texture of this L'Oreal Balm is too thin and not very moisturizing. Revlon Lip Butters feel like butters to me (creamy and buttery), while this L'Oreal Balm doesn't feel like a balm. It feels like a sheer lipstick on my lips.
Texture: Revlon wins.
Now on to staying power. I've been using Plush Plum for several weeks and I can say with 100% certainty that I cannot get this product to last more than one hour on my lips. It fades much too quickly for me, whereas Revlon Sugar Plum tends to last about three hours on my lips.
Staying Power: Revlon wins.
As far as fragrance and flavor go, again, this is personal preference. The L'Oreal Balm is not as heavily scented or flavored as a Color Rich lipstick, but it does contain what I would call a milder version of the signature Color Riche fragrance and flavor. I've heard some people say that the flavor of L'Oreal Balm tastes plastic-y and I would have to agree. The "plastic" note seems to come to the surface the longer I have this product on my lips. Revlon Lip Butters are made with vanilla absolute and they have a very mild, natural vanilla fragrance and flavor to them.
Fragrance and Flavor: Revlon wins.
Once again, these are just MY personal opinions and I don't expect everyone reading this to agree with me. Like I said at the top of this post, everyone seems to be Team L'Oreal or Team Revlon when it comes to these particular lip products, and I personally am Team Revlon.
PS: I want to also call to your attention that L'Oreal Balm contains SPF15, whereas Revlon Lip Butters do not contain SPF. So that might be a factor for you regarding which one you'd like to try.
Do you own any L'Oreal Balms or Revlon Lip Butters? Which do you prefer?
L'Oreal Balm in Plush Plum was obtained with personal funds. Revlon Lip Butter in Sugar Plum was given to Nouveau Cheap directly from the manufacturer for a previous review. All reviews on NouveauCheap.blogspot.com are the honest opinion of its author and editorial samples do not, in any way, affect the outcome of product reviews.