Last Friday evening, four Toronto chicks headed over to the trendy Queen Street West downtown to experience the thrill of making our very own lipsticks at none other than the BITE Lip Lab!
I’ve never made my own lip colour before save for the one time I melted some Vaseline with a bit of food colouring when I was around 12 years old. 😆 Good times! The BITE Lip Lab is just a tad more advanced than my at home “lab”! XD
I attended this event as a guest of Cat of MyLipAddiction! Along with Cat and myself, there were Maria of Best Day Blogger, and Grieta of TO Beauty ‘n Beyond. 😀 It was such an intimate event that they had closed up shop and served us some wine…
I didn’t indulge too much because I wanted to have some sobriety when I was deciding my shades (or else I might have come home with a pastel blue lippie 😆 )
A quick bit of FAQ on the BITE Lip Lab. BITE Beauty, as most of you know by now, is a homegrown Canadian brand that focuses on food grade ingredients in their products. Go ahead and munch on those lipsticks all you want, it’s all good. 😀 The BITE Lip Lab is a natural extension of the ready-made shades – choose from different formulas, a variety of scents and an endless possibility of colours!
I was of two minds when it came to trying to decide what colours I wanted. Should I create something unique and not easily found “off the shelf”? Or, get something common but knowing that it would be in the amazing BITE formula? I ended up getting the best both worlds!
First, the lip prep!
1) Removal of existing lipstick – I was rocking BITE Luminous Crème Lipstick in Pepper that night (when in Rome, right?) and it came off cleanly with Lush Lip Wipes. Completely clean lips void of any existing product is a must when testing new lip colours.
2) Exfoliation using the Agave Sugar Lip Scrub. I *think* the instruction was to tissue off the excess but um, I just licked my lips clean. This tastes like candy. 😉
3) Hydration – we were offered their Agave Lip Mask but if you recall, I tried it before and it made my lips itch! So I asked if there was another option available and Jen offered offered me the Agave lip balm version, which I ended up liking so much that I’ve already bought it from the Sephora sale! 😉
Would you believe that I decided to make a red lipstick? Me, the lover of MLBB shades and sheer tinted lip balms? 😮
1) Everyday Red
This is such a difficult shade to pin down for a lot of people. But having a fabulous red lipstick is like having a little black dress! I wanted a shade that was brightening on the face and was easy to wear. Jen wrote down the following notes based on my preferences:
• blue based red
• creamy / AB (Amuse Bouche finish – there are other options available including Luminous, Matte Crème, and Glossy Sheer)
Here are the formulas for the red:
• 1/2 K7121
• 1/4 tannin
Although I requested a red, it took some getting used to actually seeing RED on myself. It was a bit tricky to apply on my lips precisely from the disposable flocked applicator so Jen provided a BITE lip pencil for me to fill in the edges – very helpful. I got more comfortable seeing myself with red lips (after many rounds of assurances from the gang!) but I requested just a touch toned down shade of red.
• 1/2 K7
• 1/4 tannin
• 1/6 almond
This was the winner! The addition of the almond shade toned down the colour to a more wearable red for me.
Austen said it best when he described this shade as “You’re wearing that red, it’s not wearing you.” Exactly! ❤
I’ve decided to call this shade “I’m Not Really a Streetwalker“. 😉 It’s scented with a tantalizing citrus mango vanilla fragrance. Swatch will be below.
My second shade is one that I’ll be wearing a LOT. The quintessential MLBB colour. Hey, I just had to. I’m fairly certain that a MLBB nude shade is BITE Lip Lab’s most requested custom colour. It makes sense since what’s my perfect nude may not be your perfect nude – why not get it customized.
2) Perfect Nude
• AB (Amuse Bouche finish)
• 1/2 nude
• 1/6 musk
• 1/4 rhubarb
The first iteration of this was slightly too pale so I asked for some “oomph” – I know, very technical! 😛
See how the base colours are all the same but just a tweak of the ratios? This mixture was truly my perfect nude! I wore this for the rest of the evening. It felt so good on my lips – the Amuse Bouche formula is dreamy.
This one is scented with coconut lime – yum. I’m calling this shade “Sleepy Tofu“, in honour of Cat’s cute Chihuahua. 😉
The actual “production” process of the lipsticks is quite straightforward but fascinating at the same time.
At one point I compared it to cooking, which it kind of is: measure out the correct ingredients, mix it up, and “cook” it. Voila, a lipstick!
The mixture is then poured into metal lipstick molds.
The molds are then chilled rapidly using an anti-griddle (similar to the ones that are used to make Thai rolled ice cream! New side business for BITE Lip Lab? 😉 ) I would have a photo of this in action but I think I had too much wine at this point… 😇
It is advised not to apply the lipsticks for at least 40 minutes to allow the bullet to completely set. To be safe, I waited 4 days before I opened the tubes. 😆 You guys know about my delayed gratification, right… 😉 4 days is a speed record for me to open up new makeup! XD
And now, some glamour shots of the lipstick creations:
For me, the BITE Lip Lab isn’t only about the end product – the lipsticks – it’s about the experience. I’ve never had the opportunity to interact face to face with the people who actually create what I’m going to wear. Think about that for a second – when was the last time you talked to the person who made anything you’re wearing, be it makeup, clothes, jewellery, shoes, etc? There’s just something special about being present through the whole process. The event lasted for an hour and a half but it will live on forever in my mind! ❤
Here are some things to keep in mind when you’re creating your own lipstick colours:
• DO go with an open mind – don’t bother bringing in a lipstick to try to dupe, it really takes out the fun in the whole experience. It’s better to cite an iconic look or reference a colour family instead.
• DO provide direction – just like going to a hairdresser, it’s helpful for the Lip Lab Artists to have an idea of what you prefer. After all, it’s your very own custom lipstick shade for YOU
• DO speak up if you’re not satisfied with the mixture before they finalize the shade – they’re great listeners and can also provide suggestions if you’re unsure of how to improve the colour
• DO look at the colours in various lighting conditions – similar to foundation matching, one set of lighting isn’t going to provide the complete view of how the colours will look on you. We were encouraged to walk to the windows to look at ourselves in daylight.
• DO wear your normal makeup (foundation and blush especially) to see how the lipstick colours will work in combination with the overall look. I even brought along my concealer because I knew there’d be quite a bit of rubbing to try on the various test shades and my skin gets a bit red when rubbed. This helped to clean the edges of my lips as well.
• DO bring a friend along if you can. I think this would make a wonderful party idea for a group of friends or mom / daughter / sister / aunt / grandma dates. 😀
I’ve been spoiled now – a bespoke makeup item has been a dream of mine for ages! First a bespoke lipstick, what’s next? Bespoke foundation? Eye shadow? Nail polish? 😮 Have you been to the BITE Lip Lab? What would be your dream lipstick shade?
For more information on the BITE Lip Lab in Toronto, click here.
This event was organized by Cat Forsley of MyLipAddiction.com. As always, these views are my own.
PS. I revamped my site design as inspired by the tissue paper that BITE Lip Lab used to wrap our precious lipsticks. 😀 ❤