Sep 24 2016

Lipstick Shades of Grey…For the Modest or the Daring


For the past few years, I’ve noticed that grey lipstick has been growing in popularity. Do you all remember when MAC released “Grey Friday” and put the formerly fringe lip color on the map? And then last year (or maybe longer) when “greige” (grey + beige) lips became a major thing? Grey has gone from being unconventional to almost mainstream. For me, whether a hint or a full serving, grey lipstick gives me the option of a little edge without (hopefully) looking like I’m trying to re-live my goth/grunge years. If you didn’t already know this about me, I was a teenager in the 90’s. Moving on. Grey is usually a tone I think of for the Autumn and Winter seasons. As we embrace the arrival of Fall, therefore, I thought it might be fun to share with you guys some of the “grey lipsticks” in my collection.

Shades of Grey Lipstick

Shades of Grey Lipstick

The reason I titled this post “Lipstick Shades of Grey” (other than trying to be cheeky) is because “grey” in the lipstick game can be interpreted many ways. There are more neutral greys that have a beige/taupe base, deeper ones with a brown base, the purple (lavender) dominant mauves that have a touch grey, and the straight up greys. Here are some options from more muted to the…yep, that’s grey alright! (Note: All wear times listed are based on lady like eating of light foods i.e. using a fork and drinking with a straw. Heavy meals/anything greasy will significantly cut down on wear times).


Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in Oblivion

Grey Lipstick Urban Decay Oblivion

Grey Lipstick Urban Decay Oblivion Swatch


Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in Oblivion ($17.00 USD) is described as a gray-taupe with a mega-matte finish. It’s a cool, rosy beige-grey that can work as a neutral for light to medium skin tones. This is my one and only lipstick from UD’s new gargantuan Vice line. (Raise your hand if you find the display intimidating). The formula is mostly comfortable during wear time though it can start to feel just a tad drying after a few hours. That being said, Oblivion applies quite smoothly and evenly (dare I say almost feels a little creamy) while offering great color coverage. Wear time is 5-6 hours.


Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Thistle

Grey Lipstick Bite Beauty ThistleGrey Lipstick Bite Beauty Thistle Swatch


Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Thistle ($28.00 USD) is described by the brand as a mauve infused taupe with a satin finish which I think is a pretty accurate description. Thistle is also slightly cool in tone with a hint of grey. Another neutral-ish option for light to medium skin tones. I must say that I’m not very experienced with Bite Beauty’s formula, having only tried one other color a long time ago. It was one of the limited edition rose scented lipsticks which, due to how strong the fragrance was, put me off of BB for a while. Anyway, I’m quite glad I gave it another go because the formula is nice and the regular scent is a pleasant citrus. Thistle has a comfortable smooth and somewhat creamy-tacky texture that clings to lips nicely. It offers a semi-matte/satin finish with plenty of pigment to boot. Lasts about 4-5 hours.


ColourPop Ultra Matte Lip in Kapow

Grey Lipstick Colourpop Kapow SwatchGrey Lipstick Colourpop Kapow Swatch


ColourPop Ultra Matte Lip in Kapow ($6.00 USD) is described as a muted grey taupe. I’d say this one has brown-purplish base with a neutral tone and if you want to use it as “neutral” it is better suited for medium skin tones and deeper. I love the color though, which on my light complexion, it definitely pops. In my experience with this one shade from the collection, it’s quite matte and can flake off in areas if you don’t let it dry down properly. Also, due to how flat matte the finish is, it can get uncomfortable after a time. The long wear (up to 7 hours), minimal transfer and intense pigmentation are considerable positives though. And who can beat these prices?


ColourPop Lippie Stix in Tootsi

Grey Lipstick Colourpop TootsiGrey Lipstick Colourpop Tootsi Swatch


ColourPop Lippie Stix in Tootsi ($5.00 USD) is described as a cool-toned grey beige (“greige”) in a matte finish which is pretty much exactly what it is. If anything, I’d say the finish is more of a semi-matte as it’s not so flat. A great neutral for fair-light/medium skin tones – “grey lipstick” for the timid. ColourPop did a great job with these, I really like the Lippie Stix formula. They glide on so smoothly and have a very comfortable lightweight texture that still offers plenty of pigment. Wear time is between 2-3 hours.


MAC Stone Lipstick

Grey Lipstick MAC StoneGrey Lipstick MAC Stone Swatch


MAC Stone Lipstick is described as a muted grayish taupe brown with a matte finish which is pretty spot on. The color is quite similar to Colourpop’s Kapow though I’d say Stone is a touch warmer. It has nice color coverage and a creamy texture that glides on the lips quite well considering its a matte (more like semi-matte). I also enjoyed the consistency which was about medium weight (not too thick not too thin) that makes rubbing your lips together feel good. Although this a deeper shade, I’d say it looks best on fair/light skin tones and deep skin tones, but not so much for medium-deep skin tones that have a olive undertone. Last about 4-5 hours.


Nars Audacious Lipstick in Dominique

Grey Lipstick DominiqueGrey Lipstick Dominique Swatch


Nars Audacious Lipstick in Dominique ($32.00 USD) is described as a pink-lilac. In addition to those qualities, I’d also say it’s got a bit of grey in there and is rather neutral in tone. In my past review of this shade (here), I called it a “a dusty, warm, purple-lilac with hints of grey and pink.” Having recently reviewed more of the Audacious lipsticks from the Fall release, I think it’s safe to say I like the formula. They are fantastically rich in pigment yet not heavy. Also, the texture is quite creamy without being too emollient, clinging well to the lips. They remain fairly comfortable throughout wear and offer a nice, even fade. Wear time is about 4-5 hours.


NYX Extra Creamy Round Lipstick in Power

Grey Lipstick NYX PowerGrey Lipstick NYX Power Swatch


NYX Extra Creamy Round Lipstick in Power ($3.99 USD) is described by the brand as blue-toned mauve. Power is basically a cool lilac-mauve with a hint of a grey undertone. It’s a difficult shade to pull off to say the least as it can give off a very corpse-like vibe. But I’d seen people make it look great. In my opinion, the NYX Round Lipsticks are a very under-rated formula. For four bucks you get a creamy formula with a very nice saturation of color that’s super comfortable. The only down side is that it can almost be too emollient at times. Wear time is 2-3 hours.


NYX Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick in Stone Fox

Grey Lipstick NYX Stone FoxGrey Lipstick NYX Stone Fox Swatch


NYX Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick in Stone Fox ($6.99 USD) doesn’t seem to have an official description but to my eyes its a charcoal grey with blue undertones and a matte finish. Now we’re getting into the real grey grey lipstick. In fact, Stone Fox is almost too much for me and I’m not quite sure I can get away with it at my age. Stone Fox is very pigmented with a creamy slightly tacky texture that reminds of the Too Faced Melted lipsticks. It applies fairly evenly but if you’re someone who has pigmented lips you may need to go back in for a second coating. This newer formula by NYX promises to be long lasting and waterproof. I’d say wear time is more like 5-6 hours. Also, I feel like it never dries down completely leading to major transfer (even more so than a traditional lipstick).

Smashbox Always On Matte Liquid Lipstick in Chill Zone
Grey Lipstick Smashbox Chill ZoneGrey Lipstick Smashbox Chill Zone Swatch

Smashbox Always On Matte Liquid Lipstick in Chill Zone ($24.00 USD) is described as a deep, cool grey. That’s pretty much it – though there’s a brown-ish taupe-mauve shift. Again, I only have this one shade in the Smashbox Always On Matte formula. It has great pigmentation and opacity in addition to having a very lightweight, thin creamy-mousse like texture. As far as long-wear liquid lipsticks go, this is more of the more comfortable formulas that doesn’t crack on the lips as it dries down. Another one that promises long-wear (eight hours to precise), I’d say wear time is also in the 6-7 hour range. It can tend to fade in middle if you press your lips together often.


Shades of Grey Lipstick


Shades of Grey Lipstick

Swatches (Left to Right): Urban Decay’s Oblivion, Bite Beauty Thistle, ColourPop Kapow, ColourPop Tootsie, MAC Stone, NARS Dominique, NYX Power, NYX Stone Fox, and Smashbox Chill Zone.



Well, there you have it. How do you feel about grey lipstick?





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  1. Tootsi and Dominique are stunning! I can’t pull off grey tone or anything cool tone well but that two shades are just too good to pass.

    Shireen | Reflection of Sanity

    • Gabrielle on September 24, 2016 at 4:50 pm
    • Reply

    I am loving grey tones. I just got an ultra-matte grey/nude from Lime Crime called Cashmere that I absolutely adore and wear constantly.

  2. Gosh these are tough to pull off! I think Tootsi is the safest option here.

  3. Great title for a post–and love the ones you picked out!

  4. I like the look of Tootsi 🙂 I’ve never experimented with grey so it seems a good place to start that isn’t too far out of my comfort zone!

    Jasmine xx

    Jasmine Talks Beauty

    1. Definitely a great place to start – lovely neutral!

  5. Haha I just read the book 50 Shades of Grey (honestly the worst book I’ve ever read) so I’m liking your title and subject matter! 😉
    How does one own so many grey-ish type of lipstick?!! I do not own a single one but I’m really liking how wearable the ColourPop in Tootsi looks! I would also wear UD Oblivion and Bite Thistle. Do you keep your eye makeup really simple when you wear a grey lippy?

    1. Haha. I’ve never read the book but sat painstakingly through the movie the other day. Umm…I usually pair them with a simple eye look…using taupes, browns, mauves, champagnes etc with the purple greys I tend to use cooler shades and with tootsi, for example, I go for a warmer eye. 😊

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