When I spied the Sephora Oil Infusion Color & Care Lip Balms in the “What’s New” section of the Sephora website several weeks ago, I knew I had to try one. The first thing that came to mind? The YSL Tint in Oils, of course. Despite owning only one, Pink About Me (which I reviewed here), I absolutely love the formula. As such, I couldn’t resist the allure of a possible dupe for less than half the price…
Sephora describes the Oil Infusions as a “translucent balm-in-oil formula, enriched with kendi oil and shea butter, for a new sensorial experience.” This hybrid formula, they claim, nourishes and moisturizes the lips for a unique wet shine look and features fresh juicy colors.
I decided on the shade Lavender Creme. I can’t resist those violet, lavender-grey type colors and I thought, perhaps, it might be close in color to my YSL Tint. Pink About Me is decidedly pink, but there is a hint of purple to it. However, on closer inspection, turns out that they aren’t really dupes shade-wise (see swatches below).
As to the texture, formula and wear of the Sephora Oil Infusions versus the YSL Tint in Oils, I would say that there are both similarities as well as differences. Happily, they share many great characteristics. They both leave a nice, natural looking wash of color on the lips and are very comfortable and moisturizing. Like a major upgrade from chap stick. Neither are sticky or tacky. They do not flake or gather toward the edges of lips like some glosses can do.
Now onto the differences. The most obvious is packaging and application method. You’re paying more than twice as much for the YSL, and cosmetically, this is apparent. Also, the Sephora Oil Infusion features a traditional doe-foot while the YSL wears its signature kiss shaped applicator that promises to hug the lips.
As to formula, the oils in the YSL version are definitely richer (apricot kernel oil, coriander fruit oil, jojoba seed oil, and possiflora edulis seed oil) and this difference can be felt on lips. Don’t get me wrong, the oils in the Sephora balms are lovely and definitely noticeable, but the formula is more like a gloss hybrid than the YSL.
With respect to pigmentation, the Sephora Oil Infusion does not promise full pigment but, rather, a “translucent” sheer color. The Tint in Oil, on the other hand, does promise a “full color” tint. Although when swatched, the Sephora version appears to offer more pigment, the YSL version actually tints the lips whereas the former does not (more on that below).
The two formulas also wear differently. Upon initial application, the Oil Infusion settles somewhat into lip lines whereas the Tint in Oil does not. I’m fully aware that this may be a question of shade selection: Lavender Creme is a pale, milky color while Pink About Me is a non-milky pink-fuchsia. We all know that creamy pastel colors have a tendency to accentuate lip lines.
After settling for a minute or two, however, the Sephora Oil Infusion looks much more even on the lips. What I did notice after wearing for several days, however, is that it does not stain the lips in the same was as the YSL Tint in Oil. Even in the lip swatches below (taken after two minutes of wear) you can see the color of the Sephora version fade, while the YSL remains the same. In fact, the color payoff of the Tint in Oils actually deepens as you reapply. You can better see the effect in my initial review (which I also think has better lip swatches).
My final verdict is that these two are not dupes. But the Sephora version is a lovely, oil balm that is far more budget friendly and offers a very similar experience. Lip gloss for those who hate lip gloss. 🙂 And Lavender Creme, in particular, looks incredible over a pink lipstick. I wore it with Clinique’s Pink Pop the other day and the result was amazing!
BTW: If you’re looking for shade dupe for Pink About Me, check out the Oil Infusion in Raspberry Smoothie – which appears to be a pink-fuchsia type color.
The Sephora Collection Oil Infusions retails at Sephora for $14.00 USD.
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