Notes From The Powder RoomNARS Carthage Pure Matte Lipstick, Or My New Best FriendCézanne Colvin

I’m always on the lookout for three things: Highway patrol, a good sale, and work-appropriate lipstick that can transition from day to night.

Due to my barista budget, I’m typically more of an unintentional Revlon clearance aisle spokesperson, but this is Notes from the Powder Room, not Notes from the Collection Agency (closer to my reality). Let’s live a little!

NARS Carthage Pure Matte lipstick will technically set you back $25. However, there is the added risk that if you get it at Sephora, you’ll probably end up getting distracted by something shiny. What I’m trying to say is, let’s just be real with ourselves and admit upfront that this is probably upwards of an $86 investment piece.

Disclaimer: Colors are close. Well, close-ish.

Carthage is a highly pigmented hot pink, but somehow not loud or obnoxious. It took me about ten seconds to paint my lips to satisfaction and it’s surprisingly forgiving. It’s basically a little tube of magic and wonder.

It feels… I mean, it feels like I’m wearing lipstick. It’s not particularly drying like other matte lipsticks I’ve tried, but it also doesn’t seem to have a strong command of any moisturizing properties.

One of my least favorite things is when my lipstick wears off more quickly than anticipated and no one tells me, leaving me with an uneven ring of shame around my mouth, so I put Carthage to the test.

Test #1: The simulation of a night out, albeit it an unfulfilling one. To achieve this, I drank two glasses of wine, smoked four cigarettes, and danced to a Ke$ha song.

Is the wine getting to me, or could I totally be credited as “Girl with Pink Lips” in a B-list movie right now? Pass!

Test #2: A make-out session with someone. I chose my hand.

Things around here are starting to slightly deteriorate, but color and coverage are very much intact. I think I still look totally acceptable as long as I stay out of natural light. It’s 11 p.m., so we’re all good here. Pass!

I asked my boyfriend if he liked my lipstick and he said, “Your lipstick looks fantastic.” Keep in mind, this is after tests #1 and #2. Also worth keeping in mind that this is a man’s opinion from across a poorly lit apartment. One last thing to keep in mind is that he thinks I’m mad at him right now.

Well, I’m hungry. And you should probably pick this lipstick up.

Featured image via Beauty Blitz.

Filleosophy’s real name is Cézanne. She is a blogger who moonlights as a cat. You can find her at, @filleosophy, or in a perpetual state of distress.

  • Kassandra Ann Vasquez

    Awesome column! Instant addict! Side note: you’re not helping me prevent myself from becoming a shop-aholic. I’ve been fighting it for months now…I may have to give in…

  • Emily Douglas

    Could you please try take some true-to-colour photos? love it so far though!

  • Ashley Miracle Lapato

    I fell in love with this color in Sephora the other day, but I already have Schiap so I passed – it looks really great on you! :)

  • Almie Rose


  • Heather Favro Binuya

    I have been on the lookout for a great matte lipstick. This makes me happy.

  • Jennifer Still

    Girl, I love this column!

    I’m not a massive lipstick girl myself, though I am obsessed with lipgloss (I’m really into the super shiny look) and sometimes wear ones with colour. The NARS looks great on you, but I always feel that on me, intense colours like that make me look clownish and strange… I should probably get over that.

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