Fenty Beauty by Rihanna launch: my thoughts + Gloss Bomb review

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If you're a beauty lover, you can't have missed it: Fenty Beauty launched late last week, and it's been all over our Instagram feeds and Youtube subscription lists since! Created by superstar Rihanna, the brand was highly anticipated and excitement was built with a steady flow of sneak peeks in the week before the big release. There are a few things that I find intriguing about this new brand and wanted to talk about, plus I have swatches of a few products and a full review of the Gloss Bomb after the jump!

The brand launched its whole lineup of products at once, instead of releasing only one at a time like we've seen recently. I'm sure the permanent range will grow with time, but here's what Fenty Beauty has to offer at the moment:

- the Pro Filt'r Instant Retouch Primer, a pore-blurring, shine-reducing base for the face.

- the Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation in a whopping 40 shades. The range seemed heavy on very fair shades - a quick look at the bottles in the display left me puzzled, as it seemed like my best match would be almost in the middle of the range... We've heard since that the foundation darkens during and just after application, so you can't go with the color you see in the bottle to find your match. Some lighter shades also seemed to have very strong undertones, whether it be pink or yellow. I would not recommend buying this foundation online based off a swatch, I would definitely try to go to a store and get matched!

- the Invisimatte Blotting Powder, a white translucent powder to absorb oil.

- the Invisimatte Blotting Paper dispenser to remove shine on the go.

- the Match Stick Skinsticks in Shimmer and Matte finishes. Those also sold individually and also come in trios that contain a concealer shade, a contour and a shimmer or blush. There is a contour shade called Amber for light skin tones that I compared to Anastasia Stick Foundation in Shadow. As you can see on the swatch below, Amber is even more ashy and cool toned, while Shadow has a stronger yellow undertone.

Match Stick Skinstick Amber vs Anastasia stick in Shadow

I was a little underwhelmed by the Shimmer sticks. They felt rather gritty and left a coat of glitter rather than creating a pearly glow. I didn't find them very pigmented either, as you can see on the swatch below it's rather subtle with just one swipe (that's Trippin, Confetti and Starstruck from left to right). I think they can still be fun to use, but definitely not a must-have or an everyday product for me.

Match Stick Skinsticks shimmer swatches

- the Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter. It comes in two individual shades, Metal Moon and Trophy Wife, and four duos. Trophy Wife, a glittery gold, is the star of the show. It's very metallic, very pigmented, and very sparkly! I think it would be hard to pull off as a highlighter on a skin tone as light as mine, but it could make a nice eyeshadow and accent topper. Metal Moon was very sheer and rather disappointing in comparison. As for the duos, I found that throughout the range the color on the left was always sheer and created a very subtle glow, while the shade on the right was more metallic with a higher impact. See swatches below, the first two on the left are Trophy Wife and Metal Moon, then the duos from lightest to deepest.

killawatt highlighters swatch trophy wife metal moon

- the Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer, which is the product I bought, review further down this post!

- a bunch of tools: sponge, full-size and travel brushes.

I wanted to share a few thoughts I have about Fenty Beauty. First, it's hard not to see the brand as the anti- KKW Cosmetics, Kim Kardashian's beauty brand that debuted recently. The packaging is also nude, but the design is much more thoughtful and appealing. Fenty Beauty managed a world wide launch that went very smoothly, no product sold out in the US in the first few hours, and they put out their entire lineup at once, instead of desperately trying to build hype by slowly releasing one product at a time. The prices are as expected from a mid-range brand, with a $34 foundation, $54 stick trios and $34 highlighters, all with generous amount of products for their price tags. KKW should take some time to reflect on what she's trying to do with her own brand.

I also find the choice of products Rihanna decided to start with very interesting. You'd expect any new brand to go for the easy crowd-pleasers such as brow products, liquid matte lipsticks and warm neutral eyeshadow palettes, but all these best-sellers are nowhere to be found here. Fenty Beauty does ride one of the major current makeup trends with highlighters, but apart from that, the products available indicate a vision of beauty that is quite different from what other popular brands stand for. The Fenty face is light on the eyes and lips, and focuses on the face with a matte base but a buildable glow. No eyeliner or false lashes, no bold brows, no matte or metallic lips, what I see here is an attempt to flatter any face with products that create light where needed. We'll see where the brand goes from there, but so far I find it rather refreshing.

Gloss Bomb Review

When was the last time a brand sold at Sephora released a universal shade of lip gloss? Yep, not as far as I can remember! The Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer is a good example of Fenty's approach to beauty. It's a high shine gloss that flatters by making the lips look juicy and plump, no matter if matte lips are still all the rage!

The tube is one of nicest of any gloss I own. It's shorter and fatter than your typical gloss tube, with a unique pentagon shape (the sticks in the range are hexagons). The velvety doe-foot applicator is also larger than usual, but not so big that it becomes awkward to use.

The texture of Gloss Bomb is on the thicker side and it feels very cushy on the lips, however it is not sticky at all. It's very comfortable and I find it rather hydrating. There's a light and pleasant scent to it that I can only smell while I'm applying, a mix of vanilla and fruits. Being a shiny gloss, it transfers and only lasts a few hours, nothing unexpected here.

The only available shade, Fenty Glow, is a warm rosy nude with very fine golden and multi-color shimmer, and it's sheer enough that it just gives a touch of warmth and color to the lips. The finish is very glossy, and paired with the shimmer, it makes the lips super shiny, wet looking and smooth. Usually I roll my eyes when I hear of "universal shades", but I really don't see who this one could look bad on. I do believe it should flatter everyone, if only with its beautiful shine.

fenty glow swatch

lip swatch

I don't think it's a particularly unique shade or a life-changing gloss as much as the brand's description make it sound though. It reminded me of a gloss by Clinique I had called Sunset, which had the same kind of effect but was more bronze and more pigmented - and also considerably more sticky. I think you could easily find something similar from any brand that makes shiny, sheer gloss. It is nice and at $18 I think the price is okay, so it's worth buying if you want to try something from Fenty and like the idea of an everyday, flattering gloss.

full face fotd motd
Wearing Gloss Bomb, and a Fenty Beauty inspired look
with contour and strong highlight

Where to buy?

The product featured in this review was purchased by me. I received no compensation to write this post, which only reflects my personal opinion. This post contains affiliate links. I receive a very small commission when you click on those links, and the money generated covers a small portion of my expenses to purchase products for review. Clicking on those links helps ensure that Beaumiroir continues to publish reviews of new and exciting high end French products - at no cost to you!

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