For one of Guerlain’s newest offerings, Rouge Automatique ($35), creative director Olivier Echaudemaison took his inspiration from a 1936 Guerlain product of the same name. Each of the 25 shades is named for a Guerlain fragrance (past, present, or future). The shades are available in four color families: Les Beiges (nudes/browns), Les Rouges (reds), Les Roses (pinks and roses), and Les Oranges (oranges/corals).
The color emerges from the gold tube when you slide a lever, which opens the cap and reveals the color bullet. You can push the lever up only as far as you need to use the lipstick and not break it.
“Lipstick is an accessory — you should have fun with it,” said Echaudemaison of both the color and the way it is accessed (quoted in WWD). He noted that Rouge Automatique is intended to be a midpoint between the brand’s sophisticated Rouge G and classic KissKiss lipsticks.
The finish and performance fall somewhere in between shiny and long-lasting (up to three hours), according to Isabelle Hébant, group manager of makeup and marketing development for Guerlain. “It is intended to have a second skin effect on the lips, which is accomplished by a low gradient fusion point — when the formula touches the lips, it becomes liquid,” she said of the brand’s new proprietary Crystal Pigment technology. “This formula involves pigments encapsulated in glass, which makes colors true and vivid (quoted from WWD)."
All the new colors arrived at my local Neiman Marcus on Friday, and I was there Saturday morning to select three in person. My eyes gravitated straight to Les Roses, and I had no trouble finding two favorites quickly. Then I decided to explore Les Beiges, and I found one that's a rosy brown, one of my favorite lipstick colors. I came home with Après L'Ondée (#100), Cherry Blosssom (#161), and Bloom of Rose (#162).
They are swatched at right in that order. My photo was taken in outdoor sunlight. Once you see Après L'Ondée, you will wonder why it was categorized within Les Beiges. Glad I explored them! While Cherry Blossom and Bloom of Rose look very similar in this photo (and they are), Cherry Blossom is a more subdued rose than Bloom of Rose. I think both of them are gorgeous. Because my photo was taken in full sun, the colors look extremely shiny. I wouldn't characterize them that way; I would call them subtly shiny or perhaps glossy.
Kari showed Cherry Blossom and another shade, Mitsouko (#140) at Fab over Forty. You will want to see her swatches too.
The shades offer pigmented color, so if you see a swatch and think it's light, it may not be. I'm wearing Après L'Ondée, one of the "lightest" shades as I write, and it's plenty dark for my pale features. I like shiny lips. Rouge Automatique has a nice shine; I don't feel I need to add gloss over it - at first. I do after an hour or two. I like the way Rouge Automatique feels on my lips: creamy and hydrating. Even the push-up lever is very classy. This is an elegant lipstick. What else would you expect from Guerlain?
I like it much more than Rouge G. While the Rouge G lipstick itself is very nice, I've never been fond of the razzle dazzle of the Rouge G container, with its mirror and heavy weight. The whole lipstick is too heavy for me to carry around. By providing Rouge Automatique, the company has offered me a great alternative. I would love to make a suggestion to Guerlain's marketing folks: provide a regular lipstick top to fit over Rouge G for those of us who love the lipstick, but don't want the extra weight. Let us choose. I'd be happy with a plastic cap. I would even pay extra for it! At least with Rouge Automatique, I don't have to worry about that.
Extremely nice lipsticks! They have arrived or are arriving now at Guerlain counters in the U.S. They are launching this month in Europe too. Please let me know what you think.
Photo at top courtesy of Guerlain