Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Product Review/Drugstore Dupe:
Sleek Pout Paint vs. OCC Lip Tar

Sleek Pout Paints, from Top to Bottom:
Pin Up, Peek-A-Bloo, Cloud 9, Peachy Keen

A new addition to the Sleek line, this ultra concentrated lip pigment promises endless color options and outstanding color payoff with just a tiny speck of product. The 11 shades in the line are meant to be mixed, though of course they can be worn solo as well. This create-your-own shade idea isn't new: MAC has made Lipmix for around a decade, but the most well known member of this category is Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics' Lip Tar. OCC's cult following is well deserved, but how does Sleek's version compare?

First, the similarities. Both products perform almost identically, with a few caveats. The products are very pigmented and make true on promises to provide opaque color and long wear with just the tiniest amount of product. They both mix easily with other shades to create an infinite number of color combinations. Both products dry down to a similar satin finish that feels light and comfortable on the lips.

Now for those caveats I spoke of. First and most obvious is the price difference. Both Sleek Pout Paint and OCC Lip Tar come in 8ml tubes, but Sleek's run $8.00 as compared to OCC's $13. If you're in the UK, this will definitely be a plus, but for those ordering online, shipping charges may make that savings moot. In the US, for instance, the price of both Pout Paint and Lip Tar are $18/ea with shipping.

As for the formula, though they perform similarly, there are some notable differences. While Sleek's base formula is a blend of polymers and oils, OCC's is almost exclusively oil. This means that OCC Lip Tars are much runnier in consistency than Sleek Pout Paints. Pout Paints stay in the tube until you squeeze them out, whereas Lip Tars will drip out without any force. I actually have to store my Lip Tars nozzle-up to keep them from leaking out of the tube. Sleek's thicker consistency paired with a finer pinpoint nozzle results in greater control: more accurate mixing with less mess and waste.

OCC's Lip Tars also exhibit much more bleeding on my lips than the Sleek Paints (you can even see this effect in the following swatches). I also felt that my OCC Lip Tars spoiled relatively quickly; some went rancid in less than a year. Of course, I haven't had my Sleek Pout Paints long enough to gauge their shelf-life, but judging by the lower level of oils and the inclusion of preservatives (OCC Lip Tar includes only Vitamin E as a preservative), I'd imagine Pout Paint would stand the test of time much better.

One more note on formulation: keep in mind that while OCC Liptars are completely vegan, Sleek Pout Paints do contain beeswax, so if that's a concern for you, be(e?) aware. Oh, and if scent is an issue for you, know that Sleek Pout Paints have a light orange fragrance, while OCC Lip Tars are peppermint scented.

Now, finally, the colors. As I mentioned before, Sleek's current range of Pout Paints includes 11 shades, while OCC's spectrum has 36 shade choices to offer. In my opinion, since the pigments are meant to blend, shades outside of the primary colors and shades are just bonuses. I mean, if these products are designed for blending, then do we really need more than black, white, red, yellow and blue? But it's here that Sleek has missed the boat- excluding both black and yellow hues from their range limits the true potential of the product.

FYI, I've seen a lot of people asking other reviewers if the two brands are interchangeable. I've made several blends mixing the Lip Tar and the Pout Paint and had no problem. Depending on your ratio, you may experience some separating, since the Lip Tar has a tendency to do that on its own, but a simple stir will remedy that, so no worries.

Of the 4 Sleek Pout Paints that I was sent, I own "dupes" for 3 in OCC Lip Tars. Here are the comparisons:

OCC Lip Tar in RX (top)
Sleek Pout Paint in Peek-A-Bloo (bottom)

OCC Lip Tar in Feathered (top)
Sleek Pout Paint in Cloud 9 (bottom)

OCC Lip Tar in NSFW (top)
Sleek Pout Paint in Pin Up (bottom)

As you can see, the blue and white shades are pretty dead-on. Though OCC's Feathered seems sheerer in the swatch than Sleek's Cloud 9, I didn't notice a big difference on my lips. There is a slight difference in the reds- OCC's NSFW is a bit brighter and has less blue than Sleek's Pin Up. Both lines have other reds that may be better matches.

To sum up, both products are great at what they do. OCC definitely wins points for a wider color range, whereas Sleek's lower price point may sway some. Boiling it down to product performance alone, Sleek wins out for me simply because their Pout Paints don't separate in the container or feather on the lips, making the product easier and more enjoyable to use.

Some products featured in this review were submitted for promotional consideration by a representative of the company. What does this mean? I didn't pay for it. My commitment is to you- my readers- and to myself (it's called integrity, I like to have it). The opinions expressed on are my own, based on my own research and experience; I am not paid in any way nor is the final outcome of the post influenced by any outside party.


Eden-Avalon said...

Thank you! I've been waiting for someone to do a post like this. I'll probably stock up on sleek pout paints and then pick up one or two (compared to the dozen I had planned) lip tars just for fun. <3

Elena said...

Hi! I have a question... Can you mix the two brands together? It works? Thank you!

Jessica said...

I have indeed mixed them together, and for the most part, it worked just fine.

The mixture will separate over time if it sits, but the OCC Lip Tar does this on its own, so that wasn't unexpected. A little mixing blends it all back together, so easy fix.

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