Manolo for the Big Girl Fashion, Lifestyle, and Humor for the Plus Sized Woman.

March 10, 2011

Review Revue: Revlon Just Bitten Lipstain+Balm

Filed under: Makeup — Miss Plumcake @ 5:28 pm

First an apology: It’s been All Crazy All The Time here at Stately Château Gâteau for the past two weeks and it’s not going to slow down until April but that’s no excuse! If Karl Lagerfeld can design for Chanel, Fendi AND his own house, then I should be able to post to you at least once a day. I mean granted I have a soul and he has a stable of minions who may or may not be winged monkeys and little blue dudes in hats, but still. I am truly sorry and I humbly repent.

As I mentioned in my last post, I’m headed to Ireland next week with my two best friends. They will pack everything they’ve ever owned because they like to make me insane and then attempt to fit it in a car the size of a shoe box. And I’m not talking the nice spacious Lanvin ones, either.

Meanwhile, I’m taking this:

Which, not for nothin’ is beautiful Italian leather and on major sale at

I am a light packer. It’s one of my few redeeming qualities. This poses a slight problem in this situation because unlike the majority of vacations, which I take alone the way nature intended it, I’m going to be with two other people. Two other people who will have cameras.

This means I will need to Look Cute, because my two friends are just as good-looking and vain as I am and I refuse to be the one with the “great personality” in any and all photodocumentation.

So I have to bring makeup, but I need whatever I bring to be long lasting, comfortable and provide excellent bang for my packing-inch buck.

Enter: Revlon Just Bitten Lipstain+Balm

I have been searching for YEARS for the right lipstain.

What I want in a lipstain:

  • Color Payoff- I want intensity without sacrificing its sheer nature
  • Staying Power – I don’t want to it to chew off or melt if I put a lipgloss on top of it
  • Precision Application – a cheek stain is fine in a pot, for lips I want something more precise.
  • Buildability – if I want an intense color, I want to be able to build it up.
  • Weightlessness – It should feel like there’s nothing there and be non-drying

It’s a tall order, I understand. I keep trying and failing. Regardless of price point, there’s no joy in mudville.

I liked CoverGirl Outlast pretty well but I never felt the payoff was quite right, and the felt-tip applicator didn’t let the product flow evenly, so it was nigh on impossible to get an even coat. That’s not the end of the world when you’re using a neutral as a base for a lipcolor and gloss, but I wouldn’t trust it to wear it alone.

Then a few weeks ago on a whim, I picked up Revlon’s entry in the marker-style lipstains.

The line is small –10 shades– and they’re clearly trying to capitalize on the Sparkly Teen Vampire audience with names like Gothic, Midnight, Forbidden, Twilight and Frenzy.

I was looking to do a very specific dark sheer cupid-bow lip, so I picked up “Midnight” a sheer black cherry. I loved it so much I went back and bought every single color in the line.


Color Payoff:

Now THIS is how you do a non-neutral stain! With one layer it’s deep but sheer, clearly a stain, as if I’d fallen asleep with my face in a glass of Cabernet. Not that I’ve ever done that.  No really I haven’t. Shut up.

Staying Power:

Five stars for staying power. I actually fell asleep without taking off my lipstick last night, just to see how it would fare. I applied at 5 p.m., had an event, ate sushi, drank tea, ate some raspberry gelato brushed my teeth and woke up with an application that was only moderately worse for the wear.

Precision Application:

MUCH much better than Outlast from CoverGirl. It feels like nothing more nor less than taking a Sharpie to your lips.

I’m having an early eighties Debbie Harry lip moment right now so I need something precise for that severe, angular cupid’s bow (word to the wise: don’t try this unless it’s your natural lip shape. It will end in tears). I want it to be perfect, but in an artifice-for-artifice’s sake Warhol way. What I DON’T want is a velvety, perfect 1950’s lip.

I had a bit of trouble getting the application even at first with Midnight –the darkest color in the line– so I buffed the color a little with my ring finger and it evened out perfectly. All the other colors I’ve used applied evenly the first time, but I still buff because if I’m using an intense stain –especially if I’m doing it matte– I want that flawless finish.


Another big win. Last night I wanted to do a I’m Not Playing With You red lip. First I filled in the entire lip with one layer of Flame, a brilliant orange-red reminiscent of the old Fire and Ice before Revlon done lost their damn minds and changed the formulation and lined it with Gothic, a deep blue-red like Cherries in the Snow. Then I built up the color. Worked like a charm.


Finally, something touting itself as weightless that actually IS weightless. I don’t feel it on my lips at all, even if I don’t use the balm. It’s not drying, it’s not sticky, it’s not sitting ON my lips. It’s fantastic.



  1. Dear Miss Plumcake, I’m surprised you haven’t ‘discovered’ this lipstain before. I went on a lipstain hunt a few months ago and as always skimmed the net to see if any particular product pops up in reviews. With few exceptions Revlon’s Just Bitten seemed to be everyone’s favourite choice.
    So happy for you to be going on this wonderful holiday to Ireland. Don’t worry, since it’s likely to rain a lot your friends will have to manage holiding their umbrellas and snaping photos. That alone should provide some amsusement ;-)

    Comment by coffeeaddict — March 10, 2011 @ 6:51 pm

  2. I will run, not walk to my closest Revlon counter! Thank you so much

    Comment by Janet — March 10, 2011 @ 10:49 pm

  3. I’m hoping there is a How Not to be the Great “Personality” One suitcase packing post coming up

    Comment by Amna — March 11, 2011 @ 3:58 am

  4. I agree with Amna – we need a packing post. I’ll be in Hawaii with Mr. Carol’s family, so need to amp up the fabulosity while staying casual and able to walk forever up and down waterfalls without changing shoes. How????

    Comment by Carol — March 11, 2011 @ 9:09 am

  5. Oh, and I don’t do shorts. Skirts (dresses preferable) or longer pants only. And I’ll be stopping after work tonight to pick up some lipstain. Been wanting to try it, but never had enough info to choose between them. I’ll try the Revlon now! Thanks so much.

    Comment by Carol — March 11, 2011 @ 9:11 am

  6. I’ve always thought the key to great packing was interchangeability of durable pieces and statement accessories, but I need Plumcake confirmation.

    Comment by JB — March 11, 2011 @ 9:25 am

  7. I bought a lipstain for use at the beach last summer, and it worked splendidly for two weeks and then ran out, which really disppointed me. I can’t remember if this is the one. Although upon perusal of, it seems I may have gotten the covergirl, since the quick drying out comes up a lot in the reviews.

    In any case, I will have to revisit this, since I like the sheer, long lasting color, and also like stuff that can do double duty on my cheeks since I’m super pale. Have you tried this on your cheeks, or if not, do you think it would do alright?

    Comment by SarahDances — March 11, 2011 @ 10:46 am

  8. Any chance of a review of the various shades, and what types of coloring/complexions might be best served by each? Or any recommendations from others who have tried this brand? I’m AWFUL at picking colors for lip products, especially things like this which look a lot different on the lips vs. in the tube…and I suspect I’m not the only one who has this kind of trouble! Help?

    Comment by lazydaisydays — March 11, 2011 @ 1:38 pm

  9. Thanks for the tip; I’ll definitely have to check this out. My problem with stains has been that, no matter what color it says it’s going to be, it always comes out as a kind of pinkish-berry-magenta, which isn’t the best color for me. But I gave up on them a while ago, so maybe the stain technology has advanced since then.

    Comment by daisyj — March 11, 2011 @ 3:05 pm

  10. @Coffee Addict: I have been burned so many times by online reviews that I’ve pretty much given up. Plus I was gun shy because of the Twilight-adjacent name. It seemed just like a cheap tie-in product.

    @Amna & Carol: That’s a good idea! Maybe when I figure what I’m packing next week, I’ll document it!

    @SarahDances: Yeah that sounds like what happened with the CoverGirl Outlast for me. I haven’t used this on my cheeks because you don’t blend it on, you DRAW it on, and it sets quickly.

    Comment by Miss Plumcake — March 11, 2011 @ 3:46 pm

  11. And oh I do like that bag:).

    Comment by Lisa — March 13, 2011 @ 12:59 am

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