Mums are the worst over-reactors. When mine saw me with my Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Dagger, which is a fetching light grey-blue shade, she screamed, “Aiyoh!!! You look like ghost! You look like hantu! Are you trying to scare people ’cos it’s Seventh Month? So ugly! Quick, clean it off!” Meanwhile, my dad uttered an uninterested laugh, while my husband barely noticed it until I asked, “Eh, do you think my lipstick is weird?” (Just shows how much he looks at me.) His response? “A bit scary.” My 18-month-old son just pointed at my lips with a quizzical look, then went back to wrecking our coffee table with his magic markers.
Okay, interesting reactions so far. So the story is that when a box of Kat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks landed on our desks at 8 DAYS, some of us decided to do a little experiment with the weirder colours (ie. colours you wouldn’t wear unless it was Halloween or you were one of the tattooed and pierced beauties in Kat Von D’s make-up artist team, the Artistry Collective.) Aside from demonstrating our own thick-skinnedness and bravery, I’m not sure what this experiment was supposed to achieve, to be honest. Anyway, I ended up being the only foolish person who wore weird lipstick around the whole day, while another colleague slicked on a bright blue shade long enough to get a few shocked looks from people in the office, before cleaning it off.
So here’s what I learned:
#1 People don’t look at you as much as you think.
While a few uncles starred at me a little longer than usual on my way into the office, there weren’t any really big reactions from anyone aside from my dramatic mother. I walked right in front of co-workers who seemed to look at me but showed no surprise at my grey lips. Perhaps they were preoccupied and thinking about their next Powerpoint presentation, or maybe the lipstick wasn’t that strange?
#2 People are too nice to comment.
But when I eventually asked someone, “Eh, you don’t think my lip colour is weird?” she said, “Yeah lah, a bit strange. You look a bit dead, like got no colour. Isn’t this the opposite of what you try to achieve when you wear lipstick?” She’s got a point, of course. Women usually wear reds, pinks and corals to look bright and alive, right? So why didn’t more people ask me why I was trying to look like an extra on The Walking Dead? Maybe everyone is just too nice.
#3 It’s all about where you work, what you do or where you’re going.
For some folks, grey lipstick isn’t all that odd. People in the beauty and fashion industries wouldn’t bat an eyelid at a make-up artist with black lippie or a fashion influencer with ombre blue lips. For me, while I do work in the media industry, I still tap on a laptop in an office, so while I got a few curious stares, it’s not entirely out of place, especially since I’m always trying more out-there make-up and hair colours. And if you’re a millennial on a wild Friday night bender, I can imagine a grey pout would be not-that-abnormal. And to be honest, after a day wearing this shade called Dagger, it's starting to grow on me. I may or may not wear it the next time I do drinks with my gal pals. But yah, grey lipstick marks on your wine glass would look quite strange.
Kat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipstick ($31) is available at Sephora stores. Most of the colours are in more wearable shades of red, pink or nude.