For those who are not sure what a "lip tattoo" is, it is not actually permanent makeup. It is basically a lipstain that comes in a thick gel that dries down to a film. You basically apply the gel onto your lips, wait for it to dry down (5 - 10 minutes mostly), and peel it off, to reveal the stain on your lips. The stain is less intense than the original colour, but if you leave the stain on longer, then you'll get a stronger colour on your lips. Other Kbeauty brands also have such products, under varying names - some call them lip tattoos, some call them lip packs, and so on. Just think of them as peel-off lip stains! These types of peel-off lip tattoos are getting really popular here lately, and I guess it's just a matter of time consumers in the West will catch on too.
Skinia Some Lip Tattoo Swatches
Fantastic Wine is my favourite of the bunch, it looks dark and vampy and purple in the tube but when applied, the fainter stain is actually a pretty plum shade. It's one of the colours with a stronger staining effect.
Ruby Red is also a nice shade - it's red, but the eventual stain that turns out makes it very wearable, just a tint of red.
Sugar Pink is a bright pink shade that just becomes sheer pink. This may not show up if you have very pigmented lips - perhaps it might make your lips look a tad pinker, though.
Candy Orange is a bright tangerine orange. This does turn out pretty orange, too, and is one of the more obviously staining shades.
My first impressions from swatching the product was that the product was quite thick and goopy as compared to normal lipglosses (which is typical for these types of peel-off lip tattoo products). It's also a little tricky to get an even layer on your skin, because the applicator is just a normal slant-tip plastic applicator, which again is usual for peel-off lipstain type products. Not that it really matters if you don't get an even layer, because you'll be peeling it off. That said, the stain does indeed last for pretty long - Skinia sells a special makeup remover for their lip tattoo, but you can use a good oil cleanser (it did take me awhile to remove the tint).
Skinia Some Lip Tattoo Applicator
Lastly, and importantly, these products are pretty drying on the lips. This is quite common to these peel-off lip packs/lip tattoos/lip stains in general. On the HKCPlaza website, they advertise the product as being very moisturizing, but it really isn't. At the event where I took these swatches, myself and another blogger tried them on, and we both agreed that they were really drying! This is because of the ingredients and the mechanics of the product needed to stain your lips, which I will go into here.
For some reason, it is quite common for these peel-off lip tattoos and lip packs to advertise themselves as being moisturizing, regardless of brand, but they all function the same way (if you look up their ingredients they are all nearly identical), so they are really all quite drying. Let's use the Skinia ones as an example, since I'm swatching them anyway. Here are the ingredients:
You'll notice, if you look at the ingredients list, that the product is basically water, film former (Polyvinyl Alcohol), and alcohol. After that we get preservatives/pH adjusters (Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, 1, 2-Hexanediol), which are usually there in small amounts of less than 1%, so, really, the first three ingredients make up the bulk of the product.
So knowing that, how it works is really simple - the product (along with its colouring) seeps into your lips, and its penetration is aided by the high concentration of alcohol in the product. Unfortunately, the tradeoff is that while alcohol helps in the penetration of the colour, it also makes your lips more dry. Meanwhile, the film former (Polyvinyl Alcohol) is the one that is responsible for forming the film on your lips as the product dries. When you peel off the product, you are peeling off a layer of Polyvinyl Alcohol, and the colour that remains on your lips is the stain. Pretty much every brand of lip tattoo/lip pack works this way, so although it's a fun product to use, I wouldn't really recommend it if you have dry lips.
So, if you are thinking of trying out these lip tattoos, on the positive side, they are quite fun to play with, and they do stain for quite long. But on the negative side, they are quite drying (even if they advertise themselves as being moisturizing - just look at the ingredients list and you will see that this is not the case). The tint in most cases is pretty faint as compared to the colour in the tube, so this is a good product to use if you just want a hint of colour.