YSL Vernis a Levres (Glossy Stains): Lip Swatches

Yves Saint Laurent’s new Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres (a.k.a. “glossy stains”) are so new and noteworthy and so different, I wanted to give you as much information as possible to guide your purchasing decisions.

I mentioned that the glossy stains deepen and “develop” on the lips. The change can be quite substantial from the color as it comes out of the tube. When contemplating my own online order, I had worried that some of the lighter colors might be too light… actually, the lightest colors (by and large) actually turned out to be my favorites.

Some of the shades I thought I would like (spoiler alert: 9 Rouge Laque) pulled surprisingly cool on me. So I wanted to give you a couple of lip swatches (in addition to the arm swatches) to illustrate those discoveries. Some of the photos may look a little similar; forgive the photo conditions. I’ll describe each color for accuracy.

I think I’d better post these in the order I photographed them (generally from lighter shades to darker), so you can make sense of the changing light. These were photographed on a cloudy day.
Yves Saint Laurent, YSL, Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres, glossy stains, swatches, lip swatch, 19 Beige Aquarelle
I tried on 19 Beige Aquarelle because I was curious how the two lightest colors (18 and 19) would look on the lips… and warm Beige Aquarelle seemed like a better choice for me than cool Rose Pastelle.

Beige Aquarelle provided pretty good coverage, and — while pale pink lips aren’t usually in my wheelhouse — I quite liked this one. I’d say it’s more “Kristin Chenoweth light pink” than “Kim Kardashian nude,” and I put it on my “buy someday” list.
Yves Saint Laurent, YSL, Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres, glossy stains, swatches, lip swatches, 7 Corail Aquatique
7 Corail Aquatique turned out to be one of my two favorite shades. It looks like a light, warm pink on the arm, and deepens into a warm rose pink on the lips.

6 Camel Croisiere is my other favorite shade. It doesn’t necessarily look amazing in an arm-swatch; its “dirty” orange probably means folks will think they can pass it by. But it’s incredible on the lips. So many of my favorite lip colors are some version of a sheer orange (which builds into the perfect warm pink/warm red on the lips). I love Camel Croisiere’s tomato-persimmon-coral.
Yves Saint Laurent, YSL, Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres, glossy stain, swatches, lip swatches, 5 Rouge Vintage
5 Rouge Vintage was another “maybe” shade online that I didn’t love when I finally tried it on. It turned into a surprisingly deep raspberry/cherry color.
Yves Saint Laurent, YSL, Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres, glossy stain, swatches, lip swatches, 12 Corail Fauve
12 Corail Fauve is another one I liked. It’s like a deeper version of 7 Corail Aquatique: a warm not-quite-red rose-pink.
Yves Saint Laurent, YSL, Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres, glossy stains, swatches, lip swatches, 8 Orange de Chine
I think 8 Orange de Chine is actually my favorite “red.” Its vibrant orange (darker than 6 Camel Croisiere) deepens on my lips to create a perfect warm red.
Yves Saint Laurent, YSL, Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres, glossy stain, swatches, lip swatches, 9 Rouge Laque
I had thought I would like 9 Rouge Laque (warm red in an arm swatch). On my lips it pulled surprisingly cool (and surprisingly pink). Not a personal must-have.
Yves Saint Laurent, YSL, Rouge Pur Couture Vernis a Levres, Glossy Stain, swatches, lip swatches, 20 Rouge Enamel
Ahh, running out of daylight. 20 Rouge Enamel was an even deeper cool red than 9 Rouge Laque. Not a personal favorite.

I wish I’d had time to also photograph 15 Rose Vinyl. On my lips it was a very blue-rose pink. Not a color I love for myself, but it garnered several compliments.

The glossy stains are available at Nordstrom.comicon (exclusive provider of shade 13; free shipping at any price), Sephora.com (exclusive provider of shade 20; free shipping at $50), and NeimanMarcus.comicon (free shipping at any price with code FSMAR).

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10 Responses to “YSL Vernis a Levres (Glossy Stains): Lip Swatches”

  • Black. says:

    I Love Beige Aquarelle & Corail Aquatique, beautiful!

  • Latoya says:

    You showed the three that I’m looking forward to – Corail Aquatique, Corail Fauve, and Camel Croisiere – thank you so much!! I can’t wait to get my hands on these :)

  • Claudia says:

    Karla, I’m having a hard time to decide which color to get, as they all look pretty much similar on my screen. I love deep cool reds, like (Chanel’s Dragon for instance). Can you give me a suggestion ?? Thanks ;)

  • KarlaSugar says:

    Ooh, Claudia, you have so many choices. I think you’ll like #10 and #20 best (in two coats, I found them to be similar).

  • Claudia says:

    Thanks a lot for your reply! I will get one of these two! Thanks!

  • Alison says:

    I like Corail Aquatique best on you!

  • Ana says:

    Thank you for these pictures, you save a lot of people costly mistakes! Like me you seem to be in search of a nice warm red – everything ends up cold red on me. I am tempted by the Orange de chine

  • aksaiyo says:

    Orange de chine looks on you like what I wish I would look like one. It was pretty much a red toned orange, and a very bright orange on me. I love it but I think maybe I should try rouge laque next, perhaps it will show mure true to swatch in me too. :P
    I just want a poppy shade so badly, but I hear poppy is one of the Pantone colors for next spring, I’m quite excited!

  • Kari says:

    Hello Karla! Loved this post! Im the “same level of fair” (lol) as you are in this pic, so naturally I’m wondering, what foundation are you wearing in this pic that makes your skin look so even and beautiful? That, and, it is one of the most perfect shade matches I have ever seen! Bravo & thanks

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