Kosas Hotliner Lip Liner and Lip Booster Review
This lip combination proves you don't need lip filler for a voluminous pout
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There’s a first time for everything, and most recently, that saying rang true for me when I wore lip liner sans lipstick. In fact, a trial run with Kosas’ new lip liners made me realize that maybe not all lip liners even need a lipstick companion—but a glossy lip plumper instead. I came to this conclusion while testing the beauty brand’s two newest products: the Hotliner Hyaluronic Acid Contouring Lip Liner and the soon-to-be-available Plump & Juicy Lip Booster. Now, time for some explanation behind why this is my new go-to lip combo—and why it could be yours, too.
What are the Kosas Hotliner Lip Liner and Plump & Juicy Lip Booster?
Established by Sheena Yaitanes in 2015, Kosas got its start with the launch of four lipsticks, followed by the debut of several other makeup products across the categories of eyes, lips, and face. The brand also has a line of body care items, including a deodorant and body wash. Kosas products are sold either in store or online at retailers such as Sephora, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Urban Outfitters, and Free People.
Kosas’ newest additions, the Hotliner Hyaluronic Acid Contouring Lip Liner and the Plump & Juicy Lip Booster, are an expansion on the brand’s lip offerings, which include a lip balm, lip gloss, and lipstick. The now-available Hotliner Hyaluronic Acid Contouring Lip Liner contains hyaluronic acid to “hydrate and plump” the lips, konjac root to protect them, and jojoba oil to “soften and smooth.” The liner retails for $19 and is available in six shades: “100” (muted pink), “Max” (salmon pink), “Mega” (shell pink), “Peak” (terracotta red), “Wow” (candy red), and “Supreme” (dark brown).
On the other hand, the Plump & Juicy Lip Booster, “a buttery lip treatment,” will launch shortly after its lip liner companion on June 28. The clear gloss’s hero ingredients include peptides to promote the production of collagen and reduce the appearance of fine lines, hyaluronic acid to “attract water and lock in hydration,” and concentrated fatty acids to relieve lips from dryness. It will retail for $25.
Kosas Hotliner Hyaluronic Acid Contouring Lip Liner
I never reach for lip liner because it tends to fade away within hours—or sometimes minutes—after I put it on. However, the Hotliner Lip Liner changed my mind about the makeup item. Starting off with the pink shade “Mega,” I traced the perimeter of my lips. The way the liner’s pencil-thin tip was able to seamlessly glide around my skin immediately earned a thumbs up from me.
In fact, one pass of the color along the edges of my lips was enough to give them a dramatic upgrade: I noticed that they appeared much fuller and transformed from a cool, cherry red to a bold, candy apple crimson. When it came to its longevity, though, the color faded after about three to four hours of wear.
I also wanted to see how the liner fared when used to fill in the entirety of my lips. Similar to the results I saw after etching only the edges of my lips, the reddish shade “Peak” made my pout appear fuller. This shade didn’t produce the vibrancy that “Mega” did—it provided a cooler, muted-brick hue—but that is more reflective of the color than the formula or application method. As for the wear time, using it like a lipstick to shade in my lips lasted twice as long compared to when I used it only as a liner. It stayed put for about five to six hours, and thanks to its creamy texture, it felt more like a tinted lip balm than a lip liner, which made the wearing experience all the more enjoyable. So, if you’re into lightweight lip colors that pack a serious colorful punch, Hotliner may be for you.
Kosas Plump & Juicy Lip Booster
The Plump & Juicy Lip Booster served as the “cherry on top” when it came to tying together any look I created with the liners. A tingling sensation that lasted for more than 30 minutes—though luckily wasn’t irritating—signaled to me that the plumping ingredients were working. Though I saw a slight change in my pout’s volume, I’m more impressed with the lip treatment’s glossy finish. I find lip colors look dull without a sheen atop them, so this is a must-have for adding that glistening appearance.
Also, the Lip Booster sat on top of the liner without a fuss and managed to not interfere with the liners’ texture or color. The seamless application of the two ultimately got a 10/10 from me. I’ll continue to wear them as a pair rather than separately. I would give this a try in combination with one of the Hotliner shades if you’re on the hunt for a vibrant, glossy lip pairing that adds some volume.
Are the Kosas Hotliner Lip Liner and Plump & Juicy Lip Booster worth it?
The Hotliner Lip Liner is worth every cent of its $19 price to me because of its demonstrated versatility. Whether you want to line the contours of your lips or fill them in with a hint of color, this creamy lip liner delivers the impact of a lipstick—minus the several-hour wear time and, at least in my experience, hydration deprivation.
If you’re a makeup minimalist like me and want a not-so-obvious voluminous pout, then the Plump & Juicy Lip Booster is a $25 investment worth considering. Furthermore, you don’t have to endure the piercing feeling that other lip plumpers tend to have—like the trending Tarte Maracuja Juicy Lip Plump—while still coming out on the other side with fuller-looking lips.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.