Review – L.A. Girl Velvet Contour Sticks

LA Girl Velvet Contour Stick

I’ve come to expect great things from L.A. Girl, they’re one of the most popular makeup brands available at the drugstore.  They are cruelty-free, they have a wide range of makeup products, plus you get good quality at an affordable price.

Well, sometimes…

I was SO excited when I spotted the L.A. Girl Velvet Contour Sticks at Dis-Chem a couple of weeks ago.  It was the day before their Beauty Fair started (I had no idea at the time) and so I bought 4 shades.  Had I waited for just ONE day, I could have received one for free.  Meh…  There were unfortunately no testers available, so I couldn’t swatch any of them.  I think some Dis-Chem stores do have testers now, so you might want to go swatch these before you buy them.

Please remind me to NEVER buy a makeup product EVER again, unless I’ve swatched a tester first.

When I saw the price of these, I actually did a double take because I couldn’t believe my eyes.  R100,00 a pop is not very affordable for a brand like L.A. Girl, right?  Or am I just getting old?

Don’t answer that.

I paid R400,00 for 4 Velvet Contour Sticks and as it turns out, I only like 1 of them.  I was going to buy more, but kept myself in check because I remembered my previous experience with the L.A. Girl Matte Pigment Gloss products.  There was so much hype around those liquid lipsticks, so I bought 5 or 6, and in the end they were a huge disappointment for me.  Wasted money.

LA Girl Velvet Contour Stick

First things first, I don’t really understand why these are called ‘Contour Sticks’.  On the official L.A. Girl website the bronzers, blushes and highlighters are all classified under the same ‘Contour Sticks’ name.  Strictly speaking not even the bronzer shades are contour products, because contour shades are usually more cool-toned (to mimic a natural shadow on the face).

So, I grabbed 2 blushes, 1 highlighter and 1 bronzer.  I’m going to start off with my full review of the products (texture, how well they blend, pigmentation, longevity) and will then give you a rundown of each shade.

The whole collection consists of 3 highlighters, 10 blushes and 3 bronzers – some are matte, others are shimmery, and others are frosty.  There are some really, really beautiful shades in the collection but I suggest you read my review all the way to the end before you pop in to your nearest Dis-Chem store to stock up on these.


♥  I love the idea of the convenient twist-up packaging, there’s no need for a sharpener and you can apply it directly to the skin.

♥  The texture initially feels super velvety and smooth, I imagine it’s thanks to the jojoba seed oil, shea butter, cocoa seed butter and grape seed oil within the formulation.

♥  Once you start blending the shades with your finger, the texture changes to almost a powder finish (it doesn’t remain waxy / sticky).

♥  Each chubby stick has a clear cap and the outside of the tube closely matches the actual shade of the product, making it easy to grab the specific shade you want without having to open it up or look for the name.

♥  The dome shape of the stick fits nicely around the contours of the face.

♥  Initially these products are very pigmented, until you start to blend them, and that’s when the problem starts…


♥  The Velvet Contour Sticks feel very waxy, and as a result they tend to disappear as soon as you start to blend them out.  It’s the weirdest thing, the 2 blushes and the contour shade all blend out to basically nothing.  It’s a catch-22, if you don’t blend them enough they look  too intense / harsh, but once you start to blend them out with your fingers / makeup sponge / makeup brush the shades dissolve into the skin.  The only shade I don’t have this issue with, is the highlighter shade because it leaves a beautiful sheen behind (it doesn’t matter how much you blend).

♥  These products tend to disrupt your foundation if you apply them directly from the stick, so the only other option is to apply a little bit to the tips of your fingers and then dab onto the cheeks.  This technique wouldn’t really work for the bronzer shade, though, as it will be very time-consuming to do this around the forehead, temples, lower cheekbones, jawline, and nose.

♥  The bronzer and blush shades don’t last very long on the skin – I get about 3 hours’ of wear before they start to fade, and then they fade quite fast.

♥  The price tag is a bit hefty for an L.A. Girl product – am I right?  Or am I right?

Regarding the swatches below – in the top photo all 4 shades have been heavily swatched (6 layers), and in the middle photo the 4 shades (3 layers) have been blended out with my fingers.

LA Girl Velvet Contour Sticks Swatches

Let’s take a look at the shades I bought:

LA Girl Velvet Contour Sticks

Luminous – A stunning golden champagne highlighter shade, it’s shimmery but not glittery (thank goodness).  This shade is super easy to work with, it doesn’t require a lot of blending and leaves the skin looking healthy and radiant.  Because it is such a light champagne shade, it’s difficult to tell if the actual colour fades fast but the shimmers remain intact throughout the day.  I like to apply this on my upper cheekbones, tip of the nose, cupid’s bow, brow bone and inner corners of the eyes – it brightens up those areas really nicely.

Dreamy – This is a beautiful matte baby pink shade, very natural and very work-appropriate.  Initially it gives the cheeks a gorgeous flush of colour, but it’s very easy to overblend this shade and doing so will leave you with nothing on the cheeks.  This particular shade likes to disrupt any foundation / concealer underneath, so it’s also rather difficult to work with.

My Bae – I picked this shade because I really liked the look of it, it’s a bright coral shade with gold and silver shimmers.  It almost reminds me of NARS Orgasm blush, but it’s just a bit brighter.  It’s a lovely shade, but it fades quite fast and by lunch time all that is left on the cheeks are flakes of shimmer.

Suede – This is a matte bronze shade (there are 2 other bronzer shades as well, but both are shimmery) with quite a warm undertone.  I was initially a bit apprehensive to use it at first, because it is so warm in tone – almost to the point of looking orange.  Once you’ve blended ‘Suede’ out, it gives a very natural warmth to the skin BUT if you overdo it with the blending it disappears, and if you underblend it looks a tad muddy.  For this reason, I find it difficult to work with ‘Suede’.

LA Girl Velvet Contour Stick Blush Bronzer Highlighter

Because I like to turn lemons into lemonade, I’m going to see these chubby sticks as a type of ‘primer’ for my powder blushes and bronzers.  Cream products perform best when they are set with a powder product (especially on combination or oily skin), and powder products perform best when they have something to stick to.

That’s basically all I have to say about these products – the bronzer and blush shades were a huge disappointment for me.  I think I’m in the minority here, because I’ve seen some rave reviews on beauty blogs and in YouTube videos.  Unfortunately these just didn’t work out for me.

The highlighter shade is a winner, though, and I highly recommend you check out the 2 shimmery highlighter shades – ‘Luminous’ and ‘Radiance’.

The L.A. Girl Velvet Contour Sticks retail for R100,00 each at Dis-Chem stores nationwide.  But remember, Dis-Chem is currently running their Beauty Fair promotion – buy 3, get 1 FREE (until the 6th of March 2016).

I apologise if this blog post is a bit of a Debbie Downer, but I would rather save you from the disappointment of spending money on something that might not work for you either.  Well, at least 3 out of the 4 shades I own didn’t work out for me…  I can’t speak for the other shades in the collection, but I image the formulation would be the same for all the products.  If you have some of the other shades in your makeup collection, please let me know in the comments section below what your thoughts are on these products?



  1. Sharleen
    25 February 2016 / 14:06

    Thank you for saving me some bucks

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:24

      My pleasure, Sharleen. 🙂

  2. Cathleen Masters
    25 February 2016 / 14:08

    I’m so glad I didn’t snatch it when I saw the buy two her one free sign. Thanks for this review, and sparing me the disappointment.

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:25

      You’re welcome, Cathleen. 🙂

  3. 25 February 2016 / 14:14

    Thank GOODNESS I saw you mention previously that you weren’t a fan because I saw them at Dischem and would have bought them! I was also stressed as to why they didn’t have testers. Boo for that 🙁

    – Jane Wonder –

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:26

      Very disappointing indeed… At least you saved a couple of bucks to spend on something else. 😉

  4. Nicole
    25 February 2016 / 14:18

    Beautiful pictures as always and love your honesty. xxx

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:26

      Thanks so much, Nicole. 🙂 xo

  5. Daphne
    25 February 2016 / 14:38

    I dont see this as a debbie downer post at all, you saved us from spending money on something that doesn’t work. You should never apologise for that. 🙂 Your honesty is why we keep returning to your blog every day. xxo

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:27

      Thank you for saying that, Daphne – I really appreciate your support. 😀 xo

  6. Taz
    25 February 2016 / 14:41

    Thank you for this review, Luzanne. I appreciate your honesty, you saved me some cash.

    What a pity, I always thought all LA girl products were great quality. What are your favorite LA girl products?

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:30

      My pleasure, Taz – I’m glad to hear this review helped you in some small way. 🙂

      My favourite products from L.A. Girl are the Pro Conceal HD concealers, Pro Prep HD primer, Beauty Brick Blush palettes, The Nudes Eyeshadow palette, Gel Glide Eyeliner pencils, and some of their lipsticks & lipliner pencils. 🙂

  7. 25 February 2016 / 15:11

    I bought both highlighters and love them. I also bought the bronzer in goddess which I haven’t tried yet. I bought four blushes in pinch me, velour, my bae and plush. I love all the blushes. It gives me a lovely colour on my cheeks and lasts pretty long too. My favourite shades are velour and plush, definitely worth a second look. I tested most shades before buying. Also, the new lipsticks are pretty nice too. I have posted swatches of most.

    • Odette
      25 February 2016 / 15:20

      I had a look at your swatch photos of the blushes. I didn’t really find your photos helpful because from the looks of it you swatched them in-store and you don’t show how they blend out. From Luzanne’s swatches you can see the pigmentation looks amazing on all 4 the shades but the problem is they disappear when you start blending them. I had the exact same experience, they look great when swatched but not so great when you blend them, and have worn them for more than 4 hours.

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:32

      It’s great that the shades that you bought worked out for you, Azraa – you’re lucky! These just didn’t tick all the boxes for me unfortunately. 🙁

  8. Odette
    25 February 2016 / 15:16

    I bought Velour and Dreamy, both are major disappointments. My friends also bought some of the other shades and they didn’t like them either. I guess if you’re willing to settle for bad pigmentation, then you might like these but for me they were a waste a money.

    Thank you for the awesome review, Luzanne.

    And your photos are bomb!

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:32

      I agree – they’re definitely not worth the price in my opinion.

      Thanks for popping by the blog, Odette. 🙂

  9. Roxy
    25 February 2016 / 15:30

    Thank goodness I waited for your review before buying these – you saved me from the disappointment. 🙂

    Love your photos, you always make such an effort with your blog posts (even when you don’t like the products haha!)

    xo, Roxy

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:33

      Thank you so much for the amazing compliment, Roxy. 😀 xo

  10. Lalannie Knoll
    25 February 2016 / 15:33

    Thank you for your honest review!!
    I saw these last week alomg with the new lipsticks – and decided to hold back as you were going to review these products. So glad, I waited. What a dissappointment as they look very pretty!

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:33

      It’s a pleasure, Lalannie. 🙂 They look very pretty, but unfortunately the quality just isn’t there… 🙁

  11. Simone Cameron
    25 February 2016 / 15:36

    I always love your reviews. Honestly everything you’ve ever recommended….that I’ve bought, I love! So if Luzanne says, ‘give it a skip’…..Simone is going to give it a skip 🙂

    Despite the waste of R400 (R300?)…lemons and lemonade and all that…..your post is still so stunning so upin quick glance, you’d never know this was going to be a Debbie Downer of a post….he he

    And yes, you’re right, R100 is a bit steep for an affordable brand!

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:34

      Haha! Thanks for always posting such positive comments, Simone. 🙂

      And thank you for agreeing with me on the price tag. 😉

  12. Porchia
    25 February 2016 / 15:51

    Lol you’re not getting old, I thought the exact same thing. R100 for one is a bit much… So glad I waited for your review before I went out and bought these. I might buy Luminous as per your recommendation. 😉

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:35

      YAY! So happy to hear that! Phew…I thought I was the only one! 😉

      Luminous is a beaut – I’m sure you’ll love it!

  13. Nthombi K
    25 February 2016 / 15:55

    I agree with Odette, I bought the same colours and didn’t like them either. Crushed Berry was also a bust for me.

    Really enjoyed reading this post, L.

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:36

      Aaaah, that’s a pity! Sounds like most of the shades are disappointing then.

      Thank you for checking in on the blog, Nthombi. 🙂

  14. farzana
    25 February 2016 / 16:14

    I bought one blush colour and I hated it, I dont even remember the name because I passed it onto my niece.

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:36

      How disappointing… 🙁

  15. Anabel Seitz
    25 February 2016 / 16:38

    I bought 3: 1 blush, 1 highlighter, 1 bronzer and turns out I also only like the highlighter. But I got Radiance, I think its less yellow and more silver and white than Luminous. At least I got the 1 for free, but still…its so frustrating when I buy stuff that I dont end up using.

    Great review, Luzanne.

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:37

      You’re right – it’s very frustrating. For me, it’s literally R300 down the drain. 🙁

      Thanks for popping by the blog and for leaving a comment, Anabel. x

  16. R Fourie
    25 February 2016 / 19:19

    Ek lees altyd lekker aan jou blog. Die inligting is waardevol, eerlik en volledig. En tog slaag jy daarin om dit “lig” te hou. Ek geniet die humor en skerpsinnigheid wat so natuurlik deurkom ☺

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:38

      Baie dankie vir hierdie positiewe comment, jy het definitief ‘n groot glimlag op my gesig gesit. 🙂

  17. Kelly
    25 February 2016 / 20:09

    Thanks for the post! Just looking at them you’d just wanna buy them coz of the packaging and they just look so interesting! But I also did the swatches with the testers available and they weren’t that grand. Though for my skin tone, medium to dark, the bronzer shade Goddess actually worked as a good shimmery bronzer, giving me a nice glow 🙂 Not much of the colour stayed on but if you want a bit of a glow on darker skin, it’s not too bad. Though I also feel the same, it is a bit pricey…

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:39

      I agree with you 100% – the packaging is so cute and colourful! Thanks for posting this comment, Kelly, it’s nice to know Goddess works well as a shimmery bronzer on medium to dark skin. 🙂

  18. 26 February 2016 / 07:43

    I have the High-lite stick in Luminous I really liked it and for me it did last, I wasn’t really interested in the bronzer or blush.

    Atleast I know now not to try buy the bronzer or blush 😉

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:40

      Thanks for taking the time to read my blog post & for leaving a comment, Nooreen. 🙂

  19. Lauren Henderson
    26 February 2016 / 08:58

    These looked so cute when I saw them at Dis-Chem but I waited before I bought some because I knew you were going to review them. (I always wait for your opinion / review on products before I buy them)

    I won’t get the blush or bronzer but will most definitely get a shimmery highlighter.

    Thanks for the indepth review, Luzanne.


    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:41

      Thank you for your support, Lauren. 😉 The highlighter is gorgeous, I’m sure you are going to love it!

      My pleasure. 🙂 xo

  20. 26 February 2016 / 10:21

    This was so helpful. Thank you for doing the testers so that we don’t have to.
    I also had high expectations for this. Oh well.

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:41

      You’re welcome, Gisele. 🙂

  21. Linell
    26 February 2016 / 11:21

    Truth be told and you shall be set free from holding back….brand holders always get away with wacky products and we run along to spend more on wacky stuff…Sharing is caring #NothingDebbieDowning

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:42

      Thank you so much for your support, Linell. 🙂

  22. Mithi
    26 February 2016 / 11:37

    Agreed! It is too expensive for L.A Girl, I swatched the samples and on my tan Indian skin it didn’t show up much.
    Thanks for your swatches and blogs, it really helps 🙂

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:43

      It’s a huge pleasure, Mithi. I’m glad I’m not the only one to think these are duds – hopefully they will be reformulated at some stage because the shades in the collection really are stunning! 🙂

  23. Charlene Steyn
    26 February 2016 / 11:57

    As a student my budget isn’t that great and at R100 a stick its pushing it a bit. I must agree with regards to the matte lip gloss. I feel I have a love-hate relationship with L.A Girl, some products I love and others just doesn’t make the cut. The review is much appreciated!!

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:45

      I totally agree with you – some of their products are bomb, and others are not so great… Thanks for checking in on the blog, Charlene. 🙂

  24. Melissa ❀
    26 February 2016 / 17:01

    No thanks, I think I will give these a skip!

    Thank you for the brilliant and helpful review, Luzanne. 🙂

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:45

      My pleasure, Melissa. 😉

  25. 28 February 2016 / 13:35

    It is rather disappointing that these products don’t match the hype around them. I must admit that their PR team is brilliant at selling their products over social media. I definitely don’t consider this post to be a Debby Downer, because honestly is the best policy after all. xx
    Rivania | The Glam Unicorn

    • Luzanne
      29 February 2016 / 08:46

      I agree – I have no idea why there was such a hype around these chubby sticks. I only ever saw one negative review, and that was from Young, Wild & Polished.

      Thank you for your support, Rivania. 🙂 xo

  26. Samantha van Tonder
    29 February 2016 / 09:39

    Try them as eye shaddow. They work well on eyes but you will need to apply with finger

  27. sashnee
    1 March 2016 / 14:37

    aw no what a disappointment 🙁 i also felt that their matte flat finish pigment glosses were such a waste of money…

  28. Mariam
    27 June 2016 / 14:15

    Gosh i wish i had read this post before i bought them. Lol. I really dont like these. They disrupt my foundation so bad it ends up looking patchy no matter how much i blend afterwards 🙁
    But thanks for a great review. Its good to see your honesty. Some bloggers rave about products that aren’t even good just because its a craze and want to fit in.

    I like reading your reviews, very helpful.

  29. Prachi
    9 July 2016 / 08:14

    Hi Luzanne,
    It would be great if you can share the best blush and contouring product for the Indian skin.

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