Is Ariana Grande's R.E.M. Beauty Worth the Hype? Here's Our Honest Review

Ariana Grande is known for her signature cat-eye and sharp cut crease, so it's no surprise that she launched r.e.m. beauty, a makeup line that has everything you need to dress up your eyes.

By Alyssa Morin Dec 17, 2021 9:00 PMTags
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If the eyes are the windows to your soul, then Ariana Grande's new beauty liner.e.m. beauty, has everything you need to dress them up with plush curtains.

For the brand's first-ever launch, the pop star focused on the eyes—and it wasn't a play on her brand name either.

"Eyes are our main gateways to our dreams, our emotions, our everything," Ariana told Allure for its October 2021 issue. "They're our main storytellers and sources of communication. I feel like you can emote more with your eyes than you can articulate sometimes."

Considering the musician is known for drawing on a dramatic cat-eye and having a dagger-sharp cut crease, it's not surprising that her cosmetics company is a one-stop-shop to create her signature look.

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Her makeup line offers a variety of electrifying liquid eyeshadows, palm-sized eyeshadow palettes, eyeliners and mascaras that will add a little oomph to your look. Plus, her brand also features a few other goodies, such as velvety soft lipsticks, vibrant highlighters and more.

But the big question is: How does it perform? Read through our honest review below!

Lustrous Liquid Eyeshadow in Milky Way

The Lustrous Liquid Eyeshadow, which comes in 11 dazzling shades like a blue-violet, a vivid teal and pink champagne (to name a few), will take your makeup look from basic to bold and blinding. 

With one dab of the shade Milky Way, my eyelids looked like a glimmering constellation of stars with its electrifying deep blue hue and sparkly finish. Not only is the formula extremely pigmented, but it goes on seamlessly and evenly. As mentioned, a little goes a long way and I found that tapping the product in with my fingers worked best. Plus, don't let the glitter-infused product deter you because it doesn't feel scratchy on the lids and there isn't any fall-out.

While a tiny bit will transfer onto your fingertips if you happen to touch your eyes, I'd argue that it stays put and looks vibrant throughout the day. Unlike some liquid eyeshadows, I never noticed any creasing or patchiness even after 9 hours of wear.

Eyeliner Marker in Midnight Black

Ariana is known for her bold winged eyeliner, so it's no wonder she released a powerhouse liquid liner. The Eyeliner Marker in Midnight Black glides onto the lids as smooth as butter and dries instantly. There's no need to stress about random black streaks covering your lids either, especially if you have hooded eyes.

Along with its smudge-proof formula, the tapered felt tip allows for precise application and makes it easy to draw on a cat-eye—no matter if you want something dramatic or demure. And the liquid eyeliner proved to be buildable because I added a thicker line later in the day and it didn't budge.

Matte Lipstick in Roller Skates

Available in six shades that come in a variety of nudes and pinks, the Matte Lipstick packs a punch with its rich color and smooth velvety formula. That's right, the lipstick offers a comfortable matte finish that isn't drying. If anything, it feels like your pout is sitting on a soft pillowy cloud.

To me, the ultra-fluffy formula and extreme color payoff made my lips look plump and full. And although I found myself reapplying the lipstick throughout the day, especially after eating and drinking, I didn't mind it at all because of how lightweight and cushiony it felt on my pout.

Flourishing Volumizing Mascara

Want Ariana's signature doe-eyed look? The Flourishing Volumizing Mascara will do just the trick. Get fuller and thicker lashes thanks to the uniquely shaped brush, which features three differently shaped bristles that are spaced apart to coat and lift each last. A nice bonus? The product is made with clean ingredients like naturally-derived bamboo powder, Tahitian microalgae and a blend of fruit extracts.

However, there is one important thing to note. The key to using this mascara is to let it dry down before applying another coat. Otherwise, it will not only clump and create a spidery effect but it will also weigh down your lashes, making them droop instead of giving them that sky-high factor.

Matte Liquid Eyeshadow in Sup

Similar to the Lustrous Liquid Eyeshadow, the Matte Liquid Eyeshadow—which comes in 10 warm neutral shades—is an all-star product. For one, a tiny dollop will coat your lids entirely and evenly. It also dries down instantly, so there's no creasing or messiness. Similar to the shimmery liquid eyeshadows, this one works best when you tap the product in with your fingers.

What's more? No matter if you're using a light shade (like a nude beige) or something deeper (like a warm brown), know that the pigment is vivid and will give you that all-eyes-on-me effect. In addition, the matte eyeshadow stays locked in all day without any transferring or smearing.

Eyeshadow Palette in Babydoll

When it comes to palm-sized eyeshadow palettes, it takes a lot to impress me. Why? These products are supposed to be easily portable and offer shadows in the same color family, while maintaining versatility. I'm happy to report that Ariana's Eyeshadow Palette, which is available in three different options—Babydoll, Midnight Snack and Principessa—checks all the boxes.

Each eyeshadow palette offers a mix of six matte shadows and shimmers that deliver a powerful color payoff without any fall out. Both formulas in the palette are easy to blend and ultra-buildable, so you can keep it simple for everyday wear or dress up your lids for that wow factor. Along with its rich pigmentation, the product is long-wearing and sweat-proof. I didn't notice any creasing or dullness after a full day of testing. Plus, it didn't budge even after I finished a cardio workout.

Lip Stain Marker in Booked N Busy

Available in a variety of reds—Booked N Busy, Miss Berry, Popular and Fall Out—the Lip Stain Marker is a smudge-proof lipstick that doesn't transfer. You don't have to worry about it smearing onto your face, water bottles, masks, etc. And unlike most lip stains, the formula isn't drying either.

However, there are a couple of downsides. The lipstick applies patchy and enhances any natural creases on your lips (it looks even worse if they're chapped). While the soft, straight applicator glides on seamlessly, it lightly disperses the product. For example, it took me four coats to see the lipstick appear on my lips. And even with all that back-and-forth and tugging, the product was faint and uneven.

Kohl Eyeliner Pencil in Teddy Bear

While I love a liquid eyeliner moment, I'm more of a pencil eyeliner devotee. The Kohl Eyeliner Pencil impressed me with its soft and smooth formula, which gently slid onto my upper lash line and waterline—I didn't have to pull or tug at my lids to disperse the product. Even better? The shade Teddy Bear, a chocolate-colored hue, looked vibrant and rich with one swipe.

But despite the extreme color payoff and comfortable formula, the liner completely disappeared after a few hours of wear. And that's because I wore this during a particularly uneventful day (re: sitting at home catching up on my reality TV shows), so I can only imagine how many touch-ups would be needed if I were out and about.

Want the scoop on more beauty products? Click here to read our review of Lancôme's new Emily in Paris makeup collection. Plus, do some last-minute shopping for the beauty lover in your life with these handy gift guides.

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