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Black Honey: How a 5 Decade-old Lipstick Became Viral Again

Learn about TikTok's irresistible power as it turns Clinique's "Black Honey" lipstick into a viral hit. This lipstick has turned into a must-have, selling out, and amassed a sizable fanbase thanks to its inclusion in enduring films and its ability to enchant TikTok users. 'Black Honey' is the perfect example of how TikTok's influence on beauty trends has embraced all skin tones and a desire for multi-benefit products.
Woman applying Black Honey lipstick

One tube is sold every 3 minutes

If you were a 90s kid with a bad habit of searching through your momma’s makeup bag, there’s a high chance that you’re familiar with Clinique’s ‘Black Honey’ lipstick, which is currently enjoying a kind of revival all thanks to TikTok, with the hashtag #cliniqueblackhoney currently at more than 110M views.

So how did ‘Black Honey’, this already iconic lipstick, recently go viral? As it turns out, we have another cult classic to thank for the resurgence.

In July, sharp-eyed TikTok users started posting about how Liv Tyler wore Black Honey in the renowned “Lord of the Rings” movies. And you know how things can get with its fandom…

From there, it didn’t take long for the lipstick to reach the makeup side of TikTok.

@sienna.mckenny

Reply to @smartbleep.com I’m so happy this lovely follower put me onto my new favorite lipstick @clinique #clinique #cliniqueblackhoney

♬ Lovers Rock – TV Girl

By August, employees at Sephora were going crazy about the lipstick selling out everywhere, only intensifying the need-to-have-it psychology. “It literally looks good on everyone, so whether you’re a teen just getting into makeup or a mom or a hella busy career woman, this will work for you.”

@jenn_aedo

I’ve been wearing this since 1995! Take note from a #genx make up gal 🤣 #viralmakeup @clinique #beautyadvisor #sephoratok #cliniqueblackhoney

♬ Everywhereigo – Babyxsosa

It turns out the shade has graced our screens many times before. A TikTok user shared how Black Honey was used by Troian Bellisario in Pretty Little Liars, Julia Roberts in Stepmom, and Zooey Deschanel in New Girl.

Of course, Clinique responded to the hype within days, reposting user-generated content on TikTok and dedicating social media posts to the cult favorite product. The brand also had celebrity brand ambassador Emilia Clarke herself test the product for the first time live on Instagram. “I’m a granny, I’m sorry. I’m not on TikTok,” Emilia jokingly said while demonstrating the product. “That’s amazing! Clinique, send me seven more, thank you very much.”

Its ability to flatter a range of ages and skin tones is part of the reason it has become Clinique’s #1 selling lipstick. According to the brand, it accentuates the color of your lips, so it will look slightly different for everyone who wears it. But it also speaks to a larger trend in the beauty world: People are now looking for products that feel good but have other benefits too, aside from just color payoff.

Take away from all this? #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt is very real.

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