Thursday, December 2nd, 2010


Silver Eyeliner: Milani Silver, L’Oreal HIP Silver Lightning, Make Up For Ever #8L, Urban
Decay Dime, Guerlain Silver, Urban Decay Gunmetal, CoverGirl Silver Spark, Urban Decay Uzi

Silver & Gray Eyeliner Comparisons & Dupes

It looks like metallic silver has been done by quite a few brands, doesn’t it? When it comes to grays, though, I don’t have nearly enough to give a particularly great comparison, but of the three darker grays I own, there are more differences between the three than with the five silver shades.

  • Milani Silver Liquif’Eye Liner is a metallic silver. It is nearly identical to Urban Decay’s Dime. (Review)
  • L’Oreal HIP Silver Lightning Chrome Eyeliner is a metallic silver. It is very similar to Guerlain’s Silver, and it is a little darker than the other three silver shades here. (Review)
  • Make Up For Ever #8L Aqua Eyes is a metallic silver. It is a little lighter than the other four silver shades here. (Review)
  • Urban Decay Dime 24/7 Liner is a metallic silver. It is nearly identical to Milani’s Silver.(Review)
  • Guerlain Silver Stylo Yeux is a metallic silver. It is very similar to L’Oreal HIP’s Silver Lightning; it is a little darker than the other three metallic silver shades here. (Side note: I received this relatively recently, but yet I could hardly find any information on it… anywhere.)
  • Urban Decay Gunmetal 24/7 Liner is a darkened silver-gray with shimmer. (Review)
  • CoverGirl Silver Spark Liquiline Blast is a bluish silver-gray. It’s similar to Gunmetal, but it is bluer and has less shimmer. (Review)
  • Urban Decay Uzi 24/7 Liner is a blackened silver. I was hoping to find you a dupe for this one but no such luck. (Review)

Thoughts

DUPE ALERT! The first five shades are all quite similar: Milani Silver, L’Oreal HIP Silver Lightning, Make Up For Ever #8L, Urban Decay Dime, and Guerlain Silver . L’Oreal HIP Silver Lightning and Guerlain Silver is are a hue darker than the other three. Make Up For Ever #9L is the lightest of the five.

Product Formulas/Wear: I have no notable issues with wear with any of these formulas (with the exemption of Guerlain’s Stylo Yeux, which I have not tested). They all wear all day for me (tested for at least 12 hours) without budging or migrating. L’Oreal HIP and Milani are the creamiest, with Urban Decay’s 24/7 Liners following shortly after (still creamy, though). Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes are firmer but still doesn’t tug on the lash line. CoverGirl Liquiline Blasts sometimes need a second pass for true color pay off but otherwise wear fine.

What are your favorite silvers and grays?

See more swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010


Gold Eyeliner: Tokidoki Unicorno, Guerlain Gold, Make Up For Ever #9L,
Urban Decay Eldorado, Urban Decay Honey, Milani Gold, L’Oreal HIP Gold Charge, Stila Koi

Gold Eyeliner Comparisons & Dupes

There are certainly lots of variations on gold but one particular hue seems to find its way into multiple ranges, and I’ve deliberately excluded more antique golds (to-be-posted), but these are the more traditional golds, based on the products I own.   (Please assume that if it’s not here, I do not own it.)

  • Tokidoki Unicorno Glitter Eyeliner is a pale white gold base with darker gold glitter. (Review)
  • Guerlain Gold Stylo Yeux is a golden orange-peach–looks yellower in the pencil than swatched. (Side note: I received this relatively recently, but yet I could hardly find any information on it… anywhere.)
  • Make Up For Ever #9L Aqua Eyes is a lightened yellow gold. It’s not a dupe for Urban Decay’s Honey (or Eldorado). (Review)
  • Urban Decay Eldorado 24/7 Liner is a true yellow gold. You can tell it is significantly different from Honey. (Review)
  • Urban Decay Honey 24/7 Liner is a rustic gold with a molten gold-bronze glint. This is one of my favorite colors, but apparently Urban Decay discontinued it. It is similar to the next three eyeliners, but it seems a hue darker. (Review)
  • Milani Gold Liquif’Eye Liner is a deep metallic gold. It has a nearly identical texture and color to L’Oreal HIP’s Gold Charge. (Review)
  • L’Oreal HIP Gold Charge Chrome Eyeliner is a deep metallic gold. It has nearly identical texture and color to Milani’s Gold. (Review)
  • Stila Koi Smudge Stick is a deep, metallic gold. The color is nearly identical to both Milani’s Gold and L’Oreal HIP’s Gold Charge, but it’s a mechanical pencil, so it’s not quite as creamy. (Review)

Thoughts

Urban Decay Honey is now discontinued, but for those feeling the heartbreak and are running low, you may want to consider any of the following as close sistersL’Oreal HIP Gold Charge, Milani Gold, or Stila Koi.

DUPE ALERT! If it wasn’t visually obvious, L’Oreal HIP Gold Charge, Milani Gold, and Stila Koi are near identical.  L’Oreal HIP Chrome Eyeliner and Milani Liquif’Eye Liner formulas are quite similar, too–both creamy eye pencils that glide on smoothly (creamier than Urban Decay’s 24/7 Liners, by-the-by).  Stila Smudge Sticks are mechanical pencils, and they have known packaging woes (takes forever to get it to twist, often you can’t twist it back in).

Product Formulas/Wear:  I have no notable issues regarding overall wear with this set of eyeliners (exempting Guerlain Stylo Yeux, which I haven’t tested).  For more specifics, I urge you to review the particular product’s review.   Tokidoki Unicorno Glitter Eyeliner is a bit rough/scratchy against the lash line, because of the glittery bits.

What are your favorite golds?

See more swatches! Continue reading →

Monday, February 8th, 2010

100,000 Years of Beauty

Beauty and the Brain:  100,000 Years of Beauty

100,000 Years of Beauty ($295.00, currently listed at $239) is a set of five books designed to be an extremely comprehensive study of the evolution and history of beauty. 100,000 Years of Beauty was commissioned by the L’Oreal Corporate Foundation (to celebrate their 100th anniversary!), but it is a wonderful set of books to go through if you’re a knowledge-hungry beauty addict.

100,000 Years of Beauty is the culmination of a study which identifies many approaches to beauty in all civilizations throughout the ages, including a look into the future. A major editorial endeavor, uniting contributions from 300 writers of 35 different nationalities and 20 different disciplines, 100,000 Years of Beauty brings original insights into the quest for beauty. At the heart of the book is a central theme that throughout all civilizations the quest for beauty is universal. Through this initiative, the L’Oréal Corporate Foundation hopes to share knowledge and encourage the emergence of new perspectives about beauty.

The books come in a “pyramid” with each book sized differently (the first being the smallest, the fifth being the largest) and stacked inside the book “holder.” The first book is titled “Prehistory” and goes through the early history of beauty in various societies. The second book is titled “Antiquity,” which takes a look at the changes that have changed the “pursuit of beauyt.” The third book is titled “Classical Age” and goes through beauty in both the medieval and early modern periods. The fourth book is titled “Globalization” and explores beauty through the modern era. The fifth book is titled “The Future,” and it looks at how the digital age and technology-driven period will change the way we look at beauty going forward.

One of the details I really liked about the set is that there are a variety of topics and voices. You’re not reading just one perspective, but hundreds; you get to read so many different authors with varying backgrounds–from historians to anthropologists. The other detail I like is that these are real books. These are not flimsy paperbacks with nothing to them. These are nicely weighted, thick pages with color-rich images and presented in style.

This set of books is a bit overwhelming–there are over 1,500 pages to go through–but it’s done exquisitely (and rightly so, given the price tag). These are the kind of books that you flip through, admire the images, and read over a long period of time. If I didn’t also eat dinner on my coffee table, I’d love to keep these right in the middle. I’m still working my way through it, page by page, but if you’ve ever wondered just how far back beauty has dated or what kind of beauty “rituals” were performed hundreds of years ago and how they’ve shaped beauty as it stands today–this is something to put on your wish list.

See photos of the inside! Continue reading →

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

L'Oreal Plumped Red Lipgloss
L’Oreal Plumped Red Infallible Plumping Lipgloss

The Scarlet Season: L’Oreal Plumped Red Infallible Plumping Lipgloss

L’Oreal Plumped Red #306 Infallible Plumping Lipgloss ($9.99) is a sheer, lightly tinted orange-based red lipgloss with “plumping power.” It lightly plumps up lips with just a touch of a tingle, which I didn’t find too bothersome (and I’d say I’m particularly sensitive to lip plumpers and find the majority overwhelming). I wish the color was bolder and more opaque, because it is rather subtle and sheer. It does, however, significantly tint and add redness to my lips, and it wears well, because it has a tendency to stain a little rather than sit on top of lips like a typical gloss. It has the faintest bit of shimmer, but it’s hardly noticeable on lips.

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

Check out more photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Monday, October 26th, 2009


L’Oreal HIP Chrome Eyeliner: Black Shock, Silver Lightning, Gold Charge, Violet Volt

L’Oreal HIP Chrome Eyeliner ($10.00) pencil eyeliners with a chrome detail to them. The formula currently has four shades available:

  • Black Shock is a deep black satin — this one didn’t really read metallic or chrome to me, but it’s such an ultra dark black, I love it and don’t care at all that it isn’t more chrome-d out!
  • Silver Lightning is a shiny bright silver with a definite chrome effect.
  • Gold Charge is a deep gold with a decent amount of brightness to it.
  • Violet Volt is a dark violet purple, almost a jewel-tone purple, with a slight metallic sheen (not quite as strong as Silver Lightning or Gold Charge).

I’m not often impressed by a lot of color products available at mass retailers, but when I am, I get very excited to share with others about my find! These are one of those instances where I was utterly blown away (and am a little annoyed with myself for sitting on these–not testing them, that is–for over two months) by the pigmentation, feel, and quality of the product.

These Chrome Eyeliners are ultra soft when you touch them, and the feel reminds me of an even softer version of Urban Decay’s 24/7 Liners, which I absolutely adore. These are so soft that I’d actually say it’s one of the minor issues with working with these – if you apply these with too much pressure (as is easy to do when swatching, ha!), the product may break a bit. I’m not sure if L’Oreal has a good sharpener for these, but they worked well with my Urban Decay one (which, coincidentally, works best on my 24/7 Liners, too).

The color pigmentation is amazing — very true to color and bright and bold. There’s no sheer color here. They apply easily because they’re so soft and smooth, and they just glide onto the lash line with no fuss. I will say the first time I applied these on my lower lash line and lower waterline, my eyes teared up and watered a fair amount. The liner stayed pretty well in place on the lower lash line and faded after an hour so of watery eyes on the waterline (to be expected).

I layered both Black Shock and Silver Lightning together a few days later, and I didn’t find my eyes teared up at all. I doubt very much that these are waterline tested or labeled safe, so just want to caution those looking for something to use on the waterline. Nonetheless, I found the liners wore well throughout the day and didn’t smudge or migrate on my lower lash line.

Bottom Line: Whether you find these at full price or are able to get a good deal (buy one, get one!), these are worth every penny. (I will say that $10 for an eyeliner at mass is a bit steep for me.) Soft, bold color that lasts for hours and stays put. I was just about to give up on L’Oreal, but these are totally amazing. Now, I’m a bit more eager to see what else L’Oreal releases in the future!

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 5/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Recommendation: For metallic, chrome-a-licious eyeliner, L’Oreal HIP makes a fantastic product to check out next time you’re at the drugstore!

Availability: Drugstore.com

See swatchesContinue reading →

Monday, October 26th, 2009


L’Oreal #301 Real Red Lipstick

The Scarlet Season: L’Oreal #301 Real Red Lipstick

L’Oreal #301 Colour Riche Anti-Aging Serum Lipstick ($9.99) may not be my favorite or choice in lipstick formula, but it is a more affordable line of decent lip color (the packaging really kills it for me, unfortunately). Colour Riche is very creamy and hydrating on lips, and the color is a slightly sheered out opaque orange-based red. It reminded me of a sheerer, lighter version of Giorgio Armani’s #401 Rouge d’Armani Lipstick. If I had to pick, I would go Armani, but I realize that it doesn’t fit everyone’s budget, so I thought it’d be good to feature this particular L’Oreal shade as a more budget-friendly alternative!

What do you think of this shade of scarlet?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See comparison shotContinue reading →