Asking me to choose my favorite highlighter, by the way, is akin to making me choose favorites between (fur) children (if I had more than one). There were some seriously ga-ga-glowing highlighters launched this year, too! On the blush front, there were some great shades and formulas I tried and tested, but it was easier to narrow those down.
There were actually a lot of fantastic lipsticks released this year! I already pulled up twenty that to consider for the top ten, and I had only reached August (I go backwards). There were 52 pages of lip product reviews to sift through (that’s 312 posts!), and these were the ones that made the cut:
NARS Night Series Eyeshadow Palette ($55.00 for 0.31 oz.) was a limited edition eyeshadow palette that included six of the Night series eyeshadows: Night Star (sheer peach shadow with pearls), Night Clubbing (black with pearls), Night Porter (black with green pearls), Night Rider (soft plum with glitter), Night Flight (black with cobalt pearls), and Night Breed (black with glitter).
Night Star is a subtly, warm-toned light peach with a mostly matte finish. It actually had more pigment than you’d expect for something described as sheer.
Night Clubbing is a dark black with brow undertones and a very fine dusting of bronzy micro-shimmer that’s really not visible on the lid.
Night Porter is a darkened forest green with a metallic sheen. This shade had the best color payoff and texture of the six shades.
Night Rider is a pinky-mauve with massive, chunky shards of glitter. This might be the largest glitter size I’ve ever come across in an eyeshadow. It’s horrible–it doesn’t sit on the lid well at all, as it just falls out immediately.
Night Flight is a blue-tinged black with very fine navy blue shimmer that all but disappears on the lid. The underlying black shadow is very dry and chalky.
Night Breed is a dark black with silver sparkle. Again, the sparkle doesn’t translate well, though it’s more apparent than the other shades here. The single is softer and more pigmented than the version in the palette.
Generally, I didn’t like this palette. The Night series is hit-or-miss, and the shades can be very redundant, as they tend to look more differentiated in the pan than on. With mostly blackened bases, they tend to look black on and the colored pearl/sparkle disappears or isn’t visible. Night Rider is a monstrosity of an eyeshadow; the chunky glitter doesn’t stick at all but doesn’t even look flattering on the eye, should you manage to get a few bits to stay on long enough to look! Night Clubbing, Night Flight, and Night Breed had drier, firmer textures that made blending difficult.
You can find the palette are third-party retailers, like Amazon and Izzy’s, but I didn’t spy it available at regular retailers (like NARS, Nordstrom, etc.). All of the eyeshadows, however, are available individually from NARS at $23 a pop.
** A Note on Quick Reviews: In an effort to be more on-the-ball for 2013, I’m digging through my photo folders and getting as much posted as I can. These are not full-length, in-depth reviews, and instead, I’m writing brief reviews. For dupes, I highly suggest checking out The Swatch Gallery; it’s my first stop whenever I am looking for possible dupes. All of the swatches in this post are automatically added to the gallery, so you can compare them for yourself.
There were too many shades with dry, chalky textures that were difficult to apply and blend to make this palette a must-have. They also tended to look too alike on, because the nuances from the shimmer didn't translate on the lid.
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In my stash, I had four matte white eyeliners and three shimmery/metallic white eyeliners, and I’ve compared them in this post. The finding? The matte white eyeliners are completely dupes of each other across all four shades, while the metallic white eyeliners are nearly dupes of each other, with one being minutely less bright. I like using white eyeliner to lighten other colors or to act as a base color when using eyeshadow on the lower lash line.
DOLCE & GABBANA WHITE is a bright, creamy white. It is similar to the three other matte white pencils I have: MAC Pure White, MAC Fascinating, and NARS Santa Monica Blvd.
MAC PURE WHITE is a crystal clear creamy white. It is similar to the three other matte white pencils I have: Dolce & Gabbana White, MAC Fascinating, and NARS Santa Monica Blvd.
MAC FASCINATING is a bright white with a matte finish. It is similar to the three other matte white pencils I have: Dolce & Gabbana White, MAC Pure White, and NARS Santa Monica Blvd.
NARS SANTA MONICA BLVD. is a pure white a matte finish. It is similar to the three other matte white pencils I have: Dolce & Gabbana White, MAC Pure White, and MAC Fascinating.
URBAN DECAY YEYO is a silvery-white — it’s not 100% white on me, there is a little bit of silver sheen to it, but it’s close. It is very similar to Tarina Tarantino Crystal Gun; a touch starker compared to MUFE #14L.
MAKE UP FOR EVER #14L is a brightened, metallic white. It is not quite as stark/bright compared to both UD Yeyo and Tarina Tarantino Crystal Gun–but realistically, the difference is nearly imperceptible when applied.
TEMPTALIA PICKS: #2 (wears the best), #5 (most pigmented, balanced between creamy/soft)
Behind-the-Series: It was my intention to provide heavy, opaque swatches to provide an accurate color comparison. Some eyeliners required one pass, some required five, and a few even more. When possible, the shade name (above) is linked to the original review so you can read more about the quality, wear, etc. of a particular eyeliner. If we’ve never done a review, there will be no link. Shades that were limited edition will be marked with “(LE)” and shades that were discontinued will be marked with “(DC)” after the color description. You can also find all comparisons on The Dupe List.
What’s your favorite white eyeliner? How do you like to use it?
Two years ago, I went through and swatched every eyeliner I owned by color, so that they could easily be compared. It’s time for a re-do, because we have so many more shades to add to our comparisons! Our first part of this on-going series is a comparison of the various nude and champagne eyeliners I have on hand. This shade is typically used on the lower lash line or water line to help brighten and open up eyes.
BAREMINERALS 5AM is a pewter–it’s a dirty, cool-toned gold with a silvered sheen. I didn’t expect it to be similar to anything here, but it didn’t fit well with golds either.
MAC NC15/NW20 is a light beige/fleshy shade. It is a hair darker than NARS Rue Bonaparte.
MAC NW25/NC30 is a darker version of NW15/NC20. Almost looks like a darkened peach. It is very similar to Givenchy #2.
MAC NC42/NW35 is darker version of NW25/NC30. It looks a bit peachy/orange on me.
GIVENCHY #2 is a warm, peachy beige with yellow-beige undertones and a mostly matte finish. It is comparable to MAC NW25/NC30.
NARS RUE BONAPARTE is a soft beige with a matte finish. It is just barely lighter than MAC NC15/NW20.
MAC I GET NO KICK is a soft champagne nude with a metallic sheen. (LE) It is ever-so-slightly warmer than MUFE #23L but very comparable to UD Midnight Cowboy.
MAKE UP FOR EVER #23L is a shimmering golden champagne with a nearly metallic finish. This shade is slightly less warm compared to MAC I Get No Kick and UD Midnight Cowboy.
URBAN DECAY MIDNIGHT COWBOY is a shimmering champagne peach with a subtle metallic sheen. (LE) This is most comparable to MAC I Get No Kick. An alternative to this shade would be Urban Decay’s Shadow Pencil of the same name.
Behind-the-Series: These swatches should not be used to judge the quality of an eyeliner. Some eyeliners required one pass, some required five, and a few even more. It was my intention to provide heavy, opaque swatches to provide an accurate color comparison. When possible, the shade name (above) is linked to the original review. If we’ve never done a review, there will be no link. Shades that were limited edition will be marked with “(LE)” and shades that were discontinued will be marked with “(DC)” after the color description. You can also find all comparisons on The Dupe List.
Pantone has announced that emerald green will be the color of 2013, which means expect to see about 234879234 new shades of emerald green released in beauty (and, well, everything else) next year. The good news is, for me, I adore emerald green! Here are five favorites to the tune of emerald green