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10 Sparkling, Shimmering Golds to Celebrate the New Year

Here’s a more traditional take on shades of the New Year — yellowy golds. I went for a list of some of my favorite more shimmering/sparkling shades for bonus points 🙂 What are your favorites?

  1. Anastasia So Hollywood — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  2. Kat Von D Thrasher — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  3. Colour Pop Get Lucky — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  4. Sephora Girls Night Out — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  5. NYX Mischievous — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  6. NARS Iskandar — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  7. MAC Old Gold — A Warm Gold with a Frost finish.
  8. L'Oreal Eternal Sunshine — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  9. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Triptych — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.
  10. Sugarpill Goldilux — A Warm Gold with a Metallic finish.

See side-by-side swatches!

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13 Emerald Greens to Covet

Long-time readers will probably find this no surprise… but I love emerald green when it comes to makeup! Whether it’s for nails, eyes, or lips. Here are 13 favorites — from deeper to brighter, warmer to cooler! 🙂

  1. Butter London British Racing Green — A Cool Green with a Pearl finish.
  2. Zoya Logan — A Cool Green with a Glitter finish.
  3. Kat Von D Iggy — A Cool Green with a Frost finish.
  4. Sephora Go For a Ride — A Cool Green with a Pearl finish.
  5. Make Up For Ever ME304 Emerald — A Cool Green with a Frost finish.
  6. Milani Green Safari — A Warm Green with a Frost finish.
  7. Buxom Pre-nup — A Cool Green with a Frost finish.
  8. Giorgio Armani Emeraude (04) — A Cool Green with a Satin finish.
  9. Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Cosplay — A Cool Green with a Satin finish.
  10. Make Up For Ever D306 Bottle Green — A Warm Green with a Metallic finish.
  11. Urban Decay Kush — A Warm Green with a Frost finish.
  12. NYX Risque — A Cool Green with a Metallic finish.
  13. Colour Pop Empire — A Warm Green with a Metallic finish.

See side-by-side swatches!

NYX Enigmatic Illuminator

NYX Enigmatic Illuminator
NYX Enigmatic Illuminator

NYX Enigmatic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium peachy-pink with warm, golden shimmer that gives it a frosted sheen. Urban Decay Streak Highlighter (P) is lighter (95% similar). bareMinerals The Many Splendors #2 (LE) is warmer (90% similar). bareMinerals The Five Star Treatment (LE, $26.00) is less shimmery, lighter, cooler (90% similar). MAC Luna Luster (LE, $34.00) is darker, warmer (85% similar). Bobbi Brown Sunset Glow (LE, $46.00) is darker (90% similar). Tom Ford Beauty Highlighter (Softcore) (LE, $55.00) is warmer (85% similar). MAC Adored (LE, $32.00) is less shimmery, darker (85% similar). MAC Beaming Blush (P, $30.00) is cooler (85% similar). MAC Blonde (LE, $32.00) is less shimmery, darker (90% similar). Tom Ford Beauty Cool (Winter 2016) Highlighter (LE, $55.00) is darker, more muted (80% similar). Benefit Sugarbomb (P, $28.00) is darker, warmer (80% similar). See comparison swatches / view dupes side-by-side.

This is the last of the five shades in the NYX Illuminator range. The formula is supposed to have “radiant shimmer” that gives skin a “subtle glow.” The texture of this shade was slightly dry, but it applied without a fuss on the skin and didn’t look powdery, though it did emphasize pores slightly. It had semi-sheer to semi-opaque, buildable coverage. The highlighter blended out well and lasted for six and a half hours on me.

NYX Illuminator Enigmatic
Enigmatic
Enigmatic
8.5
Product
9
Pigmentation
8
Texture
7
Longevity
4.5
Application
82%
Total

See more photos & swatches!

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NYX Magnetic & Ritualistic Illuminators

NYX Magnetic Illuminator
NYX Magnetic Illuminator

NYX Magnetic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium, peachy-coral with warm undertones and a frosted, golden sheen. It had good pigmentation with a soft, slightly dry consistency in the pan, but it applied well to the skin without looking caked on. The shimmer was just shy of pore-emphasizing-territory, so that was nice! I think this one is a more versatile shade that can be worn as a subtler highlighter or layered for greater glow. It wore well for seven hours on me. Tom Ford Beauty Pink Glow #4 (LE, $55.00) is more shimmery, darker (90% similar). bareMinerals The Many Splendors #2 (LE) is less shimmery, cooler (90% similar). Tom Ford Beauty Highlighter (Softcore) (LE, $55.00) is less shimmery, lighter (90% similar). Benefit Sugarbomb (P, $28.00) is less shimmery, darker, cooler (90% similar). MAC Perfect Topping (2014) (LE, $32.00) is less shimmery, darker (90% similar). NYX Soft Spoken (P, $6.50) is less shimmery, darker (85% similar). Kevyn Aucoin Starlight (P, $44.00) is more shimmery, darker, warmer (85% similar). See comparison swatches / view dupes side-by-side.

NYX Ritualistic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light, white gold with a lighter, ivory base and stronger, darker gold shimmer. It had nice color coverage with a soft, smooth texture that wasn’t too dry or too stiff. The white base is strong enough that it may show through and look chalky on darker skin tones, but it shouldn’t impart much color on fair skin tones. It lasted for six and a half hours for me. MAC Double-Gleam (P, $30.00) is less shimmery (95% similar). Makeup Revolution Golden Lights (P, $6.00) is cooler (95% similar). Tom Ford Beauty Moodlight (Daylight) (LE) is less shimmery, lighter (90% similar). Becca Moonstone (P, $38.00) is more shimmery, lighter (90% similar). Colour Pop Perilune (LE, $8.00) is more shimmery (90% similar). Colour Pop Lunch Money (P, $8.00) is more shimmery, lighter, brighter (90% similar). Sephora Stardust (01) (P, $14.00) is less shimmery, lighter (90% similar). Colour Pop School is Fun (LE, $8.00) is darker (90% similar). Surratt Beauty Auréole (P, $32.00) is less shimmery (90% similar). LORAC Starlight (P, $22.00) is less shimmery, cooler (90% similar). Too Faced Rosy Glow (Left) (P) is more shimmery (90% similar). Zoeva Glowing Still (P) is more shimmery (90% similar). NARS Albatross (P, $30.00) is more shimmery (95% similar). bareMinerals The Many Splendors #1 (LE) is less shimmery (90% similar). Sleek MakeUP Subsolar (P) is less shimmery, cooler (85% similar). Anastasia Starlight (P, $28.00) is more shimmery (90% similar). theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer (P, $24.00) is darker, warmer (80% similar). Colour Pop Fanny Pack (P, $8.00) is lighter, brighter (80% similar). See comparison swatches / view dupes side-by-side.

FORMULA SUMMARY | NYX Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is supposed to have “radiant shimmer” that gives skin a “subtle glow.” Most of the shades in the range (there are five) are moderately shimmery/frosty; only one is on the truly subtle side. The texture tended to be on the drier side, though I didn’t find them to appear dry on my skin (which is normal-to-dry). There is slight emphasis of pores, and the wear time varies from six to seven hours.

NYX Illuminator Magnetic
Magnetic
Magnetic
8.5
Product
10
Pigmentation
8
Texture
7.5
Longevity
5
Application
87%
Total
NYX Illuminator Ritualistic
9
Product
10
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
7
Longevity
5
Application
88%
Total

See more photos & swatches!

NYX Narcissistic & Chaotic Illuminators

NYX Narcissistic Illuminator
NYX Narcissistic Illuminator

NYX Narcissistic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light, golden peach with warm undertones and a luminous sheen. It had a soft, lightly powdery consistency that was blendable and didn’t read dry or powdery on the skin. The powder imparted a soft but noticeable glow to the skin without adding a lot of color on my skin tone (but fairer complexions may see more warmth). It wore well for seven hours on me. MAC Highlighter (LE, $32.00) is more shimmery, darker (90% similar). Tom Ford Beauty Warm (Winter 2016) Highlighter (LE, $55.00) is more shimmery (95% similar). NARS Tribulation (LE, $30.00) is darker (95% similar). Suqqu Yawakouki (05) (P, $34.00) is less shimmery, darker (95% similar). Clinique Nude Glow (P, $27.00) is less shimmery (90% similar). Cover FX Sunlight (P, $34.00) is warmer (90% similar). Josie Maran Argan Enlightenment (Original) (P, $28.00) is darker, warmer (90% similar). Surratt Beauty Coup de Genie (P, $32.00) is more shimmery, darker (90% similar). Sephora Jubilant (21) (P, $14.00) is darker, warmer (90% similar). Hourglass Iridescent Strobe Light (P, $38.00) is less shimmery, darker (90% similar). Smashbox Shimmer (LE) is more shimmery, darker (90% similar). Tarte Lit (P) is more shimmery (90% similar). Cle de Peau Sand Beige (13) (P, $55.00) is darker (90% similar). theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer (P, $24.00) is more shimmery, lighter (90% similar). Tom Ford Beauty The Afternooner (Highlighter) (LE) is lighter, warmer (90% similar). Too Faced Warm Glow (Right) (P) is more shimmery, lighter (85% similar). Laura Geller Gilded Honey (P, $24.00) is more shimmery, lighter, brighter (85% similar). Cover FX Moonlight (P, $34.00) is more shimmery, lighter (85% similar). MAC Glow Rida (LE, $22.00) is darker (85% similar). Illamasqua Rush (P) is more shimmery, brighter (85% similar). Top 20 dupes listed, see the rest. See comparison swatches / view dupes side-by-side.

NYX Chaotic Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is a light-medium pink with warm undertones and a golden shimmer and sparkle. The texture was looser–noticeably drier–and a little powdery to work with. The shimmer was stronger in this shade than in Narcissistic as well. It worked more as a highlighting blush on my skin tone, and it may be more or less a blush or highlighter depending on your own skin tone. It just barely emphasized pores on my cheeks. The highlighter started to fade after seven hours of wear. Benefit CORALista (P, $28.00) is less shimmery (95% similar). Smashbox Carnation (LE) is cooler (90% similar). Tarte Glisten (P, $28.00) is darker (90% similar). Sleek MakeUP Rose Gold (P, $6.99) is more shimmery, darker, brighter (90% similar). Too Faced Who's Your Poppy (LE) is more shimmery, darker (90% similar). Milani Dolce Pink (P, $8.49) is more shimmery, darker, more muted (90% similar). Becca Flowerchild (P, $32.00) is less shimmery, darker (90% similar). Too Faced Peachy Keen (LE) is more shimmery, darker (90% similar). Tarina Tarantino Feather (P, $25.00) is less shimmery, darker (90% similar). YSL Passionnee (6) (P, $47.00) is less shimmery, darker (90% similar). Urban Decay Score (P, $26.00) is less shimmery, darker, warmer (90% similar). NARS Orgasm (P, $30.00) is more shimmery, darker (90% similar). See comparison swatches / view dupes side-by-side.

FORMULA SUMMARY | NYX Illuminator ($9.00 for 0.33 oz.) is supposed to have “radiant shimmer” that gives skin a “subtle glow.” Most of the shades in the range (there are five) are moderately shimmery/frosty; only one is on the truly subtle side. The texture tended to be on the drier side, though I didn’t find them to appear dry on my skin (which is normal-to-dry). There is slight emphasis of pores, and the wear time varies from six to seven hours.

NYX Illuminator Narcissistic
9
Product
10
Pigmentation
8
Texture
7.5
Longevity
5
Application
88%
Total
NYX Illuminator Chaotic
Chaotic
Chaotic
8
Product
9
Pigmentation
7
Texture
7.5
Longevity
4.5
Application
80%
Total

See more photos & swatches!

5 Shades of Serenity

Here’s the second shade chosen for Color of the Year, “Serenity.” It’ll be interesting to see this color incorporated into just about every mainstream brand’s releases in 2016, because it’s a difficult color to do well. Pastels in general can be tricky, and shades of this kind of periwinkle blue are no different. Anyone else hoping for an interpretation of this as a highlighter? Like an iridescent bluish sheen? Please?

  1. Colour Pop Prance — A Cool Blue with a Matte finish.
  2. NYX Earl Grey — A Cool Blue with a Satin finish.
  3. Make Up For Ever I212 Periwinkle — A Cool Blue with a Satin finish.
  4. Zoya Skylar — A Cool Blue with a Frost finish.
  5. Inglot #429 — A Cool Blue with a Frost finish.

See side-by-side swatches!

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