Monday, May 30th, 2011


Illamasqua Abyss, MAC On the Hunt, MUFE #13, Stila Sequins, MAC Marked for Glamour

Liquid Eyeliner Comparisons & Swatches

There are several variations on the liquid liners lately, including Illamasqua Precision Ink, MAC Superslick Eyeliner, Make Up For Ever Aqua Liners, and Stila Sparkle Liners. I swatched through them to compare, and these are the results:

  • blacks: There are really no distinguishable differences between Illamasqua Abyss, MAC On the Hunt, or MUFE #13–they’re all a really deep, dark inky black. Stila Sequins is similar but has noticeable shimmer. MAC Marked for Glamour is a little grayer than Stila Sequins, and MUFE #15 is comparable to Marked for Glamour. MUFE #14 and Stila Starry are comparable, while MUFE is a little darker overall.
  • golds: There are no distinguishable differences between Illamasqua Alchemy, MAC Pure Show, or MUFE #1.
  • olives: MAC Desires & Devices has more gold shimmer and a blacker, less green base compared to Stila Flash.
  • greens: MAC Treat Me Nice and MUFE #3 are indistinguishable from each other.
  • teals: MUFE #4 and Stila Electric are indistinguishable from each other.
  • blues: The darker blues are rather varied; none of them look alike. From the lighter blues, MUFE #5 has more shimmer and is a lighter, more neon blue than Stila Bora Bora.
  • purples: Similar to the darker blues, there is quite a bit of variation of the four purple shades available. MUFE #8 and Stila Royal are the only ones that are comparable, but Stila is less red toned, more violet shimmered.
  • browns: None of the brown shades look alike.

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Monday, May 30th, 2011


Urban Decay Meltdown Makeup Remover

For Your Eyes Only: Urban Decay Meltdown Makeup Remover

Urban Decay Meltdown Makeup Remover ($24.00 for 2.5 fl. oz.) is a creamy, opaque white gel-based remover that works best applied onto a cotton round or toner sheet, then held against the skin for a few seconds and finally, wiped away. Initially, I thought this product was for the whole face, because it says makeup remover, not eye makeup remover. Even the online descriptions of this product don’t suspend that belief–they say it’s a makeup remover designed for removal of even the “longest-lasting products” that’s “good for your skin.”  (I tend to associate skin care benefits more to the whole face than just the eyes!)

Though I recognize I’m a bit skeptical of much of the miracles promised by various skincare products, I’m even more skeptical of cleansers and removers that make promises, too. Products like cleansers and removers are not on skin very long, so it’s hard to believe they would be able to provide any long-term benefits. Urban Decay’s remover includes several ingredients, and one is noted to “revitalize collagen production” while others (various oils) will moisturize and replenish. When it comes to directions, I’m glad I waited for this product to go online, because the back of the tube left me clueless–did I use water, did I use it everywhere, how much, when, what!

Again, the best way to use this, based on my testing, has been on a cotton round or toner sheet, pressed against the eye for 10-15 seconds, and then wipe away the makeup. It does a good job of removing the bulk of my makeup, but I do feel like it leaves my eyes a little cloudy. There is no greasy residue or feel afterwards, but the cloudiness necessitates rinsing with water, so then there is definitely no product leftover to sink into my skin and revitalize or moisturize anything. I needed about a pea-sized dollop for each eye. It will remove face makeup, too, but you’ll end up going through this little tube rather quickly if you do so!

If it’s for eyes, it’ll last you a lot longer, and therefore the $24 price tag stretches out over a much longer time period. It does remove long-wearing products without much fuss, feels nice against the skin, and doesn’t leave behind any greasy residue–but it did make my eyes a bit cloudy and may require a second cotton round to remove a few streaks of makeup left behind (which just feels wasteful, so I rinsed off). Good, not great.

The bottom of the tube says “demaquillant yeux,” but as a U.S. brand – should I really have to know French to decipher what the product is supposed to do?  Oddly enough, I did Google translate it last night, and I didn’t include the accented E – so it translated to just “makeup remover,” but when you include the accented E, it translates to “eye makeup remover.”

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Sunday, May 29th, 2011

Giorgio Armani Purpura (3) Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow
Giorgio Armani Purpura (3) Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow

More Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow with #3

Giorgio Armani Purpura (3) Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow ($32.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a metallic, silver-threaded plum purple with multi-colored shimmer that is dominated by indigo, violet, and gold flecks.  It was sheerer when I used it dry and really intense when applied wet.

The texture of these feels almost like a cream eyeshadow, but it has the thinness of a powder eyeshadow while retaining some of the blendability of the hybrid cream-powder eyeshadow.  It also works well with other eyeshadow (see this look using #6).  It’s almost like a really dense loose powder that’s been pressed down, because if you dig at it, it loosens.

Though pricey, each shade comes with 0.14 oz. worth of product, which is a hefty amount (normal eyeshadow averages around 0.05 oz., no matter the price).  The only aspect I didn’t love was the little black stopper inside the jar (once you unscrew the black lid), because my longer fingers felt awkward grabbing it (so I just unscrew it upside down so it falls into the cap).

The Glossover

P
product

#3

A
I thought the way the multi-colored shimmer reflected and sparkled against the plummy background worked really well. I wish it was just a bit more pigmented when used dry, though!

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Sunday, May 29th, 2011

Rescue Beauty Lounge Bikini Bottom Nail Lacquer
Rescue Beauty Lounge Bikini Bottom Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Bikini Bottom Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Bikini Bottom Nail Lacquer ($18.00 for 0.5 fl. oz.) is described as a “watery pale blue.”  It’s really a soft, pale blue with a smidgen of green that looks squishy on.  From everything I’ve read on this polish, it is a sheer shade, so it’s not expected to be opaque nor designed to be worn that way.  I wore two coats in the swatches, and I think it works best with two.  It’s not streaky like some pastels, but it will start to look uneven if you don’t let each coat dry before the next and go to three or four coats.  I think a ridge filler would be helpful here, too, to really get a flawless, sheer look.

I didn’t find this formula to be as flawless as Rescue Beauty Lounge’s other shades; it’s just not as easy to apply.  I felt like you do need to work with it and be patient, because the way it overlaps can make the color look uneven or patchy if you are not careful.  I also had some color pull up from the base, because the first coat had not dried enough.  The drying time was a little long.  I typically get a full week of wear with RBL’s formula.

The Glossover

LE
product

Bikini Bottom

A-
I feel like the odd one out, because this was such a hit with the RBL customer base and brought back by popular vote, but it just doesn't hit a home run for me.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
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Sunday, May 29th, 2011

5 Bright Pink Nail Lacquers

Reader Jasmin suggested bright pink polishes as a topic, and here are five fun shades of bright pink!

What’s your favorite bright pink polish?

Saturday, May 28th, 2011

Giorgio Armani Blast of Blue (1) Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow
Giorgio Armani Blast of Blue (1) Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow

More Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow with #1

Giorgio Armani Blast of Blue (1) Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow ($32.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a mix of violet-meets-indigo blue and medium-dark, metallic gold that creates a blend of a dusty, bluish purple with a gold-tinged sheen and sprinkling of gold shimmer.   When I applied it dry, the gold seemed to shimmer more, while when I applied it wet, the purple dominated.  As soon as this popped up on the website, I knew I had to order it–so glad I did!

The texture of these feels almost like a cream eyeshadow, but it has the thinness of a powder eyeshadow while retaining some of the blendability of the hybrid cream-powder eyeshadow.  It also works well with other eyeshadow (see this look using #6).  It’s almost like a really dense loose powder that’s been pressed down, because if you dig at it, it loosens.

Though pricey, each shade comes with 0.14 oz. worth of product, which is a hefty amount (normal eyeshadow averages around 0.05 oz., no matter the price).  The only aspect I didn’t love was the little black stopper inside the jar (once you unscrew the black lid), because my longer fingers felt awkward grabbing it (so I just unscrew it upside down so it falls into the cap).

The Glossover

P
product

#1

A+
This shade is really interesting, because it ends up being an unexpected mix of the two colors--but you can still see flecks of each.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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