Monday, August 5th, 2013

Sugarpill Hellatronic ElektroCute Neon Pigment
Sugarpill ElektroCute Neon Pigments

Sugarpill ElektroCute Neon Pigments ($16.00 for 0.19 oz.) come in an assortment of five bold, bright shades. Overall, these are going to be a product some will absolutely love and others will find frustrating and difficult to use (and ultimately not worth the patience). These are designed to be used with some sort of base or mixing medium and shouldn’t be applied straight to bare skin. Over the past week, I’ve tried a rich assortment of bases and mixing mediums, and I’ll lay out my findings below, but suffice to say, expect a fair amount of fall out, some trial and error, and maybe a test of your patience. On the plus side, when I wore these out, I was stopped by no less than five people asking me what I was wearing (in the space of an hour).

First and foremost, these are not considered eye safe in the U.S. due to neon pigments (as “the FDA has not yet tested/approved the use of neon pigments in the immediate eye area,” per Sugarpill’s website), but they are considered eye safe in Europe and Canada. I’ve used them on lips and on eyes, but I reiterate that they are not considered eye safe in the U.S. and by using them that way, I am doing so at my own risk (and if you decide to do the same, it is at your own risk). All shades, except Hellatronic, are listed as lip safe.

I had the most luck using NYX’s Jumbo Eye Pencil as a base (the one I used for testing was Electric Blue, and I would have chosen Milk, but I actually don’t have it), as it absorbed and took the color mostly evenly and kept the majority of the sparkles that were pressed on… on for the remainder of the day. I was not able to get nearly as much sparkle to stick to the lid as appears in the jar, though, and the sparkles do not apply evenly and tend to stick randomly. In my test, I applied Sparkage on half of the lid with Hellatronic on the outer half, and all of Sparkage’s sparkles wound up in the center of the lid. Be very careful blending the product and only blend around the edges if applied on the skin. Here are my results with other bases:

  • MAC Mixing Medium: slightly uneven color application, only partial adhesion of sparkles
  • Lit Cosmetics Glitter Base: somewhat even color application but was slightly darkened/patchy in places, better adhesion of sparkles
  • Fyrinnae Pixie Epoxy: good adhesion of sparkles, somewhat even application but very imperative to watch the amount of Pixie Epoxy applied and allow to half-dry before applying (it felt far more finicky to use than when I’ve used it with Fyrinnae’s loose eyeshadows)
  • Regular Eyeshadow Primers: some color applied and fairly evenly, but sparkles go everywhere but the lid (I tried Too Faced Shadow Insurance, NARS Smudge Proof, Urban Decay Original Primer Potion)

These can be applied to the brows by using a mixing medium like Illamasqua’s Sealing Gel or Lit’s Glitter Base and a thin, liner or brow brush. For lips, apply a thin coat of clear gloss and then pat on the pigment across the lips, then blend with fingers, brush, or just press and move your lips together. I like applying a little more gloss after that to get more even color. They can be applied to the body and used to accent body painting. I would recommend a creamy, opaque, slightly tacky base to apply the color on the skin and some of the sparkle, and to intensify the sparkle, use a glitter adhesive and a soft, rounded brush to lightly pat on additional product just where you need it. Small, dome-shaped brushes work the best for me for patting on color precisely and to minimize fall out. I also liked to pat and push my brush against the inside of the lid to keep the product “sticking” to the brush, rather than loosely pressed against it. The opaque base helped the most with yielding even color coverage, as invisible/clear bases seemed to highlight that they don’t always go on perfectly even. I spoke with both xSparkage (Leesha) and Queen of Blending (Lauren), and they both recommend a similar application to maximize color intensity and minimize fall out.

I’m sure some of you are thinking to yourself, “Wow, these sound like a lot of work, why would I bother?” To that, I can easily say that these are the easiest neons I’ve worked with. They are certainly a drastic improvement from MAC’s neon pigments, and these can take dampness better than most matte loose pigments. They’re more pigmented than Sleek’s neon eyeshadows and are slightly easier to blend. Sugarpill’s improved on some of the issues with neon pigments, but there is still plenty of room for improvement (in sparkle dispersion/evenness). Of the shades, Hellatronic was the most interesting and complex, as the base color actually seemed to shift (not just the sparkle), and the sparkle seemed finer and more embedded with the underlying color, whereas the others seemed more like a matte neon pigment with sparkle on top.

I looked across the different types of application (brows, body/skin, lips) to assess a rating, and ultimately, it’s hard to have such a varied application and resulting grade. I suspect most will use these around the eye area as eyeliner, eyeshadow, or brow color, so I did weight how they applied on skin (be it my forearm or somewhere else) slightly more than say lips (which was an area that these were easier to use in). I could not fully contain the fall out (even using adhesive bases designed for glitter). They don’t apply perfectly evenly. They do not want to be blended (together or on their own or with anything else).  When they work, they can look gorgeous and totally traffic-stopping, but to get them there is certainly a journey.

Hellatronic is described as a “fluorescent indigo with red/purple/blue color-shifting super sparkles.” It’s a cool-toned, violet-tinged blue with bluish-violet sparkle. Sephora My Boyfriend’s Jeans is bluer, darker, less sparkly. Sugarpill Velocity is bluer, matte. Urban Decay Chaos is slightly darker, less sparkly. MAC Dynamic Duo 2 #2 is darker, matte. MAC Cobalt is matte. Illamasqua Sadist is bluer, matte. See comparison swatches.

Hi-Viz is described as a “blazing neon yellow with blue/green/gold color-shifting super sparkles.” It’s a brightened, warm-toned yellow with goldish-green sparkle. Fyrinnae Banna Mochi is more frosted, less sparkly. MAC Bright Yellow is more matte. MAC Colour Added is more shimmery, less sparkly. Illamasqua Hype is matte. Inglot #370 is matte. See comparison swatches.

Love Buzz is described as a “brilliant neon hot pink with yellow/orange/red color-shifting super sparkles.” It’s a brightened, neon fuchsia-pink with pinky-red sparkle. Fyrinnae Superstar is more frosted, les ssparkly, lighter. Sugarpill Dollipop is matte, darker. MAC Magenta Madness is similar but has no sparkle. Make Up For Ever #75 is darker, matte. See comparison swatches.

Sparkage is described as “radioactive lime green with blue/green/gold color-shifting super sparkles.” It’s a light-medium, cool-toned green with yellow-ish edges–it looks cool-toned overall, but there’s still a yellowness that comes through. It has green-ish-gold sparkle on top. Sephora Picnic in the Park is darker, less sparkly. Sugarpill Midori is much darker and cooler-toned. Illamasqua Fledgling is slightly darker, matte. See comparison swatches.

Supercharged is described as “flaming neon orange with blue/green/gold color-shifting super sparkles.” It’s a light-medium tangerine orange with golden sparkle. Fyrinnae Pyromantic Erotica is darker, more shimmery, less sparkly. Wet ‘n’ Wild Newport Nights #5 is les ssparkly. Maybelline Fierce & Tangy is darker, brighter, cream product (might work well as a base for this shade). MAC Chessa is less sparkly, more shimmery. Illamasqua Vulgar is a bit darker, matte. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

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ElektroCute Neon Pigment

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I could not fully contain the fall out (even using adhesive bases designed for glitter). They don't apply perfectly evenly. They do not want to be blended (together or on their own or with anything else). When they work, they can look gorgeous and totally traffic-stopping, but to get them there is certainly a journey.

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

2.5/5

Results
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Hellatronic

C+

Product

6.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

3/5

Results
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Hi-Viz

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Product

6/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

2.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

Sugarpill @#$%! Eyeshadow
Sugarpill @#$%! Eyeshadow

Sugarpill @#$%! (Red) Eyeshadow ($12.00 for 0.12 oz.) is described as a “vampy pearl red with silver metallic sheen.” It’s a bold, slightly blue-based red with silver shimmer. The color payoff is incredibly rich and decadent–true-to-pan, vibrant, and totally opaque. It can stain the skin, though. Sugarpill Love+ is not as blue-based, matte. Make Up For Ever #99 is matte. Make Up For Ever #158 is darker. Inglot #382 is matte. See comparison swatches.

Asteria ChromaLust Loose Eyeshadow ($12.00 for 0.19 oz.) is described as a “brilliant, metallic golden coral.” It’s a warm-toned, coppery orange with a frosted, metallic finish. Applied dry, it’s semi-sheer, and then applied damp, it’s opaque and deeper. The texture is very, very finely-milled.  On the lid, it wears well for nearly eight hours and shows some signs of fading just before nine hours of wear.  NARS California is browner, darker. MAC Double Feature #8 #1 is more muted. MAC Star Myth is browner. MAC Hot Paprika is less shimmery. MAC Brash is slightly darker, browner. See comparison swatches.

Both shades are limited edition and have been difficult to secure unless you’ve been a regular at the local trade shows and expos, and now, for a mere thirteen hours, both will be available for purchase online. Sugarpill will also be offering their 12-color pro palette (10% off, making it $90) and expo editions of their Burning Heart, Heart Breaker, and Sweetheart palettes (10% off, making them $30.60). All of these items go up for sale July 24th at 11AM PST.  You can preview the sale here.

Sugarpill @#$%! Eyeshadow

The Glossover

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@#$%! (Red)

Temptalia Recommends
A+

It's incredibly pigmented, and the texture is soft, buttery, and blendable.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Asteria

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Applied dry, it's semi-sheer, and then applied damp, it's opaque and deeper. The texture is very, very finely-milled.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

Pure, snow white–in a variety of finishes, plus a highlighter that looks almost white in the pan but is a little warmer and golden than that. I wanted to include a white polish, but there weren’t many permanent ones to choose from (that I’ve covered and were good) — what white polishes have you found to work best? You can check out comparison swatches of my picks, too :)

  1. Inglot #453 — bright, metallic white (and not too cool-toned)
  2. Sugarpill Tako — matte white
  3. Maybelline Too Cool — creamy, cool-toned white
  4. NARS Albatross — a dusting of shimmer and sheen
  5. NARS Santa Monica Blvd. — bright white for your lash line

What’s your favorite white-hued beauty product?

Friday, April 26th, 2013

Sugarpill ChromaLust Loose Eyeshadow
Sugarpill ChromaLust Loose Eyeshadows

Sugarpill CrhomaLust Loose Eyeshadows ($12.00 for 0.18 oz.) currently has a range of eighteen permanent shades, which I have covered as they’ve been released. Like the eyeshadows, I wanted to re-do swatches so they can be added to the Swatch Gallery. This post includes swatches of all eighteen, as well as photos of them (originally taken when I first covered the product, so the product photos are not new).

  • Absinthe is a brightened, light-medium green with yellow undertones and a chartreuse shimmer-sheen.
  • Asylum is a brightened orange-red with copper shimmer and a metallic sheen.
  • Birthday Girl is a muted, medium-dark pink with a pink shimmer. It almost has a matte base.
  • Darling is a green-teal with a frosted sheen.
  • Decora is a warm-toned pink-red with lighter pink shimmer and a frost finish.
  • Goldilux is a rich, molten gold with antique gold and brown undertones and a metallic finish.
  • Hysteric is a medium-dark purple with subtle warm undertones and a frosted, metallic finish.
  • Junebug is a forest green with subtle warm, brown undertones and a frosted finish.
  • Lumi is an iridescent blue-teal-white with a frosted, metallic finish. This shade works best layered over other products.
  • Magentric is a darkened raspberry pink with a frosted, metallic finish.
  • Magpie is a dark, smoky blue with a frosted, metallic finish.
  • Paperdoll is a lavender with a matte base and silver sparkle.
  • Royal Sugar is a rich, cobalt blue matte base with lighter blue sparkle.
  • Starling is a medium-dark blue with a metallic finish.
  • Stella is a deep, dark black with subtle warm undertones and multi-colored shimmer.
  • Tiara is a warm silver-gray (almost pewter) with a frosted finish.
  • Tipsy is a warm-toned, grassy green with a frosted, metallic sheen.
  • Weekender is a cool-toned, medium purple with a silver-ish shimmer/sheen.

Generally, they have so-so to good color payoff when applied dry, and then all of them intensify when applied damp (I just used water). The only ones I don’t like are a couple that have mostly matte bases, because they can be a little powdery and hard to apply evenly and with good intensity (Paperdoll is my least favorite, and Birthday Girl performs somewhat better but is fussy); Royal Sugar has a mostly matte base but works quite well when applied damp (it doesn’t get uneven, as mattes often do when applied damp).

The texture of ChromaLusts is very, very finely-milled, so it feels very soft. The only shade that doesn’t feel quite as smooth as the rest is Tiara, which is a bit more sparkly in comparison to other shades. Some of these are prone to staining (greens, blues, and teals in particular), so you may want to wear a base underneath to minimize staining potential. When I wear ChromaLusts without a base, I get between eight and nine hours of wear, and when applied over a primer, I haven’t seen any signs of wear even after twelve hours.  Because they’re so finely-milled, they bind together well, but because they are loose, you’ll want to pat the product onto the lid rather than sweep to minimize fall out during application.

The Glossover

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Sugarpill ChromaLust Loose Eyeshadows Review & Swatches

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The best-performing shades are Absinthe, Asylum, Darling, Goldilux, Magentric, Starling, Stella, and Tipsy. My least favorites would be Birthday Girl and Paperdoll.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, April 26th, 2013

Sugarpill Eyeshadow
Sugarpill Acidberry Eyeshadow

Sugarpill Eyeshadows ($12.00 for 0.14 oz., each) currently has a range of thirteen permanent shades, which I have covered as they’ve been released. Because the initial launch was a few years ago, I’ve been wanting to re-do swatches so that they can be included in the Swatch Gallery (which requires everything be shown individually). This morning, I was like, “DO IT!” And so it has been done. I’ve also included four shades that were more recently released in the Heartbreaker palette (which didn’t need to be redone) for completion. Note that the photos of the eyeshadow pans are old (just updated the swatches).  (There is also @#$%!, which was a limited edition shade, but need to take full photos of it prior to swatching, as I’ve never used it before!)

  • 2AM is a pink-plum with a very subtle satin finish (looks mostly matte applied).
  • Acidberry is a light-medium green with yellow undertones and a satin finish.
  • Afterparty is a medium blue with a cool undertones and a frosted finish.
  • Bulletproof is a black with a matte finish.
  • Buttercupcake is a brightened, medium yellow with a matte finish.
  • Dollipop is a bold, fuchsia pink with a matte finish.
  • Flamepoint is a bright, red-toned orange with a matte finish.
  • Love+ is an orange-toned red with a matte finish.
  • Midori is a subtly cool-toned, medium-dark green with a pearly sheen.
  • Mochi is an aqua blue with a subtle satin shimmer over a matte finish.
  • Poison Plum is a deep purple-plum with strong red undertones and a matte finish.
  • Tako is a white with a matte finish.
  • Velocity is a bold, cobalt blue with a satin finish.

Sugarpill is a fantastic brand, and I’ve had the pleasure of meeting the creatrix behind the brand, Amy, and she is as fun in person as she seems online. It’s a brand that you can tell takes their time to development new products and shades; that has a goal in mind and doesn’t waver from it. I very much remain impressed by Sugarpill’s range and how they’ve grown over the years. If you like bolder shades, definitely consider their pressed eyeshadows, which tend to be bold, bright, and have mostly matte finishes.

You’ll notice that all of the shades have good pigmentation, with some being incredibly intense and others being mostly opaque. Many of them will stain if applied over bare skin, so I recommend applying over a primer which will bridge the gap between 90% opacity and 100% as well as minimize the potential to stain. They have a soft, finely-milled texture that blends easily and smoothly. Not so soft that they turn powdery, but not dry or stiff so they aren’t problematic to blend. When worn alone, I get eight to nine hours of wear without fading or creasing; with primer, I’ve seen wear as long as twelve hours.

The Glossover

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Sugarpill Eyeshadows Review & Swatches

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If you like bolder shades, definitely consider their pressed eyeshadows, which tend to be bold, bright, and have mostly matte finishes.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Sunday, August 26th, 2012

5 More Positively Electric Eyeshadows

I couldn’t resist–there are too many fabulous bright shades to highlight!  If you’re after a lot of brights, Make Up For Ever has a spectacular selection.

If you could only keep one bright eyeshadow, which would it be?