Friday, February 21st, 2014

theBalm Eyeshadow Pans
theBalm Eyeshadow Pans

Here are the next six shades from the forty-four new eyeshadows available in pan-form from theBalm, which launched at the beginning of this year. For more information about sizes, the palettes, and a general overview of the custom palette/eyeshadow pan system, please read this post. You can view swatches all of them in the Swatch Gallery here or view photos and swatches on theBalm’s Eyeshadow Single product page. .

They can be purchased at their San Francisco store or by calling 415-817-1800. Each eyeshadow pan is available for $6.50 and comes in a cardboard sleeve. The 9-pan palette is $8.00, while the 16-pan palette is $10. If you fill either the 9- or 16-pan palette up at the time of purchase, they will run you $44.00 (normally, $66.50) and $64.00 (normally, $114.00) respectively. Each palette is made out of thick cardboard–same as theBalm’s eyeshadow palettes have been in the past–and come with full-sized mirrors on the top flap.

#7 is a golden peach with warm undertones and a frosted finish. It had good color payoff with a soft texture that was easy to blend and work with on the eye. It wore well for eight hours before gradually fading. Tarina Tarantino Delightful #4 (P) is lighter. bareMinerals Ball Gown (LE) is warmer. Clarins The Essentials #3 (LE) is similar. Too Faced Cheers! (LE, $16.00) is a smidgen lighter. LORAC Light Bronze (P) is less frosted. Disney by Sephora Splendid (LE) is lighter. MAC All That Glitters (P, $15.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

#8 is a dark brown with subtle warm undertones and a sprinkling of gold sparkle. The texture was dry, so it didn’t bind or adhere well to the skin, which resulted in semi-sheer to semi-opaque color payoff. It performs better with a base, as it will give it something to adhere to. On my eyes, it lasted for seven hours before looking faded. theBalm #1 (P, $6.50) is darker, warmer. bareMinerals Toasted Espresso (LE, $14.00) is more frosted. Makeup Geek Bada-Bing (P, $5.99) is warmer, darker. See comparison swatches. I thought it might be a replacement for B4, but it seems like it lacks a little bit of that gold sparkle/shimmer.

#9 is a deep, dark black with a mostly matte finish. It was intensely pigmented but had a soft, blendable texture. A little will go a long way, so depending on the look, you might want to use a light hand! It wore well for eight hours before fading. It seems like it is Serious with an even softer texture. There are many deep, dark blacks, so it is easily duped — see comparison swatches.

#10 is a golden, medium-dark brown with a soft, frosted finish and warm undertones. It had excellent color payoff, and the texture was really soft, buttery, and smooth. It wore well for just over eight hours. MAC Golden Hours #1 (LE, $21.00) is darker. MAC A Medley of Mauves #4 (P, $21.00) is less frosted. Too Faced Hazelnut (P, $16.00) is darker. Dior Golden Flower #4 (LE) is more golden. Too Faced Buttered Rum (LE, $16.00) is more metallic, lighter. Urban Decay Ambush (LE, $18.00) is darker. Too Faced Gangsta (LE, $16.00) is slightly darker. See comparison swatches.

#11 is a bright white with a metallic finish. It had fairly good color payoff, but it wasn’t as opaque as you’d expect, though it was buildable. The texture was soft and smooth, and the color lasted for eight hours before beginning to fade. As you might expect with a basic shade like this, there are tons of possible dupes — see comparison swatches. It seems very comparable to theBalm Sassy as well.

#12 is a slightly muted, light-medium yellow gold with a pearly sheen. It had so-so pigmentation, and it was somewhat powdery to work with. It showed signs of fading after seven and a half hours of wear. theBalm #29 (P, $6.50) is less shimmery, more orange-tinged. theBalm #40 (P, $6.50) is a little brighter but surprisingly similar. MAC Lemon Tart (P, $15.00) is similar. MAC Captivating #1 (LE, $21.00) is lighter, more frosted. theBalm D1 (LE, $16.00) seems to have a smoother sheen but color-wise, very similar. theBalm Snobby (P, $16.00) is a little lighter. MAC Dreammaker (LE, $15.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

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#7

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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

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Dupes
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product

#8

D+

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

6.5/10

Texture

6/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4/5

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#9

A

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Thursday, February 20th, 2014

theBalm Eyeshadow Pans
theBalm Eyeshadow Pans

There are forty-four shades of eyeshadows available in pan-form from theBalm, which launched at the beginning of this year. They can be purchased at their San Francisco store or by calling 415-817-1800. Each eyeshadow pan is available for $6.50 and comes in a cardboard sleeve. The 9-pan palette is $8.00, while the 16-pan palette is $10. If you fill either the 9- or 16-pan palette up at the time of purchase, they will run you $44.00 (normally, $66.50) and $64.00 (normally, $114.00) respectively. Each palette is made out of thick cardboard–same as theBalm’s eyeshadow palettes have been in the past–and come with full-sized mirrors on the top flap. For more information about sizes, the palettes, and a general overview of the custom palette/eyeshadow pan system, please read this post. You can view swatches of all of them in the Swatch Gallery here or view photos and swatches on theBalm’s Eyeshadow Single product page. .

#1 is a warm-toned, dark brown with gold micro-glitter and copper sparkle over a satin-matte finish. It had really good color payoff, and the texture was fairly soft and smooth, but you could feel some of the sparkle separate from the base color, so there was fall out during application. I noticed some minor fall out during wear, but only some of the sparkle translates onto the lid so there’s less that falls out over time. The color lasted for eight hours before gradually fading. Makeup Geek Bada-Bing (P, $5.99) is grayer. Chanel Seduction #4 (LE) is less sparkly, more frosted. MAC Constructivist (P, $18.50) is darker, cream product. NARS Surabaya #2 (P, $24.00) is lighter, warmer. NARS Mekong (P, $24.00) is darker, cooler-toned. MAC Carbonized (LE, $15.00) is darker. bareMinerals Pumped (LE) is warmer. See comparison swatches. This seemed really close to Silly, but #1 had a better texture and more pigmentation.

#2 is a silver-sparkled, cool-toned pinky-purple. The texture was dry, powdery, and almost gritty–I could really feel the powder and sparkle in it. It had semi-sheer color payoff, and it was difficult to apply. It’s a shade that really has to have a sticky, almost white-tinged base to work in any usable capacity. What color I managed to get onto the lid lasted for six hours before I saw noticeable fading. Laura Mercier African Violet (P, $23.00) is cooler-toned with a golden sheen. MAC Swelter (LE, $15.00) is cooler-toned, more muted. Buxom Schnauzer (P, $18.00) is a cream product. Inglot #445 (P, $6.00) is cooler-toned, frosted. See comparison swatches.

#3 is a muted, dark green with cool undertones and a fine, emerald green micro-shimmer and satin finish. It had good color payoff, and the texture was soft and fairly smooth. It wore well for eight hours before showing signs of fading. Tarina Tarantino Very Wicked (LE) is more frosted. Makeup Geek Envy (P, $5.99) is very similar. Urban Decay Damaged (LE, $18.00) is brighter. Make Up For Ever #80 (P, $20.00) is brighter. See comparison swatches.

#4 is a softened, pink-tinged peach with a frosted finish and warm undertones. It had excellent color payoff, and the texture was soft and smooth without being powdery. This shade lasted for eight hours before it started to fade. This seemed really similar to theBalm Stubborn, though it appeared slightly lighter in the pan but the swatches were nearly identical. Kat Von D Precious (LE) is similar. LORAC Champagne (P) is lighter. MAC A Natural Flirt (LE, $19.50) is warmer.Le Metier de Beaute Nouvelle (LE, $30.00) is pinker. See comparison swatches.

#5 is a deep, dark, muted cool-toned purple with a satin finish. It had fantastic pigmentation, and the texture was very soft and finely-milled but slightly powdery. The color wore well for eight and a half hours when I tested it. theBalm The Stroke (P, $16.00) is very similar, if not identical, but the color payoff was weaker. MAC Double Feature #8 #2 (LE, $15.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

#6 is a muted, coppery brown with warm, orange undertones and a pearly finish. It had excellent pigmentation, and the texture was soft, buttery, and smooth. The color lasted for just over eight hours when I wore it. Kat Von D Dog Roses (LE) is brighter. Too Faced Jingle All the Way Eyeshadow #3 (LE, $16.00) is more frosted. Anastasia Rum Cake (LE) is slightly more frosted. NARS Isolde #2 (P, $24.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

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#1

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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product

#2

F

Product

4/10

Pigmentation

5/10

Texture

4/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

2.5/5

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#3

B+

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

theBalm Eyeshadow Pans
theBalm Eyeshadow Pans

Just in time for the new year, theBalm Eyeshadow Pans ($6.50 for 0.12 oz. each) launched so that you can customize your own palettes. It also coincided with the opening of their store in San Francisco. Right now, these can only be purchased through their store, though you can place phone orders (415-817-1800). Each eyeshadow pan is available for $6.50 and comes in a cardboard sleeve. The 9-pan palette is $8.00, while the 16-pan palette is $10. If you fill either the 9- or 16-pan palette up at the time of purchase, they will run you $44.00 (normally, $66.50) and $64.00 (normally, $114.00) respectively. I love the concept, and it’s very affordable, whether you fill at the time of purchase or as you go over time. There are five different designs to choose from for the 9-pan palettes and five for the 16-pan palettes. Each palette is made out of thick cardboard–same as theBalm’s eyeshadow palettes have been in the past–and come with full-sized mirrors on the top flap.

Aside from availability/distribution being limited, these are all numbered–none of them have names–and there is overlap with previously released shades (I asked and this was confirmed), but there is no chart or information regarding which shades are from what previous palettes. It would have been nice to know, so if there was a shade you really had your eye on from a palette, whether to replenish or purchase for the first time, it would be easy to do so. It would also help anyone avoid duplicates if they’re a regular theBalm palette buyer. theBalm is also a brand that seems to use names everywhere else in their range, so I would have liked to see these also have names. When I was opening each of these, the majority of the original labels were lifted off by the exterior packaging, so I had to add my own labels and handwrite the numbers on the back of each–the label just has the number, but it’s not something the customer should have to deal with when purchasing a product.

I’ve been testing these since late December, and I’ve now finished testing every single shade for wear, so you’ll see reviews moving forward. This is the first of several posts–there are forty-four shades!–and can be considered the overview. The eyeshadow pans contain 0.12 oz. (I’m not entirely sure how they crammed so much product in the pan), but the pan itself is not oversized–it is the same size as brands like MAC, Urban Decay, Makeup Geek, etc. They fit into MAC palettes (old and new), but they don’t seem to stick; I can turn my new MAC palette upside down, give it a tap, and the eyeshadow will pop out. However, they work well in Z Palettes and do not require additional magnets.

It will take me some time to actually write-up and post individual reviews, so I have gone ahead and added all of the photos and swatches for the forty-four shades in the meanwhile. You can view swatches of all of them in the Swatch Gallery here or view photos and swatches on theBalm’s Eyeshadow Single product page. In general, I like them, but some shades are powdery so they perform best over an eyeshadow primer and/or need to be patted, rather than swept, on to minimize excessive powdery fall out during application. Pigmentation and texture were also good with there being a few misses, and the texture was typically soft, slightly powdery, and occasionally, a few shades had a drier texture that was powdery but not stiff. Individual reviews (along with dupes and all that good stuff) to come! :)

The Glossover

product

Eyeshadow Single

In general, I like them, but some shades are powdery so they perform best over an eyeshadow primer and/or need to be patted, rather than swept, on to minimize excessive powdery fall out during application. Pigmentation and texture were also good with there being a few misses, and the texture was typically soft, slightly powdery, and occasionally, a few shades had a drier texture that was powdery but not stiff.

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Friday, February 14th, 2014

theBalm How 'Bout Them Apples? Lip & Cheek Cream Palette
theBalm How ‘Bout Them Apples? Lip & Cheek Cream Palette

theBalm How ‘Bout Them Apples? Lip & Cheek Cream Palette ($32.00 for 0.70 oz.) contains six shades of cream products that are designed to be used on the lips and cheeks. The formula is described as having a “smooth finish that won’t streak or fade.” In the past, I haven’t been a huge fan of theBalm’s multi-tasking lip/cheek products as they can be drying on the lips (which is a problem that many lip/cheek products suffer from), so I was wary about this palette. After wearing and trying all the shades on lips and cheeks, it’s definitely an improved formula. I think they function and wear better–and more comfortably–as cheek products than lip ones, but they’re more tolerable on the lips. Some are more comfortable than others as lip colors, so you can check my shade-by-shade review below for more information on those. As blushes, these are true creams–they don’t set or dry down completely or feel like powders on the skin, so they have dewier finishes. They’re blendable and buildable, but they tended to wear for six to seven hours.

Cider is a light peach with a faint hint of pink and a luminous sheen. It had semi-sheer color payoff, and this particular shade didn’t really build–it started and stayed at the same intensity. It lasted for six and a half hours on me. As a lip color, it did accentuate imperfections on the lips somewhat, and it wore for two hours–very slippery on the lips–but was somewhat hydrating. MAC Lured to Love (LE, $25.00) is a powder, so it has a different finish. MAC Something Special (P, $21.00) is darker, pinker. See comparison swatches. (If you’re looking for similar shades for how it appears on lips, here are some comparison swatches.)

Cobbler is a vibrant, orange-toned red with a luminous sheen. This shade had buildable color payoff that could be worn as a sheer, reddish tint or a bolder, brighter, candy-apple red. As a blush, it wore well for seven hours, and as a lip color, it managed three hours and was lightly hydrating. Kevyn Aucoin Fira (P) is more orange and a powder. See comparison swatches. (If you’re looking for similar shades for how it appears on lips, here are some comparison swatches.)

Pie is a muted, pinky-red with a luminous sheen. It was buildable to semi-opaque coverage both on lips as well as cheeks. When I tested it as a blush, the color wore well for six hours, and as a lip color, it wore well for three hours and was neither drying nor hydrating. Chanel Intonation (69) (LE, $38.00) is warmer, brighter. theBalm Toile (P, $22.00) is a powder. MAC Posey (P, $21.00) is more muted. See comparison swatches. (If you’re looking for similar shades for how it appears on lips, here are some comparison swatches.)

Crisp is a warm-toned coral with gold shimmer and a frosted finish. The color was buildable to mostly opaque color coverage both on cheeks as well as on lips. The golden sheen is less prominent when I wore it as a blush than when I did as a lip color. On the lips, it was drying, and the frost emphasizes any imperfections easily. On cheeks, pores were slightly emphasized. It wore well for six and a half hours on cheeks and four and a half hours on lips. Clinique Peach Pop (02) (P, $21.00) is less shimmery, lighter, powder. Chanel Intonation (69) (LE, $38.00) has no shimmer, brighter. NARS Soulshine (Together) (LE, $29.00) is a powder. MAC Fleet Fast (LE, $21.00) is a powder. See comparison swatches. (If you’re looking for similar shades for how it appears on lips, here are some comparison swatches.)

Candy is a cool-toned, bubblegum pink with a luminous sheen. It had good color payoff, and it was easy to apply and blend on the skin. On cheeks, it lasted for six hours, and on lips, it wore well for two and a half hours and was lightly hydrating during that time. Sleek MakeUP Macaroon (P) is very similar. Bobbi Brown Summer Pink (LE, $26.00) is darker. See comparison swatches. (If you’re looking for similar shades for how it appears on lips, here are some comparison swatches.)

Caramel is a muted, orange-brown with a luminous sheen and warm undertones. It had mostly opaque color payoff, and the color was buildable and blendable. The color lasted just over six and a half hours when I applied it to cheeks, and on lips, it managed to last for three hours and was neither drying nor hydrating. MAC Early Morning (LE, $25.00) is shimmery, powder. MAC Fiery Impact (LE, $25.00) is powder. MAC Optimistic Orange (LE, $21.00) is brighter. See comparison swatches. (If you’re looking for similar shades for how it appears on lips, here are some comparison swatches.)

The Glossover

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palette

How 'Bout Them Apples?

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

5/5

Results
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P
product

Cider

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Cobbler

B+

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

Soft, flushed cheeks with a hint of luminous sheen — that just says spring to me! Here are five of my current favorites for the spring season…

  1. Clinique Plum Pop (04) — cool-toned, plummy pink with a satin finish
  2. Chanel Revelation (63) — light-medium, warm-toned pink with a satin finish
  3. theBalm Down Boy — a soft, cool-toned pink with a satin finish
  4. Burberry Blossom — a softly shimmered coral-orange
  5. Hourglass Radiant Magenta — a light-medium, warm pink with a satin finish

What are your favorite blushes to wear during spring?

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

theBalm How 'Bout Them Apples? Palette
theBalm How ‘Bout Them Apples? Palette

Introducing How ‘Bout Them Apples?, a multi-functioning lip and cheek cream palette from theBalm. These freshly-picked, long-lasting shades are formulated to have a smooth finish that won’t streak or fade, so there are no bad apples in this bunch!

Availability: Now @ theBalm