Monday, July 12th, 2010

Urban Decay Vegan Palette

Can You Resist Cute Packaging?

Urban Decay Vegan Palette ($34.00) is a new and limited edition eyeshadow palette for fall, and it features six eyeshadows, one eyeliner, and a miniature-sized eyeshadow primer.  It features only products that are vegan-friendly.

The packaging is my favorite part about this product, which is creative, pretty, and functional. Otherwise, the eyeshadows are every bit of quality you’d expect from Urban Decay, but with the Naked Palette released simultaneously and featuring three of these shades (Smog, Gunmetal, Half Baked), it makes getting both of them rather redundant.

These are pitfalls of Urban Decay’s limited edition palettes, because long-time collectors often end up with multiples of several shades, since the brand reuses certain shades with great frequency. (I am personally tired of seeing Twice Baked and Baked in their palettes!) On the other hand, for newer Urban Decay fans, the palette is a cute palette with six great shades from the brand’s range. Each eyeshadow is 0.03 oz. in weight, along with a 0.03 oz. Zero 24/7 Eye Pencil and 0.13 oz. Sin Primer Potion. It’s a decent amount for the price tag, but…

The Naked Palette gives you so much for–double the eyeshadow shades (12 in total)–but every single shade in it is full sized at 0.05 oz. For $10 more, you’re getting 0.6 oz. of eyeshadow, instead of 0.18 oz. Pretty awesome, right? All six of the Vegan palette shades can be purchased individually, in case you’re dead-set on one of them. I guess what I’m really saying is if you were waffling between the Vegan and the Naked palette, I would recommend the Naked palette and not even think twice about it.

  • Minx is shimmering aqua green with tiny flecks of teal glitter.
  • Urb is a softly shimmered olive green with a golden sheen. It was the least pigmented shade of the six, though I wouldn’t call it sheer or lacking in pigmentation overall.
  • Gunmetal is a blue-toned gray-black with silver sheen. Very pigmented!
  • Twice Baked is a satin-y medium-dark chocolate brown.
  • Smog is a shimmering bronze with a copper-gold sheen.
  • Half Baked is a lightened copper with a near metallic finish.

The palette also includes a miniature-sized Zero 24/7 Liner (true black) and Sin Eyeshadow Primer Potion (a shimmery burnt champagne base). I need another Zero like I need another eyeliner, period, but it’s a solid black eyeliner which will work well with any of the six shadows and any combinations thereof. I find Sin very, very shimmery–so frosty that it’s hard to use as a base, particularly with frost finished shades like these. I think Eden would have been a better choice here to make it more versatile.

Minx and Urb are the only shades that are on the glittery side, though neither is a glitter bomb. The other four shades are smoother and don’t feel glittery–just shimmery. All six shades are very true-to-color with nice pigmentation and a soft, smooth texture. I really do like and enjoy the palette, and there is nothing wrong with it. It just depends on what Urban Decay palettes you already own and how much overlap you have between them all.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you don’t plan on getting the Naked eyeshadow palette (how could you not?!) and you don’t have too much overlap with previously released palettes, it’s an adorably packaged palette with quality in mind.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora, Urban Decay

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Monday, July 5th, 2010

Get Your Naked Palette!

Urban Decay’s Naked Palette now available @ Sephora! You can see my review & swatches here.

Friday, June 25th, 2010

Urban Decay Lip Junkie Lip Gloss
Urban Decay Lip Junkies: Midnight Cowboy, Naked, Runaway, Jilted, Perversion

Five Shimmery Shades from Urban Decay

Now, part two of new Urban Decay Lip Junkie Lip Gloss ($19.00 for oz.)! This post features the shades: Midnight CowboyNaked (pink nude with pink shift), Runaway (shimmering deep coral), Jilted (hot pink with blue shift), and Perversion (sheer sparkling obsidian). (shimmering beige),

  • Midnight Cowboy is a sheer, pale champagne-shimmered gloss. It really has no color, but it adds some shimmer to lips.
  • Naked is a lightened peach-pink base with nearly iridescent pink micro-shimmer. The shimmer in this gloss felt smaller than Midnight Cowboy, and it has more of a reflective quality to it. This seems to be a your-lips-but-better kind of gloss–not a ton of color, some shimmer.
  • Runaway is a semi-sheer, light coral with white shimmer. The shimmer here is average in size and like Midnight Cowboy’s. This one delivered more color on lips as well.
  • Jilted is a semi-sheer fuchsia-pink with iridescent fuchsia-purple shimmer and a very glossy finish. It’s like a jelly pink base with pretty shimmer in it. It added more pink to my lips, but it’s a very wearable shade–don’t let the tube fool you.
  • Perversion is a blackened plum with almost silver shimmer. Like most dark glosses, it does settle into lip lines and may bleed on those who find themselves prone to bleeding lip color (I didn’t experience it myself). The color is semi-opaque, but it’s not an opaque black gloss at all, so never fear the way a product looks in the tube–at least not until you swatch it. Oh, and this will make your teeth look a little yellow.

Make sure you’ve read part one to get a full review of the formula and all that jazz!

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: This is a solid gloss, but I don’t think it’s necessarily groundbreaking, you know? It’s another good lip gloss that’s non-sticky, smells nice (much better than the creme brulee scent typical to Urban Decay lip products), and feels lovely on the lips.

AVAILABILITY: June 29th @ UrbanDecay.com; August 1st @ Sephora, ULTA, Macy’s, and Beauty.com

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Friday, June 25th, 2010

Urban Decay Lip Junkie Lip Gloss
Urban Decay Lip Junkies: Red Light, Crush, Peroxide, Wallflower, Heavy, Love Junkie

Say Hello to the New Gloss on the Block

Urban Decay Lip Junkie Lip Gloss ($19.00 for 0.34 fl. oz.) is an entirely new product line for the fall season. They’ve released eleven shades in total (WHY! eleven! Even Steven, please!), and I’ve split them into creamy shades and shimmery shades. This post features the shades: Red Light (sheer candy apple red), Crush (sheer coral), Peroxide (palest pink), Wallflower (medium nude), Heavy (shimmering nude), and Love Junkie (deep but very sheer wine).

  • Red Light is a semi-opaque apple red that’s not overly bright or in-your-face, since it’s not fully opaque. No distinguishable shimmer really–gives off a jelly kind of look. It’s actually not as red as it appears in the tube, so those who prefer lighter lip glosses, don’t despair from the tube alone!
  • Crush is a semi-sheer magenta pink. It’s almost like magenta met bubblegum pink, and then they had a lovechild. I don’t know why it’s described as a “sheer coral,” because I did not get any coral feel from this at all! It has the same jelly look as Red Light.
  • Peroxide is a pale, milky pink. I didn’t love how this looked alone on lips, just because the milkiness of it tends to emphasize lip lines as the product settles into them, and it’s difficult to make the gloss look even (see the lip swatch). I like that it’s pale and light without being ultra cool.
  • Wallflower is a nearly opaque shade of pink with a nude edge. It’s very wearable, and I think this would be universally flattering. It has only a little milkiness, but overall, it applies smoothly and evenly without a fuss. It is also one of the more opaque shades of the bunch.
  • Heavy is a darkened peach-nude with subtle white shimmer. In the tube, it looked pretty creamy to me, but it does have subtle shimmer in it. It is surprisingly opaque, and it has the best coverage and look overall out of all eleven shades–beautifully even and smooth while making lips look lush.
  • Love Junkie is a semi-sheer reddened plum (think the inside of a plumcot!). This one did have a tendency to settle into lip lines, but I didn’t find it terribly noticeable from an average viewing distance. It looked a little splotchy on my lips, though.

Lip Junkie has a jelly feel and the less shimmery shades look it, too.  They’re not nearly as thin as Pocket Rockets, but they don’t reach the weight or texture of XXX Shines, either–they’re a little jelly, not thick but noticeably not thin.  These glosses do include Maxi Lip, which is a lip plumper, and normally, my lips don’t seem to do well with lip plumpers–but I managed to get through swatching all eleven shades back-to-back without any damage to my lips.  (The last time I did a session of swatches of a lip plumper, my lips looked and felt like hell for a week–bleeding, peeling, and painful!)

There is a little tingle, but I wouldn’t call it a sting or a burn at all.  They smell quite peppermint-y, so I actually thought that it was just more of a cooling, minty tingle rather than a particular plumping ingredient like Maxi Lip.  It seemed to dissipate after a few minutes, and it really wasn’t that big of a deal.  The sensation was more noticeable than MAC’s Plushglasses (which I barely notice and thus rank lowest on the painful-lip-plumper scale–DuWop’s Lip Venom is the highest for me).  But then again?  I really didn’t see much, if any, plumping of my lips.  Pictures of my lips on the first swatch (Red Light) compared against to pictures of my lips on the last swatch (Perversion) didn’t show any plumping action.

These are non-sticky, peppermint-scented, sweet-tasting lip glosses with a medium thickness and a moisturizing, jelly feel.  I wore Naked (in the next post!), and it lasted a solid two hours, with it beginning to fade and become just a thin layer with some glossiness in hour three.  I did notice that these seemed particularly glossy, which helps give the illusion of juicier, plumper lips, too.

According to Urban Decay, the lip glosses are packaged in a single piece, rather than a lot of other squeeze-tube glosses which have a crimped end–and that crimped end can sometimes lead to lip gloss explosion extravaganzas in your purse or pocket (soooo not fun!).  The cap is metallic-looking but feels plastic and a little cheap to me.  I don’t love the way the packaging feels in my hands, but I do like that it feels solid and the cap screws-on and pulls off–both characteristics which should keep it from staying on your lips and not all over your bag!

I do like that these have good value in them–a little less than double of your average lip gloss (but in line with other squeeze-tube glosses like MAC Lipgelees and Make Up For Ever Glossy Full Couleurs).  I did find that I needed what seemed like more than the usual lip gloss for full coverage, but it didn’t seem or feel heavy or obnoxious in the amount I applied.

So here’s the rub:  these are supposed to plump, but I didn’t see any plumping.  Though Lip Junkies seem to be a perfectly good gloss, I’m just not seeing any results on something that the marketing material was really pumping up (you’re lucky I didn’t say plumping up!).  It purports to increase lip collagen by 40% in a month, and on the tube, it says “cools and plumps.”  If you’ve managed to read this far into the review–first, kudos–but more importantly, these are like B+ glosses; not perfect, not the greatest ever, but they’re good.  But since they don’t do everything they’re supposed to based on my experience, I have to lower the score down.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: This is a solid gloss, but I don’t think it’s necessarily groundbreaking, you know? It’s another good lip gloss that’s non-sticky, smells nice (much better than the creme brulee scent typical to Urban Decay lip products), and feels lovely on the lips.

AVAILABILITY: June 29th @ UrbanDecay.com; August 1st @ Sephora, ULTA, Macy’s, and Beauty.com

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Friday, June 25th, 2010

 

Urban Decay Naked Palette
Urban Decay Naked Palette

Ready to Get Naked?

Urban Decay Naked Palette ($44.00) is new-for-fall and contains twelve shades–eight are incredibly neutral, but four pack a little–much welcome–color punch. There are six permanent and existing shades, one repromoted shade, and five new shades.

The palette includes: Virgin (satin chamois), Sin (champagne), Naked (matte buff nude), Sidecar (cocoa with golden sparkle sheen), Buck (matte nutmeg), Half Baked (subtle, lustrous bronze), Smog (deep coppery bronze), Darkhorse (bronze patina), Toasted (rich copper), Hustle (plum brown satin), Creep (onyx with gold sparkle), Gunmetal (gunmetal gray with silver glitter). The final piece is a double-ended 24/7 Liner with Zero (black) on one side and Whiskey (creamy rich brown) on the other.

  • Virgin is a pale, shimmered nude beige. It’s very, very light, but it’s such a beautiful neutral. It’s a little frosty for a highlighter, particularly on darker skin tones, but it would make for a great all-over wash or pop of light on the inner tear duct.
  • Sin is a champagne with a touch of pink and a frostier finish. This shade is permanently available.
  • Naked is a matte medium beige-brown. It has a very soft, smooth texture–not at all powdery or chalky.
  • Sidecar is a shimmered, medium bronze brown with almost a red undertone. This shade was in the first edition of the Book of Shadows. (I didn’t see it on Urban Decay’s website at all.)
  • Buck is a matte darkened beige-brown. It’s really a darker version of Naked. It has the same silky smooth texture and rich color pay off of Naked, too.
  • Half Baked is a coppery bronze with a frost-metallic finish. This shade is permanently available.
  • Smog is a medium dark bronze with a gilded bronze sheen. This shade is permanently available.
  • Darkhorse is a darkened deep chocolate brown with flecks of bronze.
  • Toasted is a medium dark pinky brown with a shimmery finish. This shade is permanently available.
  • Hustle is a dark plummy chocolate brown with a soft shimmer finish.
  • Creep is a darkened blue-black base with silver and teal shimmer. Urban Decay said “onyx with gold glitter” but I really didn’t see the gold.
  • Gunmetal is a blue-gray metallic that really must be seen to be appreciated. It almost feels like a duochrome, because it flashes blue but it’s dark and smoldering. This shade is permanently available.

The palette also contains a double-ended eyeliner, and Zero is your basic creamy black with a near-matte finish–if you’re an Urban Decay palette collector, you probably have enough Zero eyeliners to get you through the next twenty years. However, it also contains Whiskey, which is a brand new shade of creamy chocolate brown with red undertones. It’s very similar to Bourbon, but it seems a little lighter and doesn’t have the shimmer.

It’s packaged in a velvety chocolate brown exterior, which makes it look sleek and sophisticated–it’s probably one of the classier products I’ve seen come from the brand, actually. It feels very luxe and not quite Urban Decay–but I think it’s a good thing, and it’s nice to see. This is also an amazing value palette. The palette contains 12 x 0.05 oz. eyeshadows, plus 2 x 0.02 oz. liners and a miniature-sized Primer Potion of 0.13 fl. oz. (I actually originally thought it came sans UDPP, because I just received the palette… but the back of it says you do get it, so it probably tags along in a plastic package, but not included in the actual palette case.) The real coup here is the twelve full-size eyeshadows–yes, that’s right–a $17 full-size eyeshadow from Urban Decay contains 0.05 oz. of product, which is exactly what we have here–a value of $204.

I think this is one of Urban Decay’s best palettes to date, actually. It combines incomparable value for the price tag, but the high quality of their eyeshadows really comes through, too. There are no glittery, fussy shades here (and I can’t tell you how happy I am to NOT see Midnight Cowboy Rides Again!). Every shade is soft, smooth, and richly pigmented–even the mattes. For those with a lot of palettes, it may feel a bit redundant, as there are seven shades in it that we’ve seen again–but still five we haven’t. Not that I’m getting through an eyeshadow pan any time soon, but at least you can feel at ease if you fall in love with one of those seven.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 10/10
  • Ease of Use: 5/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you’re an eyeshadow fiend and love yourself some shimmery finishes, Urban Decay’s new Naked palette won’t disappoint. It even includes two matte shades–something I’ve remarked on for the lack thereof in previous palettes–and a good mix of neutrals, smoldering neutrals, and darker, smokier colors. There is nothing about this palette that’s a miss.

AVAILABILITY: June 29th @ Urban Decay; around August 1st @ Sephora, ULTA, Macy’s, Beauty.com

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Friday, June 25th, 2010

Urban Decay Fall 2010

Urban Decay Fall 2010 Collection

Naked Palette ($44.00)

We don’t do modesty here. Full Frontal is how Urban Decay does neutral! A far cry from ‘G’ rated, the Naked Palette by Urban Decay features a shade range that runs from the nudest champagne to the grittiest gunmetal.

  • Virgin Satin chamois (New, Exclusive)
  • Sin Champagne (Permanent)
  • Naked Matte buff nude (Permanent)
  • Sidecar Cocoa with golden sparkle sheen (Book of Shadows, Vol. 1)
  • Buck Matte nutmeg (New, Exclusive)
  • Half Baked Subtle, lustrous bronze (Permanent)
  • Smog Deep coppery bronze (Permanent)
  • Darkhorse Bronze patina (New, Exclusive)
  • Toasted Rich copper (Permanent)
  • Hustle Plum brown satin (New, Exclusive)
  • Creep Onyx with gold sparkle (New, Exclusive)
  • Gunmetal Gunmetal gray with silver glitter (Permanent)
  • Double-ended 24/7 Liner with Zero Black / Whiskey Creamy rich brown

Availability: June 29th @ UrbanDecay.com.  August 1st @ Beauty.com, Sephora, Macy’s, and ULTA.   Lashes only at Sephora.com, Macy’s, and select ULTAs.  Naked Palette & Lip Junkies are permanent–waiting to get confirmation on the rest.

See details on new Lip Junkie Lip Gloss, Vegan Palette, and more photos! Continue reading →