For summer, it looks like Urban Decay listened to consumer feedback and repackaged their Urban Defense Tinted Moisturizer! They initially launched it last year (and I reviewed it in full here), and I hated the packaging. It came with a pump dispenser, which inevitably dispensed far too much product, and the packaging itself seemed a bit cheap–the label appeared faded. This is such an upgrade!
From last year’s review:
Halo is the lightest and I think is neutral enough to work on both cool and warm toned skin, but it may not be light enough for our ultra pale friends. I think if you fit into MAC’s NC/NW15-20 range, this would be the best fit for you.
Bodyguard is the next lightest, described by Urban Decay as “medium light,” and it’s the shade I use. I’m NC25 in MAC, and I find Body Guard to be a decent match, if a little light. Ideally, I’d probably mix a bit of Bodyguard and Bulletproof together, but since the pump is such an issue, it’s not really possible.
Bulletproof is a medium shade, but it’s actually a big step from Bodyguard. It didn’t work for me as NC25, so I’d imagine it’s more around those at the NC/NW30-40 level.
Forcefield is described as medium dark, and it’s not too much darker than Bulletproof. It’s noticeably darker, but it doesn’t seem as big of a leap as from Bodyguard to Bulletproof. I would say this would suit shades around the NC/NW40-45 level.
For a full review for the formula and see how it wears, head on over here. I’m still waiting for official details from Urban Decay regarding availability, launch dates, and pricing, but I imagine it should be around $32 (which is what it is now). From what I could tell, the formula felt the same, but again, I’m waiting to hear more
Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion Tubes ($19.00 for 0.37 oz.) just launched at Sephora and will be exclusive to Sephora at this time. They’re available in all four varieties–Eden, Greed, Original, and Sin–and they’re actually a smidgen bigger than the bottles (0.37 oz. vs. 0.34 oz.) and cost a dollar more. I noticed that Sephora didn’t mark these as limited editoin and only stated that they would be exclusive to Sephora for a limited time–I presume they’ll roll out to the usual retailers later on. Once I have more details, I’ll be sure to post.
Urban Decay Good Karma Brushes ($32.00 to $39.00) are eco- and vegan-friendly brushes, which have bristles made out of recycled PET bottles and gunmetal handles made out of recycled aluminum.
Finishing Brush ($39.00) is a long, flared, flat-edged brush. It looks like a stippling brush, but the bristles were the same length. I felt like this brush was a little too long; it’s very dense, which is nice, but the length makes it a little too springy and floppy.
Blush Brush ($32.00) is an oval-shaped, angled brush. It is a bit too wide to be used easily for contouring, but it works well for blush. It is dense and soft.
Powder Brush ($36.00) flares outwards with a very subtly dome shaped edge. It has enough fluffiness to work well with powder but enough density that the product doesn’t get trapped within the bristles. Though it works well as an all-over powder brush, it is quite large, so I did find it took some practice to maneuver around nooks and crannies (like the area around the nose).
Even though the outer packaging is made out of recycled egg cartons, I’m just not sure why it is necessary to have such oversized packaging for a brush few are going to actually keep in it. Aside from that, I have no complaints regarding the actual packaging of the brushes. The gunmetal handles look sleek, have a nice weight to them (not too heavy, not too light), and the shininess doesn’t take to fingerprints well.
final thoughts: The brushes themselves are all very soft and not at all scratchy, but I do find the length of both the Finishing and Powder Brushes to be on the long side, which makes me feel like I have less control over the tool. I didn’t notice any difference applying finishing powder with the actual Finishing Brush over the Powder Brush, though — even though the former is supposed to be better at that particular task.
Urban Decay Urbanglow Cream Highlight ($24.00 for 0.17 oz.) is described as a cream highlight with pearl powder, weightless formula, and “adds luminescence whenever you need it.” It can be used in the inner corners of your eyes, cheeks, or brow bones. The shade range includes four but all four are sheer enough to work across skin tones. It’s supposed to dry down “instantly” and work on top of makeup. The four shades include: Brown Sugar (warm taupey brown), Moonshine (iridescent shimmer), Sin (shimmering champagne), and Wicked (radiant pinky shimmer).
I received both Brown Sugar (which I’d describe as a gilded bronze) and Sin (which I’d describe as pale golden champagne) to review several months ago (back when they first released), they did not work for me at that time. I decided to hold off on a review and wait awhile before trying them again to see if perhaps it was something to do with the state of my skin or whatever. I tested both shades on and off since these launched (September, I believe), with each shade being trialed at least five times.
For me, these look lovely–initially–but do such a disservice to my skin after two hours of wear. I think these are best for those who have naturally beautiful skin and don’t typically wear makeup. They can work for that truly no makeup look, but once you involve foundation–and, if you dare, powder–the results took a nosedive. I could not get the highlighters to stay on for more than two to three hours before there was migration that made my cheeks look like there were chunks of glitter, rather than a dusting of sheen.
This effect worsened if you set your foundation/makeup with powder, which is something I find necessary as someone who wears liquid foundation. With powder to set, the highlighters stayed on for three to four hours, but they still migrated and bulking up so that wherever there was product, it accentuated my pores (and I never thought I had large ones, but this product made me question if I was simply delusional). They just tend to look cakey after a couple of hours of wear.
My results yielded glowy cheeks for two hours but the final look was rough-looking skin with accentuated pores and chunks of glitter and very little sheen left after two hours passed. I applied with brushes, sponges, and fingertips; over and under foundation; on bare skin alone. It seems to fade better over bare skin and doesn’t give skin such a rough textured look. When I tested it on the inner tearduct and brow bone, I had the same two-hour disappearing act and migration issues I had on the cheeks. They worked best on the brow bone, though, and wore for about four hours before fading.
I have only seen others rave about Urbanglow, and so I would encourage you to research and read more reviews to balance with mine. I hate being that one naysayer, you know? Urban Decay's products are usually good, so find these so disappointing has left me in a bit of a quandary. Between how quickly the Urbanglows faded to the overall look they gave after the initial dry-down, I just can't find much silver lining in this cloud.
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Urban Decay 24/7 Shadow Pencil Blending Brush($16.00) debuted in the past couple of months, and it is a very small, domed pencil brush designed to blend and feather products like Urban Decay’s Shadow Pencils. It is made out of PET (recycled plastic bottles), so the bristles are synthetic and vegan-friendly. The brush itself is small–around 6mm or so in length–and it can be used in the crease, smudging of colors (on the lash line or elsewhere).
I found the brush wasn’t tapered enough to be a really great crease brush but too dense to blend out colors with ease. The fluffiness was lacking, and so while it could deposit color well enough, it didn’t provide the soft, airy feel that seems to make blending nearly effortless. I also wish the tip itself was a little more tapered and had a touch more give.
Funny enough, I didn’t find it useful in softening the edges of the 24/7 Shadow Pencils much; it worked better with powder eyeshadows. I felt like the creaminess of the 24/7 Shadow Pencils got eaten up by the brush and the result was more of a smeared look, rather than something feathered at the edges.
final thoughts: I’ve liked Urban Decay’s new brushes, but this one was a bit of a miss for me. It was designed to blend out the 24/7 Shadow Pencils, which I felt is where it performed the worst, and it didn’t excel in the other ways I tried it either.