Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

Milani Olympian Blue Eyeshadow
Milani Olympian Blue Eyeshadow

Shadow Like an Olympian

Milani Olympian Blue Eyeshadow ($5.99 for 0.11 oz.) is a rich medium blue with a matte finish. MAC Blue Candy is lighter. MAC Electric Eel is comparable. MAC Freshwater is a smidgen darker and frosted. Inglot #371 is a touch lighter. Inglot #322 is similar. Make Up For Ever #72 is also comparable.  This is one shade that has a lot of dupes–this, of course, is the most affordable!

Olympian Blue is highly pigmented, just as described, with an ultra-finely milled, silky soft texture that’s easy to blend.  I love that it’s not so soft that it’s powdery, and it doesn’t disappear once applied. You don’t have to pack this color on at all–it’s very intense and stays that way, even as you blend around the edges.  When I tried it out, it wore for a full eight hours without primer and there was no apparent fading or creasing.

The Glossover

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Olympian Blue

A
Top notch, intense blue for under $6! If you've drooled over shades like MAC Electric Eel and Make Up For Ever #72, this is a great option that's nearly identical but at a fraction of the cost.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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Thursday, September 13th, 2012

Milani Star Flash Haute Flash Lipgloss
Milani Star Flash Haute Flash Lipgloss

How Bright Will Your Star Flash?

Milani Star Flash Haute Flash Lipgloss ($7.49 for 0.18 oz.) is bright pop of fuchsia pink with multi-colored sparkle. MAC Dare to Dare is more yellow-toned and sheerer. MAC Eelctric Fuchsia is bluer-toned, lighter. MAC Preppy is lighter but comparable.

The Haute Flash formula is supposed to be “full coverage,” “highly pigmented, “extra glossy,” “non-tacky, and “anti-feathering.” This shade is almost opaque–so close, but not quite. There’s noticeable translucency, though when the shimmer catches the light, it nearly tricks you. The finish is high-shine in a metallic kind of way, but it’s not really glossy, as it looks a bit more like a lipstick than a gloss. Milani Flashy was thicker and a little gritty as time went on, but this shade was thinner, and less gritty–just a little texture as it faded away. If you remember MAC Dare to Wear Lipglass, this formula is very comparable. Star Flash wore for four hours, but it did become noticeably gritty as it faded away.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Milani Star Flash Haute Flash Lipgloss

B+
Even though it's not as opaque as it's supposed to be, it's still quite opaque for a gloss--and it packs plenty of sparkle and shine. It's comfortable to wear and doesn't dry lips out!

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Milani Just Perfect Eyeshadow
Milani Just Perfect Eyeshadow

Not Quite Perfect

Milani Just Perfect Eyeshadow ($5.99 for 0.11 oz.) is described as smoky, muted bluish-teal with a gray cast and a frosted finish. It’s one of those fun colors to review, because it’s blue, it’s teal, it’s green, it’s gray! MAC Rain Drop is more teal colored, less gray. Urban Decay Hijack has a blacker base color, so it appears darker. MAC Emerald Dusk is darker and bluer. L’Oreal Endless Sea is a smidgen bluer. MAC Sky has gold shimmer. Urban Decay Shattered is very similar, but it also has gold shimmer.

Milani describes their latest powder eyeshadow formula as “super pigmented, easily blendable, crease-proof, [and] silk-like.”  I’ve been loving their new powder eyeshadows lately, but Just Perfect is a little less than that.  The texture is on the drier, stiffer side, so the color payoff is decent to good, but it’s definitely not super pigmented.  I worried it was going to be difficult to apply and blend, but it performed better on the lid.I did have to build up the color, but I did not have trouble blending the color and softening the edges.  It wore for eight hours without creasing both over a primer and just on bare lids–there was a smidgen of fading.

The Glossover

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coming-soon

Gold Dust

B+
I wish this shade was a bit softer and more pigmented, then it would really be Just Perfect (ha!) -- the wear is still good, and I was able to build up the color enough on the lid.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, August 16th, 2012

Milani Gold Dust Powder Eyeshadow
Milani Gold Dust Powder Eyeshadow

Follow the Trail of Gold Dust to Find Your Way Home

Milani Gold Dust Powder Eyeshadow ($4.49 for 0.11 oz.) is a warm gold with orange tones and a frosted, metallic finish. Giorgio Armani #1 is similar, slightly darker. Clarins Enchanted Summer contains a gold that is similar but also a little darker. Dior Couture Gold has a slightly lighter shade. Milani Drenched in Gold is less orange-toned.

The color payoff is decent to good, and it will apply mostly opaque to lid with a little packing of color but not too much is required.  In my use of this shade, what I liked least was the texture, which was on the powdery side with some dryness (it’s quite apparent in the swatch).  I wish it had a better or more binding ingredients, so it would stick together better.  This would make it apply more smoothly, though the powdery texture makes it easy to blend–but there is a little fall out during application, and the color can be sheered out too easily if you are not careful.  It managed eight hours of wear without a primer and only showed some very subtle fading along the inner corner.

The Glossover

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coming-soon

Caramel Brown

B
Not bad, not fantastic. For the price, some of the drawbacks might be worth overlooking. I think you may still be able to find a better gold for a similar price tag, though.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Monday, August 6th, 2012

L'Oreal Endless Sea Infallible Eyeshadow
L’Oreal Endless Sea Infallible Eyeshadow

Swimming in an Endless Sea of Disappointment

L’Oreal Endless Sea Infallible Eyeshadow ($7.95 for 0.12 oz.) is a faded cool-toned blue with a hint of aqua-teal. MAC Sky is similar but has a stronger golden sheen. Tarina Tarantino Ozma is much more teal and darker. Urban Decay Shattered is grayer. Guerlain Les Aquas is lighter, bluer. Urban Decay Aquarius is very similar, slightly more aqua than blue. Inglot #413 is more teal.

The shade that most immediately caught my eye when I first received the new shades was Endless Sea, but it was a complete disappointment.  The color payoff is severely lacking, both when used dry as well as wet; as is typically the case, it is more pigmented when used damp–decent pigmentation–it’s still not where it should be. It’s not the rich, intense color that L’Oreal advertises for the formula.

The texture feels a little drier than some of the other shades I’ve tested, which might account for the poor pigmentation.  It doesn’t bind together as smoothly (even when applied dampened), so it has a tendency to look patchy upon application.  I applied Endless Sea on the lid (next to Golden Emerald, which was superb), and it was sad and faded after ten hours.  

Most formulas have a couple of misses, and this one is indeed one of them, but there are some very lovely shades, like Golden Emerald and Smoldering Plum (both reviewed earlier this past week). A cheap product doesn’t mean it’s a bad product–but a cheap product that’s bad is still a waste of your hard-earned money, so I’d avoid this one and opt for one of the better pigmented and better wearing shades mentioned earlier.

For a comparison against Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense, please see this post. As a quick summary, L’Oreal’s colors can be less nuanced/have less depth, and then the wear seems to be a little more inconsistent with L’Oreal (some wearing fantastically, others creasing/fading more rapidly). The way I look at it (assuming you wear primer, because then the wear is usually fine), the more the merrier!  There doesn’t seem to be a lot of overlap between the color ranges, though–they’re not putting out dupes so much as different shades in a similar formula.

The Glossover

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Endless Sea

D
It seemed like it was going to be a stunning shade, but it just lacked the pigmentation to really make it workable and desirable. Whether you use it wet or over a primer, it looks dull, faded, and patchy.

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

6/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

5/10

Application

4/5

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Friday, August 3rd, 2012

L'Oreal Smoldering Plum Infallible Eyeshadow
L’Oreal Smoldering Plum Infallible Eyeshadow

A Very Sultry, Smoldering Plum

L’Oreal Smoldering Plum Infallible Eyeshadow ($7.95 for 0.12 oz.) is a deep, dark, and wickedly intense red-toned burgundy purple with a subtle frosted sheen. It’s a more intense versino of Urban Decay Rockstar. MAC Young Punk is purpler, less burgundy. MAC Dynamic Duo 4 is reminiscent, but less red-toned and matte. MAC Indian Ink is a matte version. Giorgio Armani #2 is slightly richer, blacker, and has red and blue-violet shimmer–so it translates a bit differently. Giorgio Armani #3 has a very reflective sheen that’s more silvery–the purple is a bit grayer, less red-toned.

I love the intensity of this shade, and it even had a fair amount of darkness even when applied dry.  It’s definitely smoother and richer-looking when applied damp/wet, though, but what’s worth noting is that the color will stay that intense even after it dries so long as you use a damp brush to apply the color initially.  The texture is soft, smooth, and finely-milled. It’s not dry at all, and it really has that creamy-powdery feel that’s a hallmark of the L’Oreal Infallible/Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense ranges.

Smoldering Plum wore very well–a solid twelve hours without fading or creasing. The newest released shades seem to have a lot better wear than a couple of the other shades I had tried previously (notably, Perpetual Purple, which was more like a perpetual disappointment).

For a comparison against Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense, please see this post. As a quick summary, L’Oreal’s colors can be less nuanced/have less depth, and then the wear seems to be a little more inconsistent with L’Oreal (some wearing fantastically, others creasing/fading more rapidly). The way I look at it (assuming you wear primer, because then the wear is usually fine), the more the merrier!  There doesn’t seem to be a lot of overlap between the color ranges, though–they’re not putting out dupes so much as different shades in a similar formula.

The Glossover

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Smoldering Plum

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This is a perfect pick for fall--it's rich, dark, and on-trend for the purple-hued fall/winter season we'll be seeing in the next few months.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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