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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product

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

A
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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Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

Revlon Radiant (Blue Mosaic) Nail Lacquer
Revlon Radiant (Blue Mosaic) Nail Lacquer

A Rather Radiant Blue Mosaic Awaits

Revlon Radiant (Blue Mosaic) Nail Lacquer ($4.99 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is a blue-tinted clear base with blue glitter and larger green, silver, and blue hexagon-shaped glitter. It totally reminded me of the glitter in Deborah Lippmann–if you used Radiant (Blue Mosaic) over a blue-black base, you’d get pretty close to the overall shade. The major difference is Radiant has a mostly clear base, while Deborah Lippmann is a colored (opaque) base. That would, of course, make Radiant more versatile, since you could layer it over any number of polishes.

To clear up any confusion: the bottle I actually bought and own is called Blue Mosaic, which was around for a limited time before being re-released–but under the name Radiant, which is what is currently available at stores and retailers nationwide. How utterly confusing–It’s like when L’Oreal thought it would be a great idea to name things differently by region.

Worn alone, even with two coats, it’s fairly sparse. It really does just look like a layering polish, and I can’t imagine there was an intention for much more than sheer base the glitter is suspended in. Even in the bottle, the base color looks clear with tons of glitter particles floating in it. Alone, it makes my fingertips look frostbitten, LOL!

I tried layering it over SpaRitual’s Ebb & Flow, which was a slightly aqua-tinted blue color, and this made it look bluer with lots of glitter. In the swatches of Radiant alone, I used two coats, and with it layered, I used just one coat of Radiant over two coats of the base color polish.  I think if you really want it to stand out, you’re better off trying to do two coats for layering.

The formula is a little thick, especially if you’re doing two coats over two colored coats, but it’s manageable. The hexagon-shaped glitters you do have to fish around a little for, and they slide around easily if you don’t wait long enough between coats.  I typically get a week of wear with Revlon’s formula with minor tip wear but no chipping.

The Glossover

LE
product

Radiant

B
I wish you could get more hexagonal glitter per coat--it's one thing to need two or three layers for opaque glitter coverage, but when you need two coats for layering over a base color, it can result in a rather thick sandwich of nail colors! The formula on this shade could be a little thinner to better accommodate using two coats for layering.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

L'Oreal Golden Emerald Infallible Eyeshadow
L’Oreal Golden Emerald Infallible Eyeshadow

If the Emerald City Only Sparkled Half as Much!

L’Oreal Golden Emerald Infallible Eyeshadow ($7.95 for 0.12 oz.) is a sparkling, shimmering forest green with an olive-brown base. It has flecks of emerald green micro-shimmer and larger dirty gold shimmer. Tarina Tarantino Wonderful is less green, more olive. Urban Decay Bender has a stronger yellow undertone. Inglot #418 is less olive/yellow-toned. Make Up For Ever #310 is cooler-toned, no yellow or olive base coloring. MAC Humid is less intense, slightly yellower.

This shade sparkles in such an incredible, eye-catching way. There are few products and even less shades that sparkle in such a way; I was truly captivated when I swatched this, and it was as beautiful on the lid as it was on my arm. This is something that anyone who loves green eyeshadow should seriously consider grabbing–and the price point makes it nearly irresistible. It has one of the most gorgeous finishes I’ve come across. Not all L’Oreal Infallibles have this finish (and not all Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadows do either), but it’s an exceptional play on shimmer, sheen, and reflective surfaces.

Golden Emerald works best slightly damp or wet, because the pigmentation and finish really sing there. When it’s applied dry, it’s not quite as intense or as pigmented.  The color payoff is decent to good, but you’ll likely want to apply it over a primer if you plan to use it dry.  What’s nice about this kind of formula is that when you use it wet, it stays looking like that–it doesn’t intensify and then dry and look faded.  That lack of intensity is the only drawback about this particular shade, because the wear is tops–full ten hour wear with no creasing or fading.

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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product

Golden Emerald

A
This is something that anyone who loves green eyeshadow should seriously consider grabbing--and the price point makes it nearly irresistible. It has one of the most gorgeous finishes I've come across.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Thursday, July 26th, 2012

L'Oreal VIP Status Nail Lacquer
L’Oreal VIP Status Nail Lacquer

A Stunning, Multi-Faceted Polish for $6

L’Oreal VIP Status Nail Lacquer ($5.99 for 0.39 fl. oz.) is a cool-toned, smoky blue-gray with hints of teal and silver shimmer in a metallic base. There was not a single color that came to mind that even resembled this in a meaningful way. Rescue Beauty Lounge Teal is a creamy, dark blue-based teal, but there’s none of the gray, smokiness or the multi-faceted shimmer. If you have a dupe in mind, I’d love to hear it!

This is one cool polish–there’s a lot of dimension to the color and finer nuances that make it really interesting. It kind of reminds me of some eyeshadows like MAC Club, MAC Blue Brown pigment, Too Faced Label Whore, etc., but it’s bluer with less brown coming through.  There are visible brush strokes in the finish, and they look like threads of shimmer–they applied fairly straight and evenly, actually. They’re most pronounced under really bright light (e.g. diffused flash) and hardly visible in natural light (e.g. studio light).

The formula wasn’t too thick or too thin; it was a good balance between the two, so it helped the polish apply fluidly across the nail without gathering along the sides.  I didn’t experience any streaking or bubbling, and two coats was plenty to produce opaque color coverage.  The brush was easy to use, not too wide or narrow, and enough flexibility to move around but not so much that it became floppy.  Worth noting is that it contains 20% less polish than most polishes (0.39 fl oz. vs. 0.50 fl. oz.).  I did do a wear test with this particular shade, and I was able to get seven days of wear with minor tip wear but no chipping–it’s supposed to last for 10 days, which I haven’t tested with this shade specifically and will do so with the next L’Oreal shade (I typically only test for seven days; didn’t realize they claimed 10 days!).  Keep in mind, of course, that next to nothing chips on me, whether I use a base/top coat or nothing but the polish itself.

P.S. — This is currently buy one, get one 50% off at drugstore.com.

The Glossover

DC
product

VIP Status

A+
A stunning shade that's unique to me with an excellent formula that comes in at less than $10? All over it! Definitely worth a look-see next time you're at the drugstore.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

Revlon Gold Coin Nail Lacquer
Revlon Gold Coin Nail Lacquer

A Metallic Gold for Every Budget

Revlon Gold Coin (925) Nail Lacquer ($4.99 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is a dirty champagne-gold foil with a metallic shimmer-sheen. The most recent iteration of this that I reviewed was Chanel Diwali, which is slightly warmer. Urban Decay Superfreak is lighter. Dior Timeless Gold is very similar. And while I haven’t yet reviewed, I do have Illamasqua Swinger now swatched, and it is rather similar–marginally darker and warmer at best. Timeless Gold has the least amount of visible brush strokes (next to none), while Diwali has the most visible brush strokes.  Gold Coin and Swinger are tied for having just a few noticeable ones under really bright light.

As of this morning, it’s actually buy one, get one 50% off at drugstore.com.  I picked up several Revlon polishes a couple of months ago on a whim, and a reader mentioned Gold Coin being a dupe for Diwali, so when I realized I had it in the to-be-swatched bin, I knew I had to check it out.  It’s opaque in two coats, and the formula was a nice balance of thick and thin.  The polish applied easily, evenly, and fluidly across the nail without pooling along the sides, bubbling, or streaking.  The dry down was a little quicker than the average, and it does dry to a semi-shiny finish–there’s a lot of sheen but it’s not glossy.  I tested the wear of Gold Coin, and it wore for a full seven days without chipping and had minor tip wear.

The Glossover

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product

Gold Coin

A
If you love the look of champagne-gold with a foil finish but haven't been willing to pay the high price tags of the likes of Chanel and Dior, Revlon makes an excellent version that's just as good.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

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