Thursday, April 14th, 2011

Wet 'n' Wild Gray's Anatomy Fast Dry Nail Color
Wet ‘n’ Wild Gray’s Anatomy Fast Dry Nail Color

Wet ‘n’ Wild Gray’s Anatomy Fast Dry Nail Color

Wet ‘n’ Wild Gray’s Anatomy Fast Dry Nail Color ($1.99 for 0.46 fl. oz.) is a semi-sheer duochrome featuring both a murky, grayish green and an iridescent but played down violet. Under flash, it photographed as a purple polish and didn’t come across as sheer. In natural light, the grayish-green cast is more noticeable while the violet takes a backseat. The duochrome is there, but it isn’t as strong as it could be, due to the sheerness of the formula. I see this working better as a layering shade than alone. I did three coats and it wasn’t anywhere near opaque.

Wet ‘n’ Wild, however, claims that their Fast Dry Nail Color formula will dry in sixty seconds, are “vivid,” and “apply smooth for streak-free, even coverage.” It takes a few minutes to dry between coats (I’d say between two and three), which is two to three times the claimed drying time–two minutes is great, but it’s not sixty seconds. Based on the brand’s description of the range, I can’t assume they meant for Gray’s Anatomy to be a lone ranger and designed to be sheer.

I liked the brush, which has a slightly rouded tip, but it seemed a little wider than the average brush, but I think those with narrower nail beds should still be fine, because it did not seem unwieldy. The formula was a little runny and almost watery, which definitely didn’t help opacity issues I had with this color. It did wear well–just under a week with minor tip wear and no chips (I used Zoya Anchor/Armor as my base and top coats).

The Glossover

coming-soon

Wet 'n' Wild Gray's Anatomy Fast Dry Nail Color Review, Photos, Swatches

C
It's a fun color, and for layering purposes, more fun that way. I'm disappointed it's not quite like the color in the bottle, which looks really stunning. I really wish somewhere on Wet 'n Wild's website said that this was supposed to be a layering polish, so I could give it a higher rating.

Product

6.5/10

Pigmentation

6.5/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

Wet 'n' Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette
Wet ‘n’ Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette ($4.99 for 0.25 oz.) contains six eyeshadows–three with matte finishes and three with frost finishes. Vanity is a warm-toned palette with a mix of browns and golds. You can see a look I did with this palette here.

The three matte finished shades are: a soft, barely-there beige, dirtied light-medium tan brown, and deep, dark brown with burgundy-red undertones. These mattes were much better than the ones found in the recently launched spring palettes–much smoother, more pigmented, and applied better. I felt they swatched better than they applied, but they still applied decently. The beige shade is surprising, because for as light as it is, it wasn’t chalky at all.

The three frost finished shades are: a pale whitish-gold, bright yellow gold, and rich chocolate bronze. I found the pale gold to be rather sheer, and it easily disappeared when applied, so it did not apply evenly. The pigmentation and texture of the gold and bronze, though, is much nicer–both have good color pay off and are pretty soft, while the bronze is the best in the palette overall.

Vanity is housed in standard fare packaging for Wet ‘n’ Wild; a clear flip top with a black base. It’s sturdy enough for keeping at home, but it might not travel as well (if it’s tossed around a lot). It should stand up to some wear and tear. What I liked most was how well it secured closed. I didn’t find the included brushes to be worth using; they were scratchy and rather splayed.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Wet 'n' Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

B
I think it's a nice palette, and for something that doesn't break the bank, it's definitely a good option for warmer neutrals. I found blending to be a little more time-consuming with these eyeshadows than is par for the course, which is in part due to the texture. These work best layered directly over a base but less so when layered on top of each other--that is when blending is more difficult.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

NYX Eyeshadow Base
NYX Eyeshadow Base

NYX Eyeshadow Base:  Skin Tone

NYX Skin Tone Eyeshadow Base ($6.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a creamy, flesh-toned product designed to provide a base for eyeshadow to grab onto and stay on all day. It’s $6.99 on ULTA (which I liked, because NYX is sold-out of this shade) normally, but at the time of this review, it was $4.19. NYX’s Eyeshadow Base is also available in White and Pearl. The Skin Tone shade is a light-medium peach.

This is one of my favorite budget friendly bases, because one pot lasts forever, and the product itself keeps eyeshadow on all day long without fading or creasing. It has a nice level of creaminess that makes it easy to apply and blend out to cover the entire lid area, but it dries down quick enough that it doesn’t crease before you get a chance to apply your eyeshadow on top of it. Skintone is more of an opaque base, though, which is particularly good for those who want a product that also evens out lids.

The Glossover

P
coming-soon

Skin Tone

A-
If you're looking for an affordable eyeshadow base, NYX is definitely one of the best I've come across. It holds its own against higher-end bases, too--you're not sacrificing quality for price here.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Monday, March 21st, 2011


Revlon Carnation (025) ColorBurst Lipstick

Revlon Carnation ColorBurst Lipstick

Revlon Carnation (025) ColorBurst Lipstick ($8.99 for 0.13 oz.) is a medium-dark, blue-based pink with a soft, frosted finish and subtle fuchsia-magenta shimmer. It’s nearly opaque in color, and it doesn’t feel heavy to wear, despite the creaminess and pigmented formula.

my thoughts on the formula: Revlon’s ColorBurst lipsticks glide on easily, have decent color pay off (inevitably, pigmentation does vary from shade to shade–some are semi-sheer, others more opaque), and are scent-free. They are comfortable to wear without clinging to lips, though I don’t find them moisturizing. The biggest downside is they only last two to three hours (lipsticks wear an average of four hours on me), so the wear time could be improved.

The lipstick is packaged in a matte black case with a quilted pattern on the front and the Revlon logo/print embellished on the lipstick itself.  I like the matte finish, because it doesn’t hold fingerprints, and because it’s not rubberized (like NARS), it doesn’t hold onto dust and powder remnants either.

The Glossover

DC
product

Carnation

B-
I wish these wore a little longer!  The length of wear is the most glaring downside to the product, and it's a shame, because I love how these are unscented (no cloying, synthetically sweet scent that so often plagues more affordable lipstick brands).  I will admit that I personally had trouble shelling out $8.99 for one, though.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Friday, March 18th, 2011

NYX HD Studio Foundation
NYX HD Studio Foundation

NYX HD Studio Foundation

NYX HD Studio Foundation ($15.00 for 1.26 oz.) is described by the brand as a foundation that reflects light to give skin a smoother appearance and reduce the appearance of pores. It also includes “tri-peptides infused to promote collagen generation, reduce wrinkles, and rejuvenate skin.” I’ve only used tihs foundation for a week, so I’m not going to even touch that last part.

The HD Studio Foundation delivers light-medium to almost medium coverage. The consistency is thin overall, but not runny or watery, so it spreads and blends out easily but applies more sheerly. It is a buildable product, so for those who want heavier coverage (up to medium), simply apply more or apply more to the areas where you need it. The foundation dries down quickly and has a velvet matte finish–not ultra matte but not too dewy. I did about twenty lip swatches with this foundation on, and it photographed quite nicely, which is ultimately one of the major marketing points for it.

I’m NC25/NC30 in MAC, 140 in Make Up For Ever, #02/03 in Guerlain, and I found #04 Sand Beige to be a fairly good match. It did have a strong yellow tone, though, so I would only recommend this shade match for those with medium skin tones with warm (yellow) under tones.

I used one pump for my entire face, and for me, my primary concern is evening out my skin–I have some blotchiness in my cheeks and my forehead is a little darker than the rest of my face (always fun to deal with!). At the time of review, I did not have much in the way of major active acne or post-acne marks.

It compares well with Make Up For Ever’s HD Foundation, but NYX’s coverage seems slightly less buildable and ends up being sheerer overlal. There’s a subtle but noticeable chemical-like scent when I used NYX’s but it seemed to dissipate after being applied. NYX’s shade range is inferior to Make Up For Ever’s (8 vs. 25), and it seems like the lightest and darker complexions will have trouble finding a match within the existing range.

I was surprised at how well it wore–it wears nicely for six to eight hours before sheering out (for me, that means on my forehead, which is where I get a little oily by the end of the day). I get a little longer with Make Up For Ever–eight to ten hours–but NYX’s HD Studio Foundation hangs out respectably even past its initial wear period and doesn’t disappear at lightning speed.

The Glossover

nyxHd

NYX HD Studio Foundation Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
It's one of the better budget-friendly foundations I've tried.  I can definitely see myself reaching for it when I'm taking a lot of photos, because it applies easily, has a photo-friendly finish, and works well.  Unlike other products in NYX's HD Studio line, this one fits the price range of the line.  It's cheaper than the HD Grinding Powder by $10!

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

NYX Menage a Trois HD Grinding Blush
NYX Menage a Trois HD Grinding Blush

NYX Menage a Trois HD Grinding Blush

NYX Menage a Trois HD Grinding Blush ($16.50 for 0.25 oz.) is one of eight shades of blush from NYX’s HD Studio line. According to NYX, by grinding a blush powder each use, you’ll avoid “oil trappings on powders, contamination, and cracking.” The blush formula itself is supposed to reflect light from the skin while giving pores a smaller and smoother look. Menage a Trois is a soft tangerine-peach with spun gold shimmer-sheen. It’s really a gorgeous shade and one that will work exceptionally well on warmer skin tones.

Next to the blush, you might recognize an elephant–the price tag. NYX is known as a brand with affordable options but still a wide variety and higher quality products than many other more affordable brands (overall). It’s obvious the HD Studio range is at a higher price point, but I think it might be outpricing the comfort zone of some of their customers. Their Powder Blushes are $6, Cream Bushes are $6.50, and Mosaic Powders are $8. The HD Grinding Blush is double the price of their more expensive blush. I’m not worried that NYX is going to change directions and move to mid-tier, but it’s an interesting move.

my thoughts on the formula: The texture of the HD Grinding Blushes is very smooth–definitely finely milled. The colors themselves are a lot less intimidating when applied than they look initially–I did not find that you could quite get the level of intensity as see in the shavings themselves, but you can get close. The softness of the blush powder makes it easy to apply, blend out, and difficult to overdo. On me, it wears around six hours before there is some fading (over liquid foundation, set with loose powder).

Though I haven’t personally tested Smashbox’s Halo powders, the grinding mechanism of NYX’s HD Grinding Blushes reminded me of them. I’m not sure if Smashbox has put out Halo blushes, but they do have the twist ‘n’ shave mechanism for their Perfecting Powders, Perfecting Bronzers, and Color Correcting Powder. It’s neither a pro nor con but more for your reference.

I’m not keen on the grinding packaging, actually.  It’s cool, but any excess powder left inside inevitably seems to get everywhere else.  I had twisted and ground each blush for photos and carried them to my bathroom and left little blush shavings in my wake.  When I opened the blushes, the loose shavings had collected on the outer rim, where the cap screws on, and easily escaped to the freedom of my carpet, sink, and swatching pants!  (And that is exactly why one wears swatching pants…)  The only mitigating factor is that usually you do not twist too much excess, so there is an end in sight, unlike perhaps an entire jar of loose blush.

The Glossover

P
product

Menage a Trois

B+
I’m not particularly surprised that I’m most drawn to this shade–after all, if it’s gold, peach, or coral, I’m already there. The whole grinding concept is more of a novelty for me, and the packaging could use some tweaks so that any excess shavings stay within the jar, rather than settle around the rim (outside of the recessed opening). It could wear a touch longer; most blushes last all day (eight to ten hours) on me.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →