Thursday, December 27th, 2012

MAC Taupe Shape Blush
MAC Taupe Shape Blush

MAC Strength: Taupe Shape Blush

MAC Taupe Shape Blush ($19.50 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “satiny taupe” with a satin finish. It’s a gray-tinged brown–a brownish-taupe when blended out–with a shimmer-sheen finish. MAC Pressed Amber is less gray. MAC Equilibrium is browner.

This kind of color is usually seen for contouring, but the shimmery finish is fairly reflective and nears frost-level in how shimmery/reflective it is keeps it from being a practical contouring shade. It could work as a natural shade on some complexions or when used very lightly. Taupe Shape was soft and finely-milled, though, and it was easy to blend and apply to the cheeks. I found the shimmery finish did emphasize pores, though, to a degree that was noticeable even at a “normal” viewing distance. This shade lasted seven hours on me, and it looked a bit faded after seven and a half hours.

The Glossover

product

Taupe Shape

A-
If it didn't have shimmer, it would be an amazing contouring shade, but with the shimmer, it's more of a natural blusher/highlighter--for the right complexion.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

5/5

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Thursday, December 27th, 2012

MAC Poised Blush
MAC Poised Blush

MAC Strength: Poised Blush

MAC Poised Blush ($20.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “muted pinkish brown” with a satin finish. It’s a medium brown with soft, peach-orange undertones and a shimmer-sheen finish. Burberry Earthy is browner, more neutral and matte. NARS Madly is a touch browner. Bobbi Brown Desert Twilight is very similar, perhaps a bit darker.

Poised has good color payoff, and the texture is soft, finely-milled, and blendable.  It was easy to apply, and the color could be used lightly or heavily, such that it was true-to-pan with little effort.  The sheen it gives off is a few steps above luminous and natural, but it isn’t frosted, and it doesn’t emphasize pores.  I tested this yesterday, and it lasted for six hours well, but it was a bit faded after seven hours.  Like the lipsticks from this launch, this blush (and its partner in crime) sold out within an hour or so of soft launching online, so currently, the only way to obtain one is to track it down at a freestanding MAC store.

The Glossover

LE
product

Poised

A-
Aside from the below-average wear, Poised is a great blush. It has lovely color payoff, a superb, finely-milled texture, and it is easy to blend on the skin.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

5/5

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Tuesday, December 25th, 2012

Dior Pink Happiness (729) DiorBlush
Dior Pink Happiness (729) DiorBlush

If Happiness was a Color, Would It Be Pink?

Dior Pink Happiness (729) DiorBlush ($43.00 for 0.26 oz.) is a blush duo that features a matte side to yield color, and then a pearly side that provides the highlight/sheen. They can be used individually together, alone, or swirled together.

The matte side is a medium-dark pink with yellow undertones. Chanel Rose Intiale is very similar. MAC Subtle Breeze is a bit cooler-toned. The pearly side is a light-medium pink with yellow undertones and a pale gold shimmer-sheen. Chanel Pink Cloud is a touch warmer, lighter. MAC Flower Fantasy has a paler sheen. MAC Easy Manner is richer in color.  Together, they create a medium (just on the light side of medium) pink with a hint of coral and a subtle sheen. The color reminded me of MAC Pet Me, though that is a bit more plum. Tarte Curious is brighter, more coral. theBalm Don’t You Want Me is similar.

If you’ve tried other blush duos by Dior, you’ll likely remember how soft, silky-smooth, and finely-milled the texture was.  This duo is part of the same formula/range, but it has a different pattern that goes across it than the permanent shades.  I’m not sure if they’re made/pressed differently, but this had a much firmer, stiffer texture that made achieving true-to-pan color payoff more difficult and blending less effortless.  With the level of pigmentation, I think this is best suited for light to medium complexions, while darker skin tones may want to try before they buy.   Pink Happiness wore for seven hours well but was noticeably faded along the edges after eight hours.

The Glossover

LE
product

Pink Happiness

C+
The texture could be a lot softer, silkier, and generally yield better color payoff along with being a more blendable product.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4/5

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Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

Chanel Frivole Joues Contraste / Blush
Chanel Frivole Joues Contraste / Blush

Chanel Frivole Joues Contraste / Blush ($43.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “luminous apricot.” It’s a brightened, medium-dark orange with just a hint of pink to give it an “apricot” coloring. The finish is mostly matte, but there is a touch of barely-there sheen that translates as “natural” when applied–you can see the tiny golden sheen in the blended out swatch. Buxom Euphoria is lighter and more orange. MAC Modern Mandarin is redder, less orange, more shimmery. NARS Gilda is redder. Guerlain Peach Boy is redder, less orange. MAC Optimistic Orange is a touch more orange (and it is a cream blush). Make Up For Ever is a touch darker and more red-toned.

It is as intense as you’d like it to be; it can be as rich and bright as it looks in the pan, or it can be blended and applied more sheerly for a softer color. Darker complexions should have no trouble getting enough color to show up on them, while paler complexions can rest easy knowing that it has an exquisite, finely-milled texture that makes blending a cinch. The powder is so, so soft but not powdery. It looks luminous and subtly glowy on the skin without emphasizing pores. Frivole wore for seven hours well, and after eight, there was very slight fading along the edges.

The Glossover

P
product

Frivole

A

Beautiful, soft texture that looks natural and luminous on the skin, combined with excellent color payoff makes for a blush that will work across skin tones. It is very warm-toned, so those who tend to find orange blush less flattering may want to pass.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

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Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

Too Faced Spun Sugar Glamour to Go Palette
Too Faced Spun Sugar Glamour to Go Palette

Spin, Spin Sugar

Too Faced Spun Sugar Glamour to Go Palette ($22.00 for 0.418 oz.) contains eight eyeshadows (0.03 oz. each), one highlighter (.076 oz.), one bronzer (0.076 oz.), and one lipgloss (0.026 oz.). It’s a holiday palette designed to include a range of “holiday metallics.”

#1 is a shimmering champagne gold with a bright, metallic finish. It has a similar effect to a glittery shade without the mess. The color payoff was good, and it applied smoothly. Tarte Sunshine State is yellower. MAC Retrospeck is warmer, yellower. Chanel Apparence is also warmer, darker. bareMinerals Chart Topper is darker.

#2 is a softened orange with gold shimmer. It had good pigmentation and applied smoothly. bareMinerals Golden Iris is darker. Tarte Golden Gate Bridge is a touch darker. Tarte Canary Diamond is browner. Guerlain Turandot is slightly more orange. Milani Gold Dust is very similar.

#3 is a sparkling pink-tinted white. It had so-so color payoff, but I didn’t have any fall out problems with it. MAC She’s Got Class is less pink-tinged but similar in finish. Tarte Iceland Air is similar in color but less sparkly. MAC Crystal Avalanche is similar, less metallic. Tom Ford Cobalt Rush is a bit darker.

#4 is a gray-ish mauve with a bright, metallic sheen. It had decent pigmentation and applied smoothly. Tarte Next Level Lilac is more matte, so it is also darker in appearance. MAC Cloudy Afternoon is darker. Urban Decay Bust is several shades darker.

#5 is a shimmering, pale yellow. It had good color payoff and went on smoothly without being powdery. shu uemura Smoky Velvet is more sparkling, a little darker. Buxom Poodle is more metallic and in a cream form. Bobbi Brown Gold is very similar.

#6 is a medium-dark chocolate brown with subtle warm undertones and a bronze shimmer. It had great pigmentation and felt smooth and soft to the touch.Wet ‘n’ Wild Sparkle ‘Til Morning is a touch darker, less shimmery. MAC Carbonized has less shimmer, slightly darker. NARS Galapagos is a bit less bronze.

#7 is a light-medium gray with a silver sheen. It had so-so color payoff, and it was a touch dry to work with. Giorgio Armani #12 is darker, but it is similar when sheered out.

#8 is a soft black with fine silver shimmer. The pigmentation was weak in this shade, and it looked dry, slightly chalky, when applied. shu uemura Smoky Velvet is darker. Bobbi Brown Onyx is similar. MAC Black Tied is also similar.

The Highlighter is a white gold with a shimmer-sheen finish. Tarte Angelic is a smidgen yellower but not by much. Illamasqua Aurora is a touch lighter and in a cream form. NARS Albatross has a similar sheen, but it has a whiter base.

The Lipgloss included in the palette is pretty much clear and there’s almost no visible shimmer when applied. It made me do a double-take, because at least in the pan, you could see shimmer. Being next to two face powders is unfortunate, as it’s easy to kick up excess powder with larger blush/bronzer brushes (with eyeshadow brushes, it’s just as possible, but I think you have more control). So, you can use any clear gloss as a substitute, really!

The Bronzer is a medium-dark tan with strong orange-brown undertones and a sprinkling of gold sparkle. The texture was a little powdery but dry–I had a tough time getting this shade to deposit color, let alone blending it out. Tarte Park Ave. Princess is similar but has more golden shimmer/sheen. Urban Decay Toasted is similar but has no shimmer/sparkle.

OVERALL, this palette is best purchased if you like the eyeshadows.  The lipgloss and bronzer are disappointing, while the highlighter is better it was a touch dry in texture.  Too Faced’s Candlelight on its own is much better.  The eyeshadows are fairly pigmented, though the last two shades were on the weaker side, and the really sparkly white was a little sheer, too.  None were flops, though, and the other five shades were rather nice to work with.  If you cut the palette in half, you’ll see two very distinct quads of colors–one set is warm, the other is cooler-toned.  It’s like, not love.

When I tested out the eyeshadows, they lasted eight hours with very minor fading when used without a primer; with a primer, they lasted a full eight hours.  I didn’t have any fall out, despite using the sparkly shades, which was a pleasant surprise.  The highlighter wore for seven hours, while the bronzer was faded after six hours.  The price point is nice, though, because it’s not to pricey and makes for an easy gift to give without breaking the bank, but it still feels like a nice gift to give (more to it than just a lipstick!).  I just wish the whole palette performed better.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Too Faced Spun Sugar Glamour to Go Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

B
This palette is best purchased if you like the eyeshadows. The lipgloss and bronzer are disappointing, while the highlighter is better it was a touch dry in texture.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, December 3rd, 2012

shu uemura Smoky Velvet Eye & Cheek Palette
shu uemura Smoky Velvet Eye & Cheek Palette

Karl for Shu – The Smoky Velvet Palette

shu uemura Smoky Velvet Eye & Cheek Palette ($65.00 for 0.245 oz.) consists of two silky smooth eyeshadows, three pressed eyeshadows, and one glow-on blush.

1 is described as a “glitter black” and comes in the “silky smooth eyeshadow formula.” It’s a soft black with very small silver glitter particles. It had a creamy but a very thin consistency–it was soft and just barely creamy, enough that it felt more like a really thin, cream eyeshadow than a powder one. It had good color payoff despite the thin consistency. MAC Tall, Dark, & Handsome is a bit softer, less glittery. Buxom Black Lab is similar but has multi-colored sparkle.

2 is described as a “deep khaki” and comes in the “silky smooth eyeshadow formula.” It’s an olive green with a soft, olive shimmer. This shade was creamier than #1, but it had a similar lightweight and thin feel. L’Oreal Golden Emerald is darker, greener. Lancome Designer is darker. MAC Sumptuous Olive is warmer, browner.

3 is described as an “elegant light silver” and is part of the “pressed eyeshadow formula.” It’s a sparkling silver-tinged white with a glittery, sparkly content that gives it a very sheer appearance. Cinderella Midnight Hour is less metallic. MAC She’s Got Class is similar both in color and texture. MAC Forgery is also quite similar.

4 is described as an “mint green” and is part of the “pressed eyeshadow formula.” It’s a pale green with soft yellow undertones and a smattering of gold micro-shimmer. It had good color payoff and a soft, finely-milled texture. Cinderella Cinderelly is darker. Too Faced Fantasy Island is yellower. bareMinerals Wicked is also yellower. Tarina Tarantino Wonderful is very similar.

5 is described as an “glitter beige” and is part of the “pressed eyeshadow formula.” It’s a pale, yellow gold with a metallic sheen. The color payoff was so-so. Buxom Poodle is less yellow. Giorgio Armani #18 is similar, less metallic. Bobbi Brown Gold is yellower. MAC Treasure Hunt is similar but has more of a sheen.

6 is described as an “dusty rose” and is part of the “glow-on blush formula.” It’s a brightened, dark pink with gold shimmer. It packs plenty of pigment, so it can be used on all skin tones. The texture is incredibly finely-milled, so it is extremely blendable on the skin, so even pale complexions will be able to adjust the intensity to their liking. MAC Supernova is a bit redder. Tom Ford Wicked is pinker, more blue-based. Worth noting is it’s a pain to apply as a blush, since the pan is the size of an eyeshadow.

The palette is remarkable for its texture; the two cream eyeshadows had a beautiful, velvety-creamy consistency that felt like butter and silk came together, while the blush was finely-milled and easy to blend, despite its rich color.  The really sparkly white eyeshadow, though, while soft, did not apply as smoothly. I found it was best applied as a layering shade over another eyeshadow.  I experienced some fall out when applied alone, and significantly less (but still a little) fall out when patted over one of the cream eyeshadows. Shu can do incredible glitter eyeshadows sometimes, but the white in this palette wasn’t quite it. The gold shade was way, way less sparkly (and better bound together), so I didn’t have problems with that shade.  The cream eyeshadows wore well for six hours, but after eight full hours, they was some faint creasing.  The blush lasted eight hours without fading.

The Glossover

coming-soon

shu uemura Smoky Velvet Eye & Cheek Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

B-
The fall out from the two glittery shades along with the faint (but still there) creasing from the two creamier shades really hurt this palette overall. I'm still amazed by the textures of the products, but I wish the wear was better.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4/5

Results
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