Monday, July 4th, 2011


Bobbi Brown Bronze Tortoise Shell Eye Palette

Bobbi Brown Bronze Tortoise Shell Eye Palette

Bobbi Brown Bronze Tortoise Shell Eye Palette ($60.00 for 0.32 oz.) is new and limited edition for fall and contains eight eyeshadows: Banana (buttery cream), Olive (golden olive), Gold Nugget (yellow gold), Bronze (true bronze), Tiger’s Eye (golden copper), Copper Cocoa (light chocolate brown), Espresso (dark chocolate brown), and Amber (pink bronze).

Here’s a quick breakdown of Bobbi Brown’s finishes: regular eyeshadows have a matte finish, which means no shimmer; sparkle eyeshadows are glittery and have a translucent base to allow it to glide onto the lid; metallic eyeshadows are richly pigmented with a bright sheen; and shimmer wash eyeshadows are sheer and lightly pearlized.

  • Banana is a darkened butter yellow with a matte finish. This has a matte finish. It had nice color payoff and applied smoothly, softly, and didn’t feel powdery.
  • Gold Nugget is a sheer, yellowed gold color base with yellow gold glitter and shimmer. This has a sparkle finish. The color payoff is low here, which makes some sense if it’s supposed to have a “translucent base,” though I’m not entirely certain that these are supposed to be sheer. To me, this didn’t feel like a regular sparkle–it felt smoother. It’s a lot like MAC Goldmine.
  • Olive is a dirty khaki bronze with a metallic sheen. This has a sparkle finish. It’s noticeably more pigmented than Gold Nugget, yet it, too, has a sparkle finish. There is a little sheerness still. It is similar to Make Up For Ever #148 and a little less brown compared to Giorgio Armani #6.
  • Bronze is a red-toned bronze brown with a high-shine, metallic sheen. This has a metallic finish. This shade had nice color payoff. It’s a little less amber compared to Giorgio Armani #5. Inglot #406 is similar but richer. This seems like it would be similar to MAC’s Woodwinked.
  • Tiger’s Eye is an orange-y brown with a frosty finish. This has a metallic finish. It seemed less metallic, more frost to me. It had nice color payoff. Milani Bronze Doll is a lighter version but comparable in overall tone and color.
  • Espresso is a deep black-brown. This has a matte finish. It has really nice color payoff, but it looks a lot darker swatched than in the pan. This shade is part of the permanent range.  It seems comparable to MAC’s Showstopper.
  • Copper Cocoa is a warm, chocolate bronze with a subtle, pearly sheen. This has a shimmer wash finish. If shimmer washes are supposed to be sheer, this is quite off the mark. It’s one of the more pigmented shades in the palette. It’s a little warmer and lighter than Inglot #409.
  • Amber is a semi-sheer, orange-peach with gold and copper shimmer-sparkle. This has a shimmer wash finish. It’s sheer and has bits of sparkle that do leave some fall out when used. Urban Decay Blaze is similar but without the glitter/sparkle.

Unfortunately, the product sample I received to review did not come with a box, and the label on the back of the compact had sample labeling, so I couldn’t get an ingredients’ list or how much product was in it. I called my local Bobbi Brown counter and asked, and they said that the regular eyeshadows (mattes) contain 0.04 oz., sparkle finishes contain 0.02 oz., metallic finishes contain 0.05 oz., and shimmer wash finishes contain 0.05 oz. This palette contains 2x regular, 2x sparkle, 2x metallic, and 2x shimmer wash, which ends up being the equivalent value of: $20 in regular eyeshadows, $7.38 in sparkle eyeshadows, $20 in metallic eyeshadows, and $25 in shimmer wash eyeshadows. All in all, this palette contains $72.38 worth of product.

This is a warmer palette–very bronze indeed–that will suit medium to dark skin tones with yellow undertones best, but I do think it’s suitable for lighter complexions as a few of the shades are softer/sheerer.  There are at least two shades (Gold Nugget and Tiger’s Eye) that I could see turning rather orange on pinker complexions, though.  Fans of bronzes, earth tones, and metallic-like finishes will find this palette right up their alley, but those who prefer softer, subtler finishes may find this one too sparkly.

The Glossover

palette

Bobbi Brown Bronze Tortoise Shell Eye Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

B
This palette is a good mix of finishes at first glance, but the finishes tend to run together and you're left looking for more satin/matte finishes. Not all of the shades are fully opaque when used, and some are designed that way, but whether that's a positive/negative is personal preference.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Saturday, July 2nd, 2011

NARS Orgasm Highlighting Blush
NARS Orgasm Blush

NARS Orgasm Blush

NARS Orgasm Blush ($27.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “peachy pink with shimmer.” This is a cult product–and NARS knows it–that has been replicated across their product range (e.g. Orgasm lipgloss, nail polish, etc.) and by other brands. It seems like nearly every brand has a shade that is similar to Orgasm (just check out the dupes for it on The Dupe List.

I’ve always found Orgasm to be more pink than peach. It’s more of a light-medium, strawberry-pink color base with peach-gold shimmer and sheen. It applies softly, as the shade itself is not particularly intense. The color payoff is decent but there seems to be some inherent sheerness in the product itself. It’s interesting, because on NARS’ website, they describe their blush as “provi[ding] a sheer, natural hint of color” but many of NARS’ blushes are well-known for their intensities.

I think the color is what drives this product’s popularity; it’s a warmer pink with that golden sheen that gives a hint of color, warmth, and a subtle glow. It has a soft, smooth texture with only the tiniest bit of powderiness, which I expect is more because some of the shimmer seems to pull away from the color (but the shimmer is rather fine, so it doesn’t look or feel chunky).  I get about eight hours of wear with NARS’ blushes, while a softer color like Orgasm wears seven to eight hours (which is around average).

From products I’ve reviewed, shades like Guerlain Blush G (similarity depends on how much of each of the shades you use), Rock & Republic Call Me (less pink, more orange), Lancome Mandarin Sky (less pink, more orange), Smashbox Paradise (less pink, sheerer), Benefit Sugarbomb (more peach, lighter), MAC Springsheen (more shimmer), Benefit CORALista (less peach), and Le Metier de Beaute Echo (more orange) all show some resemblance to Orgasm. Of all of those possibilities, I find MAC Springsheen to be most similar.

The Glossover

coming-soon

NARS Orgasm Blush Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
If you like coral, especially pinker ones, I don't think Orgasm will disappointment. It's popular for a reason, and Temptalia readers regularly show it love in the Readers' Choice Awards.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, June 30th, 2011

MAC Crystal Pink Mineralize Skinfinish
MAC Crystal Pink Mineralize Skinfinish

MAC Semi-Precious: Crystal Pink Mineralize Skinfinish

MAC Feeling Flush Mineralize Skinfinish ($28.00 for 0.22 oz.) is described as a “pink champagne base with inner circle of pink, mid-tone green, and bronze.” When I swirled the center splotch together, I ended up with a muted, slightly rosy tan with subtle gold shimmer. The outer edge is a pinked champagne. On my skin tone (NC25/NC30), it’s mostly sheen, but it does lighten a bit. It’s a cooler-toned highlight, which makes it interesting, since a lot of highlighters can be warmer. Still really bummed (and a little puzzled) over the major reduction in product here–past MSFs have been 0.33 oz., while this is only 0.22 oz.

It’s not glittery like Rose Quartz, but the sheen on this one is quite pronounced, so I would recommend using a light hand–I actually applied this using the 131, and it was still quite glowy when stippled on.  I do like that it is smooth, though, so it doesn’t emphasize skin imperfections  as much as some mineralize skinfinishes do.  Pigmentation is as expected based on the softness of the overall color in the pan.

The outer layer is a lighter, rosier version of MAC By Candlelight but probably not as pink as Porcelain Pink. The swirled result is like a rosy version of Belightful.

If you missed any of our previous Semi-Precious coverage, check out this round-up.

The Glossover

LE
product

Crystal Pink

B+
The center portion of this mineralize skinfinish is very interesting--really, green?--and yet when it is all swirled together, it's much more workable.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, June 30th, 2011

MAC Warmth of Coral Mineralize Blush
MAC Warmth of Coral Mineralize Blush

MAC Semi-Precious: Warmth of Coral Mineralize Blush

MAC Warmth of Coral Mineralize Blush ($23.00 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “melange of coral and peach.” It’s more coral, peach, and orange to me–to stretch it, maybe a darkened peach? When mixed (not that you can really separate out veins in this blush), it’s a warm, medium peach-orange. I did notice that it doesn’t show up very well on my NC25/NC30 complexion; it blends out very easily and ends up looking so subtle that I wasn’t even sure I was wearing it.

The powder is very finely-milled with a silky smooth feel that works beautifully with the skin, because it sits naturally and the soft, satiny sheen allows for a subtle reflection of light without it being shimmery.  As previously mentioned, the wear time of mineralize blushes is below average from my testing–around six hours–while average is eight hours.

MAC Utterly Game is softer and has a powdery look to it in comparison. It seems a little more on the peach side than Illamasqua Lover. There is a subtle difference in depth as compared to My Highland Honey.

If you missed any of our previous Semi-Precious coverage, check out this round-up.

The Glossover

LE
product

Warmth of Coral

B-
I wish MAC's mineralize blushes did better in the wear department, because the finishes of the Semi-Precious Mineralize Blushes is really fantastic. Warmth of Coral seems most suitable for light to medium skin tones.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, June 24th, 2011


MAC Pressed Amber Mineralize Blush

MAC Pressed Amber Mineralize Blush Swatches, Photos, Reviews

MAC Pressed Amber Mineralize Blush ($23.00 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “melange of nude, beige, and brown” that all comes together as a medium-dark, muted brown.  It’s brown without being overly warm or dark–no chocolate, bronze, or the like here.  It’s more aptly described a brown nude, I would say, because it retains a lot of the natural color found in the skin.  The texture is like Feeling Flush, with a very soft, smooth powder without frost or glitter.  It has a satin-like sheen that looks natural when applied to the skin.  This product could benefit from improved wear, though, as I do find it fades faster than the average blush–I get around six hours of wear (tested this shade yesterday) before it begins its fading decline.

It reminded me of a darker, less orange version of MAC Peachtwist. It doesn’t have the plum notes that MAC Darkly My Dear has. It ends up being closer to MAC Prim & Proper but a little darker, browner. It’s also comparable to Korres #15 Natural Blush without any gold sheen/shimmer. It’s darker and less pink compared to MAC Eversun.

The Glossover

LE
product

Pressed Amber

B
I know that when I first started getting into makeup, the concept of brown blush was totally lost on me, but it's one of my go-tos for a quick touch of warmth and color without being bronzy or pink. I could see this shade being a sleeper hit.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, June 24th, 2011


MAC Semi-Precious Rose Quartz Mineralize Skinfinish

MAC Semi-Precious Rose Quartz Mineralize Skinfinish Swatches, Photos, Reviews

MAC Semi-Precious Rose Quartz Mineralize Skinfinish ($28.00 for 0.22 oz.) is described as a “rosy pink base with inner circle of silver, lime, white-pink, and copper.” As complex as that inner circle sounds, it’s more of a pink beige base with chunkier gold micro-glitter/large sparkle. The outer edge is a medium-dark strawberry pink with subtle yellow undertones. As a warmer skin tone, it’s always nice to see yellow-based pinks, because blue-based pinks tend to dominate cosmetics, particularly blushes.

When the two are mixed together, the color created is a softened pink with a champagne sheen with flecks of sparkle. Applied to cheeks, this ended up being the subtlest shade of the three I tried–it gave just a little pink flush with a shimmer-sheen of pale champagne.  The texture is a little rougher than I’d like, mostly due to the center splotch having more of a glittery finish than a softer, finer shimmer.  Of the three I tried, this seems to have a frostier finish overall, too.  I would like to know why these are 0.22 oz. as compared to 0.35 oz. for previous mineralize skinfinishes.

The overall color was reminiscent of Rhapsody in Two–but much, much darker, which led me to Chic Couple, which has a similar color but doesn’t have the same shimmer-sheen, so it ends up looking darker. It’s a lighter, less red-based Petticoat.

The Glossover

LE
product

Rose Quartz

B-
I wish this had a smoother finish, because then it would sit better on the skin without emphasizing your skin's natural texture (which may mean dry skin, pores, etc.).

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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