Thursday, October 15th, 2009

MAC Magic, Mirth, & Mischief Collection
Nail Lacquer: Lucky Number

MAC Magic, Mirth, & Mischief Review: Nail Lacquer & Softsparkle Eye Pencil

MAC launches two metallic finish lacquers: Lucky Number and $$$ Yes (which is a repromote from Heatherette), as well as two repromoted shades of their Softsparkle Eye Pencils — Nightsky and Iris Accents.

  • Lucky Number is a metallic-finish purplish-berry with a high-shine/sheen. Since it is a metallic finish polish, it does show brush strokes. I don’t know if it’s even feasible to manage to get no brush strokes to show, but I know I don’t have the patience to attempt such a feat. It’s a pretty color, though, and it’s not something I already own.
  • $$$ Yes is like wearing tin foil on your nails. It’s a bright silver with a metallic finish. Like Lucky Number, brush strokes will show up. I’ve just kind of learned to deal with brush strokes in metallic shades myself.
  • Nightsky is a medium black with silver microsparkle.  This one is opaque and goes on easily.
  • Iris Accents is a cool-toned, silvery-purple with silver microsparkle.  I find this one more of a semi-opaque shade and doesn’t go on as nicely as Nightsky–it will go on opaque, it just requires layering.

I liked Lucky Number a lot, and if you haven’t played around with the Softsparkles, you may find you like the glitz of them. I like them, but I never find myself reaching for them, despite owning all of them, so they’re not must-haves for me.

  • Product: 23/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 3/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

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Tuesday, October 13th, 2009

Urban Decay 24/7 Super Stash ($36.00) is just one of three different sets of 24/7 Eye Pencils available for the holiday season.  If I had to pick one, I’d opt for the Super Stash, if only because you can grab the four new shades all at once.   In the Super Stash, you’ll receive nine half-sized 24/7 Eye Pencils (the full-size is 0.04 oz. and these are 0.02 oz. each).  The Hi-Fi and Stereophonic sets include 24/7 Eye Pencils as well, and each is 0.03 oz., so they’re just a little smaller, but not by much, than the full-sized versions.  Most of us will never get through a full-sized blue eye liner, so these sets are a great way to grab lovely colored liners without buying more than you’ll use.

Rather than just review the Super Stash, I’m actually going to review all of the 24/7 Eye Pencils I own.  Apparently, I’ve finally collected them all except Baked, Crash (in the Stereophonic set), and Mildew (in the Hi-Fi set), which I suppose now I’m compelled to get just to round everything out.  (Does anyone else feel that way… the need to complete when you’re nearly there anyway?)

  • 24/7 Super Stash includes: Corrupt, Binge, Eldorado, Oil Slick, Zero, Graffiti, Ransom, Rockstar, and Stash and retails for $36.00.
  • Hi-Fi includes: Mildew, Zero, Flipside, 1999 24/7 Eye Pencils, as well as Distortion Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner.
  • Stereophonic includes: Crash, Zero, Underground, Gunmetal, as well as Midnight Cowboy Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner.

Why 24/7 Liners? They’re pigmented, soft pencil liners that are easy to use, look great, and last awhile.  I use these on my lower lash line all the time, because they add a lil’ pop of color, but they don’t migrate all over the place throughout the day.  They’re fairly budge-proof (at least, on me), and they are so easy to apply, because they’re soft.

24/7 Super Stash Eye Pencils

  • Corrupt is a rich dark brown with warm undertones.
  • Graffiti is a medium pop of bright green with just a tinge of teal in the base (it’s a bluer green vs. yellower green).
  • Binge is a rich navy blue with a slight cobalt kind of look to it with a soft sheen.
  • Eldorado is a brighter pop of yellow-based gold–it’s more of a true gold compared to Honey.
  • Zero is a black liner–it’s not the richest or most intense black I’ve seen, but it’s pretty dark and definitely not a light black.  It doesn’t have any shimmer or sheen.
  • Oil Slick is a silver-speckled light black.  The black base is just a smidgen lighter than Zero, but it has silver glitter/sparkle that lighten it up further.Graffiti
  • Ransom is a iridescent purple with a slight reddish purple undertone.Stash is a greenish-gold–like an antique gold with a green tone.
  • Rockstar is a dark burgundy-purple with a red undertone and slight reddish sheen.

24/7 Eye Pencils

  • Yeyo is a silvery-white — it’s not 100% white on me, there is a little bit of silver sheen to it, but it’s close.  It’s just not a stark white (which may or may not be what you’re looking for).
  • Gunmetal is a gunmetal silver-gray.  It’s a gray-black bas with a silver sheen.
  • Dime is a bright silver-gray with a high metallic sheen.
  • Bourbon is a medium dark chocolate brown with a slight sheen.
  • Underground is a cooler, medium taupe brown with a metallic sheen.
  • 1999 is a red-berry purple with a slight metallic sheen.
  • Lust is a cool-toned dark violet purple with low sheen.
  • Covet is a rich, jewel-tone teal with a slight shimmery finish.
  • Flipside is a medium pop of bright teal with silvery-teal shimmer.
  • Deviant is bright pop of medium dark blue with silver sparkle.
  • Electric is an intense, bright blue-based turquoise.  It’s lighter and brighter than Flipside.
  • Honey is a deep gold with just a bit of brownish tinge to it.  It does really remind me of honey.
  • Lucky is a coppery orange-brown with a metallic sheen.

The majority of the shades available are also available in full-size, which go for $17 a pop and you get 0.04 oz. of product in each.  The only thing I didn’t like about the Super Stash liners is that they do feel a little “stumpy” in your hand, because they are so short.

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Availability: Urban Decay

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Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

Urban Decay Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner ($18.00 for 0.25 fl. oz.) is a glitter eyeliner with colored glitter suspended in a clear base.  Uncapped and you’ll find a thin eyeliner brush attached (much like the typical liquid liner).  There are currently eleven shades available–from fuchsia to blue to iridescent.

Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner

  • Catfight is a deep fuchsia-pink.
  • Groupie is a pale, muted pink–very muted.
  • Baked is a deep golden-toned brown.
  • Midnight Cowboy is a silvery taupe brown.
  • Spandex is a multi-colored array of blue and gold and brown glitter.  (Looks absolutely nothing like it does in the tube–the rest do.)
  • Air Guitar is a slightly lightened medium blue.
  • Stagedive is a blue-based teal.
  • Mullet is a slightly olive-toned green.
  • Metalhead is a medium dark violet purple.
  • Glam Rock is a medium silvery-gray.
  • Distortion is a whitish, iridescent mix of multi-colored and pink glitter.

What I like using these glitter eyeliners for is to layer over Urban Decay’s 24/7 Liners (or any liner, really–they just coordinate well with Urban Decay’s 24/7 Liners).  Alone, they’re just so-so, because the clear base makes them apply kind of sketchy. They can also be used over eyeshadow, too, for the same kind of effect.

In the swatches, you’ll see how it’s not a very clear, even or defined line of glitter.  When you use it over a liner, it works much better, because you get the sparkle of the glitter, but the colored liner fills in any gaps so the glitter actually pops.

I think I’d love these more if they had colored bases as well, just because it’d be more of a two-in-one and require a little less effort on my part.  They just may make excellent, super glittery bases if they were in a colored base, too… Hm!  Nevertheless, they were designed to have a clear base, so I won’t knock the product because my preference is different.  It’s much like Urban Decay describes, and I love the range of shades they have.

Oh!  One more idea, Urban Decay, how about a holiday set of miniature sized versions of these?  Would be awesome methinks!

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Monday, September 28th, 2009

MAC DSquared Collection
MAC Greasepaint Sticks: V, B, Black

MAC Cosmetics DSquared Collection: Greasepaint Stick & Feline Kohl Power

MAC DSquared Collection is small launch in-stores today, the 28th. The collection includes three shades of Greasepaint Sticks and repromotion of Feline kohl power.

Greasepaint Stick

  • B is a deep, dark navy blue with lighter blue shimmer and a metallic sheen.
  • V is a deep, dark purple-violet with lighter purple shimmer and a metallic sheen.
  • Black is a dark black-purple with a violet cast and shimmer that’s more noticeable when swatched than when used as a liner.

Kohl Power

  • Feline is an intense, richly pigmented black liner that goes on incredibly dark. One of my favorite black liners!

Per my review of the Greasepaint Stick from Style Black, I haven’t yet found these to be rockin’ my world yet. They migrate on my lower lash line quite a bit – kind of smudgy and creasing on the lower lash line. It’s great that I can smudge the product when I’m applying it, but after I smudge it, I expect it to stay put!

On the water line, it holds up better, but it seems to aggravate my eyes, so I think I’m too sensitive to wear it on my water line. I wish the Black Greasepaint Stick was actually a true black, particularly since V exists so soon after the original release. The Greasepaint Sticks can be a bit thick to work with, so you may find yourself using a separate brush to apply this product in thinner, more precise lines. They feel a bit like a shadestick to me, actually.

  • Product: 8/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 7/10
  • Packaging: 8/10

Recommendation: If you like shadesticks, you may find these to be great bases for darker looks!

Availability: MAC Cosmetics

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Sunday, September 27th, 2009


Roach, Gash, Lucky, Shattered, Acid Rain

Urban Decay Liquid Liner ($18.00) is available in a slew of shades in a cute inkwell-like pot. There are fourteen shades to choose from, from purple to black to red.

  • Roach is a reddish-toned dark brown with a metallic finish.
  • Gash is a deep red with just a touch of brown.
  • Lucky is a coppery medium-dark brown.
  • Shattered is a medium-dark grassy green with some antique gold thrown in.
  • Acid Rain is a bright pop of chartreuse green.

Urban Decay’s Liquid Liners are incredibly long-wearing, smudge-proof, budge-proof, and nearly waterproof. Once dry (takes a few seconds, but it doesn’t take long), the liner doesn’t budge at all. You can move it around before it dries, but once it sets, good luck with that! All of the ones I have give off a bit of a metallic sheen even when dry, which is something I personally like. The formula is really great for those who need their liner to stay in place without a lot of fuss. I love that these don’t fade even a little bit after twelve hours of wear. I also love the shade variety — you can’t always find red or bright green liquid liners!

The packaging is so-so; the inkwell design is cute, but it’s not space-saving. It also doesn’t make these as portable as they could be if they were in the more traditional liquid liner tube packaging (I heard that it used to be, actually!). The brush included could probably be a little finer, a little tighter, but it gets the job done with some practice. If you’re not planning to take these on-the-go, a separate eyeliner brush is a better bet. I like either 208 or 209 by MAC myself for these. I will say that the included brush does feel quite comfortable in my hand, even if the brush itself could be improved upon.

  • Product: 9/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 7/10
  • Packaging: 7/10

Recommendation: If you’re looking for richly pigmented liquid liners, Urban Decay has you covered!

Availability: Sephora

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Monday, September 21st, 2009


MAC Black CCB

MAC Style Black: Cream Colour Base & Greasepaint Stick Review, Swatches

MAC Style Black is a deep, dark collection with the rich tones of black as inspiration.  With it, two cream colour bases (kind of like a cream eyeshadow, but it’s really a multi-tasking product), Black and Bat Black; as well as a new product — the greasepaint stick in Black.

Cream Colour Base

  • Black is a solid, creamy black with a slight sheen but no shimmer.
  • Bat Black is a creamy burgundy-black with more burgundy than black and a glossy sheen.

Cream Colour Bases can be difficult to work with.  If you find that a lot of cream-based products crease extremely easily on you, these may require more work than you’d like to do to get these to work on you.  Be sure to read any safety precautions that may come with these, too, for areas that you shouldn’t use these products on.  I like lighter colored CCBs, because I like to use them on cheeks and lips more than I do on eyes.

Greasepaint Stick

  • Black is actually a purple-black with just a little bit of shimmer when you look at it up-close, but the shimmer wasn’t noticeable when I applied it on my eyes.   I found that the greasepaint held up better on my waterline than my lower lash line, as it actually migrated and smudged a bit on the lower lash line but is still on my lash line about two and a half hours later.

  • Product: 8/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 7/10
  • Packaging: 7/10

Recommendation: If you like CCBs and need a dark base, try these two.  If you like intense black liners, you may consider the greasepaint stick, but it’s not entirely smudge proof.

Availability: MAC Cosmetics

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