Thursday, August 20th, 2009


Brash & Bold Pigment

MAC Makeup Art Cosmetics Collection: Pigments

The talented photographer Marilyn Minter was inspired by MAC’s glitters and pigments. From her portion of the Makeup Art Cosmetics Collection MAC Makeup Art Cosmetics Collection comes two Reflects Glitters (Copper and Rust), two Glitters (Gold and Fuchsia), four pigments (Cocomotion, Brash & Bold, Heritage Rouge, and Push the Edge), as well as Gloss Texture in Clear.

Pigment ($19.50)

  • Brash & Bold is a velvety, deep fuchsia-red with subtle fuchsia-purple sheen. If Bright Fuchsia and Pink Pearl pigment had a baby, this would be it.
  • Heritage Rouge is a dark, cranberry-burgundy frost. It’s incredibly pigmented and goes on smooth. It’s one of the best pigment textures to date. This was a previously released shade, so be sure to check your stash to make sure you don’t already have one.
  • Push the Edge is a deep blue-based violet purple with soft shimmer/sheen. It reminded me a lot of Entremauve pigment but bluer, not quite as plum. The textures are even similar, as this one is a bit chalky (though not terribly so).
  • Cocomotion is a rich shade of antique gold with a bit more brightness than your typical antique gold. It’s one of my favorite shades of pigments (again, check your stash before buying), because it’s extremely smooth, rich in pigmentation, and is a dream to work with.

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

Recommendation: I think both Brash & Bold and Push the Edge pigments represent two shades we don’t often see MAC putting out. While neither is necessarily absolutely, positively original, they’re both pleasant surprises. Cocomotion and Heritage Rouge are also exceptional shades, and it’s good to see them make a return, at least for a limited time.

Availability: MACCosmetics.com

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Friday, August 14th, 2009


Heritage Rouge pigment

Sneak Peek: MAC Makeup Art Cosmetics Collection — Pigments & Reflects Glitters

The talented photographer Marilyn Minter was inspired by MAC’s glitters and pigments. From her portion of the Makeup Art Cosmetics Collection comes two Reflects Glitters (Copper and Rust), two Glitters (Gold and Fuchsia), four pigments (Cocomotion, Brash & Bold, Heritage Rouge, and Push the Edge), as well as Gloss Texture in Clear.

Pigment ($19.50)

  • Heritage Rouge is a dark, cranberry-burgundy frost. It’s incredibly pigmented and goes on smooth. It’s one of the best pigment textures to date. This was a previously released shade, so be sure to check your stash to make sure you don’t already have one.
  • Push the Edge is a deep blue-based violet purple with soft shimmer/sheen. It reminded me a lot of Entremauve pigment but bluer, not quite as plum. The textures are even similar, as this one is a bit chalky (though not terribly so).
  • Cocomotion is a rich shade of antique gold with a bit more brightness than your typical antique gold. It’s one of my favorite shades of pigments (again, check your stash before buying), because it’s extremely smooth, rich in pigmentation, and is a dream to work with.

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

Reflects Glitter ($19.50)

  • Reflects Copper is a shimmery, glittering confection of orange copper. It is not eye-safe, so while it’s gorgeous to look at, I know there’s not much for me to do with it. Some things you can do with glitter that’s not eye-safe: mix with nail polish, mix with body lotion, mix with hair spray, and mix with lipgloss.
  • Reflects Rust is a rusty shade of orange-red. It’s just as glimmering as Reflects Copper, and the glitter is incredibly fine, but again, not eye-safe, which is just a bummer.

  • Product: 9/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 6/10
  • Packaging: 8/10
  • Overall: 8/10

Recommendation: I adore both Heritage Rouge and Cocomotion pigments. Push the Edge is nice, but not amazing like the other two. It is a rich shade of violet, so it may be worth some of the work to make it really pop in a look nonetheless. As much as I adore the way Reflects glitters look and feel, I find myself rarely using them. Both are beautiful shades, though they are also both permanent at PRO stores, so you don’t have to hurry if you’re on a budget.

Availability: MACCosmetics.com (August 20th), MAC stores

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Monday, July 27th, 2009


Star Powder #920

Make Up For Ever Star Powders ($19.00 for 0.09 oz.) are finely milled loose color. Think MAC pigments, but more of a powdery texture and more finely milled. They can be used wherever you want, however you want. I only used mine with mixing medium, personally, as I found without the adhesiveness of mixing medium, they didn’t stay put as well.

Pure Pigments ($19.00 for 0.12 oz.) are extremely pigment-rich loose color that are matte in finish. They’re like Star Powders, but they’re more intense and contain no shimmer. Pretty much all of the Pure Pigments will stain the skin (and your brushes — so be sure to wash those ASAP! after using).

  • #920 is a shimmery muted golden yellow with frosty shimmer. This is a good base shade under golds, browns, pinks, and oranges.
  • #910 is a grayish-green with golden shimmer. It looks like an olive green at first, but it’s a bit more gray.
  • #958 is a pretty medium green–reminds me of a grassy green, actually. It has slightly more subtle shimmer than some of the other Star Powders, though it is still noticeably shimmery.
  • #960 is a mix of blue with aqua and green shimmer. It reminded me a lot of MAC’s Parrot eyeshadow, but in a loose form. It also seemed a little bluer.
  • #929 is a warm, chocolate brown with golden shimmer. It goes on smoothly and has good color pigmentation.
  • #18 is a matte turquoise. If you ever lusted after MAC’s long-discontinued Turquoise pigment, check this out. It’s extremely similar, but it’s much better in finish/texture. If you’re into intense color, you’ll love Pure Pigments. I don’t like how much they stain skin/brushes, and I don’t have a need for shades quite this bright, so I don’t think I’ll pick up any additional shades going forward.

Which of these are your favorites?

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Thursday, July 23rd, 2009


Kitten Smudge Pot

Stila’s Fall Collection also included the launch of Kitten Smudge Pot, Black Cat Smudge Pot, and Kitten Lip Glaze. I have to tell you that I am absolutely in love with Black Cat. The swatches don’t even do it justice, just because the way the shimmer/glitter catches the light is stunning.  These new products will be available September 2009, but you might see them pop up on stilacosmetics.com earlier (perhaps late August).

  • Kitten Smudge Pot is a beige-y champagne shade. It’s definitely neutral, and it’s wearable alone or as a neutral base. It’s fairly frosty, though, so if you’re more of a matte finish person, this probably wouldn’t appeal to you. I like it as a one-swipe-and-you’re-done kind of color. It’s also nice on the lower water line.
  • Black Cat Smudge Pot is a fairly opaque black-base smudge pot with golden glitter/shimmer laced through the color. It’s really glitzy and reminds me of Hollywood glamour. This is awesome as a liner, but it also makes an awesome base for that totally dark, black smoky eye.
  • Kitten Lip Glaze is a sheer gloss with a peachy base and peachy-gold shimmer. It’s pretty, extremely wearable, and has a little stickiness to it. Compared to the Lip Enamel Luxe, it didn’t excite me so much. For those who love sheer, shimmering glosses with a neutral kick, this is definitely up your alley.

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Friday, July 17th, 2009

Benefit Creaseless Cream Eyeshadow/Liner ($19.00 each) is available in twelve different shades, ranging from soft white-gold to golden brown to gray. The Creaseless Cream Shadow is a crease-proof formula that can be sheered out or layered for a more intense effect.

I found that they did indeed live up to their name — they didn’t crease or smudge on me at any point during the day, when worn alone or as a base. I will say they did seem to perform better when used as a base, but I imagine most cream-based products do. Since I didn’t notice any creasing or fading when they were worn alone, I think they held up incredibly without anything on top, too. All of the shades I tried had a light sheen or subtle shimmer to them, which was just fine with me, but I’d definitely love to see Benefit add some more matte shades to the line-up in the future.

If you’re a big fan of MAC paint pots, I think you’d adore these! I found these more blendable/buildable than some paint pots, and I didn’t have as much trouble blending shadows on top of the deeper shades as I have with some of MAC’s darker colored paint pots (e.g. Nice Vice).

Creaseless Cream Eyeshadows

  • R.S.V.P. is a slightly warmed-up champagne shade with not much shimmer but more of a golden sheen. This makes for an excellent all-over lid color when you need a quick look, but it also works well as a base shade, particularly for golds and greens.
  • Skinny Jeans is a smoky, pewter-green shade. It’s kind of like like gray meets green meets gold. So, basically, all sorts of awesome. (I’m totally obsessed with the color pewter–go figure!) I love using this as a liner on the lower lash line or as a base for a really dark green smoky eye.
  • Stiletto is a soft, reddish-burgundy shade flecked with microfine golden shimmer. I found this to be one of the sheerer shades just from the get-go, but it layers really well so you can increase the intensity if you want to use it on the lid. When I used an angled eyeliner brush to apply it as liner, I didn’t have any sheerness issues, it was pretty deep and intense.
  • Tattle Tale is an opaque shade of white-gold with golden shimmer laced throughout. This was one of my favorites, just because it looks amazing on my warmer skin tone. It works well as an all-over lid color, neutral base (and I love that it’s a bit on the white side, so it helps colors pop more), as well as a highlighter on cheeks! Gotta love a multi-tasker!
  • Busy Signal is a golden-toned bronze-copper shade. It’s incredibly pigmented, needing just one thin layer to get intense color. It is definitely a little warm, but not overly so. It seems almost neutral at times. I found I preferred to use this one as a liner than an eyeshadow (just because I personally prefer to use cream shadows as bases rather than individual shadows).
  • Strut is a silver-gray with slight bluish-gray sheen. If you want a smoky eye, try this as a base!
  • Flatter Me is a neutral, slightly subdued pinky shade with a little bit of peach and gold shimmer. I think those with cooler toned skin may find this perfect for an all-over color when warmer, more golden tones shades don’t work. I’m warm-toned, but I still like this as a soft lid color. It also can double as a blush if you work quickly with it!
  • Birthday Suit is a soft, antique gold shade, which means I am ALL over it. It is such a gorgeous shade, and it has great pigmentation. I love it for layering with brown and gold shadows, as well as greens. I love wearing this alone or as a liner.
  • Get Figgy is a mauvey-pink with slight golden shimmer. I liked this one with purple shadows, as well as some pinks, but I did find myself reaching for it more as a liner than a base color.

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Sunday, April 26th, 2009

Urban Decay Cream Eyeshadows ($17.00 each) came out a few months ago as the newly revamped cream eyeshadows. I had heard many raves for the original Urban Decay cream eyeshadows, and these are definitely up to par! I’m really loving the packaging on this product, because it is a flocked applicator that you just pull out and use to apply (very much like a lipgloss or UDPP). Usually cream eyeshadows are packaged in pots or jars, so you either usey our fingers or a brush to apply.

These eyeshadows are a silicone, gel-based formula that provides a creaseless base layer of color. I tried Grass, which is a really bright pop of emerald, grassy green; Weeds, which is a bright, shimmering yellow-y gold-green; and Radium, which is a bright, shimmering medium blue color. I haven’t road-tested them on my eyes yet, but I did blend them out on my hand to test out the staying power. Verdict? They held up all day, despite several hand washings! Definitely something to consider for the hot, sweaty summer months coming up.

Other Shades:

Asphalt (black with lots of silver and iridescent glitter), Delinquent (deep metallic purple), Grass (metallic junebug green), Midnight Rodeo (pink champagne with lots of silver and iridescent glitter), Moonshine (pale silver with lots of silver glitter), Mushroom (gunmetal with taupe shift and iridescent glitter), Radium (metallic blue), Rehab (creamy taupe), Sphynx (icy pink with silver and iridescent glitter), Suburbia (medium bronze with subtle gold microsparkle), Weeds (medium green with yellow shift and big silver glitter), Whipped (golden peach with subtle gold microsparkle)

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