Friday, December 9th, 2011

Lancome Volcano Color Design Eyeshadow
Lancome Volcano Color Design Eyeshadow

Lancome Volcano Color Design Eyeshadow

Lancome Volcano Color Design Eyeshadow ($18.00 for 0.042 oz.) is described as a “muted taupe-grey” with a shimmer finish. It’s a great variation on taupe–a cool-toned brown with a grayish overcast and has more of a satiny sheen than an overt shimmer finish, but it doesn’t deliver on full color coverage. As far as similar shades, theBalm Selfish and NARS Grand Palais are close in color but much more shimmery. MAC Satin Taupe is much more intense and deeper.

Unfortunately, the color payoff is somewhat lacking; it deposits decent color, and I discovered it performed a little better applied on the eye, but it’s just not as good as it could (or should) be and definitely requires some packing and pressing of the color onto to the lid to get decent payoff. The texture is soft without being powdery or too fragile. The formula is designed to be long-wearing with “pigment-packed color” that “stays true for daylong wear.” As expected, the wear is not perfect without a primer–I get around eight hours, after that point there is very subtle creasing–but have no issues when it is applied over a primer.

The Glossover

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product

Volcano

C+
It's really too bad about the color payoff--I was really hoping to add another fantastic taupe to the list, as sometimes finding the right shade of taupe can be a challenge, especially one that nails it on texture, pigmentation, and color.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

6.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

3.5/5

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Thursday, December 8th, 2011

NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo ($33.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “shimmering ecru” and “rich emerald green.” The lighter shade is a pale yellow beige with a mostly matte finish, but it has a really soft, silky texture with a buttery, dense feel. It’s similar in color to Make Up For Ever #102 with better color payoff. The darker shade is a greenish-teal; it’s a little tealer/bluer than emerald green, but it’s very close. It has more of a matte color base with pale gold shimmer-sparkle on top. It’s the closest shade I have to Jealousy Wakes, which is greener; I think if you wanted more of a teal and found Jealousy Wakes too green on you, then Misfit would be more up your alley. It reminded me more of MAC Surf USA, which is a touch more teal. It’s soft, smooth, and very pigmented.

Both shades have excellent color payoff, and the two pair well with each other. There’s a good amount of contrast, so you can take it from light to dark and everything in-between. Plus, with the yellow in the beige, you can pull this shade to look greener when they’re used together. The wear of this duo was nice, too; normally, when I wear these without a base, it doesn’t quite last for a full eight hours, but Misfit wore for nine without fading or creasing, though the green shade did stain somewhat, so I took off half of point from application (which does include removal!).

The Glossover

palette

NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A+
One of the best NARS eyeshadow duos I've tried to-date, and the fact that it also happens to have an emerald green (slightly teal!) shade in it is only an added bonus. Those who prefer their NARS duos to offer contrast will find this one does that, too!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

Benefit Fancy Pansy Eyeshadow
Benefit Fancy Pansy Eyeshadow

Benefit Fancy Pansy Eyeshadow ($18.00 for 0.11 oz.) is described as an “orchid silk.” It’s a cool-toned, pink-lavender with a pale, iridescent lilac shimmer-sheen. At first glance, it seems like it might be like shades such as MAC Stars ‘n Rockets, but it’s much, much lighter with less of a duochrome; it’s more like the iridescence of those types of shades without the strong fuchsia base. Inglot #346 is a matte version of this shade. Milani Royalty is the closest dupe I found.

It has a silky smooth texture, and the powder is finely-milled. It’s not powdery but so soft that it makes blending a breeze. The powder feels dense and buttery, so it delivers good color payoff without having to pack it on. Compared to other shades in the range, this one is just a tiny bit under-pigmented but that’s being nit picky.  Velvet Eyeshadows wear well, too, without fading during the day and no fall out occurs.  Another nice thing about the range is that they’re twice the size of most eyeshadows.  Fancy Pansy pairs well with darker purples, whether blue or red-based, along with navy blues.

The Glossover

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product

Fancy Pansy

A+
Benefit's Velvet Eyeshadows seem underrated or under-appreciated, because I think it's a really solid range, but I don't feel like I see people raving about these! They're double the size of typical eyeshadows with good color payoff and an amazing texture.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Guerlain Les Aquas Eyeshadow Palette
Guerlain Les Aquas Eyeshadow Palette

Guerlain Les Aquas Eyeshadow Palette

Guerlain Les Aquas Eyeshadow Palette ($59.00 for 0.25 oz.) is an upcoming new and permanent quad that features an “iridescent blue, matte navy, velvety turquoise, and glacier metallic blue.” This is one of the better eyeshadow quads I’ve tested from Guerlain since they reformulated and relaunched their eyeshadow range, so it was a welcome surprise. The pigmentation is good across the board, and it applies easily. I did find that without a primer, there was some fading after eight hours, but over a primer, it was fine.

The left most shade is a semi-matte, dark teal-blue with a grayish overcast and sparse teal shimmer. The base color is more matte, but there is definitely some sparkle to the shade. It has good color payoff, though the texture feels a little dry. Illamasqua Android seemed similar, though it is much more metallic and frosted. It has a similar base color to MAC Blue Spruce but doesn’t have the copper sparkle.

In the center, the top shade is a aqua teal with an iridescent gold shimmer-sheen. It does flash more golden depending on the angle. The color payoff of this shade was really nice, and the texture was silky soft and applied smoothly. Milani Caribbean Sea is similar but has less golden shimmer. Make Up For Ever #83 is much more intense. theBalm Open to Offers Olwen is darker. Inglot #415 is more vibrant.

Below that shade is a medium-dark bold blue with a soft, metallic shimmer-sheen. The pigmentation is excellent, and the texture feels soft to the touch and smooths out easily. I find Guerlain’s more frosted shades to have the best color payoff and feel compared to some of their mattes, satins, etc. MAC Pure Creation is a touch lighter. MAC Deep Truth is a bit darker. MAC Freshwater is comparable. Inglot #426 is also similar.

The right most shade is a bright, metallic silver. Of all the shades in the palette, it had the weakest color payoff–there was some underlying sheerness but it felt smooth to the touch. IT is similar to MAC Misty and Bobbi Brown Iced Blue.

The palette initially bears resemblance to Les Ombres de Nuit, but this is a brighter, warmer palette. None of the shades actually overlap in terms of color, but here, we have a vibrant aqua teal instead of a muted grayish teal; vibrant medium-dark blue instead of a navy blue; the other two shades are not similar.

The Glossover

palette

Les Aquas

A-
The color combination works together, though if you're not a fan of blues, you may find this palette too bold! You don't see too many bright colored palettes by high-end/designer brands, so I definitely appreciate Guerlain going out of the box with this color scheme.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Estee Lauder Cyber Lilac Pure Color Gelee Powder Eyeshadow
Estee Lauder Cyber Lilac Pure Color Gelee Powder Eyeshadow

Estee Lauder Cyber Lilac Pure Color Gelee Powder Eyeshadow

Estee Lauder Cyber Lilac Pure Color Gelee Powder Eyeshadow ($24.00 for 0.03 oz.) is a medium-dark red-toned purple with a silvered shimmer-sheen. It delivers good color payoff both wet and dry, and when it is applied wet, the metallic finish comes through more. Urban Decay Rockstar is less shimmered, so it looks darker. Bare Escentuals Encore is also similar.

I liked this one better than Cyber Green, because the texture was softer and smoother, even when applied dry. Still, the texture is like a cross of “baked” eyeshadows (like MAC Mineralize Eyeshadows) and a regular powder, but infinitely better than baked products, because it retains the vibrancy in color when it is applied damp–it doesn’t dry down to something faded. Alone, it wears about six hours without any issues when it is applied dry, and when it is applied wet, I was able to get to eight hours without issues.

The Glossover

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product

Cyber Lilac

A-
These are definitely worth checking out, just because the formula feels a little different than other eyeshadows I've come across. I like that they can be used wet or dry, but you can still get good color payoff if you use it dry and you don't lose vibrancy when you use it wet.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Sunday, December 4th, 2011

Guerlain Boulevard du Montparnasse Eyeshadow Palette
Guerlain Boulevard du Montparnasse Eyeshadow Palette

Guerlain Spring 2012: Boulevard du Montparnasse Eyeshadow Palette

Guerlain Boulevard du Montparnasse Eyeshadow Palette ($85.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a new and limited edition palette for spring. It contains six eyeshadows, with the long, skinny shade on the right designed to be used as an eyeshadow or eyeliner. The palette is hefty with a metal compact and filigree lid. There’s an interior mirror that flips open that’s connected to the lower portion of the palette. Inside, there is also a small, dual-ended brush that is serviceable but not better than the average full-size brush. The shades are described as soft pink, tea rose, pearl mauve, soft violet, luminous pink, and intense plum. I’m not entirely sure which description goes with which, to be honest! I know that the luminous pink shade is the center shade and the intense plum is the eyeshadow/liner shade on the far right of the palette.

The upper left eyeshadow is a pale white pink with a satiny shimmer. It has surprisingly good color payoff for as pale and light as it is, and it doesn’t look chalky against my skin tone. It’s similar to Tarina Tarantino Delightful (more shimmer), MAC Fresh Ice (more shimmer, purpler), and Bare Escentuals Muse (a touch darker, pinker).

The bottom right (or side right) eyeshadow is pale pink-tinted mauve with a pearly sheen. It’s soft and light with nice pigmentation and a smooth, silky soft feel. It didn’t seem like something different, but I couldn’t find a dupe for it; there’s the mauve in it that separates it from shades like Bare Escentuals Giddy, which is similar in lightness and finish but is much pinker.

In the center, there is a vibrant medium, subtly blue-based pink with a white, frosted finish. The color payoff is nice, and it has a really dense, buttery texture. Make Up For Ever #85 is less blue-based. It is fairly similar to Urban Decay Hot Pants. MAC Feather Pink also compares well in regards to hue, but it is bluer and matte.

To the right of the center pink eyeshadow, there is a medium-dark purple with a pearly sheen. It could be more pigmented; there is some softness there that makes it appear less like it does in the pan when applied to the skin. Make Up For Ever #142 is a darker, deeper version. Bare Escentuals Encore is darker and less red.

The bottom shade is a rosy brown with a satin finish; it almost appears matte. The color payoff is so-so, and on deeper skin tones, I’m not sure it would show up well. Inglot #344 is browner, while Inglot #359 is pinker.

On the right side, there is an eggplant purple with a pearled finish. It’s supposed to be an eyeshadow/eyeliner shade, so I did swatches of it dry and wet. This shade was finicky to work with; the texture was drier and stiffer compared to the other shades in the palette, so the resulting color payoff was sheerer and a bit uneven. When it is used wet, it is a lot easier to use. MAC Hyperviolet is deeper and less purple. Bare Escentuals Nightcap is darker, more matte, and browner. Le Metier de Beaute Fig is deeper and browner. MAC Fig 1 is a little darker and matte. Inglot #445 is a touch lighter and more frosted.

Overall, the palette is decent but not great–the color payoff could be improved. This was really my major issue with this palette, because three shades had pigmentation issues to some degree, with the eggplant shade having the most (as well as texture issues). Even though pink eyeshadow can sometimes be difficult to wear, Guerlain’s incorporated a lot of mauve, rose, and plum to dial back the pink; the only genuinely pink shade in the palette is the center shade. Both the pink mauve and rosy brown work well as neutrals. The wear of these eyeshadows is better over a prime and so-so without; they wear about eight hours before I start noticing some slight fading. I find Guerlain’s eyeshadows a tiny bit powdery overall.

The Glossover

palette

Boulevard du Montparnasse

B-
If you like palettes that deliver softer color, you may still enjoy this one, as the colors tend to be a little more muted compared to how they look in the pan. If you like true-to-pan results with denser, more buttery textures, you may want to skip this. At $85, I expect all shades to perform excellently, so it would be a skip for me.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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