Thursday, August 19th, 2010

MAC Fabulous Felines - Burmese Beauty
MAC Fabulous Felines – Burmese Beauty

MAC Fabulous Felines: Burmese Beauty Review, Photos, Swatches (Eyes)

I’m going to break each section into two parts — eyes and lips/cheeks. There are a lot of products, and I definitely want to focus on each part of the collection, it’s hard to digest so much in just one post. I’m working as fast as I can to get all the photos and swatches up, and I’ll fill in with more dupes as I find them.  I am missing a few pieces, and I will update the post and review once I’m able to purchase them.

Burmese Beauty Eyeshadow Quad ($36.00 U.S. / $43.00 CDN)

  • Prized is a soft nude beige with pale white micro-shimmer with a satin finish. It reminded me of a much more pigmented Shroom.  This will work well as a highlighter on light to medium skin tones, but it may be more of a light lid color for darker skin tones.
  • Skintone 2 is a slightly neutralized gold with a frost finish. It’s not a cool-toned gold, but it doesn’t have really strong yellow undertones either. This is a shade of gold that can be worn by both warm and cool skin tones.  It’s a lot less yellow compared to Goldmine (and not as frosty).  Maybe like Flip from Spring Colour Forecast. This is a repromote from Makeup Art Cosmetics.
  • Burmese Beauty is a duochrome of teal and red-based deep brown with a lustre finish. It doesn’t actually feel like a lustre to me–it’s much smoother, not so glittery like your typical lustre. This is very much like Blue Brown pigment except less intense (the brown base isn’t as strong, nor is the metallic finish). It’s a lighter, more pigmented version of Club eyeshadow as well.
  • Showstopper is a dirty, cool-toned dark matte brown. It works well when used with a brush in actual application, while it doesn’t swatch very well. This shade has been repromoted at least a half dozen times in the past five years.

Superslick Liquid Eye Liner ($17.50 U.S. / $21.00 CDN)

  • Desires & Devices is an antique gold with a dirty olive base and a mixture of green and gold shimmer.
  • Defiantly Feline is a medium-dark brown with deep gold and amber shimmer. It looks rather medium brown when used lightly and thinly.
  • Treat Me Nice is a medium grassy green with gold and green sparkle.

Pigment ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Antique Green is a darkened cool-toned green with a touch of teal. It’s definitely green, but it’s not your typical green, which tends to have stronger yellow undertones.  This is a repromote.
  • Gold Stroke is a reddish medium bronze brown with a frosty finish. It’s pretty, and it has some warmth to it, but it’s not overly warm. It makes a nice base for golds. This is a repromote.

See photos and swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

Becca Hyawatha Loose Shimmer Powder
Becca Hyawatha Loose Shimmer Powder

The Everywhere Highlighter

Becca Hyawatha Loose Shimmer Powder ($20.00 for 0.15 oz.) is a beautiful candlelit nude — it’s just a slight warmth, golden tone, but it’s not actually gold. It has an ultra smooth, ridiculously fine-milled texture; it feels like silk when pressed against skin. It even seems to adhere just fine without any sort of liquid or adhesive-based product (like Mixing Medium) when used as a highlighter. The fine texture makes it easy to mix in with your foundation or moisturizer for a quick and easy all-over glow.

Each jar packs a lot of product, too — so many brands do loose powders/pigments, but they’re usually less than 0.10 oz. (more like 0.05 oz.!), and Becca stampedes in with a hefty 0.15 oz.  Like many loose colors, a little goes a long way, so it doesn’t take much to get that effortless glow.  I didn’t see this product on Becca’s website at the moment (I bought mine during a HauteLook sale), but it’s readily available at other e-tailers like Dermstore and Glow.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

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

RECOMMENDATION: For a beautiful, all-over glow that’s never frosty or shimmery but just that lit-from-within kind of look, Hyawatha does an excellent job.

AVAILABILITY: Dermstore.com, Glow

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Monday, August 16th, 2010

Shiseido BR307 Strata Eye Color Trio
Shiseido Strata (BR307) Eye Color Trio

Still Loving Shiseido’s Eye Color Trios

Shiseido Strata (BR307) Luminizing Satin Eye Color Trio ($33.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a neutral-colored trio of eyeshadows with the same fantastic formula as Tropicalia. If bold colors aren’t your thing, consider Strata. It’s a mix of a golden, taupe-y brown, medium brown with neutral undertones, and a pearly white with subtle white gold sheen. The texture of these trios is so buttery, almost creamy, and nicely pigmented, too.

I always think of Shiseido for skin care (perhaps because some of the first Shiseido products I tried were from their suncare range), but these eyeshadows are stellar. I mean, they’re truly impressive–you gotta swatch ‘em next time you’re near a Shiseido counter.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

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

RECOMMENDATION: For some blendable, beautiful neutrals, Shiseido has you covered. SO smooth, so buttery. Such an amazing texture!

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Saturday, August 14th, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains - Maleficent

MAC Disney Venomous Villains Collection: Maleficent Review, Photos, Swatches

As we continue on, we move to Maleficent‘s (from Sleepy Beauty) “collection,” which includes two mineralize eyeshadow duos, two lipsticks, two lipglasses, one beauty powder, and three nail lacquers.

All of the character images are stamped on the products; they are not stickers. You can find official promotional imagery and color descriptions here. The collection launches on September 30th, 2010 at all MAC locations, October 2010 internationally, and approximately September 28th for online. You may also want to check your local store to see if they are holding an unveiling/preview party for the collection.

Lipglass ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Revenge is Sweet is a sheer, jelly-ish medium pink with fuchsia micro-shimmer. It has a very wet look to it but seems to settle into lip lines.
  • Wrong Spell is a semi-sheer, burnt burgundy with pinky-plum and copper shimmer. I thought Liqueur was similar, but it’s much, much lighter and bronze, not burgundy.

Lipstick ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Violetta is a brightened fuchsia-violet with an amplified finish. This is a PRO color.
  • Dark Deed is a darkened blood red with blackish-brown with an amplified finish. It’s a ever-so-slightly redder version of Media (but they are very close), and Dark Deed has a wetter/glossier finish.

Mineralize Eyeshadow Duo ($21.00 U.S. / $25.00 CDN)

  • My Dark Magic is a duo that features a blackened purple with a frosty finish and a violet-tinged blue with a navy-black base. Young Punk (Style Black) has a stronger black base with more of a glittery finish than the shimmer finish of this product.
  • She Who Dares is a combination of a darkened navy-black base with medium-dark blue shimmer and a dirty green and gold shimmered over a blackened, forest green base. The blue side does resemble Blue Flame (Style Black) with the finish being smoother in this product.

Beauty Powder ($25.00 U.S. / $30.00 CDN)

  • Briar Rose is a cool-toned, blue-based medium pink. It’s kind of like a bubblegum pink to me–like perhaps Snob lipstick in blush form. It is also reminiscent of a less purple, less cool version of Pink Swoon–perhaps if Pink Swoon and Well-Dressed had a baby. It does apply rather sheerly, though it can be built up.

Nail Lacquer ($13.00 U.S. / $15.50 CDN)

  • Bad Fairy is a stunning shade of duochrome polish that’s both ruby red, molten lava copper, and gold, depending on how the light hits it.
  • Formidable! shimmers teal, blue, violet, and reddened purple, depending on the light. It is, however, a dead-on dupe for ORLY Galaxy Girl.  There is nothing that I can distinguish as different between the two brands–formula feels the same, it wears the same.  MAC may take just a minute longer to dry.
  • Mean & Green flashes burgundy, green, and gold and is totally full of shimmer. It is a dead-on dupe for ORLY Space Cadet.

See more photos and swatches! Continue reading →

Saturday, August 14th, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains - Evil Queen

MAC Disney Venomous Villains Collection: Evil Queen Review, Photos, Swatches

Next up, we have the Evil Queen from Snow White. The Evil Queen’s “collection” includes two lipsticks, two lipglasses, three eyeshadows, one beauty powder, and one blush.

All of the character images are stamped on the products; they are not stickers. You can find official promotional imagery and color descriptions here. The collection launches on September 30th, 2010 at all MAC locations, October 2010 internationally, and approximately September 28th for online. You may also want to check your local store to see if they are holding an unveiling/preview party for the collection.

Lipglass ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Strange Potion is a lightly pink shimmered, soft pinky-coral that’s semi-opaque in coverage. This is a really beautiful shade of gloss–I can’t think of anything quite like it that MAC has put out. Very flattering on both cool and warm-toned skin.
  • Hot House is a deep fuchsia-berry with iridescent fuchsia-purple shimmer. It applies and looks semi-opaque on lips. It originally was released in Strange Hybrid.

Lipstick ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Sinister is a semi-sheer brown with pinky-plum shimmer. It looks better on the lips than as a swatch. This has a lustre finish.
  • Toxic Tale is a bright, opaque shade of nearly neon coral with an orange lean. Reminds me of Illamasqua Mistress, but in a lipstick form. Very, very pigmented–creamy but not slippery. This has a satin finish.

Eyeshadow ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Her Alter Image is a cool-toned icy, pale lilac with a veluxe pearl finish. It’s pigmented and purpler than Beautiful Iris, but it’s similar.
  • Vile Violet is a darkened cool-toned violet with muted blue tones. This has a matte finish.
  • Vainglorious is a bronzed burgundy with a frost finish. It’s similar to Cranberry, except a little browner, and it’s a bit darker and more burgundy than Star Violet–but it’s closest to Star Violet.

Blush ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Bite of an Apple is a brightened coral-pink blush that can really pack a punch!  Very opaque, though it is blendable.  This has a matte finish.

Beauty Powder ($25.00 U.S. / $30.00 CDN)

  • Oh So Fair is a soft, petal pink with subtle shimmer-sheen. It’s sheer and looks very, very subtle on my medium skin tone. I wouldn’t recommend this shade for darker skin tones, because I think it would have a tendency to turn ashy.

See more photos and swatches! Continue reading →

Saturday, August 14th, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains - Cruella
MAC Venomous Villains — Cruella de Vil

MAC Disney Venomous Villains Collection: Cruella de Vil Review, Photos, Swatches

There are four “parts” to the collection, with each part being represented by each of the characters. After much indecision, I finally committed to reviewing everything by character, rather than product type! First up is Cruella de Vil, the villainness from 101 Dalmatians. Cruella’s “collection” includes two lipsticks, two lipglasses, three eyeshadows, one Penultimate eyeliner, one beauty powder, and one blush.

All of the character images are stamped on the products; they are not stickers. You can find official promotional imagery and color descriptions here. The collection launches on September 30th, 2010 at all MAC locations, October 2010 internationally, and approximately September 28th for online. You may also want to check your local store to see if they are holding an unveiling/preview party for the collection.

Lipglass ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Wicked Ways is a brightened cherry red that’s semi-opaque with subtle golden shimmer.  I think this is going to be a very nice red on both warm and cool skin tones.  It leans just a tiny bit blue, I’d say… but very close to neutral.
  • Devilishly Stylish is a semi-sheer white-shimmered, slightly champagne nude. Not exactly the most original shade, but with some darker eye/lip products, will be a nice relief for those who need something softer.

Lipstick ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Innocence, Beware! is a semi-opaque pinky nude with a cremesheen finish. It’s a little glossy, not overly creamy, and I found it accentuated every imperfection on my lips. Make sure to exfoliate shortly before applying this shade. It seems like a pinker Blankety or paler Plink!, as well as in the family of nudes like Creme d’Nude and Hue.  This shade is more opaque than the latter three, but the texture is best in Hue (smoother, less accentuating of flaws).
  • Heartless is an almost neutral red that applies nearly opaque; if it leans in any direction, I would say slightly orange, but it really seems closer to neutral. It has an amplified finish. The closest dupe in the permanent MAC range seems like it would be Brave Red or perhaps Ladybug (which is probably a bit sheerer).

Blush ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Darkly My Dear dirtied brown with just a mere hint of plum. It looks plummer in the pan than it is in actuality–it’s rather brown when worn. It can be built up or used sheerly depending on the look you’re going for. It’s kind of like a browner, much darker version of Blushbaby. It’s supposed to have a matte finish, but it seems like it has a hint of pearl/satin sheen to it, though very near matte on cheeks.

Eyeshadow ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Sweet Joy is a pale gold with soft yellow undertones and a frost finish. This was originally included in the Passions of Red holiday palette (quite awhile ago). It’s similar to Dreammaker (Starflash) but less frosty; also similar to Creme Royale (Hello Kitty) and Creme de Miel (Style Warriors). It’s yellower than Nylon, much less gold/yellow than Goldmine.
  • De-vil is darkened, orange-y copper with a veluxe pearl finish. It’s just the tiniest bit less red and a hair darker than Coppering, darker and deeper than Amber Lights (not even really comparable, IMO). It seems a little darker than Brash (Cult of Cherry), possibly similar to Courage (Untamed).  But it’s really close to Coppering.
  • Carbon is a matte black–can be packed on for an intense black, but like some mattes, better applied than swatched. This is a permanent shade.

Beauty Powder ($25.00 U.S. / $30.00 CDN)

  • Her Own Devices is a sheered out champagne-shimmered medium nude. It gives just a hint of color on my NC25 skin (“medium”), but I think it maybe a nice shade for highlighting medium to dark skin tones, because it’s natural but it has shimmer–since it’s not pale, it won’t turn darker complexions ashy.  I’ve had a few readers ask about how it compares to Shell Beauty Powder, but the two look completely different on me.

See product photos and swatches! Continue reading →