Monday, May 7th, 2012

Illamasqua Fledgling Eyeshadow
Illamasqua Fledgling Eyeshadow

Illamasqua Fledgling Eyeshadow

Illamasqua Fledgling Eyeshadow ($20.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “matte kelly green.” It’s a brightened medium grassy green with very subtle yellow undertones and a matte finish. MAC Fresh Flare is darker, cooler-toned. MAC Wondergrass is similar but a touch lighter, yellower, and shimmery. Inglot #384 is darker. Inglot #331 is even darker. Make Up For Ever #91 is just a little lighter and yellower.

Just released, Fledgling is another stellar matte shade to work with.  It’s intensely pigmented with opaque, smooth color payoff with very little product required.  The texture is soft, finely-milled, but not powdery.  If you aren’t a fan of some of the denser, more “buttery” matte shades because of the excess powder they kick up, you may find Illamasqua’s formula a happy medium between drier and softer mattes.  Fledgling wears extremely well with or without a primer; it lasted for eight hours without fading or creasing.

The Glossover

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product

Fledgling

A
Illamasqua has a stellar matte formula on their hands. If you love pigmented matte eyeshadows that don't have a powdery finish, I think Illamasqua is a good match for you. Fledging has amazing pigmentation, and I love how subtle the yellow undertones are.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Saturday, May 5th, 2012

Milani Shocking Pink Powder Eyeshadow
Milani Shocking Pink Powder Eyeshadow

Milani Shocking Pink Powder Eyeshadow

Milani Shocking Pink Powder Eyeshadow ($4.49 for 0.11 oz.) is a vibrant magenta pink with strong blue undertones and a very subtle dusting of silver shimmer. This might be one of the most vibrant shades I’ve seen, period, but particularly from a mass brand. Sugarpill Dollipop is less blue-based, pinker. MAC Magenta Madness is a little more intense, darker, and pinker. Make Up For Ever #75 is much, much darker and pinker.

The formula is described as “super pigmented, easily blendable, creaseproof, [and] silk-like.” It’s a pretty tall order, but Milani actually delivers well on all four claims. It’s extremely pigmented; it’s rich in color, and it has a soft, buttery texture that’s dense and so very soft. It’s one of the softer, denser mattes (like Inglot), as compared to MAC’s regular matte formula, which is a drier, firmer matte. The soft, silky-smooth texture enables really easy blending and diffusing of color. It applies and adheres well to the bare lid, lasting about eight hours with no creasing and minor fading around the edges.

It will be available exclusively at select CVS stores this May. I’ve linked to Milani’s website for the time being, as it’s a good starting point for tracking down where Milani is sold near you.  These are packaged in a clear-cover plastic compact and contain almost double the amount of product as the average eyeshadow (0.11 oz. vs. 0.05 oz.).

The Glossover

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product

Shocking Pink

A
Intensely pigmented, soft as silk, smooth as butter, and easy to blend--what's not to love? Oh, and it's less than $5--even better. Fans of matte eyeshadows who also love their brights will definitely want to keep an eye out at their local CVS!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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Saturday, May 5th, 2012

Chanel Peche Cuivre Le Crayon Khol
Chanel Peche Cuivre Le Crayon Khol

Chanel Peche Cuivre Le Crayon Khol

Chanel Peche Cuivre Le Crayon Khol ($28.00 for 0.05 oz.) is a golden peach with a subtly metallic finish. It’s actually very similar to Giorgio Armani’s #5 Copper from the holidays–it might be the faintest bit darker.  This shade is one that is best as a brightener–it’s the kind of hue that works really well on the water line to wake up peepers, but the texture of this doesn’t lend itself to comfortable application on the water line.

The formula is supposed to have “rich, intense” color with a “semi-matte finish.” It is also listed as safe for usage on the rim of the eye. Each of Chanel’s pencil eyeliners comes with its own sharpener. The color applies mostly opaque in one pass, but it requires a lot of pressure to get it to apply evenly in one go. I’m not keen on the hard, dry texture of the pencil; it feels rough against the lash line. It will pull and tug noticeably, and I ended up having to go back and forth several times rather than exert more pressure as it wasn’t comfortable to use otherwise.

This color may be most striking on deeper skin tones, because on my complexion, it just gets lost.  It only wore for six hours before looking faded; this combined with the harder texture makes this a disappointment.  Chanel’s Le Crayon Yeux is a much better formula, so I was really shocked at how different (in a bad way) this formula was.  Eyeliners really need to be soft, provide good color payoff, and wear long and well.  I think there are too many stellar eyeliner formulas on the market to make excuses for under-performers.

The Glossover

LE
product

Peche Cuivre

D
This color may be most striking on deeper skin tones, because on my complexion, it just gets lost. It only wore for six hours before looking faded; this combined with the harder texture makes this a disappointment.

Product

6.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

5/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

3/5

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Friday, May 4th, 2012

Illamasqua Pivot Eyeshadow
Illamasqua Pivot Eyeshadow

Illamasqua Pivot Eyeshadow

Illamasqua Pivot Eyeshadow ($20.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “yellow green.” It’s a medium chartreuse green with strong yellow undertones and a matte finish. There are a lot of chartreuse shades on the market, but this shade is less dupeable because it has a fair amount of green in it–it is more green than yellow. MAC Swimming is darker, greener. MAC Lucky Green is a little yellower and has a shimmery finish. Make Up For Ever #171 is the closest shade, though it’s more vibrant, lighter, and has a frosted finish.

The texture is the perfect balance of softness and density.  It’s rich in color, soft like silk, but not at all powdery.  With mattes, the more pigmented formulas tend to be softer but slightly powdery as a result–you’ll kick up a fair amount of excess powder when you disturb the top layer with your brush–but with Pivot, it’s soft enough to apply smoothly, evenly, and not skip or drag, but it never turns powdery.  When worn alone, it wore for a full eight hours without creasing or fading.  It was easier to blend the shade over a primer, though it was not overly difficult over bare lids (just marginally easier over a primer!).

It’s listed at Sephora but looks like it hasn’t been added to stock yet, but I expect it to show up officially soon. It is available at Illamasqua’s website, though, for international readers.

The Glossover

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product

Pivot

A
For those who love matte eyeshadows, Illamasqua's formula is worth checking out. Pivot is a great shade for a pop of color this summer! If you have cooler undertones but have always found chartreuse-like shades too yellow, this might work better for you.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

Giorgio Armani Ecailles Black Pearl Eye Palette
Giorgio Armani Ecailles Black Pearl Eye Palette

Giorgio Armani Ecailles Black Pearl Eye Palette

Giorgio Armani Ecailles Black Pearl Eye Palette ($95.00 for 0.06 oz.) is a new and limited edition palette that contains four distinct shades of eyeshadow. It’s described as “a harmonious blend of deep sea blue, algae, lagoon turquoise, and shimmering, crest-of-a-wave white.” The reason why it’s a whopping $95 is because the lid of the compact is decorated with mother-of-pearl. To put the price in context, Giorgio Armani’s comparable palettes retail for $59, so the packaging upgrade is really coming in at a $36 price tag. I know in the past, Giorgio Armani has made a regularly-packaged version available, but I haven’t seen it online and don’t have confirmation that it is even available.

The first shade is a muted, dark blue with a hint of teal. It has a frosted sheen and so-so color payoff–the pigmentation improves a bit when it’s applied to the lid but not significantly. It was soft to the touch and felt really smooth. MAC Pre-packaged is more intense, bluer. Guerlain Les Gris is darker. Bare Escentuals Water is very similar with less sheen. MAC Bold Babe is a little lighter.

The second shade is a blue-based violet purple with blue shimmer. The pigmentation is decent but not fully opaque. It had a fairly smooth texture with a finely-milled feel. Urban Decay Ransom is less blue-toned. MAC Deserty Cloud is similar but a little less blue-toned. Urban Decay Blue Bus looks very similar. MAC Parfait Amour isn’t quite as blue-based.

The third shade is an aqua-blue with a green-gold iridescence. This shade had good color payoff. The texture was soft and finely-milled, so it applied smoothly. Milani Caribbean Sea is lighter. Urban Decay Aquarius is darker. Guerlain Les Aquas is bluer. Tarina Tarantino Violet Storm is greener and darker.

The fourth and final shade is a warm white with both shimmer and glitter–it had a chunkier texture with more obvious sparkle. It had some fall out both during application and during wear. When I applied it to the lid, it skipped a bit, too–it did not want to apply so opaquely there. It’s similar to a slew of shades, including MAC Pearl, Buxom Sheepdog, theBalm Sassy, and MAC Forgery.

Ecailles Black Pearl is a decent-to-good palette, but it’s not exceptional in quality. The pigmentation leaves something to be desired as the bold, intense pans don’t quite translate when applied to the lid.  Interestingly enough, I did not like it over NARS Smudgeproof–it did not want to blend and seemed to skip and just apply unevenly.  It was better over bare lids, where it did blend better and apply more evenly.  I also had no problems applying or blending these shades over Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Shadow.

I’m always disappointed in how little Giorgio Armani’s eyeshadow palettes contain–just 0.06 oz., when the average full-sized eyeshadow (yes, just one!) is 0.05 oz. (like MAC, Urban Decay, etc.). Seriously, I do a double-take every time I read the pack of the palette! I’m like, “No, it’s a typo!” But in the interest of playing devil’s advocate, it’s unlikely that you’ll make it through the wells here unless you’re using these shades on a daily basis. Just consider how long it takes you to get through the few eyeshadows you’ve hit pan (or even finished) on!

The Glossover

palette

Ecailles Black Pearl

B
Ecailles Black Pearl is a decent-to-good palette, but it's not exceptional in quality. I'd like to have seen better pigmentation with softer and more blendable textures. I think the color combination is gorgeous, though.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, May 1st, 2012

Dior Swimming Pool Eyeshadow Palette
Dior Swimming Pool Eyeshadow Palette

Dior Swimming Pool Eyeshadow Palette

Dior Swimming Pool Eyeshadow Palette ($60.00 for 0.24 oz.) is one of two limited edition summer eyeshadow palettes from the brand, and while Aurora soared, Swimming Pool sinks (couldn’t resist!).

The upper left shade is an iridescent pink-peach with sheer color. It had a powdery texture, though it wasn’t as bad as other shades in the palette. Tarina Tarantino DIamond Dusk is similar but has no peach. Bobbi Brown Black Ruby ends up looking similar because it’s also very sheer. Make Up For Ever #940 is very similar but has a much stronger duochrome.

The upper right shade is a pale silver with sheer color payoff and a powdery finish. Tarina Tarantino Lovely has a similar silver but has a more frosted finish. Guerlain Les Aquas is similar but has a more metallic finish.

The center shade is a light-medium sky blue with a mostly matte finish. It is very powdery, and it’s one of the most pigmented out of the five–but it’s still on the sheer side and impossible to build up on the lid. I wore this in the crease, and I kept going back (four times!) to get mediocre color payoff. The powdery texture makes this extremely easy to blend into oblivion–it just disappears as soon as you attempt to soften the edge. Buxom Husky is a smidgen lighter. NYX Cool Blue is darker. MAC Styledriven is very similar but has a frosted finish. Inglot #367 is lighter.

The lower left shade is a seafoam green to the eye, but when applied, it’s a sheer iridescent aqua that seems to bunch up on itself and disappear in sections. It doesn’t like to blend, and it doesn’t apply evenly. Giorgio Armani Airy Jade was the most similar, though it’s more metallic. Cle de Peau #112 doesn’t have the same finish. Lancome Fashion Forward is greener.

The lower right shade is a pale, frosted beige–the high metallic finish makes it appear almost white, though. This was the other more pigmented shade in the palette, though it’s still on the sheerer side. The texture was also the least powdery. Dolce & Gabbana Jewels seemed the closest.

This palette is characterized by two things: sheer and chalky. Let’s throw in powdery, too, because nearly every shade kicks up a ton of excess powder even when you barely touch your brush to the pan. When I applied these eyeshadows to the lid over a primer and over bare lids, I still couldn’t get much color payoff, and they didn’t want to blend. The aqua shade disappeared and looked so uneven. The blue shade insisted on looking like a pale, pasty blue. I’m about medium in color, but it’s horrific on me–the chalkiness is just emphasized and exacerbated with the genuine chalky base of the shades. I think the only people who could possibly wear this would be really pale skin tones.  What little manages to apply to the lid wears so-so; it seems a little faded after six hours or so both with and without a primer.

Swimming Pool may be one of the worst palettes I’ve come across from Dior. I can’t get over how powdery the finishes are, how sheer the colors were, and how they didn’t want to stick to the eye at all. I can only think of one compliment: it was a nice combination of colors in theory, but the execution was awful. I typically don’t return products I buy for review, since I get my “use” out of them, but this makes me want to reconsider that policy and get my $60 back.  I’ll have to settle for letting all of you know to check this out in person first!

The Glossover

palette

Swimming Pool

F
Chalky, powdery textures abound in this palette--accompanied by pitiful pigmentation! The eyeshadows are soft, but they are difficult to blend together, partially because they tend to disappear and blend to nothingness with little effort. I think the only hope this palette has is on really pale complexions and for someone who wants only sheer washes of color.

Product

3/10

Pigmentation

5/10

Texture

5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

2/5

Results
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