Thursday, March 17th, 2011

Benefit Brows A-Go-Go
Benefit Brows A-Go-Go

For the Brow Enthusiast

Benefit Brows A-Go-Go ($38.00) is an all-i-one brow kit, which includes both Light and Dark Brow Zings Powders (0.04 oz. each), Brow Zings Wax (0.03 oz.), Smokin’ Liner (0.01 oz.), Eye Bright (0.03 oz.), Brow Highlighter Powder (0.04 oz.), mini tweezers, and dual-ended brush.

Benefit and brows take me back almost ten years (which makes me a little nauseous to think about, because sometimes I think I’m still 18 and when I’m clearly not). One of my first beauty experiences was begging my makeup-enthused best friend to tweeze my brows, and she always carried Benefit’s Brow Zings and their mini tweezers. I can’t tell you how I longed for a pair of my own mini tweezers–they just seemed so cool at the time. (With my hands, I can appreciate full-size tweezers for regular maintenance but minis are nice in a pinch.)

The lighter shade is a medium-dark taupe brown, while the darker brow shade is a dark brown with subtle red undertones. The wax is a cross between the two–not too dark, not too light. I found the eyeliner to be fairly black but a bit stubby so it may be difficult to hold for some. I actually liked the shimmering icy pink of the highlight powder; not quite as cool-toned as Eye Bright, which is a creamy, pale white-pink.

The dark shade works well for me, having nearly black natural brows.  I like mixing the two, though, for a softer look as well.  I would be careful using the highlighting products on deeper skin tones, because I think it may turn a little ashy, but they work well on light and medium skin tones.

The Glossover

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Benefit Brows A-Go-Go Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
If you're someone who likes to have immaculate brows and tends to focus more time on them, the kit is useful. If you don't find yourself doing much to them, it may be too superfluous to merit buying. For something more compact, there is the traditional Brow Zings, which is a smaller-sized palette featuring a coordinating brow powder and wax (available in light, medium, and dark) along with mini tweezers but retails for $30.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

Bobbi Brown Peony & Python Kit
Bobbi Brown Peony & Python Kit

Neiman Marcus Exclusive: Bobbi Brown Peony & Python Kit

Bobbi Brown Peony & Python Beauty Kit ($95.00) is an exclusive set available at Neiman Marcus this spring. It contains a peony and python printed zippered makeup bag, Pink Peony Illuminating Bronzer, Pink Lilac Brightening Gloss, Black Mauve Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner, and two miniature-sized makeup brushes (face and lip).

  • Pink Peony Illuminating Bronzer is a medium-dark pink with gold micro-glitter and sheen; it is slightly cool-toned, though it seems to shift between cool and neutral depending on how the light hits it. It applies rather sheerly but can be intensified for a more obvious blush.
  • Pink Lilac Brightening Gloss is an ultra sheer gloss that really has a clear base with pink and gold shimmer. This shade is available individually.
  • Black Mauve Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner is a blackened burgundy brown. This shade is available individually.
  • Eye/Lip Brush is a miniature-sized brush with a glossy black cap that slips on and off. It’s not officially labeled, but it seems like a really narrow lip brush–not quite small enough to be a true eyeliner brush though it does seem to resemble the Ultra Fine Eyeliner Brush a bit.
  • Face Brush is a fluffy, dome-shaped brush that resembles the Face Blender Brush. It seems wider and less tapered, though. It was soft against the skin.

The kit itself comes with a high price tag, but individually (though not all shades are available individually, the product type is), Pink Peony Illuminating Bronzer would retail for $33, Pink Lilac Brightening Gloss retails for $22, Black Mauve Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner is available for $21, and then assume $20 worth of brushes. The innards of the kit are worth approximately $96, but you also receive the printed makeup bag, too. There is a Peony & Python printed makeup bag available alone for $40, but I don’t know how the size compares to the one from the Neiman Marcus kit.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Bobbi Brown Peony & Python Beauty Kit Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
It's a cute kit, and if you like every product in it, the price tag doesn't seem so difficult to pay.  If you were hoping for a value-packed deal, this isn't quite it.  The kit will complement cooler skin tones.  I wish the Pink Peony Illuminating Bronzer was available individually!

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

Wet 'n' Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette
Wet ‘n’ Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette ($4.99 for 0.30 oz.) contains eight eyeshadows spread over two columns. Each column seems to coordinate within itself more than the two columns do with each other. The tone of the palette is rather cool, with the first column being purple themed and the second column being more earth-toned.

The first column consisted of a pale, icy violet shimmered satin white; muted pink-lilac base with pale gold shimmer-sheen; darkened red-toned purple with a frost finish; and medium-dark violet-blue purple with silver sparkle. I found the pigmentation to be a little sheer in both of the lighter shades–a little dusty, too; not nearly as saturated as the two darker purples.

The second column includes a pale, high-frost pink-white; coppery rose mauve with red undertones in a soft frost finish; blackened burgundy brown with a satin finish; and a grayish black with subtle green sparkle and satin finish. The pale pink is extremely pigmented and smooth, while the copper rose shade is a bit sheerer and blends into a very sheer shade when applied. I found the burgundy shade to lean much browner when swatched than it looked in the pan. The darker grayish-black was more pigmented than previous variations I’ve seen in the Color Icon palette, which was nice, but it did fade a bit when worn (after six hours).

my thoughts on the formula: Color Icon Eyeshadows are definitely some of the best eyeshadows you’ll find in the drugstore, and this palette shows both the best and worsts of the formula overall. The frostier shades seem to work the best and have no problem wearing all day (over a base, of course), while the more matte shades tend to lack in pigmentation and fade after a few hours (they don’t disappear, but they do fade noticeably).

The Glossover

coming-soon

Wet 'n' Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

B
For cooler complexions, I think this palette will work well.  Like the Blue had Me at Hello palette, there were a few shades that didn't quite hit the mark, but overall several shades worked really well.  I though the coppered rose shade was particularly beautiful in color and wished it had been more pigmented.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, March 14th, 2011

Benefit BADgal Waterproof Eyeliner
Benefit BADgal Waterproof Eyeliner

Say Hello to New Benefit BADgal Waterproof Eyeliners

Benefit BADgal Waterproof Eyeliner ($20.00 for 0.04 oz.) is now available in two new shades: Espresso and Charcoal. The BADgal Eyeliner formula is designed to glide-on without smudging or smearing, rain or shine. I’ve reviewed the original BADgal, which was in black, previously, and I didn’t have excellent results.

Espresso is a medium-dark brown with subtle red undertones, while Charcoal is a softened medium gray. They both applied very smoothly, practically gliding on, and they delivered enough pigment in one pass to give a nice solid line of color. Each pencil has a spongy smudger brush on the opposite end, and these do stay “wet” long enough to smudge as one desires.

These eyeliners wear decently, but I did not find them to be waterproof. I didn’t find that these created excessive raccoon eyes nor migrated terribly, but they do have a tendency to smudge and migrate noticeably when hit by water. You might wonder how does one do a tear test… one cuts onions and ensures to nick the bulb to send an onslaught of natural tear gas. I also wore it in the shower, because of the water element as well as the heat and humidity that tag along. There is some fading and smudging.

On an average day, these wear six to eight hours without any major concerns, but if my eyes tear up at any point (allergies, dry eyes, whatever). For a product that’s specifically touted as waterproof, it does not hold up to my waterworks! It’s unfortunate, because the texture and glide of the pencil is excellent–soft without being prone to breaking, smooth without being too creamy (and therefore too wet and not drying down!).

Have you tried the new shades, or perhaps the original Extra Black shade?  Weigh in!

The Glossover

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BADgal Eyeliner

C-
I've seen enough mixed reviews on this particular eyeliner to know that for some it reaches holy grail status and for others, it is a mess. It's decent on me, but there are enough eyeliners that stay on all day without smudging even with some watering eyes in my stash that I never reach for this.

Product

5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, March 14th, 2011

theBalm Luscious Lani Eyeshadow
theBalm Luscious Lani Eyeshadow

theBalm Luscious Lani Eyeshadow

theBalm Luscious Lani Eyeshadow ($16.00 for 0.12 oz.) is described as a “pink champagne on ice.”  On me, the pink seems to disappear, but I feel like this is a shade that will be subtly different depending on your skin’s undertones–those with cooler and pinker complexions will see the pink come through, while those with warmer and yellower complexions will get more of a peach-champagne shade.  I found Lusicous Lani to be a glistening gilded peach champagne with a metallic-frost finish.

my thoughts on the formula: theBalm’s eyeshadows are soft, silky smooth, and packed with pigment. They apply evenly, blend out beautifully, and aren’t powdery at all (sometimes a side effect of really soft eyeshadows). I find they are so easy to use, because they apply without fall out and blend with other shadows effortlessly. Worth noting, too, is individual eyeshadows come with 0.12 oz., which is just over double the average eyeshdaow–and at a rather affordable price tag.

The Glossover

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theBalm Luscious Lani Eyeshadow Review, Photos, Swatches

A
I think this is a gorgeous neutral color--it's a shade that can be used in everyday looks as well as to anchor bolder looks.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Saturday, March 12th, 2011

Sugarpill Chromalusts
Chromalusts: Paperdoll, Tipsy, Weekender

Sugarpill Chromalusts: Paperdoll, Tipsy, Weekender

Sugarpill Chromalust ($12.00 for 0.19 oz.) recently launched seven new shades, and I have three of them to show you today: Paperdoll (lovely lavender with dazzling shimmer and sparkle), Tipsy (high-shimmer true grass green), and Weekender (metallic blue-violet with intense sparkle and sheen). All three shades are also vegan, just for reference! I hope to review the last remaining shade soon.

  • Paperdoll is a cool-toned, medium lavender with silver sparkle.
  • Tipsy is a brightened, medium grass green with yellow undertones. It’s a yellower green than Urban Decay Graffiti and darker and more pigmented than MAC Swimming.
  • Weekender is a silvered violet purple with blue and violet shimmer.

Chromalusts are loose eyeshadows that are extremely soft and smooth because of how fine these loose powders are milled. The three shades featured in this post are vegan, for reference. They can be worn wet or dry, though I tend to prefer them wet as a base, but they do work nicely dry–though better over a stickier shadow base.

The Glossover

sugarpill

Sugarpill Chromalusts: Paperdoll, Tipsy, Weekender Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
The texture of these is so silky--I think that is easily one of my favorite characteristics of the product line--and it's always fun to see new shades get added to the range.  I was surprised to see two purples in the new seven shades launched, but after swatching, I can see why--they're so different!

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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