Thursday, March 24th, 2011

MAC Cutie Eyeshadow Quad
MAC Cutie Eyeshadow Quad

MAC Quite Cute:  Cutie Eyeshadow Quad

MAC Cutie Eyeshadow Quad ($36.00 for 0.21 oz.) is new and limited edition from MAC’s Quite Cute collection, which launches in-stores on April 7th. It includes four eyeshadows: Moshi Moshi! (pale white green gold), Goody Goody Gum Drop (light white pink), Boycrazy (pale lavender with silver pearl), and Azuki Bean (mid-tone dirty violet).

  • Moshi Moshi! is a sheer, pale green–it’s so light and pale that it’s more white than green. There is an abundance of chunky silvery-white shimmer. I actually thought this was a lustre finish because of the gritty texture and excess fall out. It has a frost finish. It reminded me of Lustreleaf, which is a forever ago shade.
  • Goody Goody Gum Drop is a muted cotton candy pink with subtle gold sheen. It has decent pigmentation though it is a softer color overall. It has a satin finish. It’s a lighter version of Da Bling.
  • Boycrazy is a sheer pale lavender with silver sparkle. It has a lustre finish. It has a smoother finish than I’d expect from a lustre finish, and it doesn’t suffer from fall out (like Moshi Moshi!), but it is ridiculously sheer. I had to scrape off eyeshadow just to pat enough on so it would show in a swatch, otherwise you would have thought I hadn’t swatched it at all. It’s marginally more pigmented/easier to work with when applied to eyes but I still found myself packing it on. It’s a lighter version of Creme de Violet.
  • Azuki Bean is a dark burgundy purple. This was the most pigmented shade in the quad and easiest to work with. It has a frost finish. It reminded me of Mystical Mist.

I’m not particularly impressed with the eyeshadow quad. I don’t mind lighter colors, and I wouldn’t expect a pale green to become a deep green, but I do take issue with excessive fall out (I’m looking at you, Moshi Moshi!) and having to scrape off eyeshadow to get it to show (ahem! Boycrazy). Two of the four were nice, while one was awful and another was nearly awful. In an instance like this, I try to average everything out.

The Glossover

coming-soon

MAC Cutie Eyeshadow Quad Swatches, Photos, Review

C-
I would only recommend this to those with lighter skin tones–I just don’t think there is enough color pay off for this to work well on medium to dark skin tones.

Product

6.5/10

Pigmentation

6/10

Texture

6.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette
Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette ($48.00 for 0.141 oz.) is warm, neutral palette with only a hint of coral but mostly variations on brown.

The all-over base shade is a soft pinked champagne beige with soft gold micro-shimmer. Next, the lid shade is a soft coral-orange with faint gold micro-shimmer–this is the only coral shade of the five but love how it doesn’t lean too orange. The crease shade is a red-based, warm medium-dark chocolate brown with very subtle bronze micro-shimmer. Though I can’t imagine anyone highlighting their brow with it, the highlighter shade is a smoky brown taupe with gray tones and a metallic finish. The liner shade is a dark, smoldering brown with bronze flecks of shimmer that works well wet or dry; when used wet, the color is richer and the shade has more of a metallic finish.

my thoughts on the formula: The texture of Lancome’s eyeshadows are very smooth–soft, silky–and all of these shades were excellent in terms of pigmentation. The rich colors, blendable texture, and mix of textures gave this palette a cohesive feel.

I’m disappointed in the quantity provided in the palette, though. Lancome’s Color Design Quads come in at 0.16 oz. and their Color Design Eyeshadow singles at 0.0458 oz., which works out to be $263/oz. and $371/oz. respectively. This palette is $340/oz., which makes it more expensive ($48 vs. $42) with less product (0.141 oz. vs. 0.16 oz) than the Color Design Quads.

The Glossover

lancomeCoral

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
This is the best of the new Lancome palettes from the ones I’ve tried so far. Not a dud in the bunch!

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow
theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow ($16.00 for 0.12 oz.) is described as a “plum shimmer with gold flecks.”  It’s a medium-dark plum with subtle red-mauve undertones and even subtler gold shimmer.  I love how it is a red-based purple without being obvious, which makes it easier to wear and more universally suitable.

my thoughts on the formula: Curvy Cami has a very soft, silky texture, but it is a touch powdery and doesn’t seem as pigment-packed as other theBalm eyeshadows I’ve tested.  It is easy to blend because of the soft texture.  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

product

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow Review, Photos, Swatches

B
It’s a nice, softened plum with some darkness but without being blackberry or vampy. I do wish it was a bit more pigmented, since it seems a little sheer.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Sunday, March 20th, 2011

Video Review: Benefit for Brows

With Benefit’s announcement of free brow service on your birthday, they also included a few of their cult favorite brow products, which I swatch and talk about in this video–a bit of first impressions with some review, since I have used a few products mentioned in the video previously!  I posted reviews for both Brows A-Go-Go and High Brow this past week, and since the pencil isn’t my shade, I’m not reviewing it at this time.

Saturday, March 19th, 2011

Benefit High Brow
Benefit High Brow

Benefit High Brow ($20.00 for 0.10 oz.) is designed to “lift” and enhance brows by brightening with a “soft, matte linen-pink” shade. Benefit recommends applying it beneath your brow, just following the arch, and blend.

Inevitably, one wonders what is the difference between Benefit’s Eye Bright and High Brow, as they’re both pink pencils designed to help brighten eyes — well, Benefit wrote a blog post explaining the differences. To summarize, High Brow is a neutral pink while Eye Bright is a cool-toned pink; the cooler tones in Eye Bright as designed to combat dark circles. Benefit warns that using High Brow on undereye circles may look too light, while using Eye Bright to define brows may look too pink.

It’s absolutely true that Eye Bright is a cooler-toned, more blue-based pink, and it also has a bit of micro-shimmer–very subtle but still there. I think those who are naturally cool-toned, one could get away with using both. For those with warmer undertones, the difference is likely more noticeable.

I like High Brow for more minimal looks; not necessarily five-minute looks but when one wants to have that natural look. The creaminess of the product makes it easy to blend, and it dries down quickly and holds up fairly well alone (about six hours). I applied it in the photos below so you can see how it looks, and I deliberately went heavy-handed, because I wanted it to show up in photos–the effect can be subtler if one desires.

The Glossover

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Benefit High Brow Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
I like High Brow, and I think it may be a must-have for some but for others a totally unnecessary addition to their stash. It depends on what features are most important to you, because some love really defined brows and others will wear eye makeup nearly everyday so a powder highlight will generally be enough to define the brow area.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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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

product

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

Results
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