Sunday, February 13th, 2011

Video Review: NARS Spring 2011

This is an actual review of the entire NARS Spring 2011 collection, not just first impressions/swatches. I tried not to rant too much on those Soft Touch Shadow Pencils, but I’m not sure how successful I was there, ha! I will be reviewing Nana and Tzigane here on the blog soon.   Would love it if you subscribed to our YouTube channel, too! :)

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

Video Review: Urban Decay Dangerous, Feminine, & Fun Palettes

I managed to stay under 20 minutes, woo!

Photos & Reviews

Friday, February 11th, 2011

Video Review: theBalm Shady Lady, Vol. 3 Palette

First look at theBalm’s Shady Lady, Vol. 3 palette, which is new for 2011, along with swatches and all that jazz.  You can my written review here.

Friday, February 11th, 2011

Dolce & Gabbana Romance Eyeshadow Duo
Dolce & Gabbana Romance Eyeshadow Duo

Dolce & Gabbana Secret Garden: Romance

Dolce & Gabbana Romance Eyeshadow Duo ($36.00 for 0.17 oz.) is new for spring, part of Dolce & Gabbana’s Secret Garden collection, which should make its way to Saks within the next couple of weeks. Romance includes a bright silvery white with a frosted, metallic sheen and a dirty gray with a satin finish. The silvery white works well both dry and wet, though the metallic sheen is more noticeable when it is used wet. The gray shade is best used wet, because it went on a little patchy when applied dry.

my thoughts on the formula: Dolce & Gabbana’s Eyeshadows are inconsistent, which is troublesome–you just never know if you’re going to get! Usually, they have a really silky smooth texture, but often, they do not perform so well when applied. I’ve found that using them wet often makes them more manageable (sometimes fantastic!).

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

  • Product: 24/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: Both eyeshadows are okay–the gray shade being on the lower end, the silver shade being on the higher end. The duo does make for a quick and easy smoky eye, though, and I love that Dolce & Gabbana paired a matte shade with a frostier one.

where to buy: Saks, February 2011

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, February 10th, 2011

Urban Decay Fun Palette
Fun Palette: Woodstock, Baked, Uzi, Sin, Flipside, Psychedelic Sister

Urban Decay Spring 2011: Fun Palette

Urban Decay Fun Eyeshadow Palette ($34.00 for 0.34 oz.) includes six eyeshadows: Woodstock (bright pink with slight shimmer), Baked (rich bronze), Uzi (metallic silver with big iridescent sparkles), Sin (champagne), Flipside (electric teal with blue sheen), and Psychedelic Sister (bright purple). Also included is Oil Slick 24/7 Liner (black with silver sparkle) and the original primer potion (nude).

  • Woodstock is a medium-dark fuchsia pink with a soft shimmer finish. This shade is available individually as part of the permanent range.
  • Baked is a rich copper with a metallic-frost finish. This shade is available individually as part of the permanent range, and it has been in the Baked, Book of Shadows, Vol. 1, and Alice in Wonderland palettes.
  • Uzi is a bright silvered white with silver glitter. Yes, there is fall out. This shade is available individually as part of the permanent range, and it has been in the Book of Shadows, Vol.3 and Sustainable palettes.
  • Sin is a pinky champagne with a frost finish. This shade is available individually as part of the permanent range, and it has been in the Alice in Wonderland and Naked palettes.
  • Flipside is a teal-tinged green with a metallic-frost finish. This shade is available individually as part of the permanent range, and it has been in Baked, Book of Shadows, Vol. 2, and Sustainable palettes.
  • Psychedelic Sister is a red-toned medium-dark purple with a shimmer finish. This shade is available individually as part of the permanent range, and it was in the Book of Shadows, Vol. III palette.

my thoughts on the formula: Urban Decay’s eyeshadows are rich in pigment, apply evenly, and feel like butter. Generally speaking, their formula is excellent. I will warn and caution you against their shades with “glitter” or “sparkle” in the finish–some of these can be prone to fall out (for example, Midnight Cowboy Rides Again).

In terms of value, the palette includes 0.18 oz. of eyeshadow ($61.20 value), 0.03 oz. of eyeliner ($12.75 value), and 0.13 fl. oz. of primer potion ($6.88 value). The total value of the palette is $80.83, while the retail price is $34.

I think sometimes we lose sight of what the beauty industry and market are like as a whole — not every person purchases every palette or even much at all. Not everyone enters at the same time, so even though you may find yourself owning many of the shades, it doesn’t make it a terrible product – Urban Decay does some really excellent shades that you can get year round, but these sure make those shades more accessible and affordable to people who don’t have a lot of Urban Decay or have always wanted to try it. It would be great to see new shades, of course, but I recognize what value they may hold to others.

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 10/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: Fun has the most shades that are permanent/available individually, as they are all available whenever your heart desires. Whether it’s a good value/purchase depends on just how many Urban Decay products you have in your arsenal. The palette itself is an excellent value, and if you like more than two shadows, it works out to be the same if you had bought then individually ($17 each). Uzi has a slightly fussy finish/texture, but the other five eyeshadows are really nice, especially Woodstock and Baked.

where to buy: Urban Decay

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, February 10th, 2011

Urban Decay Dangerous Palette
Dangerous Palette: Haight, Mildew, Virgin, Oil Slick, Rockstar, Gunmetal

Urban Decay Spring 2011: Dangerous Palette

Urban Decay Dangerous Eyeshadow Palette ($34.00 for 0.34 oz.) includes six eyeshadows: Haight (dark teal with shimmer), Mildew (deep green), Virgin (satin chamois), Oil Slick (black with silver glitter), Rockstar (deep red-purple with metallic base), and Gunmetal (gunmetal gray with silver glitter). Also included is Rockstar 24/7 Liner (eggplant) and Greed primer potion (gold).

Edited @ 7:10AM:  Images are fixed.

  • Haight is a brightened medium blue with a frost finish that pulls just an itsy bit teal. This shade is part of the permanent range and available individually, and it also appeared in the Book of Shadows, Vol. 3.
  • Mildew is a rich olive green with dirty bronze-brown lying underneath the richer green sheen. This shade is part of the permanent range and available individually and has appeared in the Show Pony, Preen, and Ammo palettes.
  • Virgin is a pale beige with a satin-shimmer finish. It’s very, very light, but it’s such a beautiful neutral. It’s a little frosty for a highlighter, particularly on darker skin tones, but it would make for a great all-over wash or pop of light on the inner tear duct. This shade was in the Naked palette and not available individually.
  • Oil Slick is a rich, deep black with silver glitter. The glitter is more of an overlay, so there will be fall out. It’s not as bad as ultra glittery shades like Midnight Cowboy Rides Again, but the fall out does occur. This shade is part of the permanent range and available individually and has appeared in the Alice in Wonderland, Ammo, and Sustainable palettes.
  • Rockstar is a deep shade of eggplant purple with burgundy-red undertones and a shimmer-sheen finish. This shade was in the Book of Shadows, Vol. 3 and not available individually.
  • Gunmetal is a dark gray with a deep silver sheen. Despite the glittre in the pan, it seems to disappear before you even apply it. I’ve had this shade for awhile, and I don’t find fall out to be an issue. This shade is part of the permanent range and available individually, and it has been in the Book of Shadows, Vol.2, Naked, and Vegan palettes.

my thoughts on the formula: Urban Decay’s eyeshadows are rich in pigment, apply evenly, and feel like butter. Generally speaking, their formula is excellent. I will warn and caution you against their shades with “glitter” or “sparkle” in the finish–some of these can be prone to fall out (for example, Midnight Cowboy Rides Again).

In terms of value, the palette includes 0.18 oz. of eyeshadow ($61.20 value), 0.03 oz. of eyeliner ($12.75 value), and 0.13 fl. oz. of primer potion ($6.88 value). The total value of the palette is $80.83, while the retail price is $34.

I think sometimes we lose sight of what the beauty industry and market are like as a whole — not every person purchases every palette or even much at all.  Not everyone enters at the same time, so even though you may find yourself owning many of the shades, it doesn’t make it a terrible product – Urban Decay does some really excellent shades that you can get year round, but these sure make those shades more accessible and affordable to people who don’t have a lot of Urban Decay or have always wanted to try it.  It would be great to see new shades, of course, but I recognize what value they may hold to others.

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 10/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: Dangerous has shades we have all seen before, but ultimately, whether it’s a good value/purchase depends on just how many Urban Decay products you have in your arsenal. The palette itself is an excellent value, and if you like more than two shadows, it works out to be the same if you had bought then individually ($17 each). Oil Slick has a slightly fussy finish/texture, but the other five eyeshadows are really nice, especially Haight and Rockstar.

where to buy: Urban Decay

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →