Friday, May 6th, 2011

MAC Summer Stash Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack
MAC Summer Stash Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack

MAC Surf Baby: Summer Stash

MAC Summer Stash Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack ($32.50 for 0.40 oz.) comes with two stacks of colors, with each stack having two shades. The Summer Stash stack’s shades are described as “light pink champagne, light white pearl, light violet with silver pearl, brown bronze with gold pearl.” The individual colors do not have shade names, just the stack itself.

  • The first shade I swatched is a pinky plum–it’s purple and yet it’s pink. Just a touch a sheer. It reminded me of Plum Dressing with a purpler base.
  • Next, I swatched a rich, decadent chocolate brown with a bronzy shimmer and metallic finish. It’s a darker, more lush version of Chocolate Brown pigment; richer, deeper than Bronze eyeshadow.
  • The third shade is a bright white-beige with a metallic finish–also a little sheer. It’s similar to Phloof! but more frost in the finish.
  • Finally, the last shade is a gilded champagne beige with a bright metallic finish. It’s a slightly pinked, more metallic version of Sunnydaze. It’s a little less pink than Naked Lunch.

Each stack is about 2.5x the size of a regular, full-sized pigment–essentially, the value here is about $52 worth of product. The texture of these is chunkier than pigments, though they don’t apply that way. For the most part, they have a tendency to stick together, which is why I can see the “crushed metal” name coming from, and obviously, the finishes are very strong frosts/metallics (also, expected, from the name). The gold shade was the chunkiest, unusually so (it looks nothing like the previous stacks I’ve had nor any of the ones from this launch)–made it look like little nuggets of gold goodness!

These are best used over a slightly tacky base (like MAC Mixing Medium) or wet, because they are more like a loose color than a pressed one, but the pigment itself does bind well over an eyeshadow base or regular eyeshadow without having to be used wet, because as you press the product on, it doesn’t poof everywhere. These adhere well, and for all intents and purposes, I find them very much like MAC Pigments. When applied wet, they adhere really well without a base; when applied dry, you really have to press and ensure it’s been smoothed out to wear it alone without a base.

The Glossover

coming-soon

MAC Summer Stash Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack Swatches, Photos, Reviews

B+
This stack had two shades that were a little sheer, so the rating differs from the Surf the Ocean stack slightly. These are more wearable shades, and I think the colors coordinate better together here than in the other stack, too. Summer Stash also has a warmer leaning, but it's not too warm.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Friday, May 6th, 2011

MAC Surf the Ocean Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack
MAC Surf the Ocean Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack

MAC Surf Baby: Surf the Ocean

MAC Surf the Ocean Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack ($32.50 for 0.40 oz.) comes with two stacks of colors, with each stack having two shades. The Surf the Ocean stack’s shades are described as “frosty platinum, light yellow green, gold bronze, and dirty graphite with silver pearl.” The individual colors do not have shade names, just the stack itself.

  • The first shade of the stack that I tried was a medium-dark silvery gray with a metallic finish. It’s like a lighter version of Silver Ring, seems comparable to Silver pigment (long discontinued).
  • Next, we have a really blackened navy blue with multicolored shimmer of teal, green, and blue with more of a frost finish. Deep Blue Green would seem the closest but this is definitely bluer.
  • The third shade I swatched was a medium-dark, bronzy gold with a metallic finish. It’s a little less copper than Amber Lights eyeshadow.
  • Finally, there is a seafoam green that is really iridescent and a little sheer (even when swatched wet), and it photographs less seafoam and almost like this mauve-gray. I can’t think of any similar shades in the permanent line, but it almost seems like a lighter version of NARS Dogon.

Each stack is about 2.5x the size of a regular, full-sized pigment–essentially, the value here is about $52 worth of product. The texture of these is chunkier than pigments, though they don’t apply that way. For the most part, they have a tendency to stick together, which is why I can see the “crushed metal” name coming from, and obviously, the finishes are very strong frosts/metallics (also, expected, from the name). The gold shade was the chunkiest, unusually so (it looks nothing like the previous stacks I’ve had nor any of the ones from this launch)–made it look like little nuggets of gold goodness!

These are best used over a slightly tacky base (like MAC Mixing Medium) or wet, because they are more like a loose color than a pressed one, but the pigment itself does bind well over an eyeshadow base or regular eyeshadow without having to be used wet, because as you press the product on, it doesn’t poof everywhere. These adhere well, and for all intents and purposes, I find them very much like MAC Pigments. When applied wet, they adhere really well without a base; when applied dry, you really have to press and ensure it’s been smoothed out to wear it alone without a base.

The Glossover

coming-soon

MAC Surf the Ocean Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
The stack is an interesting mix of colors, and I would expect that these are more versatile mixed with other products than worn together because of how strong the frost is in each shade's finish--together, it might be overkill. I see this one being more popular than Summer Stash because of the seafoam-y shade.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Friday, May 6th, 2011

MAC Saffron Eyeshadow
MAC Surf USA Eyeshadow

MAC Surf Baby: Eyeshadows

MAC Surf Baby Eyeshadows ($15.50 for 0.05 oz.) come in five shades: Saffron (deep coral caramel), Short Shorts (frosty white champagne), Sun Blonde (dirty yellow gold), Surf USA (frosted teal), and Swell Baby (mid-tone grey).

  • Saffron is a rusty orange-red with a soft sheen. It has a satin finish, and it was originally launched with Mickey Contractor (’11).
  • Short Shorts is a pale white gold with a frosted finish. It has a frost finish. This is a shade we’ve seen before–think Soft Force, White Tie, Manila Paper, etc.–for a permanent dupe, Nylon is your best bet, though is a little yellower and more metallic in the finish.
  • Surf USA is a vibrant medium-dark teal that leans green. It has a frost finish–but it is a very, very subtle frost. It’s more like a cross between a satin and frost finish, actually. It’s a more vibrant version of Gulf Stream–the closest permanent dupe would be Shimmermoss, which is bluer and not nearly as vibrant. You’d be better off trying NARS Misfit as a dupe, though it’s a little greener.
  • Sun Blonde is a golden mustard yellow with a satiny sheen. It’s this great mix of gold and mustard yellow. It has a frost finish, but like Surf USA, looks less like your typical frost and more like a satin. It’s kind of like a much richer Gorgeous Gold (without the duochrome, obviously!). I can’t think of a dupe for this one in MAC’s past/present line. Maybe a darker, metallic version of Jasmine.  NARS Mangrove would be comparable though.
  • Swell Baby is a medium, silvery gray. It has a satin finish. It’s a little lighter than Print.

These are some of the best eyeshadows MAC has put out in the past year (excluding Peacocky’s Mega Metal Eyeshadows, which were some of the best eyeshadows put out by MAC ever, if you didn’t pick up any, FOR SHAME!), and the reason being is that all five have excellent color pay off with smooth texture. To hit all five out of the park, I think, is quite a feat–for any brand–and MAC does so well with these.

The Glossover

product

MAC Surf Baby: Eyeshadows Swatches, Photos, Reviews

A
Every shade is worth getting--it just depends on your personal preferences for colors and the like. Short Shorts is the least unique of the five, while Sun Blonde is the most unique.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, May 5th, 2011


Green is Green, Blue Charge, Plum Reserve, High Esteem

MAC Colored Zoom Lash Mascara

I reviewed Green is Green initially, and here are swatches of the other three shades, as well as the mascaras worn on lashes. I actually found that Green is Green did the best at coating lashes, with Blue Charge close behind. Plum Reserve and High Esteem didn’t coat my lashes as effectively and didn’t give them much color.

Blue Charge is darker than Themyscira, while Plum Reserve is darker and purpler than Victorious. I think you’ll notice less color difference when they are worn, though, but swatched, their differences are easily seen.

my thoughts on the mascara formula: Zoom Lash is supposed to “build density,” while the “ultra-sculpted brush has three-sided fibres to embrace and separate each lash.” My favorite MAC mascara is Plushlash, but I used to use Zoom Lash for quite a bit (because Plushlash didn’t exist). I like how it’s a really thick formula–thick as in it really coats each lash really well in the formula but without clumping. Zoom Lash, being a thicker consistency, will clump if you start going beyond two coats, though. (In my experience, you shouldn’t need more than two.) Zoom Lash separates and defines lashes while thickening them for me. I didn’t have any issues with the mascara flaking or smudging on me.

The Glossover

coming-soon

MAC Colored Zoom Lash Mascara Reviews, Photos, Swatches

B-
If you don't mind some prep work, layer a white primer on lashes first, then coat with a colored mascara to see more zing if you have naturally darker lashes.

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

6.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, May 5th, 2011


Make Up For Ever Aqua Liner – 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16

Make Up For Ever Aqua Liner Sneak Peek – Photos & Swatches

I’m not quite done with all of the photos/swatches I need for the review, but I’ve tested these, and they’re amazing! Definitely long-wearing and waterproof. They look a lot like some of the other felt/foam-tipped liquid liners we’ve seen come out in the past few months (MAC Superslick, Illamasqua Precision Ink, just to name a few), but the applicator on these is actually a little different–all of which I’ll go into greater detail in the actual review.

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Monday, May 2nd, 2011

NARS Dogon Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Dogon Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Summer 2011: Dogon Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Dogon Eyeshadow Duo ($33.00 for 0.14 oz.) was named for Mali-based culture and features a metallic taupe with icy green sheen and charcoal black. It is a limited edition duo. I found the lighter shade to apply really smoothly and evenly, while the darker shade was smooth but slightly dusty and pigmentation was good–though it seemed to fade too easily when blended.

In the pan, the darker shade looks rather blue–almost like a really sooty, deep dark blue, but when swatched, it does have a tendency to look much blacker. It still reads a smidgen blue, though, and part of that is owed to the flecks of midnight blue shimmer running through the matte color base.

The lighter shade is a rosy taupe with a subtle green sheen. It’s like a softer, subtler version of MAC Club or Blue Brown pigment. I can see the duochrome nature of the lighter shade really catching peoples’ eyes, though, and of all the products for summer, this is likely to be one of the more coveted pieces.

As far as NARS eyeshadows go, their duos are your best bang for your buck. Most individual eyeshadows from high-end brands are 0.05 oz. on average, while these almost equal out to three of those for $33. NARS’ eyeshadows are supposed to be long-wearing and crease-resistant. When I wear them alone, I tend to get around seven to eight hours of wear before there is a faint amount of creasing, so it isn’t a huge mess, but I’d recommend a primer for all-day wear (especially for those with oilier lids).

The Glossover

coming-soon

NARS Dogon Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
This duo has smoky eye written all over it! It is a cooler-toned set of shades, but I think both of them are workable across both skin tones because of their depth.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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