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bareMinerals The Happy Place Eyeshadow Quad

bareMinerals The Happy Place Eyeshadow Quad
bareMinerals The Happy Place Eyeshadow Quad

This Happy Place is Warm and Cozy

bareMinerals The Happy Place Eyeshadow Quad ($30.00 for 0.17 oz.) includes four shades: Peace (muted apricot), Imagine (rose gold), Exhale (smoky taupe), and Euphoria (eggplant).

Peace is a soft peach with a mostly matte finish. It had excellent color payoff and was very soft and smooth. bareMinerals Stealth is a touch more orange. Urban Decay Freestyle is more beige. Dolce & Gabbana Jewels is comparable, just more shimmery. MAC Nubile is a touch more beige and is a cream product. MAC Orb is more pink-toned.

Imagine is a muted, medium copper with a golden shimmer-sheen. It had good pigmentation and was fairly soft and smooth. MAC Star Myth is darker. MAC Mythical is darker and redder.

Exhale is a mauve-tinged taupe with a matte finish. It had great color payoff, and while it was very soft, it wasn’t powdery. This kind of color can be really versatile and easy-to-use in more dramatic looks as well as more natural ones. bareMinerals Suspense is lighter, grayer. MAC Cloudy Afternoon is lighter and frosted. Urban Decay Bust is grayer, frosted.

Euphoria is a reddened brown with warm, orange undertones. It had fantastic pigmentation and was very soft and smooth on the lid. Cinderella Rococo is more burgundy. bareMinerals Most Requested is more matte and muted. MAC Star Violet is pinker. Estee Lauder Violet Underground is browner, warmer.

All in all, The Happy Place is a well-made quad with nicely pigmented eyeshadows and soft, smooth textures that feel finely-milled, buttery, and dense.  Imagine was the “weakest” of the bunch, as it was slightly less pigmented compared to the other three, and a wee bit powdery.  I really do mean slight and bit–they’re so minor that one might not normally notice, but among truly stellar eyeshadows, it stood out.  When I wore all four shades together, they wore without fading or creasing for a full eight hours without a primer.

bareMinerals The Happy Place Eyeshadow Quad

A
9.5
Product
9.5
Pigmentation
9.5
Texture
10
Longevity
5
Application
97%
Total

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Giorgio Armani Moonlight White Palette

Giorgio Armani Moonlight White Palette
Giorgio Armani Moonlight White Palette

Not Enough Smoke in This Smoky Eyed Palette

Giorgio Armani Moonlight White Palette ($88.00 for 0.41 oz.) is a face palette that contains one highlighter, two eyeshadows, and one lip color. The shades are described as, “White shimmer highlighting powder is paired with a gradation of grey eyeshadows to create a wash of color, finish with the red lip wax for a sophisticated winter style.”

The highlighter is a pure snowy white with a silver-white shimmer. This one was a bit more sparkly compared to the Moonlight Beige palette. The texture, while finely-milled and soft to the touch, wasn’t as blendable–perhaps easier to notice given how stark this looked against my skin tone in particular. It will look best on very, very pale complexions. The closest dupe I could think of was Benefit High Beam, which is pinker.

The lip wax is a darkened pink-red with a natural sheen. On lips, it looks more red than pink and yielded semi-opaque color coverage. It has a thin consistency, so it looked a lot like a stain when applied to the lips. MAC Fire Sign is a little brighter, but it has a similar look and feel on. NARS Flamenco is also very similar, perhaps a touch more pigmented.

The first eyeshadow is a light-medium gray with a soft shimmer. It had decent to good pigmentation, and while finely-milled, was just a bit powdery. NARS Self Portrait 2 is darker. NARS Ramatuelle is shimmery and lighter. Guerlain Les Gris is more frosted. MAC Silver Gull is similar. Guerlain Les Ombres de Nuit is frosty.

The second eyeshadow is a medium-dark, faded gray with a mostly matte finish, though it is sprinkled with sparkle–you just don’t see it show up or at a distance. The color payoff here was weak; it had a faded, almost dry quality to the end result. bareMinerals Chateau is more pigmented, more matte. MAC Scene is very similar, just more pigmented. Chanel Gris Exquis is similar but has no sparkle.

My biggest problem with this palette is in the composition, all quality comments aside. There’s simply not enough contrast between the two eyeshadows for a really great smoky eye. I felt like the colors together ended up looking so much like the other–instantly muddied (if mud was gray). I was originally interested to see how Giorgio Armani took a rather bold pairing (smoky eyes and red lips), but I can see now that the grays are subdued enough that the lips are more of a focal point.

The highlighter lasted just over seven hours, and after eight, there was some slight fading.  The lip wax lasted four hours, but it was a little drying to wear. Both eyeshadows were prone to blending out and disappearing (the lighter shade did this in a particularly frustrating fashion!), but once applied, they didn’t seem to fade much more. The eyeshadows appeared a little faded after eight hours without a primer (but no fading with a primer).

Giorgio Armani Moonlight White Palette

C+
7
Product
8
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
8
Longevity
3.5
Application
78%
Total

Urban Decay Smoked Eyeliner Set

Urban Decay Smoked Eyeliner Set
Urban Decay Smoked Eyeliner Set

Make Smoky Eyes Pop with Colored Eyeliner

Urban Decay Smoked Eyeliner Set ($38.00 for 6 x 0.03 oz.) contains six travel-sized pencil eyeliners, including two set-exclusive shades: Uzi (gunmetal taupe with silver micro-glitter), Zero (zealous black), Demolition (deep brown matte), Smog (copper), Empire (dark eggplant satin), and Mainline (dark green/blue matte).

  • Uzi is a brown-tinged gray with a silver sparkle. It looks more silver-like when applied, but the sheerer or more smudged it is, the browner it looks. It has so-so color payoff in a single pass.
  • Zero is a medium-dark black with a mostly matte finish. It had good pigmentation in a single stroke, and it’s a good basic black.
  • Demolition is a medium-dark brown with subtle warm undertones and a matte finish. Like Zero, it’s a good basic shade of brown. The color payoff is decent in a single pass, but it layers well. MAC Brownborder is warmer, redder-toned. Milani Brown is similar; a touch cooler-toned.
  • Smog is a coppered-bronze with a pearly sheen. It had decent to good payoff in one go.
  • Empire is a violet purple with very, very fine blue micro-shimmer–the shimmer isn’t noticeable on, and it looks mostly matte when applied. It didn’t have great color payoff in a single pass, but it was buildable. MAC Permaplum is similar but more shimmery.
  • Mainline is a blue-teal with a matte finish. It had decent pigmentation in a single go, and it layered fairly well. Estee Lauder Electric Teal is more turquoise and lighter.

For many years, Urban Decay’s 24/7 Eye Pencils were my favorite eyeliners, and while they’re not my absolute favorites, I still love them and use them regularly.  They wear eight hours on me without migrating or disappearing, and they come in a variety of colors, making the range versatile and easy to go to.  Urban Decay’s eyeliner sets are an excellent way to get multiple colors for a fraction of the price of them full-sized.  Keep in mind, full-size is 0.04 oz., and these are 0.03 oz. a pop–25% less but each liner costs $6.33 (compared to $19.00).  This set contains $85.50 worth of eyeliner, so it’s a great deal.  Urban Decay eyeliners are buildable, and they’ll look opaque when layered (go back-and-forth once or twice).

Urban Decay Smoked Eyeliner Set

A
9.5
Product
9
Pigmentation
9.5
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
94%
Total

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Giorgio Armani Moonlight Beige Palette

Giorgio Armani Moonlight Beige Palette
Giorgio Armani Moonlight Beige Palette

Let the Moonlight Bathe You in Beige

Giorgio Armani Moonlight Beige Palette ($88.00 for 0.41 oz.) consists of a highlighter, two eyeshadows, and lip wax housed in a glossy black compact with a mirror and two sponge-tipped applicators. Giorgio Armani describes the shades as, “Beige shimmer powder joins taupe eyeshadows that intensify gradually, along with Beige lip wax for sheer, natural elegance.”

The highlighter is a pale white-beige with a silver-ish sparkle. There is definitely an overlay of silver glitter that dusts away within the first use (and likely, for the better, since the glitter particles are large). I removed this overlay before I swatched and applied the product. It has a shimmer-sheen finish where a little bit of shimmer is detectable, but it creates mostly a glow-y sheen on the skin. The texture was soft and finely-milled, so it blended easily and sat well on the skin without emphasizing pores or the natural texture. NARS Albatross has more of a golden sheen. MAC Lightscapade is similar but has a stronger sheen. MAC Truth & Light is a touch warmer. MAC Too Chic is frostier.

The first eyeshadow is a soft taupe that leans gray. It has a satin-like finish, and the color payoff is good. Chane Variation is grayer, darker. NARS Vent Glace is warmer, browner. bareMinerals Suspense is darker, grayer. Estee Lauder Tempting Mocha is darker.

The second eyeshadow is a subdued medium-dark brown with just a hint of gray. It has a mostly matte finish with a touch of satiny sheen. The color payoff seemed so-so, but on the lid, it was better–good overall. MAC Omega is lighter. Chanel Premier Regard is a smidgen darker and grayer. MAC Camo is lighter.

The lip wax is sheer, as described; it is a warm peach-beige with a soft, frosted sheen. When applied, it really just lightened my natural lip color and added a soft, frosted sheen. As far as dupes go, any sheer beige lipstick will get you close, assuming you have a natural lip color similar to mine. It had more color than MAC Tropical Mist. RevlonC reme Brulee is comparable in color, though it is a bit more pigmented.  I didn’t love the formula of this, as it is very unforgiving on the lips, since the texture is on the drier side.

The eyeshadows wore for eight hours without fading or creasing (without a primer).  They were incredibly easy to apply and blended out beautifully.  The highlighter lasted for eight hours with minor fading along the edges.  The lip wax lasted two hours on me from what I could tell–something as sheer as this harder to determine!

Overall, I like the palette, but I’m not in love.  The price point is heart-wrenching, and so I need to be in love with the entire palette to get excited about it.  The eyeshadows performed better when I was applying them, and as they’re finely-milled and very, very soft, they can become sheer if blended out enough (which is what happened when I swatched them).  The whole look this palette creates is soft and natural; very work-friendly and nearly foolproof to create.

Giorgio Armani Moonlight Beige Palette

B+
8.5
Product
8.5
Pigmentation
10
Texture
8.5
Longevity
4.5
Application
89%
Total

Tom Ford Enchanted Eyeshadow Quad

Tom Ford Enchanted Eyeshadow Quad
Tom Ford Enchanted Eyeshadow Quad

Tom Ford Enchanted Eyeshadow Quad ($75.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a limited edition palette described as “neutral.” It contains a pressed powder formula that can be used wet and dry, and the formula is different than the original quads released with the line. It is the same formula as Emerald Lust.

The first shade is an icy, cool-toned pink with a frosted sheen. It had good pigmentation both wet and dry. MAC ready to Party is pinker. MAC Fresh & Mint is comparable. Dior Garden Roses is less frosted. Tarina Tarantino Diamond Dusk has a pink iridescence. MAC Fresh Ice is a bit whiter.

The second shade is a pink-tinged peach with a frosted, metallic finish. It had good color payoff dry, but it had excellent payoff when used damp/wet. MAC Pink Frontier is less frosted. Chanel Abstraction is darker, more coral. bareMinerals Custom is warmer, less pink. Le Metier de Beaute Nouvelle is warmer.

The third shade is a gray-tinged mauve with a frosted finish. It had excellent pigmentation both wet and dry, though the frosted finish was more pronounced when used wet. NARS 413 Blkr is pinker. NARS Flowers 1 is a bit darker. MAC Joy & Laughter is darker. MAC Hypnotizing is darker, more mauve.

The last shade is a burgundy-brown with a soft, frosted finish. The color payoff was amazing–incredibly rich–and the texture was so, so smooth. MAC Sketch is less shimmered. Cinderella Rococo is lighter, less intense. MAC Rich Core is purpler. theBalm Sexy is matte. Make Up For Ever #311 is plummier.

I was not in love with Tom Ford’s original eyeshadow quads, but the formula used in the two fall palettes is phenomenal (Enchanted is one of them). The shades are nicely pigmented with soft, finely-milled textures that apply smoothly and even, and the formula adheres and wears all day long without a primer.  It has such a creamy, buttery texture that it just makes you go, “oooh!” as you touch it.  I thought the composition of this palette was more versatile in Enchanted than in Emerald Lust, because this had less over-the-top frosts.

Tom Ford Enchanted Eyeshadow Quad

A
9.5
Product
9.5
Pigmentation
10
Texture
10
Longevity
5
Application
98%
Total

Wet ‘n’ Wild Drinking a Glass of Shine Eyeshadow Palette

Wet 'n' Wild Drinking a Glass of Shine Eyeshadow Palette
Wet ‘n’ Wild Drinking a Glass of Shine Eyeshadow Palette

An All Matte Eyeshadow Palette for the Price of a Latte

Wet ‘n’ Wild Drinking a Glass of Shine Eyeshadow Palette ($4.99 for 0.30 oz.) contains eight matte eyeshadows ranging in color from white to black. This palette may be better known as I

The first shade is a soft white with a matte finish. It had good color payoff, and the texture was soft. Wet ‘n’ Wild Shimmer the Night Away is shimmery. MAC Crystal Avalanche is also shimmery. Bobbi Brown White is very comparable. bareMinerals Cheers is frosted. bareMinerals Cumuls is starker. Inglot #373 is whiter.

The second shade is a darkened seafoam green with a matte finish. This shade had decent color payoff, but it is so soft that it has a tendency to blend away a bit. When patted on, it delivers a lot more payoff and has a less faded appearance (see photos below). Inglot #345 is lighter. Make Up For Ever #53 is much darker. Sugarpill Mochi is bluer. MAC Aqua is lighter.

The third shade is a light-medium sky blue with a matte finish. It had good pigmentation, and it was soft and smooth without being powdery. Cinderella Royal is darker. Milani Olympian Blue is also darker, brighter. Maybelline Tenacious Teal is a bit darker and shimmery (and a cream). MAC Blue Candy is a touch brighter. Make Up For Ever #118 is a little lighter and brighter.

The fourth shade is a medium-dark purple with subtle red undertones. This shade had decent to good color payoff, but it was very powdery. This shade was the most powdery of the eight. MAC Plush is darker and shimmery. Milani Primary is shimmery. MAC Shock-a-holic is redder. Inglot #379 is bluer-toned.

The fifth shade is a soft, creamy beige with a matte finish. One of the best shades in the palette, this had a lovely soft, smooth texture that wasn’t powdery with excellent color payoff. Urban Decay Anonymous is similar. theBalm Adagio is very close. MAC Brule is comparable. MAC Vanilla is warmer, lighter.

The sixth shade is a faded orange with a matte finish. It had decent pigmentation, and it was the driest of the eight–surprisingly dry to the point where it was a bit stiff (which was why the color payoff wasn’t great). NARS Self Portrait 3 is darker, richer. NARS Ramatuelle is a bit more orange.

The seventh shade is a medium-dark brown with subtle red undertones and a matte finish. This shade was very sheer and a bit stiff to work with. It was the worst performing out of the eight. theBalm Presto is similar. NARS Surabaya is more orange-toned. Bobbi Brown Cocoa Berry is more burgundy. MAC Embark is darker.

The eighth shade is a dark black with a matte finish. The texture of this one was slightly dry, which resulted in just so-so color payoff. Wet ‘n’ Wild Shimmer the Night Away is comparable. MAC Carbon is also similar.

Overall, this is palette is a mixed bag, as some of the shades were powdery and two were a bit dry/stiff (and those two were also significantly sheerer than the rest). None of the shades were so powdery that they would blend away to nothing or faded away quickly, but I recommend patting, not sweeping, them on. A little over half of the matte shades in this palette are of the softer variety, so they deposited pigment well, blended easily, but did have some fall out during application. The drier mattes have less fall out but were harder to blend and pick up pigment from.

When I wore the eyeshadows from this palette, they lasted fairly well over eight hours, but there was some fading along the edges that became noticeable after seven hours (without a primer).  Over a primer, the fading deferred for an hour–only looking a bit faded with the green and purple shades after eight hours.

Wet ‘n’ Wild Drinking a Glass of Shine Eyeshadow Palette

C+
8
Product
8
Pigmentation
8
Texture
8
Longevity
3.5
Application
79%
Total

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