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Dior Grand Bal False Eyelashes Quick Review & Photos

Dior Gold Crystals False Eyelashes
Dior Gold Crystals False Eyelashes

Grand Holiday Lashes

Dior Grand Bal False Eyelashes ($28.00/pair) come in two styles with two shades each. The first pair are adorned with either silver or gold crystals, while the second pair has three “pearls” on the outermost portion of the lash in either silver or gold.  Both styles are rather dramatic, as the first pair flares out with a wide, feathery look, while the second style is thicker, heavier-lidded.  These had good flex, bend, and can be trimmed easily.  Dior includes glue with each pair, and the glue didn’t take too long to become tacky, and it held the lash in place well.  I haven’t used these in a real look yet – only played with them on bare lids, so no pictures to share of them being worn at this time (hence, quick review).

See more photos!

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MAC Taste Temptation Eyeshadow Quad

MAC Taste Temptation Eyeshadow Quad
MAC Taste Temptation Eyeshadow Quad

Not Quite as Tempting as Touted

MAC Taste Temptation Eyeshadow Quad ($40.00 for 0.20 oz.) includes four shades: Look at the Eyes (light violet), Stay Sultry (deep navy), Naval (navy blue), and Carbon (intense black).  It’s a limited edition palette that will launch with Taste Temptation, due for release in-stores on December 13th.

Look at the Eyes is a pale lilac with a frosted finish. It has decent color payoff, though when I used it, I really packed it on to get it to show up. It was the best performing shade out of the four. MAC Creative Whim is similar–a bit purpler. MAC Silverwear is lighter. OCC Datura is more iridescent, brighter.

Stay Sultry is a blackened purple with a bluish shimmer. It’s supposed to have a satin finish. It had a stiff, dry texture when I attempted to swatch it, and it performed similarly on the lid. Giorgio Armani Green Jacquard is purpler. MAC Indian Ink is also purpler, but it is similar. MAC Spellcaster is a touch redder.

Naval is an indigo blue; there’s just this purplish tint that keeps it from being as blue as it seems. It seemed even less blue when I was working with it on the eye. It looks like a matte, though it is listed as a velvet finish on the label. OCC Technoir is brighter, bluer. NARS Self Portrait 3 is lighter. Tom Ford Cobalt Rush is shimmery. NARS Self Portrait 1 is more vibrant. This shade is part of the permanent (PRO) range.

Carbon is a matte black. It has sheer color payoff with a stiff, dry texture that makes blending difficult. It’s part of the permanent range, and it’s been repromoted more than a few times recently. Shades like Wet ‘n’ Wild Drinking a Glass of Shine, NARS Self Portrait 2, Milani Pitch Black, and other black eyeshadows are all similar. Matte black is a basic enough color, so it’s really about finding the texture and richness of black that you like best. Carbon is a softer black (I’d describe it as a medium black).

The best part of the quad was inviting one to use the set of four shades together. It’s a very dark set of colors, aside from the one light one, so it was interesting trying to come up with something that used all four. The best shade was Look at the Eyes, which was softer than the other three, and it proved to have the most color payoff. You might say to yourself, “But it looks pigmented in the how-to,” but since the images are static, let me tell you that in order to develop the intensity of the crease color (Naval), I put brush to pan five times. Then, three times a piece for all three shades I used on the lid (Stay Sultry, Look at the Eyes, Carbon). In comparison, for a good eyeshadow, once is usually enough.  I’ve been wearing all four eyeshadows over a primer as well as on bare lids–and you absolutely need a primer to get decent color payoff–for the past six hours, and everything looks good thus far. If I experience any fading/creasing, I’ll update the post later tonight to reflect that.

I don’t think you should have to work this hard, period; more budget-friendly brands have put out higher quality products and have proven that you don’t need to spend a lot to get pigment-packed eyeshadow.  There’s absolutely no reason why a higher-end brand like MAC should put out dry, stiff eyeshadows with chalky, uneven color payoff.  For a similar (but these are not exact dupes!) composition by MAC with higher quality shades from their permanent range, try Beautiful Iris, Indian Ink, Atlantic Blue (for a brighter blue) or Contrast (slightly darker), and Typographic (or your preferred matte black).

MAC Taste Temptation Eyeshadow Quad

D
6
Product
6
Pigmentation
6
Texture
8.5
Longevity
3
Application
66%
Total

L’Oreal Primped & Precious Infallible Eyeshadow

L'Oreal Primped & Precious Infallible Eyeshadow
L’Oreal Primped & Precious Infallible Eyeshadow

Here’s a Silver Lining for the Holidays

L’Oreal Primped & Precious Infallible Eyeshadow ($7.49 for 0.12 oz.) is a metallic silver-gray. Giorgio Armani #22 is similar–a smidgen darker (less pigmented, actually!). Buxom Chihuahua is similar but is a cream shadow. MAC Silver Sleet is darker, more intense. Inglot #448 is a touch darker.

To complement Gold Imperial, Primped & Precious is the cool-toned, silver equivalent.  It’s just bright enough to be silver, but there’s enough gray in the color to keep it from being too stark or metallic.  When applied dry, it is a bit sheer and crumbly.  When applied damp, it binds together much better and delivers richer payoff.  When I wore this, it lasted for ten hours without fading, creasing, or suffering from fall out.  (I did have some fall out during application when I tried using it dry.)

L'Oreal Infallible 24-Hour Eyeshadow Primped & Precious
8.5
Product
8.5
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
10
Longevity
4
Application
88%
Total

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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

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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