Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

MAC Alice + Olivia Collection
MAC Mineralize Eyeshadow Trios

MAC In the Groove Collection: Mineralize Eyeshadow Trios

In the Groove is a HUGE collection, and if you love mineralize products, you’re in luck–because that’s the theme.  These are softer, smoother, and have a pearly/satin-y finish rather than glittery or overly shimmery.  There are only a few frosty finishes here, but overall, a lot smoother and less powdery than previous mineralize eyeshadows.

Mineralize Eye Shadow (Trio) ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • In the Groove is a neutral-warm trio of a muted saffron gold, reddish brown, and pale peach with white sheen. This is actually very lovely trio — it works together, but they’re all easy-to-wear shades that could be matched with other products, too. Pigmentation was just right. The lightest yellow-y shade reminded me of an old, long discontinued shade Jasmine.
  • Calm, Cool, & Collected is a cool-toned green trio featuring a grayish-white beige with satin sheen, neutral spring green, and darkened gray-green. The springy green shade was pretty sheer, and the darker green was a little sheer, too.
  • Togetherness is a cool-toned purple trio that includes a soft lilac with a satin sheen, blue-based violet purple with a frostier finish, and a mid-tone silver gray. The pigmentation here was even and rich throughout the trio.
  • Style Influencer is a trio of grayish-white with low-level pearl, darkened navy blue with a frosty finish, and dirty pink-brown with a satin sheen. The dirty pink was a little lacking in pigmentation. The only easily dupeable shade in this trio is the dark blue, which is a good bit like Deep Truth.
  • Blue My Mind is a trio of soft, whitish blue, blue-teal, and soft black. I found that this was the least pigmented, and it was definitely better to use it wet than dry.
  • Love to Love is a trio of soft beige with a low-level satin sheen, copper with an almost metallic sheen, and muted neutral mid-tone brown. All three shades were very smooth and pigmented. The lightest shade is similar to Vanilla or Shroom, while the coppery shade is very much like Amber Lights. The darker brown doesn’t scream a dupe, but it’s likely a bit similar to one of MAC’s many neutral browns–but the satin-y finish is different.
  • Making It Easy is a pearly trio of peach-champagne, champagne, and softened orange-brown. This is a warmer trio, and it could create a very subtle, everyday eye. The middle shade reminds me of Retrospeck, except without the glittery finish.
  • Fresh & Easy is a trio of petal pink with white sheen (similar to Pink Freeze), muted cranberry (a less pigmented version of Cranberry), and muted sky blue.
  • Soften the Mood is a trio of muted sky blue with pearly sheen, mauve-toned champagne, and mid-tone neutral brown with a soft sheen. I feel like this one is a combination of the other trios — the blue from Fresh & Easy, the champagne from Making it Easy, and the brown from Love to Love.

These are a lot more pigmented than previous launches when they’re used dry–they’re more pigmented wet, of course–but they are decent to well-pigmented dry.  They also adhere way better to lids.  I used them over NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow base, and I didn’t see the color fade within minutes like I typically do.  I also had very little fall out, which I was surprised to see (or not see, as the case may be).  I’d say the formula seems much improved–more cohesive, smoother, and user-friendly.

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Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

MAC In the Groove Collection
MAC Mineralize Blush Duos

MAC In the Groove Collection: Mineralize Blush Duos

In the Groove features five different blush duos, and there is a good range of colors in the collection. Happy Together and Hang Loose are the most wearable of the five, while A Little Bit of Sunshine and Band of Roses are the most pigmented and should be used with a light hand or stippling brush. New Vibe is a bit more of a glittery mix than the others, which have more luminous/soft satin sheens.

  • A Little Bit of Sunshine is an orange-y bronze duo — it features a shimmery orange-copper with a frost finish paired with a orange-toned medium brown with a satin finish. Together, they blend to create a muted orange-brown with soft sheen. It would better suit warmer skin tones, just because it does run rather orange. On my skin, it turns a little orange and definitely needs to be buffed out and used lightly.
  • Happy Together contains gilded champagne and peach-brown, and together they create a soft champagne-peach. Very luminous. I think this works well on warm skin tones for a little glow–more as a highlighter than intensely pigmented blush, though. It looks like a subtle bronzer on my skin. I think that you can go lighter/darker with ease, since you just have to focus on one half of the duo.
  • New Vibe is a duo that features a satin-y raspberry pink and shimmery bright copper with microglitter. When swirled together, they create a muted raspberry shade. I don’t really like the way they come together–it’s kind of muddy, even when worn. It’s not as pigmented as the other shades, too, when mixed.
  • Hang Loose is a mix of slightly cool-toned baby pink with a satin sheen and a frosted pale lilac with a white sheen. Together, they blend into a subtle shimmery pink–imparts some color on cheeks with enough build-up and concentration on the pinker side, but it’s very shimmery. It’s a very cool-toned, baby doll pink on my cheeks, but it does deliver a surprising amount of color. Again, you have to use the pink side more than the shimmery lilac side to get decent color pay off on cheeks.
  • Band of Roses features a played down fuchsia pink and darkened raspberry pink, both with more satin-y finishes. They create a pinker raspberry shade when blended together. It’s very pretty when worn, but it’s also incredibly easy to over-do it. Use a light hand with this one!

I did, however, finally figure out why mineralize blushes and skinfinishes don’t work so well with my skin–dimethicone is the third or fourth ingredient–and my arch nemsis! At least I know feel like I have a handle on it, even if it makes me sad that I won’t be wearing these much.

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Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

MAC Alice + Olivia Collection
MAC By Candlelight Mineralize Skinfinish

MAC In the Groove Collection: Mineralize Skinfinishes

In the Groove is most likely so anticipated because of the repromotion of Stereo Rose mineralize skinfinish.  Which will sell out… in hours.  If you’re grabbing it online, it most likely will pop online on the 6th, but there is always a chance it will make an appearance on Monday afternoon.  I’ll be sure to tweet about its availability as soon as I see it online.  I don’t have Stereo Rose yet–have to buy that when it launches–and I don’t have the original for comparisons, so my deepest apologies for that.

Edited @ 4:24PM (pst): I hope to update this post tomorrow–the 8th–with photos/swatches of Stereo Rose, assuming my store did in fact hold the Stereo Rose like they said.  Nevertheless, I updated the post with photos of me wearing the other three mineralize skinfinishes.

  • By Candlelight is is a soft, sheer gilded pink-beige. It’s really great as a highlighter on cheeks or even subtly all-over the face.
  • Petticoat is a darkened raspberry pink-bronze. This is one of the mineralize skinfinishes that can change color depending on how much glitter veining you have (and also, the less glitter veining, the less glitter). I don’t find Petticoat obnoxiously glittery, though. It’s pigmented enough to be worn as a blush for light and medium-dark skintones–the deepest skin tones may find it very subtle.
  • Comfort is a slightly bronzed brown with golden sheen. This is nice on warmer skin tones as a subtle flush on cheeks or as a bronzer. It’s one of the less shimmery mineralize skinfinishes, and it’s also one of the more pigmented ones, too.

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Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

MAC Alice + Olivia Collection
MAC Cremesheen Glasses: You’ve Got It, On the Scene, Fashion Whim, Chillin’, Right Image, Going Casual

MAC In the Groove Collection: Cremesheen Glasses

In the Groove launches on the 8th, and it contains six new and limited edition shades of Cremesheen Glass–a thin, non-sticky, sheer gloss.   They coordinate rather obviously with the majority of the lipsticks, with the exception of Chillin’ which doesn’t quite align with any of the lipsticks from this launch.

  • You’ve Got It is a subtle grayish brown with multicolored shimmer, predominantly white, though. It has that same mushroom-y look as Call My Bluff lipstick, so it would pair well with that. It would also wash out any of the other brighter shades a bit, too. It’s like a lighter, non-sticky version of Chai lipglass. It’s semi-sheer on lips–it tones down my natural color a bit and makes it look rather nude/washed out almost. Definitely not very brown on lips.
  • On the Scene is a light orange-peach with subtle white shimmer. I know someone is going to ask me if I’m sure I didn’t mess the swatches up, but On the Scene looks incredibly similar to Fashion Whim when applied to [my] lips. I’m not even joking. I put them on side by side to make sure, and I couldn’t tell. On the Scene is just barely warmer than Fashion Whim. On the full-face, you can see the way one is warmer, one is cooler. At first, I thought it was like Ember Glow, but on lips it’s a little different.
  • Fashion Whim is a light peach with pale gold shimmer. This is like a pinky nude that goes on semi-opaque . It’s kind of like Creme d’Nude in lipgloss form, or else a pinker version of C-Thru lipglass. It’s a little milky on my lips, so it has a tendency to emphasize lip lines.
  • Chillin’ is a very light, pale cloudy blue. On lips, it really just like a milky cool-toned white with multi-colored shimmer. I think it may be nice to use to add glossiness and a bring out the cool tones of a lipstick. If you were hoping for a truer blue or something pigmented, this isn’t it.
  • Right Image is a neutral-yellow pink with white shimmer. It’s just a pretty medium pink that applies semi-opaque with pink and white shimmer. Even though it’s pretty, you may own something similar.
  • Going Casual is a cool-toned, blue-based pink with iridescent purple and white shimmer–almost leans a little purple. It has a very milky look and does settle into my lip lines.

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you like ultra sheer, milky glosses, then these are totally up your alley!

AVAILABILITY: MAC

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Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

MAC In the Groove Collection
MAC Lipsticks: Call My Bluff, Creme d’Nude, Go For It, I Like It Like That, All Styled Up, Jazzed

MAC In the Groove Collection: Cremesheen Lipsticks

In the Groove also includes five new and limited lipsticks (plus one repromote–Creme d’Nude). All six of the lipsticks have a cremesheen finish, so they’re on the more pigmented side with creamier-looking color (less shimmer/frost), but they have less moisture in them (though I don’t find them drying).

  • Creme d’Nude is a creamy, nearly opaque pink-toned fleshy nude. It’s part of the permanent launch, and I know that many Temptalia readers love it as a go-to nude.
  • Call My Bluff is a lightly warmed up mushroom-y brown. It reminds me of Shitaki, except warmer. Like a cooler Touch, maybe. It’s semi-sheer on lips and has a soft silver shimmer.
  • Go For It is a semi-sheer red-toned purple with violet shimmer.  It’s a lighter, less intense version of Violetta–not nearly as shimmery, opaque, or vibrant.  More distinctly purple than Up the Amp, but it has that same subtle muted color.
  • I Like It Like That is a cool-toned, blue-based opaque pink. It’s a little darker and cooler than All Styled Up, but they’re pretty close. This shade is very close to Viva Glam Gaga, but a little brighter; it’s darker than Snob.
  • All Styled Up is a blue-based bubblegum pink with a slight glossy sheen and semi-opaque color. It actually doesn’t feel like a true cremesheen finish to me – almost like a little lustre-ness snuck in (though more a cremesheen than a lustre finish!). It does look a little streaky when applied, so make sure to smoosh lips to even it out. This shade is pinker and darker than Viva Glam Gaga, pinker than Snob. They’re all in the same family, though.
  • Jazzed is a nearly opaque, glossy coral-peach. It’s like a cross between Ravishing and Vegas Volt–not as peach/orange as Ravishing, but not as bright as Vegas Volt. It’s not too warm, so I think cooler skin tones can wear this well. This is not like Ever Hip–this is peach, orange, but not pink, which Ever Hip most definitely is. This is not like either lipstick from Pret-a-Papier, particularly since the finish is completely different, Jazzed is incredibly pigmented, and much brighter.

I really don’t why I Like It Like That and All Styled Up are so similar and in the same launch–they’re completely redundant. Yes, there is a difference between the two, but it’s incredibly small, and given they’re in the same launch? Boring! (Not to mention, this collection is obese–why six lipsticks at all?)

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Monday, July 5th, 2010

MAC Haute & Naughty Mascara
MAC Haute & Naughty Mascara

The Tale of Two Mascaras

MAC Haute & Naughty Lash Mascara ($18.00) is the latest in mascara innovation from MAC, and though the formula itself isn’t the key innovation here, it’s actually a nice formula.

I’m personally a big fan of MAC mascaras — Plushlash is my favorite MAC mascara (and second favorite mascara–Chanel Exceptionnel being the first), with Zoomlash and Opulash coming in second and third, respectively. Haute & Naughty Lash is as two-in-one as they lead you to believe, but I don’t love the fuller, more dramatic part nearly as much as the softer, more defined half.

The daytime end (the smaller opening) really cleans off the brush so that there really isn’t much mascara on it, but it keeps all that actual mascara in the tube–so you’re not wasting it, like you would if you blotted off excess with a tissue or the like. The smaller opening has a fairly large mascara wand with a tapered end, and the effect it gives is longer, fuller lashes with definition and great separation. It doesn’t clump at all, and it gives a nice full-lash look with nice length and blackness. All it doesn’t do it thicken lashes. It also seems to lift lashes a bit, too, and it held a curl well for me.

The evening end (the larger opening) allows for more mascara on the brush, even though the brush itself is essentially the same. It thickens quite a bit, but it also has more of a tendency to clump if you get too much on the brush (much like most mascaras). It lengthens, but I think because it tends to clump, it looks like there is less volume and length.

The way this mascara works is when you open using the smaller end (the first opening – the pink ring), the entire brush pulls through the opening of the larger mascara. There are actually two handles, not so much wands (the brush itself is the same) — when you open with the small tube, the skinnnier handle pulls through the larger, hollow handle of the dramatic opening. It’s kind of hard to describe, but I took a photo for you.

I don’t recommend playing around too much with it to see how the technology works (once should be sufficient!), because it does show how much mascara is removed from the brush itself as you pull it through the smaller opening–but you get it all over the larger wand when it’s outside of the tube, so you end up having to wipe it off with a paper towel rather than keeping it in the tube for later use–aka wasteful!

I dig the separation technology they’re using here, because it’s not so much in the formula as it is in the packaging itself, which is nice, since they did up the price by $6 just for it. You’ll need to comb through your lashes, and you may even need to blot the brush, if you’re going to use the more dramatic end of it, because it has a tendency to clump a bit on lashes.

Both mascaras held up well during all-day wear–no smudging, budging, or flaking. My lashes also felt soft, never crunchy, which was really nice. I also felt like I could put on a quick layer of additional mascara in the evening without much fuss, just in case you want to refresh your mascara without removing all of your eye makeup.

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

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you like longer and defined lashes, Haute & Naughty Lash does this amazingly well. It also gives you the option for thicker lashes, too, which is kind of convenient to have in one mascara.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

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