Saturday, August 14th, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains - Maleficent

MAC Disney Venomous Villains Collection: Maleficent Review, Photos, Swatches

As we continue on, we move to Maleficent‘s (from Sleepy Beauty) “collection,” which includes two mineralize eyeshadow duos, two lipsticks, two lipglasses, one beauty powder, and three nail lacquers.

All of the character images are stamped on the products; they are not stickers. You can find official promotional imagery and color descriptions here. The collection launches on September 30th, 2010 at all MAC locations, October 2010 internationally, and approximately September 28th for online. You may also want to check your local store to see if they are holding an unveiling/preview party for the collection.

Lipglass ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Revenge is Sweet is a sheer, jelly-ish medium pink with fuchsia micro-shimmer. It has a very wet look to it but seems to settle into lip lines.
  • Wrong Spell is a semi-sheer, burnt burgundy with pinky-plum and copper shimmer. I thought Liqueur was similar, but it’s much, much lighter and bronze, not burgundy.

Lipstick ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Violetta is a brightened fuchsia-violet with an amplified finish. This is a PRO color.
  • Dark Deed is a darkened blood red with blackish-brown with an amplified finish. It’s a ever-so-slightly redder version of Media (but they are very close), and Dark Deed has a wetter/glossier finish.

Mineralize Eyeshadow Duo ($21.00 U.S. / $25.00 CDN)

  • My Dark Magic is a duo that features a blackened purple with a frosty finish and a violet-tinged blue with a navy-black base. Young Punk (Style Black) has a stronger black base with more of a glittery finish than the shimmer finish of this product.
  • She Who Dares is a combination of a darkened navy-black base with medium-dark blue shimmer and a dirty green and gold shimmered over a blackened, forest green base. The blue side does resemble Blue Flame (Style Black) with the finish being smoother in this product.

Beauty Powder ($25.00 U.S. / $30.00 CDN)

  • Briar Rose is a cool-toned, blue-based medium pink. It’s kind of like a bubblegum pink to me–like perhaps Snob lipstick in blush form. It is also reminiscent of a less purple, less cool version of Pink Swoon–perhaps if Pink Swoon and Well-Dressed had a baby. It does apply rather sheerly, though it can be built up.

Nail Lacquer ($13.00 U.S. / $15.50 CDN)

  • Bad Fairy is a stunning shade of duochrome polish that’s both ruby red, molten lava copper, and gold, depending on how the light hits it.
  • Formidable! shimmers teal, blue, violet, and reddened purple, depending on the light. It is, however, a dead-on dupe for ORLY Galaxy Girl.  There is nothing that I can distinguish as different between the two brands–formula feels the same, it wears the same.  MAC may take just a minute longer to dry.
  • Mean & Green flashes burgundy, green, and gold and is totally full of shimmer. It is a dead-on dupe for ORLY Space Cadet.

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Saturday, August 14th, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains - Evil Queen

MAC Disney Venomous Villains Collection: Evil Queen Review, Photos, Swatches

Next up, we have the Evil Queen from Snow White. The Evil Queen’s “collection” includes two lipsticks, two lipglasses, three eyeshadows, one beauty powder, and one blush.

All of the character images are stamped on the products; they are not stickers. You can find official promotional imagery and color descriptions here. The collection launches on September 30th, 2010 at all MAC locations, October 2010 internationally, and approximately September 28th for online. You may also want to check your local store to see if they are holding an unveiling/preview party for the collection.

Lipglass ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Strange Potion is a lightly pink shimmered, soft pinky-coral that’s semi-opaque in coverage. This is a really beautiful shade of gloss–I can’t think of anything quite like it that MAC has put out. Very flattering on both cool and warm-toned skin.
  • Hot House is a deep fuchsia-berry with iridescent fuchsia-purple shimmer. It applies and looks semi-opaque on lips. It originally was released in Strange Hybrid.

Lipstick ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Sinister is a semi-sheer brown with pinky-plum shimmer. It looks better on the lips than as a swatch. This has a lustre finish.
  • Toxic Tale is a bright, opaque shade of nearly neon coral with an orange lean. Reminds me of Illamasqua Mistress, but in a lipstick form. Very, very pigmented–creamy but not slippery. This has a satin finish.

Eyeshadow ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Her Alter Image is a cool-toned icy, pale lilac with a veluxe pearl finish. It’s pigmented and purpler than Beautiful Iris, but it’s similar.
  • Vile Violet is a darkened cool-toned violet with muted blue tones. This has a matte finish.
  • Vainglorious is a bronzed burgundy with a frost finish. It’s similar to Cranberry, except a little browner, and it’s a bit darker and more burgundy than Star Violet–but it’s closest to Star Violet.

Blush ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Bite of an Apple is a brightened coral-pink blush that can really pack a punch!  Very opaque, though it is blendable.  This has a matte finish.

Beauty Powder ($25.00 U.S. / $30.00 CDN)

  • Oh So Fair is a soft, petal pink with subtle shimmer-sheen. It’s sheer and looks very, very subtle on my medium skin tone. I wouldn’t recommend this shade for darker skin tones, because I think it would have a tendency to turn ashy.

See more photos and swatches! Continue reading →

Saturday, August 14th, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains - Cruella
MAC Venomous Villains — Cruella de Vil

MAC Disney Venomous Villains Collection: Cruella de Vil Review, Photos, Swatches

There are four “parts” to the collection, with each part being represented by each of the characters. After much indecision, I finally committed to reviewing everything by character, rather than product type! First up is Cruella de Vil, the villainness from 101 Dalmatians. Cruella’s “collection” includes two lipsticks, two lipglasses, three eyeshadows, one Penultimate eyeliner, one beauty powder, and one blush.

All of the character images are stamped on the products; they are not stickers. You can find official promotional imagery and color descriptions here. The collection launches on September 30th, 2010 at all MAC locations, October 2010 internationally, and approximately September 28th for online. You may also want to check your local store to see if they are holding an unveiling/preview party for the collection.

Lipglass ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Wicked Ways is a brightened cherry red that’s semi-opaque with subtle golden shimmer.  I think this is going to be a very nice red on both warm and cool skin tones.  It leans just a tiny bit blue, I’d say… but very close to neutral.
  • Devilishly Stylish is a semi-sheer white-shimmered, slightly champagne nude. Not exactly the most original shade, but with some darker eye/lip products, will be a nice relief for those who need something softer.

Lipstick ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Innocence, Beware! is a semi-opaque pinky nude with a cremesheen finish. It’s a little glossy, not overly creamy, and I found it accentuated every imperfection on my lips. Make sure to exfoliate shortly before applying this shade. It seems like a pinker Blankety or paler Plink!, as well as in the family of nudes like Creme d’Nude and Hue.  This shade is more opaque than the latter three, but the texture is best in Hue (smoother, less accentuating of flaws).
  • Heartless is an almost neutral red that applies nearly opaque; if it leans in any direction, I would say slightly orange, but it really seems closer to neutral. It has an amplified finish. The closest dupe in the permanent MAC range seems like it would be Brave Red or perhaps Ladybug (which is probably a bit sheerer).

Blush ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Darkly My Dear dirtied brown with just a mere hint of plum. It looks plummer in the pan than it is in actuality–it’s rather brown when worn. It can be built up or used sheerly depending on the look you’re going for. It’s kind of like a browner, much darker version of Blushbaby. It’s supposed to have a matte finish, but it seems like it has a hint of pearl/satin sheen to it, though very near matte on cheeks.

Eyeshadow ($15.50 U.S. / $18.50 CDN)

  • Sweet Joy is a pale gold with soft yellow undertones and a frost finish. This was originally included in the Passions of Red holiday palette (quite awhile ago). It’s similar to Dreammaker (Starflash) but less frosty; also similar to Creme Royale (Hello Kitty) and Creme de Miel (Style Warriors). It’s yellower than Nylon, much less gold/yellow than Goldmine.
  • De-vil is darkened, orange-y copper with a veluxe pearl finish. It’s just the tiniest bit less red and a hair darker than Coppering, darker and deeper than Amber Lights (not even really comparable, IMO). It seems a little darker than Brash (Cult of Cherry), possibly similar to Courage (Untamed).  But it’s really close to Coppering.
  • Carbon is a matte black–can be packed on for an intense black, but like some mattes, better applied than swatched. This is a permanent shade.

Beauty Powder ($25.00 U.S. / $30.00 CDN)

  • Her Own Devices is a sheered out champagne-shimmered medium nude. It gives just a hint of color on my NC25 skin (“medium”), but I think it maybe a nice shade for highlighting medium to dark skin tones, because it’s natural but it has shimmer–since it’s not pale, it won’t turn darker complexions ashy.  I’ve had a few readers ask about how it compares to Shell Beauty Powder, but the two look completely different on me.

See product photos and swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

MAC Dare to Wear Eyeshadow
MAC Dare to Wear Eyeshadows

MAC Dare to Wear: Eyeshadows, Part 2

First, make sure you’ve read Part 1. In this post, you’ll notice four blue-based shades–this collection is definitely skewed towards blue. There are three permanent shades here: Sky Blue, Atlantic Blue, and Winkle; the first available only at PRO, the latter two at all freestanding stores.

  • Zingy is a medium blue that leans just a little green. It’s a less intense version of Electric Eel eyeshadow. It was also a little fussy to get to layer right in a swatch–though it’s pretty once it comes together.
  • Sky Blue is a soft, pale sky blue with silvery-white shimmer in a frost finish. It’s a little on the sheer side and can be a bit dusty. This is a permanent PRO shade.
  • Atlantic Blue is an intense shade of deep blue with a violet undertone in a matte finish. This is one of my favorite shades–period! This is a permanent PRO shade.
  • Winkle is a softened cornflower blue with a satin finish. It needs to be layered to get a nice level of intensity, but it has a very buttery texture. This is a permanent shade.
  • Shock-a-holic is a medium-dark purple with strong red undertones in a matte finish. It’s a little brighter, richer version of Vibrant Grape; brighter/purpler version of Nocturnelle or Fig 1.
  • Crazy Cool is a shimmery cool-toned lilac with a silver-white sheen in a veluxe pearl finish. It’s a darker version of Digit and a lighter version of Beautiful Iris. It’s a little on the sheer side and not as smooth as I’d expect for a veluxe pearl.

Temptalia’s Recommendations

  • Must-Haves:  Atlantic Blue, Winkle
  • Nice-to-Haves: Zingy, Sky Blue, Shock-a-holic
  • Skip: Crazy Cool

Recommendations by Skin Tone

  • Light: Zingy, Sky Blue, Winkle, Shock-a-holic, Crazy Cool
  • Medium: Zingy, Atlantic Blue, Winkle, Shock-a-holic
  • Dark: Zingy, Atlantic Blue, Winkle, Shock-a-holic, Crazy Cool

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Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

MAC Dare to Wear Eyeshadows
MAC Dare to Wear Eyeshadows

MAC Dare to Wear: Eyeshadows, Part 1

There are twelve brightly colored eyeshadows releasing with MAC’s Dare to Wear Collection, which is Lady Gaga “inspired.” This is a collection that will appeal to some and hold absolutely zero appeal to others. Not only are the shades on the brighter side, the majority of them have a matte finish.

The collection also has a lot of permanent shades, so check your stash before you run over to the store–and if you’re near a store, keep in mind you can purchase the permanent shades in palette form. The permanent shades are Free to Be, Lime, and Aqua, with Free to Be available at all freestanding stores and the latter two only at PRO stores.

  • Louder, Please is a pinked red with a matte finish. This shade was quite pigmented and required very little fussing to get a nice layer of smooth, rich color. This is the closest to red I’ve seen from MAC (but it is not a true red, to be clear).
  • Free to Be is a pinky coral with a matte finish. It has some pigmentation, but it can be a rather difficult shade to really punch up. This is a permanent shade.
  • Going Bananas is a soft, medium yellow with a frosty finish. It has a nice level of pigmentation, and it’s a particularly flattering yellow because it doesn’t run too bright or full-on yellow. This is a repromote.
  • Sassy Grass is a medium-dark grass green with a matte finish. I thought it might resemble Wondergrass (limited edition, released with C-Shock), but it’s much darker and a wee bit greener.
  • Lime is a muted, medium-dark chartreuse green with slight yellow undertones and a matte finish. This was probably one of the harder shades to work with out of the twelve; it’s a bit stiff and takes some layering. This is a permanent PRO shade.
  • Aqua is a bright pastel aqua-blue with a matte finish. This is one of the more powdery matte shades by MAC, and it can be layered to get a nice level of color intensity, but it may look chalky on some complexions. This is a permanent PRO shade.

Temptalia’s Recommendations

  • Must-Haves: Going Bananas, Sassy Grass
  • Nice-to-Haves: Louder, Please, Free to Be, Aqua
  • Skip: Lime

Recommendations by Skin Tone

  • Light: Free to Be, Going Bananas, Lime, Aqua
  • Medium: Louder, Please, Going Bananas, Sassy Grass, Lime
  • Dark: Louder, Please, Going Bananas, Sassy Grass, Lime, Aqua

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

MAC Dare to Wear Lipglass
Lipglass: Wind Me Up, Bold & Brash, So Bad, Gimme That!, Dare to Dare, Ban This!

MAC Dare to Wear: Lipglasses

New and limited edition, MAC Dare to Wear Lipglasses ($18.00 for 0.17 oz.) are like more pigmented, more refined dazzleglasses.  They’re much smoother than dazzleglasses, even as they wear down–the shimmer is incredibly fine to the point where I couldn’t feel it at all when I smooshed my lips together.  These are tacky, though; they are not quite as sticky as traditional Lipglass, but my lips do stick a good bit when I press them together.  Like other MAC lip products, these have their signature vanilla scent as well.

The formula feels creamy, slick, and thin when worn.  It’s not a heavy or thick gloss–not like Lipglass in terms of texture at all.  It takes several passes to get enough product to cover the lips though; I found that not enough product was coming through the tube as I pulled out the wand.   The majority of these weren’t fully opaque; they were certainly close to it, but not quite there.  I do like that they’re a mix of shimmer and rich color, because it makes it a nice two-in-one product.  You don’t have to worry about using a separate lip brush to apply a light, shimmered gloss on top of your wicked pigmented lipstick with these.

When worn by itself, it wears well–I had three hours and going strong, and then I had a creamy pasta dish for lunch.  I’d say 40% made it through lunch — not bad.  You could get away without touching up, but a touch up would still be needed, ideally.

  • Wind Me Up is a coppery browned peach. It’s semi-opaque with a base color of semi-sheer peachy brown color and a high dosage of copper and gold shimmer that lends help to making it look more opaque. This is most flattering on warmer skin tones, since it has stronger orange and copper tones.
  • Bold & Brash is a bright red with fuchsia and ruby micro-shimmer. This is the most opaque shade of the six. I had trouble discerning whether it was a blue- or orange-based red, just because it seemed to change depending on the lighting. I think this is a red that will look good on a variety of skin tones.
  • So Bad is a medium-dark coral melon semi-sheer color base with multi-colored micro-shimmer with predominantly light pink particles. Overall, it’s semi-sheer to semi-opaque. I’d say this is the most wearable of the six.
  • Gimme That! is a brightened fuchsia with a hint of raspberry. It has lots of fuchsia and purple micro-shimmer. It applies nearly opaque.
  • Dare to Dare is a light medium pink semi-sheer color base with white and pink micro-shimmer to make it appear more opaque. This is a very wearable shade, but it is also a little blah. Why is it called Dare to Dare? It pulls a little cool, so it would naturally suit those with cooler undertones, but I think it will work on warmer skin tones, too.
  • Ban This! is a deep wine berry with violet and fuchsia micro-shimmer. It’s semi-opaque, and it has more of a stained look than the thicker, more opaque looks of the other shades.

Recommendations by Skin Tone

  • Light:  So Bad, Gimme That!, Dare to Dare, Ban This!
  • Medium:  Wind Me Up, Bold & Brash, Gimme That!, Ban This!
  • Dark:  Bold & Brash, So Bad, Gimme That!, Ban This!

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you don’t mind a little tackiness to along with richer but still ultra shimmery color, you may want to check out the new formula.

AVAILABILITY: MAC

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →