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

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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

Results
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Friday, May 6th, 2011

MAC My Paradise Surf Baby Cheek Powder
MAC My Paradise Surf Baby Cheek Powder

MAC My Paradise Surf Baby Cheek Powder

MAC My Paradise Surf Baby Cheek Powder ($28.00 for 0.42 oz.) is described as a “peach pressed powder with gold hibiscus flower overspray.” I would consider it more like an overlay than an overspray, because it’s a significant amount of gold laid on top of the actual powder. I had to rub away a good deal to see whether it went through or not, and then wised up and dug out an actual chunk (as shown later in this post) to show that underneath is the darker orange-red. The base color of the blush is a brightened, medium-dark orange red, and the gold overspray mixes in to create a soft orange with an orange-gold shimmer and sheen.

The texture is decent but has this thin, dusty feel–despite being pigmented, the color dusts away easily, which means that it also blends out that way. Depending on how much of the overspray you get on the brush, the shimmer content will go up or down (and the less shimmer you get, the darker the color will be, too). I do recommend going easy on the overspray, because it adds up quickly.  You’re getting a good amount of product, though–nearly triple the size of your typical blush.

The Glossover

LE
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My Paradise

B
The warmth of the gold overspray combined with the orangeness of the blush itself will make this blush more suitable for warmer skin tones but with enough of the gold overspray, it might just be peachy enough to work on cooler skin tones.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, May 5th, 2011


Chanel Monte Carlo Rouge Coco Shine

Chanel Monte Carlo Rouge Coco Shine

Chanel Monte Carlo Rouge Coco Shine ($32.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a semi-sheer, pinked red with subtle pink shimmer. The Rouge Coco formula is designed to be a lightweight lipstick with high shine and a moisturizing base. Based on the description of the color range, it is expected to be sheerer rather than opaque.  (If you’re looking for something more opaque, Rouge Allures will be more up your alley.)

It’s a lightweight, nearly scent-free (I couldn’t distinguish what it was, but it was very faint), and has an emollient base. It applies evenly and smoothly, because it has that balm-like quality. Unfortunately, it only lasts two to three hours on me, but I would say it is on the moisturizing side, though not as moisturizing as my favorite lip balms.

I do wish these were the same size as other lipsticks in Chanel’s line (like 0.12 oz.), because of the emollient base, it’s easy to over-apply the product–and the need for reapplication being every couple of hours means you’ll go through a tube much faster than other lipsticks in Chanel’s range.

The Glossover

P
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Monte Carlo

B+
Monte Carlo is much more in line with what I expected based on Chanel's description - soft but noticeable color with translucence and shine. The color is soft and natural but still visible enough that it enhances the natural lip color across skin tones.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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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

Results
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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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Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011


NARS Club Mix Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencils

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) was a new product, released for spring, as a twist on NARS’ Velvet Matte Lip Pencil. It’s a glossy, moisturizing jumbo-sized pencil available in six “glazed” shades. The range includes: Baroque (raspberry sorbet), Club Mix (sheer grape), Frivolous (iridescent seashell pink), Happy Days (pink coral infused with gold shimmer), abd Hopi (honey beige), and New Lover (gold infused strawberry pink).

  • Baroque is a dark, pink-tinged red with silver and pink shimmer. It’s nearly opaque on lips.
  • Club Mix is a berry plum with soft pink and burgundy with a slight metallic finish. It’s semi-sheer to semi-opaque on lips with a glossy shine.
  • Frivolous is a sheer pink nude with soft gold shimmer that applies semi-sheer to semi-opaque. For me, it’s a rather my-lips-but-better shade.
  • Happy Days is a sheer coral-red with coppery gold shimmer that gives medium color coverage.
  • Hopi is a darkened, coppered tan with gold and copper shimmer. It is almost semi-opaque on lips, but you can still see my lip freckle.
  • New Lover is a dark, cool-toned pink with iridescent pink-peach shimmer. Like Hopi, it is almost semi-opaque in color coverage.

It’s hard to determine just what kind of color coverage to expect from these, because it seems to range from semi-sheer to semi-opaque overall, with Baroque being the most opaque and Frivolous being the sheerest. Given NARS’ gloss range and lipgloss in general, they are typically not opaque, so I think the pigmentation level in these is good and above average.

The finishes of each is a glossy enough to be a gloss but the thin texture of the pencil won’t give lips as full of a look as thicker lip gloss does. These are a great alternative to those who want the shine of the gloss but the texture of a lip balm.

These are smooth and glide on effortlessly, and the coverage is fairly even without having to work at it. They also deposit color well without requiring lots of layers to achieve the results seen in swatches. I get about three hours of wear with these, which is about average. I detected no scent or taste, and the texture of these is not at all tacky.

My concern with these lip pencils is how soft the pencil is–though it lends to easier application, these are so soft that they don’t do well if the temperature is 70 degrees or higher and end up rather melty. Jumbo-sized pencils like these can waste product when sharpened, and the softness of the pencil seems to exacerbate that problem.

Iwish NARS had gone with twist-up packaging, like Clinique, which would make these more convenient (no sharpening required) and eliminate the waste. The amount of waste does seem to vary from sharpener to sharpener, and I usually reach for Urban Decay’s Grindhouse, which gives me minimized waste, but there is still some.

The Glossover

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NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
If the packaging didn't waste product every time you sharpened it (or conversely, if they gave you a lot more product!), I'd love these more (they'd be rated a B+ if packaging was fine!). The color range is really workable and wearable across skin tones, and I can see New Lover being a favorite.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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