Thursday, December 1st, 2011

Giorgio Armani #18 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow
Giorgio Armani #18 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow

Giorgio Armani #18 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow

Giorgio Armani #18 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow ($32.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a pale yellowy gold with a metallic sheen. This would work well to brighten the lower lash line and on the inner tear duct to open up eyes. It is similar to Bobbi Brown Gold, which is a bit yellower; Bare Escentuals Standing O and MAC Buried Treasure are more opaque and a touch darker. theBalm Wild Child is similar in hue but has a frosted finish instead of a metallic one. MAC Nylon is lighter.

Like #17, this one isn’t as intense as other shades from the range. It can be built up, but it doesn’t have the one pass pigmentation you’d expect from the line or from a pigmented eyeshadow. It swatches about the same whether used dry or damp–it has a more metallic sheen when it is applied damp.

Eyes to Kill Intense feels and looks like compacted powder (which means it can be loosened, but it’s relatively solid and becomes more solid if you press on it, whether with a brush or the included presser). Giorgio Armani describes it as a hybrid, not a powder but not a cream–it feels more like a cream but looks like a powder. It’s a long-wearing eyeshadow whether you use it with or without a base (I achieved 24 hours of wear with #14 and over 12 hours of wear with numerous other shades).

The Glossover

LE
product

#18

B+
It's surprisingly sheer, though I will say it is buildable. The texture is still smooth and finely-milled (so no fall out like #17). This is one of the more dupeable shades from the range, so you may want to splurge on other shades first!

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

Guerlain Habit Rouge (123) Rouge Automatique Lipstick
Guerlain Habit Rouge (123) Rouge Automatique Lipstick

Guerlain Habit Rouge (123) Rouge Automatique Lipstick

Guerlain Habit Rouge (123) Rouge Automatique Lipstick ($35.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a vibrant orange-toned red with a subtle sheen. It delivers full color coverage in one pass, and because of the intensity of the red, it wears for eight hours and still looks good. The orange undertones in this shade are subtle, though, but they are distinctly there.  Clarins Red Prodige is more orange, less deep. Make Up For Ever #44 is just a touch more neutral. CoverGirl Hot is similar but more vibrant. Chanel Excessive is also more orange and vibrant. Chanel Gabrielle is brighter and more orange.

Rouge Automatique is very comparable to the Rouge G formula, and the differences are minute, though they are there. This is an excellent formula regardless of that comparison, though, because it’s creamy enough to glide on but not so creamy that the color slips around, comfortable to wear, and keeps lips feeling hydrated, too. For more packaging photos, please see this post. My lips are always happy when a Rouge Automatique is on the swatching docket!

The Glossover

P
product

Habit Rouge

A+
Rouge Automatique is a top-notch formula, because the creaminess of the texture enables it to glide on, making for an easy application, but it's lightweight and never slippery, so it stays on and wears for hours.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

Giorgio Armani #17 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow
Giorgio Armani #17 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow

Giorgio Armani #17 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow

Giorgio Armani #17 Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow ($32.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a silvered gray with darker gray sparkle. I was worried that it would resemble #12 too much, and while they’re similar (and unless you wear a lot of silver, you don’t need both), they’re not dupes. #12 is bluer, lighter, and much more metallic (go figure), while #17 is more neutral and gray with a subtler silver sheen and shimmer. It almost looks pink-tinted in comparison. MAC Misty was the closest shade I could think of, but it’s pinker and lighter.

The pigmentation was good but not great with this shade; when it’s applied dry, it’s semi-sheer and definitely has some silver sparkle fall out, while when it’s applied damp, it’s smoother and holds together better with more color payoff, there’s still a smidgen of fall out.  Even though it’s not a dupe for #12, I would have loved to have seen a shade they hadn’t done before instead!

Eyes to Kill Intense feels and looks like compacted powder (which means it can be loosened, but it’s relatively solid and becomes more solid if you press on it, whether with a brush or the included presser). Giorgio Armani describes it as a hybrid, not a powder but not a cream–it feels more like a cream but looks like a powder. It’s a long-wearing eyeshadow whether you use it with or without a base (I achieved 24 hours of wear with #14 and over 12 hours of wear with numerous other shades).

The Glossover

LE
product

#17

B
This is one of my least favorites from the Eyes to Kill Intense range; it just doesn't have the same oomph as many other shades do. The sheerness in both the dry and damp swatches is not what you'd expect from this formula, and the fall out, though fairly minor, is a drawback, too.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

Color Club Backstage Pass Nail Lacquer
Color Club Backstage Pass Nail Lacquer

Color Club Backstage Pass Nail Lacquer

Color Club Backstage Pass Nail Lacquer ($6.67 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “silver and purple hex glitter.” The description is really dead-on; it’s silver and magenta purple hexagonal glitter pieces. Both have a fairly metallic/mirror-like finish. The glitter is then suspended in a thick, clear base.  I couldn’t think of anything similar for comparison.

On one hand, I think this looks pretty spectacular, if only because it’s 3D and unlike other polishes I own, but on the other hand, it wears terribly (the glitter flakes off, even if you layer two top coats on top), because the hexagonal glitter particles are curved right around the edges. They just don’t stay put. Application requires significant patience and effort; this is not a quickie polish at all. You have to apply a blob of polish (the consistency is quite thick) and then use the brush to pull out the polish and push and pull the glitters into place. I showed three coats, just so you could see how “opaque” it could get.

The Glossover

LE
product

Backstage Pass

D-
This is just one of those products where you have to decide whether the effect/shade is worth all the trouble it takes to overcome the drawbacks from the application and consistency.

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

6/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

1/5

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Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

theBalm Balmbini Vol. 2 Palette
theBalm Balmbini Vol. 2 Palette

theBalm Balmbini Vol. 2 Palette

theBalm Balmbini Vol. 2 Palette ($28.00 for 0.59 oz.) is a limited edition follow up to Vol. 1 (which is still available, but I don’t have it and haven’t seen it myself). It includes one highlighter, four eyeshadows (or liners), lip/cheek color, and a lipgloss.

As other theBalm products are packaged, this one is also in cardboard packaging with a full-sized mirror on the interior of the lid. The palette opens about two-thirds of the way down so that one side covers or reveals the powder products and the other side covers or reveals the cream products–this is a really nice feature, because it helps to limit any loose powder from contaminating the cream products. It contains a good amount of product and is a good value overall.

  • Promiscuous Pearl is a pale beige with champagne shimmer. It adds a soft glow on cheeks without being overwhelming. If you like Mary Lou-manizer, you’d like this one, just as a more neutral version. The texture is still really buttery and soft, so it is blendable and finely-milled and doesn’t emphasize pores. It reminded me of Chanel Beiges Ombres Tissees.
  • Jinxy Jasmyne is a sooty black that looks morre intense in the pan than it does on the skin. It has a mostly matte finish, but it’s rather dry and ends up being chalky and uneven. When applied, it can easily darken the crease, but you really need to use a fluffy brush (remember to tap off any excess!) to make this one work. Application is better with a damp brush, like one might use if you were to use it as an eyeliner. It’s similar to a lot of matte blacks, like MAC Carbon.
  • Manic Maribel is an orange-y copper with a frosted golden sheen. The pigmentation is opaque with soft, blendable color. It’s almost the same as Bare Escentuals Louder. It’s a little lighter than shades like theBalm Meep Meep, Urban Decay Baked, and MAC Amber Lights.
  • Open to Offers Olwen is a muted teal-blue shot through with silvery-blue shimmer. This shade is also in the Shady Lady Vol. 3 palette. It has good color payoff and a dense, buttery texture. Inglot #413 is a bit lighter but similar.
  • Lavish Latoya is a medium-dark purple with subtle red undertones and a frosted finish. It was on the sheerer side, though. Urban Decay AC/DC is quite similar with a slightly more metallic sheen. Bare Escentuals Encore is also similar. Milani Purr-fect Purple is a little lighter. theBalm All the Way Annie is a bit darker but still close.
  • Strawberry is a poppy red that can be applied opaque or blended out for a sheerer look. On lips, it’s much pinker–more like a slightly coral-pink with a creamy finish. The color coverage is mostly opaque. It’s not as dark as MAC Ultra Darling. NARS Niagara is more coral. It’s pretty close to Bobbi Brown Pink.
  • Nude is an opaque beige nude with a cream finish. MAC C-Thru is similar in color, but this is much more opaque.

It’s not my favorite palette by theBalm; I think it has promise and potential, but it’s not fully there.  The color combination is off for me–this is not a palette that lends itself to a lot of versatility.  I feel like you really need to pull in products from your stash to make the palette really pop.  The cheek/lip color is pretty but vibrant enough that it doesn’t pair well with the eyeshadows.  I was disappointed in the texture and payoff of Jinxy Jasmyne and Lavish Latoya was just slightly under-performing.   Shades like Manic Maribel and Lavish Latoya are found in a lot of brands, so this wouldn’t be a palette for long-time beauty aficionados.  As a face palette, I’d have liked to see a powder blush, rather than a mega-sized black eyeshadow.

The Glossover

palette

Balmbini Vol. 2

B+
The overall quality of the palette is there, but the color combination doesn't resonate as well with me--as a face palette, it needs more in the cheek department; it's too eye-heavy.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

Clarins Sunset Rouge Prodige Lipstick
Clarins Sunset Rouge Prodige Lipstick

Clarins Sunset Rouge Prodige Lipstick

Clarins Sunset Rouge Prodige Lipstick ($24.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a brightened tangerine orange with peach and white micro-shimmer and a glossy shine. On my lips, it looks a bit coral-orange. The color coverage is semi-opaque; it delivers a healthy amount of color, but there’s enough translucency that my natural lip color shows through, too.  While the texture was smooth overall, it did not apply as evenly as I’d like.  It reminded me of Guerlain Orange Euphorique, which is a little brighter and more opaque. Chanel Sari Dore is more opaque and darker. MAC Made to Order is similar but doesn’t have as much gold shimmer.

Rouge Prodige is a creamy lipstick that glides on easily and delivers an ultra glossy shine. Despite its creaminess, it has a lightweight feel, and it’s comfortable to wear for the three to four hours that it wears for. It’s supposed to be long-lasting, but unless it’s a really rich red, it’s average when it comes to wear (most lipsticks wear three to four hours on me). It has a berry-like scent but no taste; the scent is subtle and doesn’t read synthetic.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Clarins Sunset Rouge Prodige Lipstick Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
It's a flattering color on warmer skin tones, and as far as really orange shades go, I would expect it to work decently on cooler complexions because of the translucency in the color.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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