Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

Estee Lauder Wild Blossom Pure Color Lipstick
Estee Lauder Wild Blossom Pure Color Lipstick

Estee Lauder Wild Violet Collection: Wild Blossom

Estee Lauder Wild Blossom Pure Color Lipstick ($24.00 for 0.13 oz.) is a light-medium pink-beige with soft, pale gold micro-shimmer hidden within a creamy finish. It’s opaque on my lips, and the lightness of the color does make it seem creamier than other shades from this launch.

my thoughts on the formula: The coverage is excellent, and it feels lightweight despite its pigmentation. It’s also more moisturizing than your average lipstick, which makes it comfortable to wear. I get about five hours of wear with this shade in particular, because it is more pigmented. Estee Lauder’s lipsticks are scented with a lightly sweetened fig but are taste-free to me.

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  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: This is a nice shade that can be worn everyday and paired with any eye or cheek–whether it’s bold and smoky or soft and neutral.

where to buy: Nordstrom

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Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

Wet 'n' Wild I Dream of Greenie Eyeshadow Trio
Wet ‘n’ Wild I Dream of Greenie Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio

Wet ‘n’ Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio: I Dream of Greenie

Wet ‘n’ Wild I Dream of Greenie Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio ($2.99 for 0.12 oz.) is a new green-hued trio for spring. It contains a pale, silvery green-tinged white with a frosted finish, medium grass green with a softly shimmered finish, and a bright yellowed chartreuse with an overlay of pale gold shimmer-glitter.

my thoughts on the formula: Color Icon Eyeshadows are definitely some of the best eyeshadows you’ll find in the drugstore, and this trio is on par with high-end eyeshadows. There’s a reason why they won an Editor’s Choice Award (or three!). The new I Dream of Greenie trio is one of the best of the six new spring trios, too. The texture is soft and smooth without being powdery or chalky, and the colors are true-to-pan and apply nicely.

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  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 10/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: It’s not often enough that you find richly pigmented brights in the aisles of the drugstore, but Wet ‘n’ Wild has definitely raised the bar with their Color Icon formula, and I Dream of Greenie exemplifies the quality of the new formula.

where to buy: CVS, Target, Walgreens

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Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Lancome Midnight Rush Eyeshadow Palette
Lancome Midnight Rush Eyeshadow Palette

Lancome Midnight Rush Eyeshadow Palette

Lancome Midnight Rush Eye & Shadow Palette ($48.00 for 0.141 oz.) is a blue-themed eyeshadow palette with five shades in total. It consists of an all-over base, lid, crease, highlighter, and liner color.

The all-over base shade is a creamy, muted white with a semi-matte finish; it’s very pigmented and so soft to use–not chalky at all. The lid shade is a navy blue with a low-frost finish; it is easy to overblend this shade into something very sheer. The crease shade is a grayish, black navy blue but really doesn’t yield much color when used; such a shame that it performs so poorly. The highlighter shade is a silvered pewter with a frost finish; nicely pigmented and smooth, with the metallicness of its finish accentuated when used wet. The liner shade is a dark black with a hint of blue and navy blue and silver shimmer; it worked well both wet and dry, though dry is a little more intense.

my thoughts on the formula: The texture of Lancome’s eyeshadows are very smooth–soft, silky–and all of these shades were excellent in terms of pigmentation. I only had minor fall out concerns with the highlighter shade, so I would recommend using it with a damp brush.

I’m disappointed in the quantity provided in the palette, though. Lancome’s Color Design Quads come in at 0.16 oz. and their Color Design Eyeshadow singles at 0.0458 oz., which works out to be $263/oz. and $371/oz. respectively. This palette is $340/oz., which makes it more expensive ($48 vs. $42) with less product (0.141 oz. vs. 0.16 oz) than the Color Design Quads.

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

final thoughts: The crease shade gave me trouble, much as it did in the Teal Fury palette. I’m not sure what it is about the formula of that finish that results in poorer color pay off. Midnight Rush is reminiscent of Guerlain’s 2 Place Vendome Palette, with three of the five being quite similar.

where to buy: Sephora

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Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Hourglass Primal Extreme Sheen Lipgloss
Hourglass Primal Extreme Sheen Lipgloss

Hourglass Primal Extreme Sheen Lipgloss

Hourglass Primal Extreme Sheen Lipgloss ($28.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a plum-tinged red with soft gold shimmer. It’s semi-sheer to semi-opaque on lips; close-up, it looks sheerer, but from further away, it seems to give the illusion of more coverage. It has the same rich texture of the other Extreme Sheen lipglosses, but this is the sheerest I’ve come across so far.

my thoughts on the formula: It is such a rich, luxurious gloss that applies nicely and doesn’t settle much into lips, given its darker and sheerer color. The formula is thick without being goopy, non-sticky, and very moisturizing. I get three to four hours of wear. There is a light, sweet scent–reminiscent of perhaps creme brulee–that doesn’t feel overwhelming nor smell synthetic.

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  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: The sheerer, darker color of this gloss makes it slightly more difficult to ensure an even layer. It’s interesting to see how many different finishes are found within the Extreme Sheen line-up, though. Wish they’d put more in each tube, though–0.12 oz. is below average.

where to buy: Hourglass

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Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Rescue Beauty Lounge Plie Nail Lacquer
Rescue Beauty Lounge Plie Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Plie Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Plie Nail Lacquer ($18.00 for 0.4 fl. oz.) is described as the color of the satiny slippers of a prima ballerina. It is a soft, muted pale pink–it’s not a milky pink nor is it pastel. I would say it’s more like a soft pink with a gray overcast. Plie has a cream finish and applies beautifully.

my thoughts on the formula: These are richly pigmented lacquers that have nuances in both the color and finishes. Each color is well-thought out, and I’ve yet to come across a poor performer in the brand’s color range. I needed two coats for opaque coverage.

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

final thoughts: This is a shade of pink that’s infinitely flattering and wearable. It’s delicate without being sheer, pink without being obvious.

where to buy: Rescue Beauty Lounge

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Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Givenchy Candide Garden Eyeshadow Quad
Givenchy Candide Garden Eyeshadow Quad

Givenchy Spring 2011: Candide Garden

Givenchy Candide Garden (78) Le Prisme Eyeshadow Quartet ($56.00 for 0.14 oz.) is easily one of the best quads I’ve seen Givenchy put out that I’ve had the pleasure of testing. Candide Garden is stunning in its color combination and a joy to swatch.

This quad contains a rich, medium-dark chocolate brown with a satin finish; soft, burnt orange with a flashy golden orange shimmer-sheen; soft, pale peach with a satin sheen and pale peach-gold micro-shimmer; and a light yellowed chartreuse with a soft frost finish.

The shades work well together, and there is something about the overall combination that is unexpected. None of the colors feel too warm, which is uncommon in oranges, peaches, and chartreuses. Even the brown seems more neutral, because sometimes it looks cool-toned but other times, warm. The only downside to this quartet is the amount of product you get–a mere 0.14 oz. for the $56 price tag.

my thoughts on the formula: Soft, finely milled eyeshadows apply smoothly and blend effortlessly. You won’t find chunky shimmer or powdery fall out in these shades. Each shade was nicely pigmented.

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

final thoughts: For cooler skin tones that have always wanted to find a more wearable orange, you may want to check out this particular palette. It just might work!

where to buy: Sephora

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