Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

NYX I Dream of Barbados Eyeshadow Palette
NYX I Dream of Barbados Eyeshadow Palette

Quick Review: NYX I Dream of Barbados Eyeshadow Palette

NYX I Dream of Barbados Eyeshadow Palette ($8.75 for 0.28 oz.) contains five eyeshadows and is part of NYX’s Caribbean Collection of eyeshadow palettes. This particular palette is cool-toned, purple and lilac themed. There is a light-medium pale lilac with a frost finish; charcoal-black with a silver sheen and brown undertones; cotton candy pink with blue undertones and a satin finish; cool-toned bluish gray with a soft frost sheen; and a fuchsia-purple with a satin sheen.

Of the three palettes I’ve tried from this series, this is the most pigmented and most consistent. All five shades had excellent pigmentation, and they applied smoothly and evenly with no powderiness. You can also check out full reviews for I Dream of St. Lucia Eyeshadow Palette and I Dream of St. Thomas Eyeshadow Palette.

Welcome to Swatch-all-idays! To start 2011 off on the right foot (or post, as it may be!), Temptalia is going through a backlog of products we have photographed, swatched, and often tested but in a slightly different manner. Quick reviews may be partially incomplete, such as a blush may only be swatched on the arm rather than shown on the face. It is our hope that what we are able to provide is still helpful!

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: I would definitely recommend this for cooler skin tones, but paler skin tones in particular.

AVAILABILITY: NYX

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Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

Lancome Artliner
Lancome Artliner Precision Point Eyeliner

Quick Review: Lancome Artliner Precision Point Eyeliner

Edited @ 8:26am: Fixed photos!

Lancome Artliner Precision Point EyeLiner ($29.00 for 0.05 oz.) is a liquid eyeliner with a nifty applicator that makes lining much, much easier than traditional brushes of liquid liners (which can be too thick, too long, too flexible, or too stiff!). They have a slightly watery texture, which means they glide on easily and never skip, but they may need a layer or two to look opaque. The applicator is a foam tip is pointed while having a little bit of give and flexibility, and you never have to worry about too much product on the applicator.

  • Noir is a dark black.
  • Navy is a medium-dark navy blue.

While the applicator is fantastic, so is the formula itself. It wears all day without smudging or budging, but they never feel dry or tight on the lid. When I tested it, it seemed waterproof, too, but I didn’t see that noted in the official description, though it certainly seems quite water-resistant at the very least.  If only the price weren’t so steep–even for high-end, it is an investment.

Welcome to Swatch-all-idays! To start 2011 off on the right foot (or post, as it may be!), Temptalia is going through a backlog of products we have photographed, swatched, and often tested but in a slightly different manner. Quick reviews may be partially incomplete, such as a blush may only be swatched on the arm rather than shown on the face. It is our hope that what we are able to provide is still helpful!

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 5/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you’ve struggled to apply liquid liner in the past, you may want to consider investing in Lancome’s Artliner–a tried and true liquid liner favorite.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

Kat Von D Black Metal Love Autograph Pencil
Kat Von D Black Metal Love Autograph Pencil

Quick Review: Kat Von D Black Metal Love Autograph Pencil

Kat Von D Black Metal Love Autograph Pencil ($18.00 for 0.04 oz.) is a medium-dark black base with silver micro-glitter. It also looks like there are flecks of teal in it when the light hits just right. Sephora describes it as a “matte black with silver micro-glitter.” If you were hoping for a deep dark black–from descriptions only–it sounds like Puro Amor may be the one to consider. It also has a sharpener in the cap and a smudging sponge on the other end.

It’s a very smooth, creamy formula that’s easy to smudge, but takes a few extra seconds to dry down–great for smudging purposes, and if you close your eyes tightly for a few seconds, you can even get some tight-lining done. Since it has glitter in the formula, I kept it away from my water line but wore it on my lower lash line and had good results. I had some fading after four or five hours, but it looked about 80% there after eight.

Welcome to Swatch-all-idays! To start 2011 off on the right foot (or post, as it may be!), Temptalia is going through a backlog of products we have photographed, swatched, and often tested but in a slightly different manner. Quick reviews may be partially incomplete, such as a blush may only be swatched on the arm rather than shown on the face. It is our hope that what we are able to provide is still helpful!

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

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: The creaminess of the formula made it incredibly easy to work with, but I wish it lasted a bit better.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

Clarins Natural Instant Smooth Highlighter
Clarins Natural Instant Smooth Highlighter

Quick Review: Clarins Natural Instant Smooth Highlighter

Clarins Natural Instant Smooth Highlighter ($32.50 for 0.28 oz.) is a sheer, shimmering pink highlighter with soft peach-gold shimmer. It has a creamy, almost gel-like consistency, and it melts into the skin with ease. It’s easy to blend, and the shimmer is fine enough that it doesn’t look too frosty. I like this for light and medium skin tones, as it may look a little ashy on darker skin tones.

Earlier, I reviewed its darker companion–Bronze–here. My big issue with Bronze was the wear time, and I had similar problems with this shade, too–it just doesn’t last beyond four hours. It seems to fade away into oblivion before I know it!

Welcome to Swatch-all-idays! To start 2011 off on the right foot (or post, as it may be!), Temptalia is going through a backlog of products we have photographed, swatched, and often tested but in a slightly different manner. Quick reviews may be partially incomplete, such as a blush may only be swatched on the arm rather than shown on the face. It is our hope that what we are able to provide is still helpful!

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

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If it lasted longer, it would be a more viable highlighter choice. Given the short wear time, it’s something that could be used for special occasions but not if you’ll be out and about all day.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Philosophy Heavenly Light Pink Illuminator
Philosophy Heavenly Light Pink Illuminator

Quick Review: Philosophy Heavenly Light Pink Illuminator

Philosophy Heavenly Light Pink Illuminator ($28.00 for 1 fl. oz.) is a sheer pink-based highlighter in a lotion form. It’s gorgeous on cheekbones, and it is most suitable for cooler, paler skin tones. The problem with this product is the packaging, which has a brush attached to the end. In order to squeeze out any product, it squeezes through the brush. It’s a bit unsanitary, because I wouldn’t feel comfortable washing it (in case any of the cleanser got back into the tube), but more frustrating is the absolute waste of product. A little goes a long way, but so much gets pushed through the brushes and ends up staying there.

If you like the idea of a pale pink highlighter, I suggest checking our Benefit’s High Beam instead.

Welcome to Swatch-all-idays! To start 2011 off on the right foot (or post, as it may be!), Temptalia is going through a backlog of products we have photographed, swatched, and often tested but in a slightly different manner. Quick reviews may be partially incomplete, such as a blush may only be swatched on the arm rather than shown on the face. It is our hope that what we are able to provide is still helpful!

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

  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 1/5

RECOMMENDATION: Skip it — there are so many excellent highlighters on the market, there is no need to buy one with such fussy packaging.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora

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Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

NYX Lip Pencils
NYX Lip Pencils: Natural, Plum, Auburn, Dolly Pink

Quick Review: NYX Lip Pencils

NYX Lip Pencils ($3.50 for 0.04 oz.) are excellently pigmented lip pencils to enhance, mute, or neutralize your lips. If you can’t find the shade you need amongst NYX’s 53 different lip pencils, I don’t know you ever will! Like most pencils, I recommend swatching it once or twice on the back of your hand, which will soften the point to make it easier to apply to the lips. You can use the slanted edge to get a really crisp line when lining your lips, too. For a traditional lip pencil, these are exceptionally creamy and glide on easily. They also wear well without feeling dry (but they are matte and for most, you’ll want to layer a lipstick on top or a balm underneath if you plan to wear it for extended periods of time).

  • Natural (810) is a medium beige with a hint of brown.
  • Plum (812) is a deepened, berried red–not really plum to me, though.
  • Auburn (801) is a muted brick red with brown.
  • Dolly Pink (839) is a bright, blue-based cotton candy pink. This would work well with shades like MAC Snob, Lady Gaga, etc.

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: These are lovely lip liners, not even for the price but on their own merits.

AVAILABILITY: NYX

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →