Monday, December 15th, 2014

Revlon HD Fire Opal (560) Ultra HD Lip Lacquer
Revlon HD Fire Opal (560) Ultra HD Lip Lacquer

Revlon HD Fire Opal (560) Ultra HD Lip Lacquer ($8.99 for 0.20 fl. oz.) is a bold, brightened medium red with warm, orange undertones and a creamy, glossy finish. It was intensely pigmented with full color coverage that applied beautifully and evenly. This shade wore for almost six hours, but there was very light feathering after four and a half hours of wear (and I am not prone to feathering). Shiseido Lust (RD305) (P, $25.00) is sheerer. Laura Mercier Poppy (P, $25.00) is redder. Illamasqua Touch (P, $22.00) is more shimmery. Maybelline Signature Scarlet (020) (P, $8.99) is slightly redder. Revlon Fire (P, $7.49) is a smidgen darker, not quite as orange-toned. Illamasqua Temper (P, $22.00) is lighter. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Revlon HD Rose Quartz (530) Ultra HD Lip Lacquer ($8.99 for 0.20 fl. oz.) is medium, rosy red with lighter pink shimmer and warm undertones. It’s an interesting shade that sometimes looks richer, and other times, lighter, due to the contrast between the base color and color of the shimmer. It had a very smooth, metallic finish applied. The consistency is slightly tacky after an hour or so of wear, and the gloss lasted for five hours all in all. It was fully opaque on me. NARS Risky Business (P, $26.00) is similar in concept but so much sheerer. Chanel Friandise (82) (LE, $27.00) is sheerer. Dior Paradise (732) (P, $29.50) is sheerer. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Revlon HD Strawberry Topaz (535) Ultra HD Lip Lacquer ($8.99 for 0.20 fl. oz.) is a brightened, medium coral-pink with very fine gold pearl–the gold shimmer is subtle and isn’t noticeable from afar. It had nearly opaque color coverage that went fairly evenly and smoothly. The texture was slightly thick, lightly tacky to moderately tacky (as it wears), and lasted for five hours on me. Marc Jacobs Beauty Gone Bad (216) (P, $28.00) is more orange, less shimmery. Dior Rose Tricheuse (669) (LE, $35.00) is more muted, less shimmery. Hourglass Muse (P, $28.00) is brighter, less shimmery. NARS Paris Follies (LE, $26.00) is more muted. MAC Drawn in Chic (LE, $15.00) is lighter. Marc Jacobs Beauty Paint It (202) (P, $28.00) is lighter. Revlon Papaya (P, $7.49) is more muted, lighter. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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HD Fire Opal (560)

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Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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product

HD Rose Quartz (530)

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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

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HD Strawberry Topaz (535)

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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

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Sunday, December 14th, 2014

ColourPop I Heart This Super Shock Shadow
ColourPop I Heart This Super Shock Shadow

ColourPop I Heart This Super Shock Shadow ($5.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “cool-toned silvery taupe.” It’s a brightened, light-medium gold with a metallic, sparkly finish. It had excellent color payoff with a very smooth consistency. It had a lot of fall out during application (if you blend it at all, expect fall out), and then I had some fall out during wear (noticeable but not terrible) but no creasing or fading for ten hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

ColourPop Tinsel Super Shock Shadow ($5.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “grayed out icy lavender [with a Metallic finish].” It’s a plummy brown with warm undertones and a metallic sheen. It had semi-opaque color payoff both swatched and applied to the lid, though it was buildable with two to three layers patted on. The texture was very smooth, though. It looked the same ten hours later as when I first applied it. It is part of the Not a Box of Chocolates limited edition set. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

ColourPop Lectra Super Shock Shadow ($5.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “deepened burgundy with pink violet glitter [with a Metallic finish].” It’s a medium-dark, plummy purple with warm, reddish undertones and lighter violet sparkle. It doesn’t read metallic to me–more like a satin with sparkle, but the sparkle is actually present on the lid due to the cream formula. It had great pigmentation that went on smoothly and evenly on the lid. I had slight fall out over time, but the eyeshadow itself didn’t crease or fade over a ten-hour period.
It is part of the Megan Naik foursome. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

ColourPop Farah Super Shock Shadow ($5.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “deep brown [with a Matte finish].” It’s a medium-dark brown with warm, yellow undertones and a satin finish. There’s a subtle sheen to it that keeps it from being totally flat, but it doesn’t have a lot of shine. It had good pigmentation and a very smooth, even application. I didn’t have any issues with fading or creasing over ten hours. It is part of the Megan Naik foursome. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

ColourPop Onai Super Shock Shadow ($5.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “creamy white with blue violet opalescent duochrome [with a Satin finish].” It’s a light beige with a hint of warmth and a pearly sheen. I didn’t get much of a duochrome with this, though. It had fairly good color payoff with a blendable, smooth texture. It wore well for ten hours. It is part of the Megan Naik foursome. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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I Heart This

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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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product

Tinsel

A-

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Lectra

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Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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Sunday, December 14th, 2014

Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Medium/Candlelight The Creamy Glow Duo
Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Medium/Candlelight The Creamy Glow Duo

Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Medium/Candlelight The Creamy Glow Duo ($28.00 for 0.16 oz.) is a highlighting and contouring set of shades in a cream formula. I think this will be nice on medium and fairer skin tones, with it being subtler on medium-dark skin tones. The contouring shade may be too subtle on deeper skin tones, though the highlight should be lovely. I was impressed by the long-wear, because both shades have a creamy, thin, emollient consistency that just doesn’t seem like something that would have any longevity, but there they were, nearly eight hours later with both color and a light sheen. (I have normal skin at the moment, for reference.) The contouring shade just made me long to try The Sculpting Powder to see how it works with the Celestial Powder. My only complaint is that actual pans are quite small, and it was difficult to use any of my angled contouring brushes as they were all oversized. I ended up flattening my brushes between my fingers and focused on getting the product primarily on one side of the brush.

Sculpting Medium is a medium-dark brown with yellow undertones and a subtle gray overtone with a satin-matte finish.
Kevyn Aucoin Tropical Days (P, $48.00) is much more shimmery, powder. MAC Matte Bronze (LE, $70.00) is warmer. MAC Sculpt (P, $16.50) is warmer, powder. Too Faced Chocolate Soleil (P) is powder. MAC Pure Sculpture (LE, $20.00) is warmer. Becca Lowlight (P, $38.00) is warmer. MAC Coffee Walnut (LE, $20.00) is more olive, darker. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Candlelight is a champagne gold with a luminous sheen and very, very fine shimmer. It translates to a dewy glow on the skin that works as well on bare skin as it did layered over foundation (even when already set with powder). Burberry Nude Radiance No. 01 (P, $48.00) is sheerer. MAC Born to Dazzle (LE) is more sparkly. Chanel Camelia de Plumes (LE, $76.00) is cooler-toned. Tarte Champagne (LE) is warmer. NARS 413 BLKR (P, $30.00) is more metallic, warmer. Giorgio Armani Belladonna (LE, $88.00) is a smidgen warmer. Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight (P, $44.00) is lighter (I think the effect is similar, but the cream version runs more golden). Becca Moonstone (P, $38.00) is similar but a powder. theBalm Solid Gold (P, $24.00) is more metallic. Illamasqua Aurora (P, $24.00) is a smidgen less golden. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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palette

Sculpting Medium/Candlelight

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Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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product

Sculpting Medium

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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product

Candlelight

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Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

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Sunday, December 14th, 2014

SUQQU Brushes
SUQQU Brushes

SUQQU may not be the most accessible brand yet (here’s hoping they’ll expand to a good stockist in the U.S.), but they live up to the hype and are lovely brushes for those who wish to indulge. I can see why the Cheek brush is constantly out of stock at Selfridges. I know readers have recommended Ichibankao for ordering Asia-exclusive beauty brands, and they also have SUQQU brushes available (but I haven’t personally ordered from them, though I have been tempted!). I have no complaints; they’re outstanding, high-quality brushes. I’ve been putting them through testing since October, and I haven’t had any issues with shedding, smell, or re-shaping after washing. I’ve washed all of the brushes numerous times since then, and they’re still as soft and silky as they were to begin with. The shapes are well-done–more distinct from many brushes I own but they’re still useful, versatile shapes that I can easily use.

SUQQU Cheek Brush (£80.00 / ¥15,000) is a small, rounded blush brush that flares outwards from the ferrule and then tapers to a rounded edge. It is made out of gray squirrel hair, and it is supremely soft, silky, and smooth against the skin. No matter the direction or pressure, the brush never felt rough or sharp. It had moderate density with a feathery quality to it, which made it particularly suitable for use with more pigmented or very soft-textured powder products. This is useful if you’re more heavy-handed when applying your blush, even if you don’t mean to be, as it is hard to overdo your cheek color with this brush. It works well to blend and soften edges of various powder products for cheeks and face. I really liked it for highlight, though, as it gave me similar results that I get with a fan brush but with more precision–diffused, luminous, but never metallic.

  • Sizing: 34mm in length, 19mm in width, 15mm in thickness (it’s round); total length of 15.5 centimeters.
  • Most similar: Chikuhodo Z-4 is similar in its smaller size, but it is wider and flatter (thinner) with less roundedness; where the Z-4 looks more like a blush brush, SUQQU Cheek looks more like a highlighting brush

SUQQU Face Brush (£168.00 / ¥30,000) is a large, rounded powder brush that tapers slightly at the edges and rounds out at the top. It’s dense without being fully packed (it’s not a kabuki brush), so there’s a light spring and give as it is swept across the skin. It feels like silk (even when I had my husband do the blind-softness-test, he described it as such, “It feels so silky, is that even possible with a brush?”) as the bristles move together. You just don’t feel the individual fibers at all. The fullness makes it ideal for dusting finishing and setting powders all over the face. I also liked it for diffusing the edges of a trickier blush or bronzer as well. It is made out of gray squirrel hair.

  • Sizing: 50mm in length, 36mm in width, 26mm in thickness (it’s round); total length of 13 centimeters.
  • Most similar: Chikuhodo Z-1 is slightly smaller, while Chikuhodo Z-9 is wider/flatter and a bit overall–they all feel the same in regards to softness.

SUQQU Eyeshadow Brush M (£48.00 / ¥8,000) is a medium-sized, domed brush with a very rounded edge. It’s like a much larger and wider take on a pencil brush or a really squat, densely-packed crease brush. It can apply quite a bit of color even though it’s made out of gray squirrel, if desired. There’s no doubt it’s one of the softest pencil-like brushes I’ve tried, as it swirls and taps, sweeps and blends and never, ever feels pointed. The bristles move together in a way that feels silky across the skin. Though it probably will make some cringe, but this is such a good shape and brush for applying cream eyeshadow into the crease, particularly for blending out the edges (I really liked it with Laura Mercier). I tend to favor other brushes for initial application and only use this as a buffing tool, just because it makes it cleaner when I use it for blending. It’s lovely for blending out powder eyeshadows as well, and it is nice for highlighting the inner tear duct/corner of the lid. I’ve also had good luck using it to buff out creamy concealers underneath the eye or tapping brightening powder underneath the eye.

  • Sizing: 12.5mm in length, 6mm in width, 6mm in thickness (it’s round); total length of 13 centimeters.
  • Most similar: Chikuhodo Z-10 is much more tapered towards the end and comes to more of a point; IT Cosmetics No. 105 is longer, so it has more spring, but it has a similarly-sized rounded edge (it is also a synthetic option)

SUQQU Lip Brush L (£32.00 / ¥6,500) is a thin, rectangular lip brush that can line, fill, and blend with great precision. Its greatest attribute is that it never feels sharp, even when using the edge get a really crisp line of color. The bristles are extremely well-cut so that you don’t get skips and drags, and they move together for the most part. I like that it doesn’t come to a defined, tapered point, which is one of the things I like least in lip brushes, and the length is nice, as it gives you enough real estate to get product on it and cover lips without it taking an eternity. All that said, I rarely use lip brushes, so I wouldn’t consider myself a lip brush authority, so please keep that in mind!

  • Sizing: 10mm in length, 6mm in width, 0.5mm in thickness (it’s round); total length of 17 centimeters.
  • Most similar: Hakuhodo 270 (I don’t have it) appears similar based on photo/listed measurements; Tom Ford also has a more rectangular-shaped brush

The Glossover

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Cheek Brush

It had moderate density with a feathery quality to it, which made it particularly suitable for use with more pigmented or very soft-textured powder products. This is useful if you're more heavy-handed when applying your blush, even if you don't mean to be, as it is hard to overdo your cheek color with this brush.

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Face Brush

The fullness makes it ideal for dusting finishing and setting powders all over the face. I also liked it for diffusing the edges of a trickier blush or bronzer as well. It is made out of gray squirrel hair.

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Eyeshadow Brush M

It's like a much larger and wider take on a pencil brush or a really squat, densely-packed crease brush. It can apply quite a bit of color even though it's made out of gray squirrel, if desired. There's no doubt it's one of the softest pencil-like brushes I've tried, as it swirls and taps, sweeps and blends and never, ever feels pointed.

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Saturday, December 13th, 2014

NARSissist Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow Palette
NARSissist Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow Palette

NARSissist Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow Palette ($79.00 for 0.24 oz.) includes eight shades, seven of which are part of the permanent range (Ursa Major is, at this time, exclusive to the palette). The Dual-Intensity formula is supposed to give eight-hour, can be used wet or dry (dry for “sheer soft touch of sensual color” and wet for “high-impact finish”). They are sheerer applied dry, but I find them surprisingly buildable dry as well, so it takes two to three layers, and it doesn’t take real packing on, just going back for a little more product. They will be more intense right off the bat if applied with a damp brush, though, which is as described. The formula has a soft, finely-milled feel to it, and they’re very smooth and easily blended on the skin. The only downside is the wear varies anywhere from six to nine hours, and dry application seems to consistently wear between six and seven hours before creasing, whereas damp application lasts slightly longer with seven to nine hours of wear. The eyeshadows felt and performed very much in line with their permanent counterparts, but some of the under-performers from the original launch seemed improved in this palette, which is very rare to see.

Each eyeshadow is 0.03 oz., and full-sized versions are 0.05 oz. for $29, which makes the palette a $139 value in terms of amount of product, and in a more big picture way, to get eight shades would run you $232 (though they would be full-sized, just to be clear). I think this palette is an excellent way to try out NARS’ newer eyeshadow formula without completing breaking the bank. All but Ursa Major are part of the permanent range. The palette launches at NARS on January 1st but will head to other retailers and stores that carry the brand on February 1st as well.

Europa is a pink-tinged peach with warm undertones and a soft frosted finish. It had semi-sheer pigmentation applied dry and full opacity applied damp. The version in the palette actually performed better than the single I have–it feels almost smoother and softer (my single felt a little dry). It wore well for six and a half hours dry, seven hours damp. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Himalia is a medium-dark golden brown with a frosted, metallic sheen. It had semi-sheer coverage applied dry that made the color appear softer and lighter, compared to the damp application, where the color was fully opaque and richer-looking overall. This shade wore well for almost seven hours dry, eight hours when applied damp. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Ursa Major is a dark brown with subtle, warm undertones and a slight gray tint. It had more of a pearly sheen, though it lookst more satin-like in the pan. It had sheer color payoff applied dry, which intensified to opaque payoff applied damp, though the color seems lighter applied than it appears in the pan. It wore well for six hours when I tried it dry, and it was slightly better applied damp with seven and a half hours of wear. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Subra is a rich, burgundy purple with subtle, warm undertones and a pearl finish. It had semi-opaque pigmentation dry and was fully opaque applied damp. It wore well for just over seven hours when I wore it dry, but it lasted for almost nine hours when applied damp. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Andromeda is a light beige with a golden shimmer-sheen finish. It had fairly opaque color both wet and dry, though it was brighter when applied with a dampened brush. It started to crease after six and a half hours applied dry, seven and a half hours applied amp. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Lysithea is a gray-ish pewter with a hint of olive and gold in it and a metallic sheen. It was sheer applied dry and nearly opaque applied damp. I was able to wear this for six hours before it creased applied dry, and the wear extended to eight hours if I applied it with a dampened brush. This one was also better in the palette, as it actually had color when applied dry. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Giove is a blackened navy blue with a soft, frosted finish. It had semi-sheer pigmentation applied dry and appeared darker, while applying it with a dampened brush yielded good color payoff and a stronger, brighter blue coloring. It wore well for six and a half hours when I applied it dry, but it lasted for eight hours applied with a damp brush. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Sycorax is a dark black with a satin finish. It had semi-sheer color payoff when I tried using it dry, and it was very nearly opaque applied damp (and it appeared richer, too). I thought it was softer in the palette than the single. This shade started to crease after six hours of dry wear, and eight hours of wear when applied damp. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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palette

NARSissist Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow Palette

Temptalia Recommends
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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

5/5

Results
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product

Europa

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

5/5

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Himalia

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Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

5/5

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Saturday, December 13th, 2014

Wayne Goss The Holiday Brush (Black)
Wayne Goss The Holiday Brush (Black)

Wayne Goss The Holiday Brush ($85.00) is available in black or white, with both brushes being made out of goat hair, and are, essentially, the same as far as shape, weight, and softness go. It’s a large powder brush with a full, rounded brush head that gradually tapers to a soft point. The brush head is in 50mm in length and 25mm in thickness and width (at its thickest/widest point). The brush has a total length of 7 inches / 17.5 centimeters with an open ferrule. I liked it best for applying finishing powders, particularly Guerlain’s Meteorites, as it fit in the jar well and dusted the powder all-over quickly. It’s too large for me when I’ve applied blush, except if it is a very barely-there blush where precision is unnecessary. Loose or pressed setting powder can be applied using this brush as well, and the brush is just soft enough that it feels comfortable on the skin but not so soft that it doesn’t pick up a lot of product. I also liked it for applying a soft highlight (anything metallic was easily over-applied with this brush, though) for a diffused glow. Between the two, I would go for the white brush hairs, because there was a fair amount of dye washing out of the black fibers for the first half a dozen washes. I haven’t had any issues with shedding with either brush over the three weeks I’ve been using them–a few hairs overall but nothing consistent (often none during an application).

If you’re familiar with MAC 138 ($53.00), this will look familiar. It is identical in its size and shape, with the MAC brush having a slightly longer handle. The Holiday Brush is slightly softer–it feels smoother when it is swept across the face ever-so-slightly–and seems a touch less dense (a little more feathery) with finer fibers. I used them side-by-side, and the Holiday Brush seemed to pick up product more readily, which may come down to preference. My MAC 138 is from 2009 (possibly even older than that), and I know some of my more recently-purchased MAC brushes have felt inferior to my original purchases, so I’m not sure if the 138 is still made the same today.

NARS Mie Kabuki ($55.00) comes to a more angular point towards the end (the taper isn’t as gradual), and it is ridiculously scratchy and rough against the face. Chikuhodo Z-8 Cheek ($111.00) is somewhat similar in shape but is half the size with a more rounded, less tapered edge; it is made out of blue squirrel hair, so it is noticeably softer–I think the larger powder Z-series brushes are too rounded to be similar to the Holiday Brush. I don’t have it to confirm, but I believe Hakuhodo’s 103 (from $75, available in the S, B, and J, though the J is a goat and synthetic blend) is similar as it has been compared to the MAC 138.

The Glossover

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The Holiday Brush

I liked it best for applying finishing powders, particularly Guerlain's Meteorites, as it fit in the jar well and dusted the powder all-over quickly. It's too large for me when I've applied blush, except if it is a very barely-there blush where precision is unnecessary. Loose or pressed setting powder can be applied using this brush as well, and the brush is just soft enough that it feels comfortable on the skin but not so soft that it doesn't pick up a lot of product.
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