Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

Urban Decay Summer of Love Eyeshadow Palette

Travel with Urban Decay This Summer

Urban Decay Summer of Love Shadow Palette ($29.00) is a new-for-summer eyeshadow palette that features four eyeshadows (0.04 oz. each), a miniature Sin Primer Potion (0.09 fl. oz.), and miniature Bourbon 24/7 Eye Pencil (0.03 oz.). The eyeshadows included in the palette are Flash (bright iridescent purple), Maui Wowie (medium gold with silver glitter), Chopper (coppery fawn with silver microglitter), and Smog (deep coppery bronze).

Everything in the palette is available individually, should you only fall in love with one of the shades! As such, everything included is also permanent. However, for those who do not already have the majority of these eyeshadows either individually or in various past-released palettes, you get a good amount of product in the palette itself.

Normal eyeshadows are 0.05 oz. (and retail for $17) while the palette versions are 0.03 oz. — still plenty to use. The eyeliner is typically 0.04 oz. (and retails for $17) but 0.03 oz. in the palette. Plus, you do get the mini-sized Sin Primer Potion (my least favorite of the primers, though–so metallic!). All in all, the palette is a good deal with lots of value–if you don’t already own the shades in it.

  • Flash is a cool-toned violet purple with a slight iridescence. It’s very smooth, pigmented, and vibrant.
  • Maui Wowie is an antique gold with silver glitter. It has great color pay off, and I swear this version felt so much smoother than the one included in the Alice in Wonderland palette, which felt much grittier. You may encounter some fall out with this shade from the glitter.
  • Chopper is a muted copper with a gilded-bronze sheen/shimmer. It has nice pigmentation and applies smoothly.
  • Smog is a deepened chocolate brown with a warm bronze sheen. It, too, is a vibrant shade that has rich pigmentation.

Urban Decay seems to really love releasing summer palettes with a series of browns and then a pop of color. (Remember Get Baked from last year?) I do like this color variation a lot better than last year’s, because I feel like there is a good amount of differentiation between each shade.

The packaging fits with their theme–definitely groovy and all that–but I’m not digging the vintage photographs on the back. I would have personally loved to have seen the floral pattern continue around the mirror, like it did in Get Baked. It’s cool that the graphic designer’s parents are now immortalized in a makeup palette, but for me, it’s just, “Who are these random people?” Like the majority of Urban Decay products, it is made out of sturdy cardboard. I like these flip-open palettes, because they’re slim, streamlined, and easy to travel with and store.

It’s a nice option for a summer palette, but as always, I wish Urban Decay would release new shades of eyeshadows rather than using their permanent shadows. It makes it hard to purchase as a fan, just because you probably own all of them with the palettes you already have! Maybe Urban Decay should make palette forms available of all their eyehadows so we can just mix and match throughout the year! :)

P.S. – I think I have enough mini-sized Bourbon liners to get me through year 3000.

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

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

Recommendation: If you don’t own a lot of Urban Decay eyeshadows, this palette makes a fun option for some summery shades. It’s a great value if you don’t have any of the shades, and the quality of the products within the palette are tops.  It’s easily skipped if you own half or more of the shades/products in it.

Availability: Urban Decay

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Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

Toki Doki for Sephora
Toki Doki

tokidoki for Sephora: Royal Pride Inferno Bronzer

tokidoki Royal Pride Inferno Bronzer ($22.00 for 0.37 oz.) is a warmed, golden-tan with champagne-gold shimmer bronzing powder. The powder itself has a heart and crossbones raised design in the middle, and there’s no overspray on it, it’s just the same as the rest of the product–which is nice, just because I hate being duped by those oversprays!

Though I was disappointed with the color pay off of Adios Star, I had no such pigmentation issues with Royal Pride. This swatched beautifully–pigmented, smooth, and gorgeous to look at. As far as bronzing goes, I think this will work nicely on lighter medium skin tones to deeper medium skin tones, but it may turn orange on some of the paler beauties. I’d recommend paler and very cool skin tones to swatch in-store if they’re able to.

tokidoki also has Diavolina, which is described as a “medium/tan with gold shimmer.” I felt like Royal Pride was a pretty deep bronzer, but it’s described as a “light/medium with gold shimmer.” I think Diavolina may be best for medium deep to deep complexions, but I haven’t seen it to be sure.

The packaging is made out of plastic, but it feels heavy and thick enough that I don’t feel like I’m using dollar-store makeup (which is always my fear whenever I see a non-beauty brand enter the beauty biz!). It’s solid, semi-clear, and should be sturdy enough to tote around.

You also get a whopping 0.37 oz. of product, which is rather hefty for a bronzing product. MAC Bronzing Powders are also $22, but you get 0.30 oz. I think tokidoki did a good job pricing themselves above mass, but they didn’t price themselves out of range, either. I wouldn’t go crazy buying hundreds of dollars over this without testing it first, but I can see myself picking a few items just to try and see (and if all else fails, take advantage of Sephora’s excellent return policy).

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

  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Recommendation:  If you’re looking for a golden-toned bronzer, I think you may like Royal Pride.  It’s quite pigmented, so use a light hand or a fluffier brush when you go to use it to keep from overdoing it!

Availability: Sephora

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Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

Toki Doki for Sephora

tokidoki for Sephora: Adios Star Cromatico Eyeshadow

tokidoki Adios Star Cromatico Eyeshadow ($15.00 for 0.07 oz.) is a matte black base with silver glitter strewn through it. It looked pretty in the pan, but unfortunately looks rather chalky when swatched, and it took some effort to get a decent level of pigmentation. Being a black eyeshadow, though, you could easily use this in the crease and not notice any chalkiness–but you might think of it as more of a dark gray-black than pure black.

This is the only tokidoki eyeshadow I have tried, so please don’t take this review of this single shade as representative of the whole line! I’m definitely going to check it out in person or grab another one or two shades online to see if this is just a poor man within an otherwise good range. Hopefully, Temptalia readers have also given these a try, so they can speak up on some other shade’s behalf! :)  I know the lovely Muse reviewed Carnivora, Diamante, and SavanaSavana looks way better in terms of pigmentation.

The packaging is very tokidoki inspired–if you dig it, you dig it; if it’s not your thing, that’s okay, too. I’d say that I’m neutral on the whole thing myself, but I think it’s done well. It’s not luxe, ultra high-end packaging, but it doesn’t feel like something you’d find in the dollar bin either. I like that each of the eyeshadows has a different colored lid–it’s just a nice touch. The price is also just right at $15, because these are actually cheaper than MAC eyeshadows by the ounce–MAC eyeshadows are $14.50 each, but you only get 0.05 oz. while the tokidoki eyeshadows are $15 each, but you get 0.07 oz.

So right now, though I’m disappointed in this shade, I am going to keep an eye out for more shades at my local Sephora and see how those hold up for me. I definitely want to check out Bastardino, Bruttino, Ciao Caio, Killer Candy, Savana, Skeletrina, and Soya. Shocker, I’m sure, that those are all some of the brighter shades available.

Shades: Adios Star (glitter black), Bastardino (dark green glitter), Bruttino (blue pearl), Bulletto (brown pearl), Carnivora (beige pearl), Choco (brown pearl), Ciao Ciao (pink pearl), Diamante (glitter pink), Donutella (nude multi-glitter), Killer Candy (purple pearl), Nancy Rocks (lavender pearl), Romeo (plum pearl), Samba (gray pearl), Savana (gold glitter), Skeletrina (indigo pearl), Soya (green pearl).

Have you tried these? Which shades?

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

  • Product: 20/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Recommendation: I would skip this particular shade of the Cromatico Eyeshadow line-up — I haven’t tried any of the others, so I can’t speak for those! Funny enough, the cute and just-right packaging and price save this product from a non-passing grade!

AvailabilitySephora

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Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

MAC Water-Based Mixing Medium

Mixing Medium — Don’t Use Pigments Without It!

MAC Water-Based Mixing Medium ($18.00 for 50ml) is an absolute must-have if you work with MAC Pigments or Glitters. It actually took me many years before I purchased the real deal Mixing Medium–previously, I had always done the DIY version. (For reference, the DIY version is one part glycerin and three parts water, mix, and enjoy!) To be honest, I think either version works just as well, but I know the official Mixing Medium is designed to have a much longer shelf life than the DIY version (since it lacks any preservatives).

This Mixing Medium is water-based, and as such, the texture feels just like water. I like that, because it doesn’t feel thick, goopy, or sticky. The way I use my Mixing Medium is primarily with pigments and occasionally with glitters. I usually put one drop (it dispenses by droplets) on a flat brush like the 239 or 249, pick up some pigment, and then apply on the lid (or wherever). Together, it creates an excellent eyeshadow base, but it also intensifies pigments and keeps them together–there’s no fallout here! Though I haven’t used it for such things, you can also use this with other MAC liquid or powder products. I will also say that one bottle will last me a lifetime (though I will obviously replace it before then!).

There is also an alcohol-based Mixing Medium (used from the neck down), an eyeliner Mixing Medium (comes in a tube), lash Mixing Medium (allows you to create customized shades of Pro Long Lash Mascara), and gel-based Mixing Medium (not to be used around the eye area).

It is a PRO product, which means it was originally designed to be used by makeup artists and not necessarily consumers, but everyone is able to purchase PRO products, regardless of your resume. If you live near a PRO store locally, you just have to show up and shop like you would any other MAC location. If you don’t, I know in the U.S., you can place a phone order with any PRO store and they’ll ship you your items for a flat rate of $7 (this is usually how I get any PRO products). Since shipping is a flat rate, I usually make up a good list of PRO-only items I want so I can make it worth it, too :)

By the by… some PRO stores will have collections in a week early, and so if SF, LA, or SCP PRO have it out, sometimes I place a phone order and that’s how I’ll get the products a couple of days earlier than the national launch date. Secrets from a MAC addict… LOL!

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

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

Recommendation: If you’ve ever had trouble with your pigments or loose color eyeshadows, you may want to check out MAC’s Mixing Medium to keep your loose color on your lid better!

Availability: MAC PRO

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

Guerlain Beige Tint Meteorites

Guerlain Beige Tint Meteorites ($56.00 for 1.2 oz.) is one of three new shades released with Guerlain Meteorite Perles Collection, due out in May.  The two other shades that will be available are Rose Tint and Gold Tint.  The new Meteorites are designed to enhance/correct certain issues with skin.

From the press release, “[A] rosy complexion tends to show redness, while a beige complexion turns grey with the onset of fatigue and a golden complexion becomes yellow and dull. As the uncontested expert in color and powder, Guerlain has created three different Météorites Perles color harmonies to address the ways that different skin tones reflect color and light, in line with the principles of the color wheel and interaction of secondary colors.

Which one is for you?

  • Harmony 01 / Teint Rose (Rose Tint) corrects by using mauve to reflect light and brightening the complexion along with green to reduce redness; pink to give skin a more even look; and white for illumination, gold for “radiance.”  I think this is suitable for those with cooler undertones, rosacea, or uneven or reddened skin.
  • Harmony 02 / Teint Beige (Beige Tint) corrects with mauve and pink to keep skin from looking dull; beige and apricot beige to add warmth; and white and white gold to reflect light.  I think this is suitable for most skin tones, though warmer skin tones may find this more beneficial than those with particularly cool undertones; also good for those with more neutral or beige undertones.
  • Harmony 03 / Teint Dore (Gold Tint) corrects with mauve and blue to eliminate yellowness amongst a golden tone; beige and chocolate beige enhance golden tones; and white gold reflects light while pearly apricot brightens.  I think this is suitable for those with yellow, golden, or olive undertones to bring out the natural warmth in the complexion.

Keep in mind that Meteorites are not an opaque powder in the least bit!  Just like traditional Meteorites, the ones from Meteorites Perles have the same feel and texture.  I’ve only tried Beige Tint in person thus far, which is a good thing, considering it’s the one that matches me best.  I think I could also work with the Gold Tint as well, but it may be more of a definite highlighter than all over powder.  We shall have to wait and see on that aspect!

Beige Tint contains several different colored spheres ranging from champagne-peach, peach-apricot, shimmering white, pinky-apricot, darkened apricot, and lilac.   On skin, it has a champagne-lilac illuminating base with sparkles of gold and champagne.  It’s a soft, fine-milled shimmer/illuminating powder that looks subtle against skin, even when used all-over.  If you do choose to use it as an all-over face powder, using a fluffier or stippling brush ensures you don’t overdo it.  Otherwise, it can be used as a light highlighter wherever you want to reflect light (usually cheekbones, Cupid’s bow, etc.).

The Meteorites Perles Meteorites are packaged in a “metal” container.  I think it’s more of a harder, metal-like plastic than pure metal (it just doesn’t have the weight of metal), but it’s certainly an upgrade from some of the cardboard-esque packaging they’ve used in the past.  Though I don’t mind myself, since it’s still pretty, more eco-friendly than plastic, and I don’t carry my makeup around very often, except when I travel (then I bring the whole bathroom… and the bathroom sink!).  It’s sleek, classy, and elegant–I love it.

The very idea of running out of one of the Meteorites is not something I can fathom, because it takes so little to get what you want out of it as a highlighter/illuminator.  I think one will last you quite awhile (aka years), but it does carry a steeper price tag than other high-end highlighters–though in line with Guerlain’s pricing point overall.

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Recommendation:  I think this is suitable for most skin tones, though warmer skin tones may find this more beneficial than those with particularly cool undertones; also good for those with more neutral or beige undertones.  For those with cooler or pinker undertones, consider Rose Tint; and for those with more golden and yellow undertones, consider Gold Tint.

Availability:  May 2010

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Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

MAC Art Supplies Collection
Lipstain Markers: A Classic, Full of Flare, Modern Mocha, Point of View,
Purposefully Red, Runway Ripened, Stylesetter, Sunset, Tomorrow’s Coral

MAC Art Supplies Collection: Pro Longwear Lipstain Markers Review, Photos, Swatches

There are nine new and limited edition shades of Pro Longwear Lipstain Marker ($16.00) in MAC’s Art Supplies Collection. I really, really wanted to love these–I have been wanting a good lip stain forever–a superb formula in various shades, not just one great shade (e.g. Benetint). I was most excited for the Lipstain Markers when I first read about Art Supplies, but they just didn’t work well for me.

Update @ 4/1: Reviews, photos, & swatches for ALL shades now available.  Enjoy!

Pro Longwear Lipstain Marker ($16.00)

  • Full of Flare is a brightened coral with a tinge of orange-red in it.  Probably one of the loveliest shades of the five I’ve tried so far!
  • Runway Ripened is a raspberry-ish red, but it’s still fairly red.  It gives good coverage and applies evenly.
  • Modern Mocha is slightly reddened coffee brown.  It’s not the most flattering color on my skin tone, but I could see some deeper skin tones using it for a natural lip tint.
  • Point of View is a darker and redder version of Modern Mocha.  It’s a rasberry-ish brown.
  • Purposefully Red is a vibrant cherry red.  I think this and Full of Flare are the best bang-for-your-buck colors of the nine.  If you love red but hate reapplying, bleeding, etc., Purposefully Red might be worth trying.
  • Sunset is a darkened, slightly reddish, coral.  This would look nice on both cool tones and deeper skin tones, because it’s not an overtly warm coral, which isn’t always easy to find.
  • Tomorrow’s Coral is a rich red with only a smidgen of coral in it. It’s definitely redder than I anticipated–I don’t think I’d have even picked up on any coral tones to it if it wasn’t for the name!
  • Stylesetter is a brightened pink with blue undertones. Reminded me a bit of Impassioned, perhaps, but more blue-based.
  • A Classic is a muted red–significantly lighter/less bold in comparison to Tomorrow’s Coral.

The good: The color applies quite evenly from the marker tip. I didn’t experience problems getting the color to apply evenly onto my lips. The stain will also last for hours if you don’t eat or drink (sounds like lipstick/gloss, eh?) and doesn’t come off on skin (or someone else’s lips…). You can layer a lip balm on top to keep it from looking so dry without disturbing the color itself as well. I also didn’t find that the lip stain would bleed on my lips, which is always a good thing!

You can wear the lip stain as a way to add more color or deepen color of your lipglosses and lipsticks.  They seem to work and look best when layered underneath something, rather than worn alone, which is kind of how I like to wear my lip stains–just a shift in natural lip color that looks exactly natural, no heavy gloss, no sheen, no shimmer, no weight.  To use it as a layering product, it acts a lot like a lip pencil or lip liner.

The bad: If you have dry, cracked, peeling, or otherwise imperfect lips, these are going to be a pain in the behind to use. I don’t consider myself to have any lip issues, and I even made sure to exfoliate promptly before applying these, but they are brutal on my lips. They’re incredibly unforgiving and will accentuate any dryness on your lips. If you wear a lip stain, make sure to exfoliate lips and moisturize well beforehand so that lips are hydrated before applying the stain on top. You may want to layer clear lip balm or a gloss on top to keep lips from drying out during the day as well.

Like other stains, the color will also have a tendency to deposit more in lip lines, but the effect of this isn’t noticeable until after two or three hours of wear when the stain starts to fade a bit. I’m not sure if perhaps my lips are more sensitive than others, but I found the marker tip to be more abrasive than I’d expect in a lip product. It really does feel like a regular marker on the lips–it’s not like sandpaper, but it’s not like a sponge-tip lipgloss wand either. It made my lips tingle and feel a bit irritated for about twenty minutes after application.

I also found that these stains wore off significantly when drinking or eating. I actually brushed my teeth wearing one of these, and it was almost completely gone. It’s surprisingly easy to remove, but that’s not exactly why you’d opt for a stain, is it? I did several wear tests since receiving these on Friday morning, and I did wear tests with two of the three shades I currently have. I wore Tomorrow’s Coral while sleeping (approximately eight hours total), which allowed me to wear it without eating/drinking. I didn’t wake up with perfectly stained lips, but there was still a good amount of color left–too bad my lips looked like raisins left out in the sun to further dry out! I also wore Stylesetter for another eight-hour test, but during the day, to see how it would survive eating/drinking–it didn’t. I’d say about 80% of it disappeared by the time I had finished lunch.

They smell like vanilla, but they have kind of an odd taste. It’s not gross or chemical-y, but there’s something about it that’s a little unpleasant (but not wholly so). The packaging is cute and sleek, but they look 95% like CoverGirl’s Outlast Lipstains, which I thought was interesting.

My picks: None at this time. Based on lack of long-wearing power, I don’t think any of these shades are must-haves. I’ll be buying the other six shades to photograph and swatch so you can see what they look like when it launches in-store, so perhaps one of those shades will wow me enough to recommend it!

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