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Benefit No Pressure Creaseless Cream Shadow

Benefit No Pressure Creaseless Cream Shadow
Benefit No Pressure Creaseless Cream Shadow

Benefit No Pressure Creaseless Cream Shadow ($20.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “rich fawn.” It’s a bronze-shimmered, medium-dark brown with a hint of gray to keep it from being too warm-toned. It has a frosted, metallic finish that reflects a fair amount of light even when sheered out. Benefit Birthday Suit is lighter and more golden. Maybelline Bad to the Bronze is warmer, more of a true bronze. Make Up For Ever #15 is a few shades darker.

Whew! While the last two shades I’ve reviewed haven’t been much to write home about, No Pressure brings its A-game!  It has a creamy, lightweight consistency that goes on opaque without having to layer and layer product on–and there’s no worries about it applying unevenly or catching on itself.  It smooths on beautifully and sheers out easily, too, if desired.  Because it’s a richer, more pigmented color, it also works well as an eyeliner.  After I wore No Pressure for twelve hours, there were no signs of fading or creasing.

Benefit Creaseless Cream Eyeshadow/Liner No Pressure
10
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
10
Longevity
5
Application
100%
Total

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Sephora Rolling in the Grass (10) Eyeshadow

Sephora Rolling in the Grass (10) Eyeshadow
Sephora Rolling in the Grass (10) Eyeshadow

Sephora Rolling in the Grass (10) Eyeshadow ($13.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “mirror dark green.” It’s a subtly warmed-up forest green with a soft, golden olive undertone and a green-gold shimmer with a frosted, metallic finish. L’Oreal Golden Emerald is lighter, warmer. Inglot #414 is cooler-toned, tealer. Inglot #418 is greener. Make Up For Ever #310 is less metallic.

When applied dry, it had rather disappointing color payoff; it appeared dry and a bit uneven, and overall, semi-sheer. When applied with a damp brush, it took on a much more intense color; it applied more evenly, smoothly, and was mostly opaque. Sephora’s Mirror finish is interesting, because it has the sparkling quality of a glitter eyeshadow matched with the reflective quality of a metallic finish but without the fall out problems.  While it didn’t wear the full ten hours Sephora claimed, it did hold up well; there was only some very minor fading along the edges.

Sephora Colorful Eyeshadow Rolling in the Grass (10)
9.5
Product
8.5
Pigmentation
9
Texture
9
Longevity
4.5
Application
90%
Total

Benefit Blue My Mind Creaseless Cream Shadow

Benefit Blue My Mind Creaseless Cream Shadow
Benefit Blue My Mind Creaseless Cream Shadow

Benefit Blue My Mind Creaseless Cream Shadow ($20.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as an “arctic blue.” It’s a pale, silvery blue with a frosted, metallic finish. It’s surprisingly only subtly cool-toned, despite its blue/silver coloring. MAC Blue Willow is more glittery and lighter. Cinderella Glass Slipper is a touch darker and less metallic. Buxom Husky is darker. Giorgio Armani #10 is very comparable.

This shade is incredibly reflective, and it tends to look more like a silvery white on the lid than blue–so if blue eyeshadow isn’t your thing, don’t let the color in the pot fool you! When paired with cooler-toned colors and other blues/teals, it will look bluer, but generally, it is a gray-ish white. The pigmentation of Blue My Mind was so-so; I wasn’t able to build up the color to get really opaque color, but it applied evenly for the most part even if there was a sheerness to the color overall.  I did experience noticeable creasing after ten hours of wear but no fading.  I also noticed that this one was coming apart from the edge of the glass, so the lid may not have been screwed on tightly enough after being manufactured.

Benefit Creaseless Cream Eyeshadow/Liner Blue My Mind
8.5
Product
8
Pigmentation
9
Texture
7.5
Longevity
4
Application
82%
Total

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NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder

NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder
NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder

NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder ($34.00 for 0.35 oz.) is described as a “weightless, translucent powder” with a “soft matte finish that looks luminous in any light.” It has the exact same description as the Pressed Powder.

I actually found the two to look surprisingly different when swatched. The Loose version is a similar stark white, but it looks nearly matte with very, very fine shimmer sparsely found when blended out–but nowhere near the same sheen as the Pressed Powder. As a result, this mattified skin better and had a very subtle sheen–really barely-there. Like the Pressed Powder, the Loose version softens the skin’s appearance; texture and lines blur, while pores soften and smooth out. Can you really tell the difference between the two? At a glance, no, definitely not, but if I look at myself in the mirror, I like the way there’s a noticeable but natural sheen to the skin all-over that the Pressed seems to generate more so than the Loose powder. I think if you have oilier skin, you may prefer the Loose.

Since it is a loose powder, the texture feels different, as it is an extremely finely-milled powder that’s soft and blendable on. I found it was easier to apply, because you’ll have no trouble getting enough product on a brush or pouf with this. I recommend only opening a few of the holes in the powder, because it will be easier to contain the excess that you aren’t using. Of course, because the pot tends to expose more product than you need, it can be easy to over-apply the product. The Loose version is more like Hourglass Diffused Light, though Diffused Light has a warmer tone, so it is also a color corrector.

NARS Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder Translucent Crystal

NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder

NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder
NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder

NARS Translucent Crystal Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder ($34.00 for 0.24 oz.) is described as a “weightless, translucent powder” with a “soft matte finish that looks luminous in any light.” It looks stark white in the pan, and there’s a definite sheen; a pearly finish that certainly reflects light. The texture of the powder is very unique; I don’t think I’ve ever felt anything like it. It almost feels like a cream and powder hybrid–not just a cream-to-powder product–but the texture has the smoothness of a cream but the thinness and dryness of a powder. Because of this texture, you really need to swirl and swish your brush across the surface (if you use a brush) to loosen the product.

I primarily used a powder brush to apply the product (I liked the results of MAC’s 134 best), and the powder, while it can swatch more heavily and look white and almost chalky, disappears and holds true to its translucency claim applied to the skin. There’s no powderiness in the pan or as seen on the skin. It absolutely softens and smooths out the skin’s texture and appearance. There is a faint reflective quality as an overall glowing sheen but doesn’t translate as visible sparkle or obvious particles.  It extended the wear of my foundation by an hour or so–I have normal-to-dry skin.

Even though it’s titled a setting powder, it feels more like a finishing powder, though the category is, frankly, one that I always feels blends together/overlaps where the two are often more alike than not. In that vein, Guerlain Wulong has a similar sheen and coloring, but Wulong has a stronger shimmer-sheen finish, so it gives skin a more luminous (“glowy”) appearance. We are talking degrees, not canyons, of difference, though. It has more of a sheen to its finish than Hourglass Diffused Light, which I reviewed yesterday.

One thing I noticed about the Pressed version is that you have to be really good about the brush or tool you use to apply it, because the surface of the powder doesn’t seem to react well to anything liquid/moisture/cream. It was really imperative to wait for my foundation to dry before brushing this on, because any smidgen of foundation caught on the brush (which I only used for applying the setting powder) would slightly harden the surface of the pan. There’s a very thin sponge included with the powder, and it works for application, but I found it dirtied very quickly and resulted in far more foundation transfer into the pan than preferable.

I will be reviewing the Loose version shortly after this, and while I prefer the look of the Pressed over the Loose, I really don’t like how touchy the surface of the pressed powder is and find the Loose one is easier to apply and maintain. Also worth noting: the pan of this is on the smaller size at only 0.24 oz., though physically it seemed rather large (even the Loose version has 0.35 oz.).

NARS Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder Translucent Crystal

Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder
Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder

Hourglass Diffused Light Ambient Lighting Powder ($45.00 for 0.35 oz.) is described as a “soft, warm pale yellow powder.” It’s a pale, pale white with subtle yellow undertones and a barely-there sheen. This one didn’t have any sparkle or shimmer. I’m not an expert on finishing powders, as I’ve only tried a dozen or so on the market, but you can see my past reviews, which may be helpful. From what I’ve tried, I felt like MAC’s Sheer Mystery Powder may have been the most similar in terms of feel, look, and composition (pressed, soft, no sparkle), but I wouldn’t say they’re dupes for each other.

Diffused Light is supposed to “reduce redness and give skin clarity.” Like all of the shades within the new range, it is supposed to be suitable for all skin tones. The larger idea behind the Ambient Lighting Powders is that they help to make your skin look like it’s been lit by soft, diffused light; think having a bit of a photographer and his lighting crew follow you around, except in powder form.

I applied Diffused Light over Hourglass’ Veil Fluid foundation using the Ambient Powder Brush to the right half of my face (see photos below), and I think the effect is exactly as anticipated: something that’s nigh on invisible to the eye in terms of seeing the product but that it does soften the way the skin looks. The natural textures and imperfections of the skin, including some unevenness, pores, and the like, look softer and smoother. Because it is a powder, too, it will take down any shine and does help to prolong the wear I get out of my foundation by an hour or so.

It didn’t look heavy, caky, or obvious on; there’s no residual powderiness that’s there as it sits on the skin, because you can’t see what you’ve put on. This is exactly what a finishing powder should be; and really, it’s what base makeup is all about: your skin but better. I have a medium complexion, and this did not look chalky or ashy when I applied it to my face, though it did look potentially chalky when I did a heavy swatch on my arm–so if you do the same in-store, you might try seeing it blended and applied on the face.

The powder itself is incredibly finely-milled and soft, which is great for application and blending of the product on the skin. However, a downside to that is that it does kick up a fair amount of excess powder (and I used Hourglass’ own Ambient Powder Brush) as the bristles disturb the surface of the powder. Again, none of this excess turns up on the skin, but there is some waste, I’d say. It is more “pigmented” as a result compared to other products in the category, like Guerlain Pressed Meteorites.  The excess is, ultimately, wasted product, and it does get into the nooks and crannies of the compact and some disappears into the air. That’s really my only complaint!

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Diffused Light
10
Product
10
Pigmentation
9.5
Texture
10
Longevity
5
Application
99%
Total

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