Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

Stila Soul Eyes Are the Window Shadow Palette
Stila Soul Eyes Are the Window Shadow Palette

Stila Soul Eyes Are the Window Shadow Palette ($49.00 for 0.51 oz.) includes twelve eyeshadows in an assortment of a slightly earthy set of more neutral shades. The eyeshadow formula is described as “luxe,” “long-lasting,” and “high-intensity” that “deliver rich color with a luxurious satin finish.” They can be used wet or dry, but I wouldn’t use the majority with a damp brush, because it creates a stiffer, hardened surface on the top that you’ll have to remove if you want to use the eyeshadow again. I was able to use the more frosted shades with a damp brush without issues later on. The frosts, in general, perform better than the other shades, as they have a denser texture, but they still tend to be powdery. The mattes have a thinner, drier consistency that feels soft in the pan but just doesn’t translate as intensely on the skin. It is a huge improvement from Body, but there’s still a lot of powdery shades with hit or miss pigmentation. I feel like it’s a palette that absolutely requires a primer to do the heavy-lifting and/or a damp application (in the case of the frosts) to be workable. At this price point, though, there are too many misses.

Light is a light, warm-toned beige with a matte finish. It had so-so color payoff both wet and dry with a slightly powdery consistency, but it wasn’t too bad. It wore well for seven and a half hours before fading. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Individual is a medium brown with warm undertones and a matte finish. Applied dry, it was semi-sheer, and applied damp, it was semi-opaque. It wore well for seven hours on me before fading. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Being is a medium-dark brown with subtle, warm undertones and a matte finish. It had semi-opaque color payoff applied dry, and then it was about the same applied damp, just more uneven. The texture was powdery but thin, a little chalky. The color showed signs of fading after seven hours of wear. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Kitten is a warm-toned, beige peach with a frosted, slightly metallic, finish. It had semi-sheer color payoff applied dry, and it was fully opaque applied with a dampened brush, which also helped smooth the color out so it applied better. It wore well for eight hours before creasing. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Affection is a medium brown with warm, orange undertones and a frosted finish. Applied dry, it had semi-opaque pigmentation with a soft frost finish, while applied with a dampened brush, the frost finish was amplified and the color was more opaque. The consistency was soft, blendable, but it was a bit powdery. It wore well for eight hours before creasing slightly. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Character is a dark brown with warm undertones and a copper sparkle (that just translates into a mostly satin sheen with little visible sparkle). The texture is drier and thinner, which yielded barely-there color payoff when applied dry. It was boosted to semi-sheer coverage with a damp application, but it rendered the color difficult to blend, so it appeared patchy. It started to fade after six and a half hours of wear. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Thought is a medium, bronzy brown with warm undertones and a frosted sheen. It had good pigmentation applied dry, and it was fully opaque when applied damp. The texture was soft without being powdery, while the color wore well for eight and a half hours before creasing. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Heart is a rosy brown with neutral-to-warm undertones and a satin-matte finish. It was semi-sheer applied both wet and dry, but trying to apply it damp made it difficult to work with as it didn’t want to blend. It lasted for seven hours before fading on me. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Peace is a medium-dark, coppery-brown with a muted quality and soft frosted finish. It had semi-opaque pigmentation applied dry, and it was mostly opaque applied with a dampened brush, but it was somewhat hard to blend with both application methods. It wore well for seven hours before fading on me. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Vitality is a brightened, gold with warm, yellow and brown undertones and a metallic finish. Applied dry, it had semi-opaque color coverage, but it was powdery enough that it didn’t bind well dry. It worked better with a dampened brush, as it had opaque color payoff and was much smoother. It wore well for eight hours when I tested it. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Substance is a medium-dark, warm-toned taupe with a frosted finish. It was semi-sheer applied dry, and it was fully pigmented applied with a dampened brush. The consistency was slightly powdery but workable, and it lasted for eight hours before fading on me. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Essence is a medium-dark black with a matte finish. The texture felt soft, but it was dry and thin, so it didn’t bind well on its own. It had semi-opaque color payoff applied dry, and it intensified to mostly opaque color coverage when applied dampened, but it was harder to blend when I used it damp. The color stayed on well for seven hours before creasing. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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palette

Soul

C+

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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product

Light

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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product

Individual

C+

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Monday, August 18th, 2014

Stila Body Eyes Are the Window Shadow Palette
Stila Body Eyes Are the Window Shadow Palette

Stila Body Eyes Are the Window Shadow Palette ($49.00 for 0.51 oz.) includes twelve eyeshadows in an assortment of jewel-tones. The eyeshadow formula is described as “luxe,” “long-lasting,” and “high-intensity” that “deliver rich color with a luxurious satin finish.” They can be used wet or dry, but I wouldn’t use the majority with a damp brush, because it creates a stiffer, hardened surface on the top that you’ll have to scrape or rub away (paper towel works well) on the satin/matte finishes. I found this palette to be incredibly powdery, poorly pigmented, prone to fading, and a generally frustrating experience. I wouldn’t have paid $10 for this, let alone the $49 I actually paid for it. I bought all four (like a complete and utter fool), but I’ve only tested two for wear so far, and I think this one is the worst, but tentatively speaking, I don’t have high hopes for the others.

Pink Diamond is a light pink with warm undertones and a frosted finish. Applied dry, it was sheer; applied damp, it was semi-opaque. It was soft but powdery. It faded after seven hours of wear. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Topaz is a muted, medium-dark brown with warm undertones and a soft, pearly sheen. Applied dry, it was sheer, and applied damp, it was more opaque. It was powdery but blendable, and it lasted for seven hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Garnet is a medium-dark plum with a eparly sheen and warm undertones. Applied dry, it was ultra sheer and very stiff/dry–impossible to blend–and applied damp, it was semi-opaque but still difficult to blend on the skin. It lasted for six and a half hours before fading. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Rose Quartz is a peachy-pink with warm undertones and a soft, frosted finish. The texture was incredibly powdery, which made it hard to work with as it can’t be used dry without an adhesive/creamy base underneath it, as it is very sheer and prone to disappearing the moment you try to blend it. Applied damp, it had better color payoff but you really have to wet the brush repeatedly to keep it from drying. It had noticeable fading after six hours of wear. It is a little warmer compared to Pink Diamond. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Aquamarine is a soft, bluish-aqua with a pearly sheen and cool undertones. It was sheer applied dry, and then semi-sheer applied damp. It was faded after five hours of wear, and it looked awful applied, because it was uneven and sheer. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Emerald is a darkened, cool-toned green with flecks of green and teal shimmer. The texture was stiff, dry, and difficult to blend and use on the eye. Applied dry, it was very sheer, and applied damp, it was semi-opaque. The color started to fade after six hours of wear. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Amethyst is a light-medium, pinky lavender with a frosted finish. The texture was so, so powdery and a little chunky. It was sheer dry, then just slightly less sheer damp. It faded after five hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Tanzanite looks to be a medium-dark purple with subtle warm, pink undertones and a bit of a bluish-teal sparkle, but it’s hard to know since it was barely a veil of color when swatched, wet or dry. I tried to test this one the best I could for wear, and it seemed about three to four hours before it was just kind of a faded, slightly creased, mess–but I could barely get color on in the first place. This shade is beyond unacceptable. I might have breathed a little fire after using this one. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Midnight Quartz is a cool-toned, muted purple with a satin finish. This one was just like Tanzanite: almost imperceptible dry… or wet. It was dry, stiff, hard to blend or apply. What little I managed to pack onto the lid was all but gone after four and a half hours of wear. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Moonstone is a brightened, silvery-white with a frosted sheen. Though very powdery, it at least had semi-sheer color payoff when applied dry and opaque color payoff applied damp. It was faded after six hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Sapphire is a medium-dark blue with subtle, green undertones and a pearly sheen. It had semi-opaque color payoff applied dry, opaque color coverage applied damp. This shade was only somewhat powdery, and it lasted for seven hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Black Diamond is a dark, neutral-to-cool-toned gray with a frosted finish. It was mostly opaque both wet and dry, though slightly powdery and surprisingly, not as blendable as expected either. It wore well for seven hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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palette

Body

F

Product

5.5/10

Pigmentation

5.5/10

Texture

5.5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
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product

Pink Diamond

C-

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

6/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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product

Topaz

B-

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, August 6th, 2014

Stila Fall 2014 Collection
Stila Fall 2014 Collection

Eyes Are the Window Shadow Palette ($49.00) (New, Permanent)

Inspired by the spiritual notion that true beauty is revealed from within, Stila created endless looks with these Eyes Are The Window™ Shadow Palettes. The carefully curated palette features 12 luxurious eye shadows in finely-milled powders that deliver high-performance color that can be worn wet or dry. Encased in exquisite, jewelry-inspired compacts™, a blend of rose, yellow, and white golds, this shadow palette includes a look book curated by Sarah Lucero, Stila’s Global Executive Director of Creative Artistry.

  • Mind
  • Body
  • Spirit
  • Soul

Magnificent Metal Lip Gloss ($24.00) (New, Permanent)

  • Citrine Sheer peach champagne with multidimensional shimmer
  • Moonstone Sheer cool pink with multidimensional shimmer
  • Kitten Sheer nude pink with multidimensional shimmer
  • Pink Sapphire Sheer lilac toned pink with multidimensional shimmer
  • Rose Quartz Sheer golden rose pink with multidimensional shimmer
  • Garnet Sheer burgundy red with multidimensional shimmer

Mile High Mascara ($26.00) (New, Permanent)

Revamp lashes with this jet-black mascara, infused with plumping plant extracts and emollients for lush, glossy lashes. The color glides on effortlessly, leaving eyelashes with ultimate length and volume that will not smudge, budge, clump, or flake off. The propeller brush grips, lifts, and lengthens lashes, while the patented V-shaped bristles delicately wrap lashes from roots to tips for ultimate curl.

Availability: Now at Sephora, ULTA

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Sunday, June 15th, 2014

Makeup Geek Smoky Eye Look
Makeup Geek Smoky Eye Look

I haven’t done a smoky eye in awhile, so I wanted to try it with some of the products I had tested recently as well as with some shades I’ve worked with in the past. Then, I wanted to experiment with pairing a warmer lip with a smoky eye, as my typical go-to is something cooler-toned, like a rosy beige or more bubblegum-like pink.

Eyes

I first applied Makeup Geek Rockstar Eyeshadow on the inner third of the lid and blended upwards over the tear duct, towards the brow bone. Then, I patted on Makeup Geek Prom Night Eyeshadow to the center of the lid to brighten and create a gradient towards the outer lid. I used Makeup Geek Corrupt Eyeshadow to darken the outer corner and crease, which created a smoky effect. I softened the crease color’s edge by applying Burberry Trench Eyeshadow to the brow bone. I defined the lower water line with Marc Jacobs Beauty Blacquer Highliner Gel Crayon, and then I used bareMinerals Skinny Dip Eyeshadow smudged on the lower lashine.

Face

Guerlain Parure de Lumiere Foundation (002 and 003) set with Guerlain Les Voilettes Loose Powder. I applied Stila Kitten All-Over Shimmer on the tops of cheek bones.

Lips

I applied Guerlain Gaetane Rouge G Lipstick all over the lips, and then I topped it off with Bobbi Brown Citrus High Shimmer Lipgloss for added shimmer and shine.

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Saturday, June 14th, 2014

I have a definite weakness for colored eyeliner! I love how it can add a pop of color with very little effort. Here are a few shades I’m loving for summer this year…

  1. Urban Decay Chaos — bold blue
  2. Marc Jacobs Beauty Ody(sea) — bright teal
  3. Stila Mint Julep — mint
  4. Milani Perfect Purple — sparkling purple
  5. Sephora Sun Tan — coppery bronze

>> See side-by-side swatches here! <<

Monday, May 26th, 2014

Neutral Eyes with Teal Eyeliner
Neutral Eyes with Teal Eyeliner

Last week, a few readers said they missed seeing looks posted on the blog (as in, cohesive ones!), so I’ll try to post some periodically–depending on whether there’s time for a more “free” day.  Sometimes there are so many products to test, I can’t give up the facial real estate :)  On Saturday, we spent all day with my husband’s family, which is usually a 14-hour minimum, so it’s a day where I prefer to just go with something that works.  I remember several readers wanted to see Stila Smudge Stick Mint Julep in action, so I thought this might a good opportunity to showcase that as well.  Going forward, I will try to post looks using recently reviewed products, but this was a very “for me” look more than anything, so hopefully you can forgive the excess of older products in it.

Eyes

A lot of the times if I’m not specifically testing something for wear, then I’ll reach for products that I really, really love that are, more-than-likely, discontinued or long ago limited editions. I love the two shades of cream eyeshadow Tom Ford released a year ago so much that I keep them in my basics/regular routine drawer, and I always take them with me when I travel. I’m so used to not using primer these days, but when I know I’m going out and about all day and am not testing, then I’ll still start with a primer!

I used NARS Smudge Proof spread all over the lid to the brow bone with a finger tip. I also like to take a little and apply it to the lower lash line for extra hold for the eyeliners I’ll use as well. Next, I applied Tom Ford Escapade Cream Eyeshadow to the first two-thirds of the lid, starting from the inner lid and moving outwards. Tom Ford Pink Haze Cream Eyeshadow was applied to the outer third of the lid and into the crease, blending outwards and upwards. To soften the edge of the crease eyeshadow, I applied Burberry Trench Eyeshadow to the brow bone (this is my go-to highlighter). For the lower lash line, first I applied Marc Jacobs Beauty Ody(sea) (62) Highliner Gel Crayon, and then I applied Stila Smudge Stick Mint Julep underneath the inner two-thirds of the lower lash line and along the water line. The effect made it look as if the eyeliner was glowing–I was quite in love with it! For lashes, I used a mascara fan brush to apply MAC Opulash Mascara.

Face

Normally, I find primer an unnecessary step with my skin type (normal-to-dry) for regular, everyday wear, but yesterday was going to be a longer, 14+ hour kind of day, so I started by applying Hourglass Mineral Veil all over my face. Then, I mixed two shades of Guerlain Parure de Lumiere Foundation with half of a pump of Kevyn Aucoin Celestial Skin Liquid Illuminating Emulsion as my base. For blush, I applied Troy Surratt Duchesse Blush  on the apples of cheeks. I set with Urban Decay Naked Loose Finishing Powder and finished with Guerlain Wulong Pressed Meteorites Powder.

Lips

I mixed two shades of OCC Stained Gloss in Aurora and Dune (reviews are forthcoming).

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