Monday, September 3rd, 2012


NARS Heat Soft Touch Shadow Pencil

Well, At Least They’re Consistent

NARS Soft Touch Shadow Pencils ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) come in four shades for the holidays: Empire (black), Heat (teal), Silver Factory (aluminum), and Trash (vivid purple). Silver Factory is limited edition, but the other three are permanent.

If I had a makeup nemesis, I imagine it would look a lot like NARS’ Soft Touch Shadow Pencils, because it’s one of the worst products I have ever seen, and I get frustrated every time I use a new shade in the same disappointing formula. I wish I could tell you that the latest four showed improvement, but I can’t. They’re as awful as expected. I have reviewed these thoroughly. I have tried them in various ways; as a base, alone, over a base, over a primer, over eyeshadow, under eyeshadow, as eyeliner, as brow highlighters.

NARS describes these as having an “easy, portable, long-wearing application” to “shade the lid, line, or highlight the eye.” They’re supposed to make for “an ideal base for layering with powder shadow or increased color intensity. All four shades creased on me within five minutes if used on the lid; it did not matter whether I used it alone or over NARS’ eyeshadow primer. I tried them as an eyeliner, as well, even though I fully intended not to bother, and they were migrating onto my waterline (FYI, Heat and Trash burned terribly), into my eye, and below my lash line within minutes. Empire didn’t smudge, but it did disappear, as an eyeliner.

  • Empire is a medium black that has a slightly drier consistency compared to other shades as well as the ones in this launch. Realistically, black eyeliner (in general) looks just like this. As a base, you might opt for a gel eyeliner (MAC Blacktrack makes for an excellent all-black base).
  • Heat is a bluish-teal with so-so color payoff. It’s very, very creamy and retains a rather glossy finish. Maybelline Edgy Emerald is greener. Make Up For Ever #21 is more shimmery.
  • Silver Factory is a bright silver with a metallic finish and silver glitter. It doesn’t really get opaque–but it’s not too uneven when it applies, at least. MAC Virgin Silver is similar.
  • Trash is a medium-dark royal purple with strong pink-red undertones. This had good color payoff for a purple; when used in a single pass, it looks rather pink-purple, but layered, it looks more purple. Make Up For Ever #26 is similar, slightly pinker. Urban Decay Delinquent is less red/pink-based.

There are lots of jumbo eyeshadow pencils on the market; using them does not require applying in a myriad of ways in hopes to find the one way that will last longer than an hour. They don’t take days and days of usage just to figure how to use them for longer than five minutes. Imagine me fumbling down the hallway with my eyes closed so that I can get at least one photo where it doesn’t look like Crease City. Suffice to say, these were consistent with the past shades I’ve tried. If you’re so inclined, I recommend reading my past reviews for a full lecture on these.

The Glossover

product

NARS Andy Warhol Soft Touch Shadow Pencils Reviews, Photos, Swatches

If you're been looking for a product to deliver a creased, glossy look, perhaps for an editorial, maybe this is up your alley. I suspect you could find a cheaper cream product to do something similar or else pat Vaseline or gloss over your eyeshadow of choice.
Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches!


NARS Empire Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Empire Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Empire Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Empire Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Empire Soft Touch Shadow Pencil (Initial / 5 Minutes)


NARS Heat Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Heat Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Heat Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Heat Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Heat Soft Touch Shadow Pencil (Initial / 5 Minutes)


NARS Silver Factory Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Silver Factory Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Silver Factory Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Silver Factory Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Silver Factory Soft Touch Shadow Pencil (Initial / 5 Minutes)


NARS Trash Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Trash Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Trash Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Trash Soft Touch Shadow Pencil


NARS Trash Soft Touch Shadow Pencil (Initial / 5 Minutes)

Product & Review FAQ

Where can I purchase it? How much is it?

Sephora, $24.00 (October 1st).

Is it limited edition?

Silver Factory is, the other three are not.

Any dupes?

See individual shade review! :)

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

170 thoughts on “NARS Andy Warhol Soft Touch Shadow Pencils Reviews, Photos, Swatches

  1. Avatar of Mirian Vermeulen Mirian

    This whole collection is making me SO SAD.

  2. I was thinking “please please, let this be good, let this be of good quality!”
    No. Nars disappoints me. I thought is was only MAC that put out bad limited editions.

  3. Liz

    such a shame because they are gorgeous colors

  4. I’m so surprised NARS would keep putting out a product like this. Even if it wasn’t meant to be used alone, they should still be easy to use for such an expensive product. People should be able to swipe these across their eyes and use them without fail, even if they’re not supposed to be used that way. This is so sad because this line has some really great colors! I think NARS should spend time focusing on improving this product or make a whole different product but still a shadow pencil with an easier formula…

    • I’m trying to figure it out, too. I don’t usually see others raving about this – I know that periodically I’ll get a comment on an older post from someone who bought it and had the same thing happen. I’ve used jumbo eye pencils before, and there are formulas that stay well on my eyes (and some don’t stay 100%, but very few are like this).

  5. Too bad these don’t perform well since the shades are really lovely :)

  6. Oh, Christine. *squishes cheeks* Only you could find a makeup nemesis in the form of a NARS pencil ;o) You are my favourite!

  7. Avatar of Carrie Carrie

    It’s so sad that these have such a terrible formula because the colors are gorgeous! You’d think they’d improve the formula though.

  8. Avatar of Liz Liz

    Ugh, so sad! I had a bad feeling about this whole Andy Warhol collection as soon as I saw it. It just didn’t look NARSy, and I worried that the quality wouldn’t be there. I mean, at least the nail polishes are good? But otherwise, ugh…why, NARS?

    • Maybe some of the gift sets will be better (I don’t have any, so I can’t say) – but the palettes are a huge miss for me. I knew these pencils weren’t likely to be hits, so at least I didn’t have high expectations!

  9. Avatar of Mariella Mariella

    Others may disagree and that’s fine but I’ve found the naming of this collections objectionable – dead people who more or less did themselves in or lived such out of touch lives…. Anyway, I guess an F rating is karma for this (or that’s what I’m choosing to think, anyway!)

    • Elizabeth

      I’m sorry, are you referring to Andy Warhol? With what, exactly, was he “out of touch”? Warhol did a great deal to demystify the Artist as creative genius. His collaborations with fellow “workers” or artists, many of whom were untrained, suggested that anyone could be an artist if s(he) worked hard, while his appropriation of popular images, such as soup cans or soap boxes and photos taken from newspapers suggested that no great ideas or artworks are born of nothing – they are always influenced by the work and ideas of those who came before. His works encourage us to see the artistic in the everyday in addition to exposing the commercialism of high art. Of course, you can have your own opinions of his work, but he was very insightful, whether he intended to be or not, and anticipated many of the ideas that form the core of postmodern thought.

      To say he “did himself in” could be taken as pretty offensive. He died of complications resulting from surgery.

      Maybe I’m misunderstanding you. I hope so.

      • Avatar of Mariella Mariella

        When he was shot (I remember it well), there was quite a cult of silence – he didn’t do much, as I recall, to bring Valerie Solano to justice – it was all very weird. Edie Sedgewick was another “icon” being invoked in this collection – someone born with great privilege whose life ended sadly and certainly not in a way I consider worthy of becoming “a legend” if you know what I mean. As I say, this is just my opinion – no one else has to share it.

  10. Clara

    OMG! Why is NARS doing this?

    • I’d really love to hear from those who love these pencils and how they use them – I’d love more insight! I have to expect that people are buying enough of them that NARS thinks they’re worth putting out.

  11. Avatar of gabis gabia

    It immediately reminded me of Mac’s big bounce eye shadow. Geez, even bad formulas are being copied now?

    • At least Big Bounce you could use as a base–they wouldn’t stand on their own, but if put eyeshadow on top, they’d make it. These I can’t even do that with!

  12. Its a pity they perform so poorly cos the shades by themselves are nice. Heat and Trash are gorgeus.

  13. kari

    wow, this whole collection is such a dud :\ heat and trash are GORGEOUS, so sad looking at the crease pictures/

  14. Avatar of Kate K.C.

    Why am I not surprised…

  15. Avatar of Barbie Barbie

    lol these remind me of the nyx jumbo eye pencils, i have dry eyelids and they creased on me so fast lol i don’t know how people use them as bases

  16. Carrie

    I keep wanting to like NARS and then this just keeps happening. :(

    • I like their Sheer Lipstick range quite a bit :) An unexpected hit with me!

      • Avatar of tzwiggy t_zwiggy

        You like SHEER lipstick?? I’m kinda in shock right now, lol. But I agree, NARS sheer lipsticks are great. :)

        • I like it when they’re almost translucent in some capacity – so it’s even, noticeable, but effectively, looks natural. My kind of sheer!

          • Carrie

            That’s an interesting thought to try out the next time I’m in a hunt for a lip product!

            I just remember trying out one of their shadows (can’t recall which one) and it was such a dud that it turned me off. To make matters worse, it was right when I first started dipping my toes in the waters of high-end brands. I’ve been weary ever since and it seems like the ones I want to try keep end up being the worst offenders!

            • When NARS nails it, they nail it. I seem to have the best luck with NARS’ shimmery eyeshadows – they tend to be the right balance in texture and pigmentation.

              But I completely understand. MAC has a ton of great shades in their permanent range, but if someone had only tried recent LE products, they might never find that out!

  17. Lucia

    Too bad that these are such duds. Kind of ridiculous for the price tag, considering that Sephora brand makes awesome, fabulous eyeshadow pencils for only $12 a pop!

    • Avatar of Kafka Kafka

      I agree, Lucia, Sephora makes great shadow pencils at a great price and they don’t have these problems! I have their 24hr Waterproof one in “Violet” and it’s pretty close to Trash, except a wee bit less red than what Trash looks like here. “Violet” has an almost iridescent shimmer that is stunning and it is fast becoming my go-to purple for a base, over even the MUFE Aqua purple. It’s just so easy to apply!

    • Dani

      Yeah, and considering Milani does the same thing for much cheaper too and with better consistency and wearability.

  18. danza

    There are some things that you can always depend on. The sun will rise, disney stars grow up… and NARS Soft Touch Shadow Pencil will crease… badly.

    It’s almost comical at this point, and your review becomes very entertaining with each pencil. At least I got UD 24/7 shadow pencil to work on me over UDPP, and even better if I top it with powder, and this is coming from someone with oil rigs as eyelids.

    • I’m glad you were able to get the UD pencil to work for you in some fashion! I have normal-to-dry lids, so when stuff creases so quickly on me, I’m like… “How?”

      • danza

        That’s the thing! There are some things that works on you that doesn’t on me, like UD 24/7 liners (raccoon city in 30 minutes) but things you said sticks like cement, will work for me one way or another. For example, BareMinerals Primer Shadows (those tiny things) and MUFE Aqua Creams. Sticks and sticks impeccably. So I trust your review, and not blindly.

        I know and have read reviews of these STS where it worked, but always with some kind of extra effort. At the price, it’s unwarranted. I want to buy things that works in 20 seconds with my hard earned money.

        • I think that’s one of the hardest things to accept when it comes to reviewing makeup – every product is “your mileage may very.” What works for one person might not for others!

          I am happy that some products do last and last on you! I still love that murky color that BareMinerals put out. Very unique!

  19. Avatar of Jill AnGeLwInGz

    That’s sad and funny at the same time. It’s nice to have an honest blogger like you Christine. Some people are probably drawn into the Nars name and automatically think it’s going to be great.

  20. It makes me LOL and at the same time concerned about their judgment that they keep sending you these STS Pencils! Either they just don’t care how their products are coming across, or they actually think they have improved each time?! It just doesn’t make sense when MUFE, Urban Decay, and Milani have pencils like this that last!

  21. Emma

    OMG I can’t believe they are that bad!! :( they looked so nice swell!

  22. Ciara

    Hey Christine! I was just wondering if you had any thoughts on why these Soft Touch Pencils have good reviews on Makeupalley and why NARS keeps putting them out. Are they good on other lids but not yours for whatever reason? Do people just really want to believe that such an expensive product is good? It just doesn’t make sense o.o

    • From what I’ve seen on MUA, it’s a mixed bag of reviews – some love, some hate, but it does seem like the few that work, many people are using as a brow highlight or on the inner tearduct, where you should be getting less noticeable creasing (particularly the brow bone). Others seem to be able to make them work for them, which is great :)

      • TwirlyGirly

        Another thing to consider is there are only a total of 21 reviews of the NARS Soft Touch Shadow Pencils on Makeup Alley. 10 reviews for the color “Goddess” (60% would buy again), 4 for the color “Palladium” (NONE would buy again), 4 for the color “Aigle Noir” (50% would buy again), and 1 review each for the colors “Queen,” “Tall Tale,” and “Dark Rite” (the reviewers for all three colors would buy again). If you take the reviews for all the shades together, only 52% would buy again, and the average rating is only 3.2. Even if 21 reviews were statistically significant, an average rating of 3.2 isn’t exactly stellar…..

  23. Blacktundras

    BRAVO to the title girl! ” Well, At Least They’re Consistent”, I almost fell over with that.

    • It’s better they’re consistent, I say – then you aren’t in this limbo, “Well, will THIS one be a good one?” I’d rather a consistently bad/good product than a range that’s hit or miss, since then you can’t trust and have to take chances every time!

    • Avatar of Kafka Kafka

      I laughed my head off at that title too. So, so funny!

  24. Have NARS ever got in touch with you about the consistent negative reviews? I would have thought they’d want to work to make it better if they knew how rubbish they were. I won’t buy these ever after seeing your reviews and I won’t be the only one… so it’s in their interests to improve the formula and get a good review, to sell more??

    They need to withdraw these bloody shadow pencils from their line. IT drags down a really good make-up company otherwise! I just do not get why they still have Soft Touch Shadow Pencils. *sigh* The phrase “Epic Fail” springs to mind…

    • I can only guess that there are enough sales to support the continued production and inclusion of the range – there are certainly instances where a product doesn’t work well for me but works well for many others. However, in those cases, you’ll often get readers who have those good experiences chiming in with said experiences. With these, it doesn’t usually seem to happen (I don’t remember every comment) often. More likely, someone will ask if I have tried it such and such way or suggest that it’s intended to crease and look that way.

      • Well, out of curiosity I did a Google search for them, and I’ve found numerous negative reviews… It really isn’t just you!

        I’m guessing people buy from swatching on their hand at NARS stores and liking it there, when a hand swatch is nothing like applying it on the eyelid :\ Or a blind purchases with no research at all.

        I WANT them to be brilliant so it’s incredibly frustrating!

        • Could be – I am surprised the return rate isn’t higher, but it’s so hard to know!

          • TwirlyGirly

            True makeup aficianados read blogs and watch YouTube video product reviews and know not to buy them. I suspect many of the people who are buying these are NOT the ones who much research of products before they buy. Those people are also most likely not to know you CAN return products you’ve opened and tried that don’t work for you (at many stores).

            • It makes me sad if people experience the same results but don’t return :( It’s too steep of a price tag to permit such results!

            • Avatar of Kafka Kafka

              I feel for the people in all the countries which DON’T permit returns for makeup products. They’re stuck with this and are out at least $24, if not more given the currency exchanges and higher prices in other countries. Perhaps NARS is being mislead by all the overseas sales numbers, not realising that people are stuck with the pencil and can’t give it back. LOL.

  25. Avatar of Kafka Kafka

    Hahaha, I was waiting for this review. I must be a terrible person, because I find F reviews incredibly fun and funny in general. But NARS’ consistency on this makes it even more hilarious. This whole collection makes me want to host a picnic with goodies as we watch the trainwreck. *takes out the popcorn and enjoys the show*

    • Well, as long as y’all think they’re fun to read… :)

      I have had some suggestions to stop testing the pencils, and I’ve considered it, because I can understand that nobody wants to see the same thing said over and over again – but I asked myself, “Would I stop writing positive reviews for the same reason?” Nope. Besides, you never know when or how someone might find a review – they may never have seen my past reviews!

      • Avatar of Kafka Kafka

        I’m really glad you continue to review them (and not just because of the entertainment value of an F rating). When a product gets SUCH consistently terrible reviews, across a large variety of sites, there is always the hope that NARS will realise and reformulate the next one. I mean, at what point do they continue with this? I received a NARS shadow pencil in Goddess (pink-champagne) and it has one of the worst reviews I’ve seen on Makeupalley, except from those who have completely given up and use it near the tearduct or to highlight. (And even then….) Anyway, I know a number of people — like Amy, for example — were really interested in the look of some of these STS Pencils, so your review is bound to be helpful and save a lot of people money.

        And, until NARS wakes up and reformulates them, there is always the added fun of reading one of these reviews in the meantime. I think my favorite one is for the gorgeous, stunning Dark Rite which, at the 30 minute mark, looks unimaginably horrific: http://www.temptalia.com/nars-dark-rite-soft-touch-shadow-pencil-review-photos-swatches “Your nemesis” indeed. *grin*

  26. Nicoco Chanel

    I am honestly convinced the creative team sit around, get drunk and go “OH THIS IS A GORGEOUS COLOUR.”

    “… I know! Let’s put in on the STS Pencils!”

    “…….. BRILLIANT.”

    • I wonder why they don’t launch them in their regular cream eyeshadow formula? I haven’t tried it extensively, but I know it’s better than this one.

      • Nicoco Chanel

        They are secretly trying to see how much they can devastate colour addicts and make up lovers and still get business? That’s the only thing I can think of.

        Though I did just see someone raving about Celebrate staying put all day – highly confused rn!

  27. ml124

    have you ever tried applying to your finger and smudging over the lid as a sheer wash or base for another shadow? i think this is how they work well as opposed to drawn straight on or with a brush. (btw, you made a typo, i think it’s *suffice* to say)

    • Hi ML!

      I noted in the review that I’ve used it as a base, and it works just as dismally there :) I’ve used them in the past as a sheer wash, applied with fingers, through the pencil, with a brush, with a sponge-tip applicator, and nothing has yielded good results.

  28. Avatar of tzwiggy t_zwiggy

    I can’t believe NARS are still releasing these. They should’ve known by know that they’re utterly crap.

    Only thing positive is that I get to read another F review. I get really excited every time you give a product a bad grade. Weird, I know, lol.

  29. joyce

    I feel NARS has lost its way lately. It’s been one of my fave lines for being edgy yet elegant, and I’m turned off by the lackluster quality and way too much glitter. It’s disappointing, but I’m glad for your honest reviews, Christine.

  30. Savannah

    Wow. This is a really disappointing product! I’ve given up on attempting to find a nice eyshadow pencil, some last but i can’t blend and they look terrible, or they blend nice but barely last. I’ll just stick with primer and powder eyeshadows :)

    • Oh no! Which have you tried? One of my faves is UD, but I think a lot of it depends on how you want to use ‘em. Like if you use them as a base, blendability is less important, but if you want to use them on their own or as the star, then blendability is more important!

  31. Why do they keep making these? Or why don’t they reformulate them? Every time I read a review of these, they are negative, while the idea of an eyeshadow pencil isn’t bad at all.

  32. I had to laugh at “Well, at least they’re consistent.”

    They get mixed reviews on Sephora too, but I’ve noticed that a lot of people think THEY are at fault when a product doesn’t work. They assume it’s their application skills or eye-rubbing habits or something, and not the product itself falling short. You’ve tested so many products over such a long time that I know it’s not your application skills at fault. You’ve obviously tried everything with these.

    It’s possible that people with dry-dry lids or something are having better luck.

    LOL, want me to buy one and test it? I’m kind of tempted, because I’m also normal to dry and rarely have trouble with creasing, so it would be interesting to see if my experience is like yours or different!

    • I look at it this way: this is not the first product of its kind. So, given that I can use at least 5 other comparable products without having to get creative in application technique/tools… it’s the product, not me. It might be my chemistry, but it can’t be a skill issue.

      If you do, I’d certainly love to hear the results. My eyelids are normal-to-dry as well, and while some eyeshadows on their *own* (no primer) can crease on me after 6-8 hours… I am able to get plenty of products to last without creasing (including powder eyeshadows, as well as cream eyeshadows). NYX’s pencils wear pretty well on me and I know they’re a more hit-or-miss product with the majority. Usually, though, you can set even a fussy cream eyeshadow with shadow and it will work significantly better. I don’t even get significantly better with these! It is bizarre.

      • Okay, I’m going to get at least one – any preferences on shade? They’ve all been a nightmare for you, right? :D

        • Pretty much! I’d say Dark Rite and Celebrate were rather hard to work with.

          • Okay, I bought Dark Rite and Skorpios (were out of Celebrate) and… I think you’ve been too generous with these. If I’m allowed to put it here, here’s my video response:

            http://youtu.be/0MeKtfdrAcc

            • LOL! Love it – pigmented Crisco!!

            • Avatar of Kafka Kafka

              That video was one of the funniest and best things I’ve seen in a while. From the opening warning, “DISASTER!!” in all caps, to your utterly infectious laughing fit over these things…. I love it! I was laughing right there with you and all the way to the end (“I’ve never smelled anything like this either!!” Complete with a grimace — LOL!!) I think you did an excellent job and I’m so impressed at how you bit the bullet on all our behalves and bought these things to test out. Please tell me that you plan on returning them to get your money back!

              BTW, I have to ask: what nail varnish are you wearing? That medium grey with the faint shimmer is gorgeous!

  33. TwirlyGirly

    The very first ingredient in the formula for the NARS Soft Touch Shadow Pencils is Olus (Vegetable Oil), so OF COURSE they’re gonna crease. They also contain quite a bit of Avocado Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil, and a bit of Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil.

    You’d be far better off with the NYX Jumbo Eye Pencils. At least the first three ingredients in their formula are all waxes! (Not to mention, you can buy four or five of the NYX Pencils for the cost of just ONE of the NARS….)

    • NARS’ pencil is SUPER creamy, which has always been what I suspected as the problem – it just can’t be *that* creamy and wear. It doesn’t have a setting time, because it stays creamy. I didn’t wear these for hours and hours, but I’ve done so in the past, and they’re still creamy and spreadable after five hours. They’ll transfer if you touch them even lightly. :(

      The real question is why formulate it like that?

      • TwirlyGirly

        You’re right – that IS the question! I was pondering that after I left my comment. It seems to me even if one has Sahara Desert dry lids, with those ingredients it’s still going to crease. Now, if they released them to the market without sending out PR samples first, for sure they would sell a bunch of them until word got around. But it defies logic as to why they would release a product with a crappy formula, then send it out free for review, so that you and others can announce to the world just how crappy it is and prevent people from buying it.

        Ya know, the chemicals used in cosmetics are quite safe at the levels used in the formulas. But these people are exposed to great amounts of them day in and day out. Maybe affecting their thought processes?

        • I’m definitely surprised to see them persist on the market. They are some of the few posts that get the random comment periodically that tend to say “I wish I had read this before I bought it.” There are a few who they work for, though. The perception I get is the majority has had trouble with them, but it’s easy to lose perspective when you look at who’s saying what online (and we’re not always the real majority!).

  34. Avatar of Stephanie Stephanie

    I can’t believe they’d put Warhol’s name on such a crappy product :/

  35. So disappointed. You’re not the first to give it a bad review, either–so I’m surprised they haven’t addressed this problem yet! Does anyone even buy these? I’m sure this would crease on EVERYONE, so I can’t believe that they’re still selling enough to keep making them!

  36. Emily

    This is one of the best post titles you’ve ever had. : )

  37. MandyB

    Hi guys! I am one of the people to blame for NARS continuing to make these, haha. For some odd reason, they totally work for me (dry lids/dry climate/PFM..who knows). They are my go-to product for a quick 5 min face where I do use them as a shadow; they work as a base under powder eyeshadow and I like them just as much as my NYX jumbo pencils. I also use them pretty much daily to line under my lower lashes because I find them creamier than my UD 24/7 pencils. It’s too bad that these are a complete failure for so many people, because I will be sad the day these are discontinued – at least I shouldn’t have too much competition hoarding backups when that day comes.

    • I’m glad they work well for you, Mandy :) What’s nice to hear is that you don’t have any special tricks, either, which is as it should be. Do you layer these on until they’re opaque, or do you just pat a tiny bit on?

  38. Lizzy

    Oh no, well this is very disappointing. Tsk, tsk Nars, nice colors, but you should’ve worked a bit more on the formula. Recently, I bought MUFE Aqua Shadows, and even if they’re a bit tough to apply (well to me at least,) the color payoff is great and they stay put. Thanks so much for your thorough reviews, Christine, that way I know exactly what to skip (and what to splurge on!)

  39. blueraccoon

    The title made me laugh. I’ve never bought one of these, and I never will, and I just don’t understand where the market is. You’d think people would buy one and realize what crap it is, right?

    • One reader recently commented saying she’s one of those people who this works well for – so maybe there are people it is a good product for after all!

      • Avatar of Amy xamyx

        I’m another who these work well for, but based on general comments I’ve read from the majority of your readers (which is *alot*), I realize I’m the exception, as I’ve never had any eye product, in any formula, by any brand crease on me, even without primer. I have three of these, and I actually fell asleep one night with Aigle Noir, and when I woke up, there was only a bit of smudging & some fading, but it wasn’t really that bad. Again, I realize I’m definitely in the minority. That said, $24 is still too much for a pencil, so I think I’ll hunt down the NYX purple.

        • I’ve probably asked you, but how do you like to wear these?

          I’m glad a reader was able to share a NYX dupe for Trash!

          • Avatar of Amy xamyx

            Honestly, pretty much as you have them in the pics. I like these as a quick grab-and-go color with mascara when I’m in a rush. Like I said, I have really good luck with pretty much all eye products, and the *only* reason I wear eye primer in to enhance the intensity of the shade, especially more vibrant ones. I guess the same way you can get nail polish to last for over a week, I have luck with eye products, LOL. I seriously have to change my polish every other day, at best, due to chipping.

  40. Bobbie

    That’s too bad – the black and purple look lovely when first applied
    :( Skip – they would only be good for eyeshadow bases and there are several drusgtore brands that work for that! (Nyx jumbo pencils, for example).

  41. Avatar of Jenny Jen B

    So sad that the formula is such a failure since NARS comes out with great colors. Not worth the effort or money.

  42. Haha I was curious if they’d improved these.. as soon as I saw the title, I knew the answer ;) Thank you for always being honest – very appreciated

  43. Avatar of Elizabeth Beth Maiorana

    I can’t figure these out!! I have Calabria and Dark Rite. I am dumbfounded and speechless- and they expect people to actually PAY $24.00 each for these?! Thanks for the post, Christine. As always your candor is so appreciated. xoxo Beth in Pgh ;-)

  44. Ugh, I’m sorry this collection is so poor, mostly because I know how much you dislike writing negative reviews. The Soft Touch pencil is such a pretty color, but even the swatch on your arm has poor payoff.

  45. melhadjis

    They can not for the life of them manage to fix these things.

  46. barcodestan

    UGH, Christine! How can you even put these on your face?!?!?! That takes some serious dedication, and for that I thank you. I can just imagine how painful it was to sit there and watch these “shadows” crease before your eyes! It reminds me how back in the day I never wore eyeshadow primer, I went to the mall in the afternoon, but I put some eyeshadow on in the morning, and it was all creased up! The looks I got! LOL I was so confused, and I went to the bathroom mirror to see a horrible mess on my eyelids! I was so mortified! I can sympathize with the pain you felt as these creased!

  47. Lark

    Am I the only person who reads this blogs who has ever been to the Nars site and seen how these are intended to be used? And Christine – would you really leave the house with your eyelid Crayolaed in like that? No. nobody uses a pencil like that. You blend! And these do that wonderfully.

    You use these with a brush, just like Shade Sticks. They’re supposed to be sheer. Just like many of M. Nars pan shadows. Sheer colors, sheer colors layered, you hate these for the same reason you hated Big Bounce. It’s a new idea. I don’t have trouble with the one of these I have, and love, and pro’s use them with no problem. With a brush. Blended out.

    Get over it already! Christine, get a brush and go sheer. Then give us a reveiw. Nars is not MUF or UD, although you’d never wear their fat pencils like that either.

    • Hi Lark,

      I’m happy they work for you! :) Unfortunately, they do not work for me. I have previously applied these with brushes, fingertips, sponge-tip applicators, and straight from the pencil. :( I have used them as a wash (as you suggested), as a base, as a standalone color, and I’ve had the same results. I remember using MAC Shadesticks, and I didn’t have to use them with a brush at all – you could apply and go. I actually quite liked Big Bounce eyeshadows as a base – but not alone, since they creased. As a base, they do not work for me (they crease quickly) (see Celebrate). As a sheer wash of color (blended out), they do not work for me (see Hollywoodland). As an eyeliner, they do not work for me (they smudge and migrate). As a highlight, they slide and fade (and around the tearduct, still creases, since I have folds/wrinkles/lines there).

      I will say that if these are supposed to be sheer, and if all of NARS’ eyeshadows are supposed to be sheer, the brand should clearly state such things. (The eyeshadows, for instance, are described as highly pigmented.)

      There are certainly looks that go for more defined shapes, as well as cut creases, so I don’t see why one wouldn’t wear color like that. I know that when I use a colored base, such as a jumbo pencil, I put down an opaque layer of color and then put eyeshadow on top. Maybe you don’t care to wear it like that but others might :)

    • Avatar of artemis artemis

      oh please, leave Christine alone! she isn’t dumb, she tests stuff in all ways possible. she doesn;t even have oily eyelids but these still faded and creased badly. guess it would take 1 minute on mine.
      it doesn’t matter how you use it, a bad product is a bad product.

  48. I’ve seen plenty of people colour block on their eye like this.. usually in black for a really edgy rocker look, but certainly not exclusively so I disagree that one would only use these pencils as a sheer colour. Oh, and I was one of those people suckered into MAC Big Bounce shadows and I tossed them. I presume that certainly ‘pro’s’ can find use for these products since they are typically working in an editorial mode and on hand to do touch-ups during a shoot, etc.. but let’s face it, these shadows are not for us lowly non-pro’s… yes, that’s us, the real people who actually pay for and use these products. You couldn’t make me buy one of these based on these results. GARBAGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • I wish I could get one to stay put even as a wash of color, but no dice for me :( I know with other cream shadows, what makes them great is how versatile they can be – you can have opaque color or a wash – so usually they’ll work either way.

  49. helen

    Wow, harsh! I agree, there will be some people that may find this product enjoyable and not agree with your findings and that’s okay. I always appreciate your reviews and respect your opinion. They are the litmus test for me (and you are generally right!). Thank you (always) for doing the initial leg-work, Christine.

    • I’m always happy to hear from readers about how a product has worked for them. I really do feel it helps complete the picture, since I’m only one person!

  50. Good Lord. That’s just inexcusable. I’ll stick with my UD Shadow pencils… or maybe let my 4-year-old paint on my face.

  51. Avatar of Carolina Carolina

    Ok, I admit, I’m in this just to see the next part of the ongoing saga of the NARS Shadow Pencils. True to form, neither NARS, nor Christine disappoint.

    LOL

  52. Patricia

    What’s with the Limited Editions this year?! Are they doing this with their eyes closed? Each year, I’m getting more and more disappointed with the pigmentation and lasting power with these limited editions sets. They depend on brand more than anything! Good work on this review. Saved me some money

  53. Monica

    The cherry on top of a crappy product is that burning feeling you mentioned about Trash and the other one! honestly….
    But I hope you continue to review this stuff, its so much fun! specially that part about you fumbling down the hallway trying to get a picture of the product LOL

  54. Avatar of Jenny Jenny

    I need to say this: NARS Trash is exactly a DUPE for NYX Purple jumbo pencil, and I mean exactly 100%! The difference is NYX jumbo eye pencils have much more staying power than these ones and also are a lot cheaper. So if anyone loves that NARS color, NYX has the dupe for it :)

  55. Clara

    Hi Christine! I m from Brazil and i just love you site!!! Could you tell me the name of your favorite brown eye pencil ever?
    Xoxoxxoxoxox!Thanks !!

  56. Amanda S. Tahn

    I hate how you go through all this trouble of doing these wonderful, in depth reviews for us and then you get SO MUCH unwarranted criticism for doing an honest review! NARS is NOT untouchable and I think people sometimes just can’t handle the truth! You are obviously not to blame for the product not working– look at all your other incredible looks and tutorials and your skill is evident!!!! Sorry for rambling, I just really and truly appreciate everything you do for me, Christine! I wish you could do my makeup, lol! Thank you again for doing such amazing reviews <3

  57. Ada

    This is so upsetting. The product can’t even last 5 minutes and they want us to pay that much for a stick? So sad. :(

  58. Mai

    I’m trying to come up with any logical reason why they’d continue to keep the pencil formula because I cannot believe that they’d be so deluded into thinking that the bad reviews aren’t being serious. I’m starting to think that they commissioned the production of the pencils to a factory and they are contracted in to continue making these because I can’t believe any company would voluntarily produce something so consistently terrible.

  59. Espe Barajas

    wow…those would be my worst nightmare on my hella oily crisco lids.

  60. Jennifer

    Looks like the color Trash really IS TRASH!

  61. Ouch, that doesn’t look good… I’ll pass on this one.

  62. Yellowlantern

    God I love it when you review these things.

    I feel a little bad since you don’t like writing negative reviews, but these soft touch shadow pencils are makeup comedy gold to me. They are just so bad they’re epic.

    I’ve seen other blogs give these things the thumbs up, but they either don’t mention how long they last in the review at all or they don’t show any photos of them being worn. For me a blogger giving these a pass w/o photos or very detailed reviews are always a red flag that I’m not sure if I can trust their reviews.

    • Not on these specifically, but there have been a few instances where someone has posted a faraway photo of themselves with their eyes open to “prove” a long-wearing claim. I’m like, “I can’t tell! I need a close-up, LOL!”

      These do seem to work well for a few readers, so I wouldn’t rule them out!

  63. Hannah

    I was hoping NARS would change the formula of these pencils, they must surely know people are not getting on with them. I went to a NARS Masterclass months ago and asked the artist who was doing the class how to wear it without it creasing, he insisted you could wear it without creasing. I just gave up. You don’t expect this from a really expensive product. I got a Barry M eyeshadow pencil that was under £5, it stayed on all day with very little creasing. If you like coloured eyebrows like myself, these NARS pencils work well for that. Just don’t wear them on the eyelids.

  64. Avatar of artemis artemis

    :/ wow, even 20 cents questionable eye pencils last longer x_X

  65. Well, these pencils seem to perform just like… Wet n Wild Idol Eyes eyeshadow pencils. Except the latter are just a few bucks and throwing one away won’t break my heart. And hell, I don’t even think they crease SO badly!

    If I bought a Soft Touch pencil without knowing how poorly they perform, I think I’d be infuriated and demand my money back…

  66. Avatar of Deedee Lulu

    Holy lord. Just go buy the NYX Jumbo Eye Pencils. They’re like 4$ and can be used everywhere and have tons of colors. They last so well too.

  67. It amuses me that despite your consistent F’s, they keep putting out such a crap product.

  68. Sky

    I was so excited for the whole collection from NARS when I read of it here, especially the Silver Factory pencil here. And I was really hoping you would loves these, cause then I wanted to try them. But i’m so glad you did the review, cause it saves me from ordering a product like this thats not so cheap. I have never tried these, but this amazing review saves me from giving the money for something that may not work for me. That’s what I love about your reviews! Your so honost, and you tell who it may work for and who it may not. And it saves the trouble of dishing out a lot of money for something that turns out to be crap

  69. Heidi Myrvang

    are you kidding me?!

  70. caitlin

    ahhhhh!!!! 5 freakin’ minutes later??!!! i am dying!!! thanks for your honesty christine, even though it breaks my heart :) c’mon nars!! such gorgeous colors too :(

  71. T.

    Too bad these creased so quickly they are nice colours.

  72. Avatar of Jenn Stylediva80

    I know this is a shame to say because they aren’t cheap, and the intensity of the color is supposed to be a selling point, but have you ever tried sheering them out over a base?

    I smudge Aigle Noir in the crease and along the sides. I also use Silver Factory Sheered out as a brow bone highlighter and mixed with other colors in the crease to add some color. They seem to work well for this, and it’s the only way I’ve ever tried using these sticks.