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Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009


MAC Black Knight Lipstick + MAC Bling Black Glimmerglass

Pucker Up:  Black as Knight

As I expected, applying MAC’s Black Knight lipstick does yield better results when used with a lip brush than straight outta the tube. (But it’s important to know that distinction–you want to know just how much work you have to put in to get what you want out of a product.)  It took me a solid five minutes to layer the color on, and I felt like I had to use a fair amount of product.  I mean, honestly, not particularly dismaying as this isn’t a shade I’ll be reaching for constantly, so I don’t run a high risk of using it up in the next week.

Black Knight will eventually layer and look opaque enough to satisfy most.  I do want to note that in my bathroom’s light, unevenness and flaws are very, very minimized.  When I stood in the mirror, it looked pretty opaque–even when I shoved my face all up in my mirror’s business.  The camera’s flash does accentuate every little flaw!

Black lips are very, very high maintenance.  The color bleeds, and it is easy for you to smudge and pull at the color and make it uneven.  Just pressing your lips together will create some unevenness, which is a little frustrating!  A drier black lipstick would be easier to work with, to be honest.  I’d probably recommend MAC’s Black Lip Mix over Black Knight lipstick.

Bottom Line: Apply a thin layer of concealer or foundation (or MAC Lip Erase, which serves the same purpose) to lips.  This helps to neutralize your natural lip color and make whatever you’re applying much more pigmented, but it also evens out the surface a little more and adds a dry layer.  Black Knight has a lot of natural glossiness to it, which makes it easy for the color to slip and glide, creating that uneven look.  Use either a very dark or a clear lip liner all around the edges of the lips to help prevent the intense color from bleeding.  Then, apply Black Knight using a lip brush.  Layer until satisfied.  Be cautious when applying gloss, because the gloss tends to shift the color around in a slip-slide fashion.

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Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009

Temptalia Asks You

Would you wear black lipstick? How would you wear it?

Temptalia's Answer.

Personally, I’d cater it to my style, which doesn’t lean towards ultra bold lips most of the time. Instead, I’d use it to layer underneath different glosses (particularly reds).

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Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009


Benefit Lipglosses: Almost Famous, Fresh Squeezed, Zone Out

Benefit Lip Gloss: Review, Photos, Swatches

Benefit Lip Gloss ($18.00 for 0.17 fl. oz.) is available in eight shades from copper to berry to gold. Each is scented with an apricot-lychee scent with a non-sticky, slick-feeling texture. They’re fairly glossy with lots of shimmer.

  • Almost Famous is a sheer rosy-bronze with amber bronze glitter throughout. This one felt a little glittery to me.
  • Fresh Squeezed is a pinky-coral with smoother, more shimmer-esque multicolored shimmer.
  • Zone Out is a sheer nude gloss with golden shimmer to add some sparkle.

These glosses wear about average (four hours), and they don’t dry out lips but don’t feel extra hydrating either. I like them, but I don’t love them. Both Fresh Squeezed and Zone Out felt nice on my lips, but Almost Famous has a gritty glittery texture that I didn’t appreciate. (Luckily, neither Fresh Squeezed or Zone Out felt like that!)

These lip glosses are slightly pricier (by the ounce) compared to Make Up For Ever and NARS, but they’re a better value than Dior and Chanel. At $18, I’d probably opt for a NARS gloss instead (though these smell much, much better).

  • Product: 8/10
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 8/10
  • Packaging: 8/10

Recommendation: If you sheer, shimmery lipgloss, you may want to snoop at the Benefit counter for these!

Availability: Benefit

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Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009


Benefit Lipsticks: Fame Game, Label Lover, No Competition, Breakup Rumor

Benefit Full Finish Lipsticks: Review, Photos, Swatches

Benefit Full Finish Lipstick ($18.00 for .10 oz.) are slim lipsticks available in fourteen different shades and two finishes (cream and pearl). Today, let’s look at four shades — Fame Game, Label Lover, No Competition, Breakup Rumor.

  • Fame Game is a soft frosty pink with silvery-white shimmer. It’s opaque and has a pearl finish.
  • Label Lover is a bronzy, russet rose kind of color with a gold-bronze shimmer and pearl finish. It goes on semi-opaque on lips.
  • No Competition is a creamy, opaque muted berry that is dark and bold, but not overly so.
  • Breakup Rumor is a shimming rosy plum with gold and rose shimmer and pearl finish. It applies mostly opaque on lips.

Benefit’s Full Finish Lipsticks are mostly opaque to opaque in color, feel creamy, and don’t leave lips dried out while you’re wearing them. They wear well (I get about six hours of wear-time with minimal drinking/light eating), too, which is always a plus. I love the shade range Benefit has, because I feel like they offer a good mix of shades that flatter many skin tones. Their pearl finishes aren’t drying in the least, as some frost-finish lipsticks often can be. I love all four of these shades, though I love the way Breakup Rumor shimmers.

The packaging is slim and compact, and it looks sleek in an all slightly shiny all-black case with Benefit’s logo wrapping around it in white. The value is so-so; it comes in as slightly more expensive (by the ounce) than Urban Decay and MAC, but it’s still less than brands like NARS and Dior.

  • Product: 9/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 8/10
  • Packaging: 8/10

Recommendation: If you love more opaque lip colors, these lipsticks are a great place to start your search!

Availability: Benefit

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Monday, September 21st, 2009


Young Punk

MAC Style Black: Mineralize Eyeshadows Review, Swatches

MAC Style Black is a deep, dark collection with the rich tones of black as inspiration.  Perhaps one item that has likely caught many readers’ attention are the four new mineralize eyeshadows:  Young Punk, Gilt by Association, Cinderfella, and Blue Flame.

Mineralize Eyeshadow

  • Young Punk is a deep purple with lighter icy pink-purple shimmer/glitter.  When applied dry, it has just so-so pay off, but the color is much more intense when applied wet.  When it dries, though, it will fade a little bit.
  • Gilt by Association is a glittering antique gold with a hint of warmer bronze shade.  It has decent color pay off when used dry, but as typical with mineralize eyeshadows, wet is still much better.
  • Cinderfella is a silver-black.  It has a deep black base with a shimmery, silver glitter laced through it.  Again, wet is more intense than dry.
  • Blue Flame is a dark navy blue with silver-blue glitter/shimmer that brightens it.  When used dry, it looks more like a sheer blue-black.  When used wet, that’s when you see the navy blue shade.  It looks very much like the eyeshadow named Blue Flame or the permanent shade Deep Truth.

If you know me, you know I’m not a huge fan of mineralize eyeshadows.  The color pay off tends to be below my expectations with too much fall out to bother.  These are definitely shades that are best used wet (which you can do with mineralize eyeshadows without fear of leaving behind a wet spot).  Using them wet also helps to minimize the fall out issue, which is something that glittery shadows are prone to have (mineralize or not).  I like the colors, and I do like the theme of this dark black-inspired base with brighter shimmer to give it color.  I’d likely be taken in by them, but I’m not sure these are the ones that’ll get me on the mineralize side of life.

  • Product: 7/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 7/10
  • Packaging: 8/10

Recommendation: If you’re a mineralize eyeshadow fan, you’d probably like these.  If you’re not, these aren’t likely to win you over.

Availability: MAC Cosmetics

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Monday, September 21st, 2009


MAC Blackware Glimmerglass, Bling Black Glimmerglass, Blackfire Glimmerglass

MAC Style Black: Glimmerglass Review, Swatches, Lip Swatches

MAC Style Black is a deep, dark collection with the rich tones of black as inspiration.  MAC introduces a new lipgloss formula, Glimmerglass, and launches three shades:  Blackware, Bling Black, and Blackfire.

Glimmerglass

  • Blackware is a sheer gray-black tinged gloss.  It is a creamy finish with no real shimmer.
  • Bling Black is a sheer black that casts a little green from the gold-green-olive shimmer.
  • Blackfire is a sheer black that casts slightly burgundy, which probably comes from the burgundy-red shimmer.

All three shades are incredibly sheer and not even close to being opaque.  The only way to get something more than sheer is to layer with a base lip color or to really slather on the gloss (which doesn’t work well either).  It’s a thick, jelly-textured lipgloss with a non-sticky feel.  These feel thicker than cremesheen glass and nowhere near as gritty as dazzleglass.  I liked Bling Black the most, because I felt like the green-gold cast was different and fun to see.

  • Product: 8/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 9/10
  • Packaging: 8/10

Recommendation:  Gloss fiends will likely enjoy this non-sticky new gloss from MAC.  They’re not the best in value relative to other MAC glosses, but they’re not out of line with other competing brands.

Availability: MAC Cosmetics

See more photos, swatches, and lip swatchesContinue reading →