Friday, August 27th, 2010

Illamasqua Precision Ink
Illamasqua Precision Ink

A Tale of Twin Liners

Illamasqua Precision Ink Liquid Eyeliner (£16.50 for 0.06 oz.) is a new eyeliner launching with Illamasqua’s Art of Darkness collection for fall. It’s a long-wearing and waterproof liner that should dry quickly.

It may look familiar. In fact, it may look very familiar. Illamasqua’s Precision Ink and MAC Superslick Liquid Eyeliners are exactly the same. Every part of the packaging is the same, from the bottom to the inside to the formula itself. MAC has sticker labels on the bottom, while Illamasqua has the label on the side of the eyeliner–which reveals a bit of an inset, and after peeling back the MAC label, the MAC liner has it, too.

Illamasqua has two shades (at least for now): Abyss, which is a rich black, and Alchemy, which is a metallic gold. (The MAC counterparts would be On the Hunt and Pure Show, for reference.) The shades are exactly the same as far as I can tell. There is no discernible difference, and I swatched both gold shades on my hand and kept them there for about 36 hours–I wanted to see them in all different lighting.  If there is any difference between them, I could not detect a single one.

This is a very easy review, because I’ve done it before: they are as long-wearing as they claim to be. They won’t smudge, budge, flake, or migrate whatsoever once they’re dry, though I find that drying time is around twenty to thirty seconds (not super fast, not agonizingly long). It is water-resistant, and it flakes off when you put makeup remover on it.

Whenever two brands, particularly such well-known brands as these, come out with exactly the same product, not just similar colors (which you could simply say are coincidence or going with the trends), I wonder what went on. I don’t know much about manufacturing and the behind-the-scenes aspect of beauty product creation, so I don’t have any insider knowledge to provide for you. My first experience with it was with all of the lip stain markers that released in the earlier half of this year–it seemed like every brand was putting out some kind of lip stain marker. Then MAC and Orly’s polish similarities, and now this… It just makes you wonder.

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

RECOMMENDATION: Just depends on which brand you prefer, I’d say… It’s a very nice long-wearing liquid eyeliner that’s easier to use than your typical liquid eyeliner.

AVAILABILITY: Illamasqua

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Thursday, August 19th, 2010

MAC Fabulous Felines - Leopard Luxe

MAC Fabulous Felines: Leopard Luxe Review, Photos, Swatches (Eyes)

Here’s part one of Leopard Luxe — part two coming soon! :)

Leopard Luxe Eyeshadow Quad ($36.00 U.S. / $43.00 CDN)

  • Wild By Nature is a medium-dark nude brown with a matte finish, though it seems like it has just a bit of satin to it.  Reminded me of a lighter Soft Brown.
  • Notoriety is a slightly sheer dirty brown with cool undertones and flecks of gold shimmer with a velvet finish. I really hate the pay off of Notoriety, even though it’s an interesting color. This is a repromote from Makeup Art Cosmetics.
  • Style Predator is a gold-shimmered medium orange base with a veluxe pearl finish. It reminds me of a darker version of Straw Harvest (Spring Colour Forecast) and more of a gold sheen than Off the Page (Makeup Art Cosmetics).
  • Furiously Fabulous is a deep, dark brown-gray with a veluxe pearl finish. This is the best textured eyeshadow of the three quads–it’s smooth and pigmented. I thought it was going to look like Knight Divine from an initial glance, but it’s very different. It’s like Brun and Satin Taupe had a baby.

Superslick Liquid Eye Liner ($17.50 U.S. / $21.00 CDN)

  • Pure Show is a true gold, and it seems a little less pigmented than the average Superslick liner — it’s more shimmery with a sheerer color base. It can be layered for a more intense, opaque line, though.
  • Marked for Glamour is a darkened gray that almost looks taupe when used lightly.
  • On the Hunt is a very deep, dark black.  It has a very semi-glossy look even when dried, but it’s not wet looking (but not 100% matte/flat).

Pigment ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Lithe is a lightly shimmered peach-nude. It reminded me of Dazzleray and Jardin Aires pigments (both limited edition)–the texture is much smoother and finer than either of those pigments, and Lithe isn’t as frosty.
  • Old Gold is a green-based gold with touches of reddish brown. It flashes a green-gold overall. It’s a very interesting and complex shade; definitely worth a look if you haven’t acquired this previously. This is a permanent shade.

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Thursday, August 19th, 2010

MAC Fabulous Felines - Palace Pedigreed
MAC Fabulous Felines – Palace Pedigreed

MAC Fabulous Felines: Palace Pedigreed Review, Photos, Swatches (Eyes)

Here’s the first of two posts on the Palace Pedigreed part of the Fabulous Felines Collection.

You can find official promotional photos and information on MAC Fabulous Felines here.  I will not have full collection swatches and photos until I’m able to purchase the missing pieces.  I purchased all of these through Bloomingdale’s, which is selling early online (no idea why).

Palace Pedigreed Eyeshadow Quad ($36.00 U.S. / $43.00 CDN)

  • Courtly is a semi-sheer dirty mauve with a satin finish. It seemed rather muted to me, and it took a little extra work to get it to swatch well. The closest permanent shadow I could think of was Seedy Pearl, which has a lot more shimmer, significant pink tones, and an iridescent glow about it that make them quite different in actuality.
  • Palace Pedigreed a darkened plum with a soft sheen and satin finish. It reminded me of a darker version of Plum Dressing, less purple Nocturnelle.
  • Quite Spoiled is a pinky purple with a soft, satin finish. It has a subtle sheen of shimmer. It reminded me of a purple version of Modest Tone (N Collection).
  • Russian Blue is a darkened teal with a matte finish. The pigmentation seems lacking, but when used with a brush, it’s a lot better, though it’s still not quite as pigmented as I’d like. You’ll want to use the pat-and-pack method rather than sweeping this shade on.

Superslick Liquid Eye Liner ($17.50 U.S. / $21.00 CDN)

  • Nocturnal is a bright metallic silver with a high frost finish.
  • Signature Blue is a medium-dark navy blue with lighter blue micro-shimmer.
  • Smoky Heir is a burgundy plum with violet, plum, and purple micro-shimmer.

Pigment ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Bloodline is a darkened taupe-brown with a tiny bit of plum. When wet, it can be very intense. If used with a brush like an eyeshadow, it works well in the crease and darkens substantially.
  • Mauvement is a chunky brownish mauve with flecks of gold. It’s an interesting shade, but it does have some chunkiness to the texture that can be bothersome.  I’m really annoyed that I can’t find my original jar of Mauvement, because this seems browner than the original; slightly smoother, but still on the chunkier side.

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Wednesday, August 4th, 2010


Plum Crazy, Dirt Bag, Brown Sugar, Handcuffs, Blackout

Quickie Reviews: Too Faced Metal Eyed Liquid Shimmer Eyeliners

Periodically, I do quickie reviews — these are products that I just don’t do full reviews for one reason or another, but I have photographed/swatched and–at the very least–briefly tested in some capacity, but perhaps not to the fullest extent. I figure if I’ve taken photos/swatches, the least I can do is show you!  (I can’t believe I’ve had these sitting in my photo folder since October.)

Too Faced Metal Eyed Liquid Shimmer Eyeliner Blackout ($17.50 each) are semi-sheer liquid eyeliners with lots of glitter and a fairly metallic finish. I swatched five shades…

  • Plum Crazy is a blue-based lilac violet with silver sparkle.
  • Dirt Bag is a deep cool-toned bronze with gold and red-brown sparkle.
  • Brown Sugar is a warmed-up molten chocolate brown with copper sparkle;
  • Handcuffs is a metallic silver with silver sparkle; and
  • Blackout is a charcoal black with silver sparkle.

These wear all day long, and the glitter stays put pretty well with only minor fall out, though all the shades are rather sheer when used as eyeliner. You really have to layer it on (and be sure to wait for each layer to dry) in order to get a richer, more opaque look. These do dry very quickly, so you’ll need to work fast to get that precise look. I like these best layered over a solid eyeliner (e.g. black) for a shimmer effect. As a water-based formula, they definitely feel wet and seem to have a thinner formula, but again, it dries down very quickly.

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

  • Product: 24/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: For layering, these can be fun; if you’re looking for a rich, opaque glitter eyeliner, not so much.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora

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Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Givenchy Pardas'Eyes Liner

Givenchy New Impressions Collection: Parad’Eyes

Givenchy Parad’Eyes Eye Liner ($27.00 for 0.1 oz.) includes two new shades as part of Givenchy’s New Impressions Collection for Spring 2010. The two shades are…

  • Mauve Impression (8) is more pink than move. It’s a clear base with lots of shimmering pink sparkle. It’s very pretty and spring-y, but it didn’t show up mauve at all on me! Sephora described the shade as “metallic lilac,” which is a little easier to get behind than “Mauve.”
  • Nude Impression (9) is a metallic bronze with champagne and bronze shimmer. Like Mauve Impression, it seems like a clear base with colored shimmer rather than a colored base.

The Parad’Eyes Eyeliners come in square tubes with predominantly black packaging with the bottom of the top with Givenchy’s logo in blue and the bottom of the product in a bronzy-gold and the label. I find that these liners do stay on well, once they dry (which takes a little longer than the average liquid liner), but with these being more glitter/shimmer based, they look best layered over a solid-colored liner. These can also be fun on lashes for a little extra bling-bling over mascara. They stay on without budging or flaking, but they may be a little pricey just for a glitter/shimmer eye liner!

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If you love a bit of added sparkle to your spring look, these certainly will do the trick! They’re sheer enough to be versatile and universal, but they have plenty o’ bling to give you that glitz and glam. They’re on the pricey side, though in line with high-end prices, so they may be more of an indulgence. Both shades should work nicely on both cool and warm skin tones, because neither is so warm/cool–though naturally Nude pairs the best with warmer skin tones and Mauve with cooler skin tones.

Availability: Sephora

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