Monday, April 2nd, 2012

NARS Charade Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Charade Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Charade Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Charade Eyeshadow Duo ($34.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “matte smoky plum” and “muted mauve.” NARS fans that prefer duos with more contrast may like this one, because the shades differ from each other noticeably but still complement each other well.

The left shade is a pinky-plum brown finished with a satiny sheen. I found the color rather hard to describe, because I can see a hint of plum, but it seems pinker yet toned down by a lot of beige/brown. It has pretty good pigmentation, and it applies smoothly across the skin. The texture was slightly powdery, though. MAC Jete is similar but has a more metallic finish, and it’s warmer, not as neutral. Guerlain Boulevard du Montparnasse is slightly pinker, less brown. Giorgio Armani Sweet Fire is pinker and more metallic.

The right shade is a smoky, played-down purple with subtle red undertones. It’s almost a neutral purple. Like the left shade, the color payoff is good, though it could be slightly improved. This shade had a soft, smooth feel and wasn’t as powdery as the other hue. theBalm Curvy Cami is redder in undertone. MAC Azuki Bean is slightly darker. Paul & Joe Purple Clover is fairly similar.

NARS touts their eyeshadows as long-wearing and crease-resistant, though they’re not quite impervious to creasing/fading over an eight hour period. They do just fine over a primer (no problems after as long as ten hours), but there was subtle but noticeable fading after eight hours with this duo.  Charade is a wee bit powdery but certainly easy to work around (tap excess off the brush and use a lighter touch against the powder itself when you use your brush), and there’s no fall out problems once it is applied.

The Glossover

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NARS Charade Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
Charade is a wee bit powdery but certainly easy to work around (tap excess off the brush and use a lighter touch against the powder itself when you use your brush), and there's no fall out problems once it is applied.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Sunday, March 25th, 2012

NARS Surabaya Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Surabaya Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Surabaya Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Surabaya Eyeshadow Duo ($34.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “brown sugar” and a “chestnut.” This is an interesting duo that desperately needs to be swatched! I can’t emphasize that enough, because it looks very, very different swatched and in practice than it does in its pretty pans. Both shades are much darker–so much so that not only did I swatch this duo twice, but I googled and looked through dozens of other images and saw similar results. In my old school NARS Duo product photos and swatches, the products look lighter than they do when swatched.

The left side of the duo is a rich, orange-red-toned dark brown with a smattering of gold shimmer and finer burnt red micro-shimmer. It has such a beautiful, silky texture with excellent color payoff. NARS Galapagos is slightly darker, more of a yellow-toned brown. Bare Escentuals Pumped is similar but not as red-toned. MAC Roasted Chestnut is similar, just a touch lighter and more metallic in finish. MAC Make Your Mark is not quite as intense or as red-toned. Laura Mercier Cedar is slightly less red-toned. MAC Swiss Chocolate is very similar but matte and a bit browner.

The right side of the duo is a warm, red-toned medium-dark brown with red shimmer. Like the left shade, this has a soft, smooth texture that yields rich, opaque pigmentation. Make Up For Ever #14 is more metallic and a deeper brown. theBalm Tres Moi is similar but more frosted. MAC Take Root is less intense and red-toned. MAC Antiqued is browner. theBalm Racy Kacy is a bit lighter and less brown.

This duo represents what NARS is capable of:  soft, silky smooth textures combined with rich pigmentation.  Both shades blended out beautifully and with ease, though a little goes a long way.  These shades could be used together, but you’ll find they work even better when paired with a lighter shade for more contrast.  When applied over the lid without a base, it lasted for eight hours with very, very minimal fading but no creasing; and when applied over the lid with a base, there were no issues after ten hours.

The Glossover

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NARS Surabaya Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A
Luxurious textures, intense color payoff, and beautiful colors to boot--NARS really nailed this duo. It's virtually an A+, if you always use an eyeshadow primer, since you shouldn't have any wear issues (NARS does, however, state these are long-wearing and crease-resistant).

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

NARS Demon Lover Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Demon Lover Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Demon Lover Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Demon Lover Eyeshadow Duo ($34.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a duo of “iridescent storm blue” and “deep matte indigo.” It’s part of NARS’ permanent range of eyeshadow duos.  NARS’ eyeshadow formula is supposed to be long-wearing, highly pigmented, and crease-resistant.  They can also be used wet or dry.  I never get quite crease-resistant, long-wear out of NARS’ eyeshadow formula–typically about six to seven hours of good wear, but slight fading and/or creasing after eight hours.  I don’t have any problems over a primer, though.

On the left, there is a muted blue-based purple with a slightly frosted finish. There is some underlying sheerness to the color, so it doesn’t have a completely smooth appearance. It’s not as blue as MAC Wintersky. MAC Illegal Cargo is similar but not as blue. Urban Decay Blue Bus is brighter, less faded. Estee Lauder Untamed Violet is a bit darker, less shimmered.

On the right, there is a dark, faded purple with a gray-ish overcast to it. It has a matte finish, and while it looks a bit sheer swatched, it actually performs very well. It applies with good color payoff and doesn’t disappear once you start blending. theBalm All the Way Annie is similar but not as dark or as faded. Urban Decay Rockstar is more eggplant-hued, not as dusty. Giorgio Armani Green Jacquard has a similar shade that’s just a touch purpler.

The Glossover

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NARS Demon Lover Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
It's a cool-toned purple eyeshadow duo that will look really lovely against paler skin tones, though it should work for a variety of complexions. The quality is good overall, but it could be a bit more pigmented.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, January 12th, 2012

NARS Paramaribo Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Paramaribo Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Spring 2012: Paramaribo Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Paramaribo Eyeshadow Duo ($34.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as “metallic shades of brass and bronze.” For whatever reason, this is one of the few limited edition shades for spring, which is totally too bad–it’s a gorgeous product and my favorite from the spring collection.

The first shade is a rich golden brass with a metallic-frost finish. It’s really smooth, opaque, and easy to work with. The way it binds together makes for a really adhesive, longer-wearing product, too. Make Up For Ever #11 is less golden in a way. OCC Cruising is darker, less yellow. Le Metier de Beaute Chameleon is browner. It also reminded me of the golden tones from MAC Golden Gaze. Urban Decay Rush is much browner.

The second shade is a softened bronze-shimmered brown. This shade is extremely soft and finely-milled, so it feels like silk against the skin and melts like butter once applied. Urban Decay Rush is not quite as dark. Giorgio Armani Khaki Pulse is less warm-toned. MAC Romp is more orange-toned. Urban Decay Deeper is similar. Urban Decay Smog is slightly less golden shimmered.

This eyeshadow formula is supposed to be crease-resistant, long-wearing, and highly pigmented.  Without a primer, they do look a little faded and have minor, but noticeable, creasing after eight hours of wear.  I don’t encounter those problems, typically, over a primer.  Some of the lighter, more powdery shades do fade a bit over a primer, but neither of these shades are like that.  The powders for both shades really bind together well, so they adhere better to the skin.

The Glossover

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NARS Paramaribo Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
Both shades have excellent color payoffs and beautiful, workable textures that feel soft as silk against the skin. They're warmed-up but not overly warm; there's an edge about them that keeps them from being your more traditional gold and bronze pairing.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

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Thursday, December 8th, 2011

NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo ($33.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “shimmering ecru” and “rich emerald green.” The lighter shade is a pale yellow beige with a mostly matte finish, but it has a really soft, silky texture with a buttery, dense feel. It’s similar in color to Make Up For Ever #102 with better color payoff. The darker shade is a greenish-teal; it’s a little tealer/bluer than emerald green, but it’s very close. It has more of a matte color base with pale gold shimmer-sparkle on top. It’s the closest shade I have to Jealousy Wakes, which is greener; I think if you wanted more of a teal and found Jealousy Wakes too green on you, then Misfit would be more up your alley. It reminded me more of MAC Surf USA, which is a touch more teal. It’s soft, smooth, and very pigmented.

Both shades have excellent color payoff, and the two pair well with each other. There’s a good amount of contrast, so you can take it from light to dark and everything in-between. Plus, with the yellow in the beige, you can pull this shade to look greener when they’re used together. The wear of this duo was nice, too; normally, when I wear these without a base, it doesn’t quite last for a full eight hours, but Misfit wore for nine without fading or creasing, though the green shade did stain somewhat, so I took off half of point from application (which does include removal!).

The Glossover

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NARS Misfit Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A+
One of the best NARS eyeshadow duos I've tried to-date, and the fact that it also happens to have an emerald green (slightly teal!) shade in it is only an added bonus. Those who prefer their NARS duos to offer contrast will find this one does that, too!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

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Monday, November 28th, 2011

NARS Isolde Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Isolde Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Isolde Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Isolde Eyeshadow Duo ($33.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as “frosted ginger” and “shimmering copper.” This is one of the best NARS duos I’ve tried when it comes to quality, but I will readily admit that as far as the shades themselves go, they’re not unique, so you may already own similar shades. It’s a great basic duo for someone who hasn’t already added a few coppers to their stash, though! This is part of the brand’s permanent range, so I think it’s a nice core product to have.

The left side of Isolde is a medium copper with a frosted gold sheen. It has an incredibly soft, smooth texture that’s buttery and dense without being powdery. It delivers excellent color payoff, too! This shade is similar to: Bare Escentuals Louder, MAC Amber Lights, and theBalm Meep Meep.

On the right side, there is a deeper copper with burnished brown undertones and a frosted golden sheen. Like the left side, the texture is amazing–soft, smooth, rich–with intense pigmentation. It’s has more copper compared to Make Up For Ever #12, while MAC Bronze is too brown. Giorgio Armani #5 comes closest but is a touch browner.

Isolde adhered really well to the lid without base, and it wore longer than most of NARS’ eyeshadows do for me–I was able to get eight hours without creasing and to ten with very faint creasing, which is really good. Of course, with a base, there wasn’t any issues at the twelve-hour mark.

The Glossover

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NARS Isolde Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A
One of NARS' best duos in regards to quality--excellent color payoff, good wear with or without a base, and a divine texture that's soft and silky smooth.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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