Friday, May 18th, 2012


MAC Red Racer Lipstick

MAC Hey, Sailor: Lipsticks

MAC Hey, Sailor! Lipsticks ($15.50 for 0.10 oz.) include four shades: Red Racer (bright yellow red), Sail la Vie (bright mid-tone orange), Salute! (neutral peach), and To Catch a Sailor (highly frosted tan).

First, to those who wanted Red Racer and Sail la Vie, never fear–there are several retailers still yet to launch the collection online, and it’s still not out in-stores (except PRO stores). I wish I could have posted the lipsticks sooner, but I did not have all of them (and ironically, I was missing both the shades that sold out) until 7PM last night!

Truthfully, I was a little surprised that both sold out so quickly, because they seemed dupeable (from the descriptions), but they are certainly lovely shades and wear and apply well to boot.  I really say this as a gentle reminder that makeup is supposed to be fun.  Sometimes the adventure and efforts it takes to track down just that particular shade can be fun and exciting, but when it takes a turn for aggravating, frustrating, and upsetting? that’s when it’s too much. And never be afraid to mix and match–you might be surprised just how much you can dupe if you mix two or three products together!

The only shade that was problematic was Salute!, which applied awfully on my lips. I thought maybe it was just because it was the first lip product I swatched, so I tried it on again, but it looked just as bad (the second attempt is what is shown below).  It just catches on imperfections that a lot of other lipsticks don’t (for instance, To Catch a Sailor was swatched second).  All four shades were opaque, and they had good, creamy consistencies that enabled easier application.  I tested the wear of To Catch a Sailor (three hours) and Red Racer (five hours with a light stain).

MAC lipsticks are vanilla-scented but have no discernible taste. They’re typically packaged in a semi-matte black tube, but these are in a glossy, navy blue tubes with white striping. The finishes of these lipsticks were not at all problematic, and even though To Catch a Sailor has a very metallic finish, it wasn’t drying (but not moisturizing).

The Glossover

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MAC Hey, Sailor Lipsticks Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
All four shades were opaque, and they had good, creamy consistencies that enabled easier application. The only shade that was problematic was Salute!, which applied awfully on my lips. I also think that Salute! is going to be harder shade to wear, but it will be flattering on some skin tones, particularly deeper ones.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, May 17th, 2012


MAC Crew Highlight Powder

MAC Crew Highlight Powder

MAC Crew Highlight Powder ($29.00 for 0.35 oz.) is a multi-colored highlighting powder that has three primary shades: soft peach-orange with an almost matte finish, subtly yellow-toned light-medium pink with a satin-like finish, and a cool-toned pink-lilac with a satin finish. There’s also creamy beige hue, but this is an overlay of color and does not go all the way through. I made two gouges in the product to see how the colors went through, and it seemed like each main color is really what’s underneath a 1-2mm layer of the creamy beige. The composition of this reminded me of Benefit Sugarbomb and Benefit Hervana.

When the product is swirled together, the end result is a coral-tinted pink with yellow undertones. It looked a bit chalky against my skin tone when I swatched it, but it was less chalky applied to my cheeks. I think the lighter color paired with a slightly matte finish gives it a drier look, which translates into chalky on my medium skin tone. There is a very faint satin sheen, but it’s incredibly subtle. For those who love more shimmery, metallic highlighters, this is on the opposite end. MAC Flower Fantasy is lighter and shimmery. Chanel Brompton Road is lighter. Chanel Blush Horizon de Chanel is darker, yellower. Benefit Hervana is similar but more coral, lighter. Chanel Pink Cloud is lighter, less pink. MAC Stunner is darker, warmer. Burberry Peony is a smidgen darker and warmer.

The texture is soft, smooth, and finely-milled.  If you want to use it as a blusher, it’s certainly do-able, even on medium skin tones.  I don’t know if this genuinely highlights as it does brightens and adds some natural color to the cheeks that’s not too warm, so it’s instantly brightening and should be flattering on both cool and warm undertones.  It wore around eight hours on my cheeks before staring to fade around the edges.

The Glossover

LE
product

Crew

A-
If you want to use it as a blusher, it's certainly do-able, even on medium skin tones.  I don't know if this genuinely highlights as it does brightens and adds some natural color to the cheeks that's not too warm, so it's instantly brightening and should be flattering on both cool and warm undertones.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

Illamasqua CanCan Eyeshadow
Illamasqua CanCan Eyeshadow

Illamasqua CanCan Eyeshadow

Illamasqua Can Can Eyeshadow ($20.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “bright lilac purple.” It’s a medium lilac with strong purple tones and a cool undertone. The finish is matte. Benefit Fancy Pansy is closest in color, but it’s lighter and has a shimmery finish, so it appears different. Inglot #346 is lighter, more pastel.

Can Can had lovely color payoff, but it was a smidgen on the drier side, so there was a little powderiness to contend with. It’s not overly difficult to deal with, but it’s noticeable and must be mentioned. It can be hard to find a shade of lavender like this that has such strong pigmentation, though, and it’s what makes this shade stand out the most.  I liked that it was darker than your average lavender/lilac shade, because it’s easier to wear, especially on medium to dark skin tones.  The texture is soft and smooth but a little too soft (hence the powderiness).  When I tested the wear, it managed seven hours with light fading around the edges but no creasing.

The Glossover

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product

Can Can

A-
It can be hard to find a shade of lavender like this that has such strong pigmentation, though, and it's what makes this shade stand out the most. I liked that it was darker than your average lavender/lilac shade, because it's easier to wear, especially on medium to dark skin tones.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

OCC Foxfire Loose Colour Concentrate
OCC Foxfire Loose Colour Concentrate

OCC Foxfire Loose Colour Concentrate

OCC Foxfire Loose Colour Concentrate ($12.00 for 0.088 oz. / 2.5 grams) is described as a “silvery lime-green shimmer.” It’s a shimmery medium green with yellow undertones. MAC Fresh Flare is darker, less shimmery. Wet ‘n’ Wild Bright Idea is less yellow-toned. MAC Wondergrass is more vibrant and darker.

Applied dry, it’s on the sheerer side, softer in color, and pulls more like a springy yellow-green. When it’s applied wet, it’s much darker and greener. What’s interesting about the difference is that it is almost like having two different colors, because the dry version is only slightly sheer, almost translucent, but much, much lighter.  Perhaps the difference is that it’s light and delicately translucent as compared to sheer in a patchy kind of way.  I love that when you use it damp, the color continues to look that intense once it dries. The texture is soft, finely-milled, and applies smoothly, but it’s the tiniest bit powdery. When I tested it out, it wore for a full eight hours without any fading or creasing.

The Glossover

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product

Foxfire

A-
This is a great shade for spring and summer; it has a lighter coloring that's perfect for spring but enough vibrancy to take you into summer. It's soft, smooth, and really nice when applied damp. The color stays rich and intense even after it dries down.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Monday, May 14th, 2012

theBalm Meet Matt(e) Eyeshadow Palette
theBalm Meet Matt(e) Eyeshadow Palette

theBalm Meet Matt(e) Eyeshadow Palette

theBalm Meet Matt(e) Eyeshadow Palette ($34.00 for 0.33 oz.) contains nine matte eyeshadows named after theBalm’s favorite Matts. It includes a small, dual-ended bristle brush, which is usable and better than sponge-tipped brushes that are often included in these kinds of palettes, but it wouldn’t replace full-sized brushes for me. The palette is small, square-ish, and made out of heavy-duty cardboard. It flips open and has a mirror under the lid.

Overall, the texture of these shades are soft, smooth, and buttery–they’re not as dense or as buttery as theBalm’s more shimmery eyeshadows (think the Shady Lady series or their singles). These are finely-milled and soft enough that there is some excess powder kicked up when you go to use them. The majority of the shades applied with good to excellent color payoff, though Matt Chung was a little chalky and sheer, Matt Schilling wasn’t chalky but it was a bit sheer and a little dry, and Matt Patel was slightly sheer in places and didn’t apply as smoothly. Also worth noting, Matt Batali was a bit drier and not as soft or as dense as the other shades in the palette, but the pigmentation didn’t suffer as a consequence.

Each eyeshadow is 0.037 oz., whereas the average full-sized eyeshadow is typically 0.05 oz. I actually like the size of each shade, because they’re about 75% the size of regular full-sized ones (though theBalm’s individuals shades are 0.10 oz.), you still get plenty of product, but the entire compact fits in your hand and is very travel-friendly. I will point out the obvious that theBalm’s Shady Lady palettes contain a whopping 0.60 oz. (almost double the size of this palette) and retail for $39.50, which is only a little bit more. Nude ‘tude is slightly larger at 0.38 oz. and retails for $36. The Shady Lady palettes are still a super-sized value palette in comparison, but I think the pricing is about right here, and you’re getting a good amount of product for your buck.

The Glossover

palette

Meet Matt(e)

A-
It's definitely one of the better matte eyeshadow palettes I've come across (though two shades aren't entirely matte). Overall, there is good color payoff, smooth, soft textures, and they're blendable and wear well on the eye.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Saturday, May 12th, 2012

Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Pencil
Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Pencil

Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Pencils ($24.00 for 0.04 oz.) come in six shades: Black Navy (deep midnight), Black Plum (rich eggplant), Hunter (deep emerald green), Jet (blackest black), Mahogany (rich brown), and Smoke (charcoal grey). The formula is supposed to wear for twelve hours, glide on smoothly, be waterproof, and not smudge or smear. Each pencil comes with a sharpener.

  • Black Navy is a dark navy blue with a hint of purple. It seems darker than other navy blue eyeliners. The color payoff in a single pass was pretty good.
  • Black Plum is a medium-dark eggplant purple with subtle red-burgundy undertones and a bit of a metallic finish. It had decent color payoff in a single stroke. It’s kind of like Urban Decay 1999 and Rockstar merged together. Chanel Cassis is a matte version. Urban Decay Crash comes close as well.
  • Hunter is a dark swampy green. It’s not emerald green like Bobbi Brown describes–there’s a really murky quality to it, probably from the olive undertones. I couldn’t think of a dupe for this one. This shade had really good color payoff in one pass.
  • Jet is a deep black. It applies quite intensely in just one stroke. There are numerous black eyeliners like this shade on the market.
  • Mahogany is a deep chocolate brown with subtle warm, red undertones. The tip of the pencil broke off while I attempted (more on this later) to do a single pass of it in the swatch, but it does apply fairly well in a single go. CoverGirl Brown is just slightly lighter.
  • Smoke is a deep, dark gray with hints of purple. It has decent color payoff in a single stroke. CoverGirl Silver Spark is much lighter but the closest shade I could think of.

There was a consistent product failing that occured–all but two pencil tips broke off when I swatched them against my skin. Just snapped right off, and let me tell you, after the first one broke, I applied very, very gentle pressure with the next one, but it still happened. One of the two that hadn’t broke when I applied it to the lash line. It also seems like the outer edge has a slightly waxy film around it, which keeps the color from applying as intensely as it does once you’ve worn away the exterior (and it’s just a very thin layer on the exterior of the pencil). Once I sharpened the ones that had broke, they applied more intensely than before. It’s not a complete deal-breaker, but it’s very annoying and shouldn’t happen at this price point, and it’s not as if there’s tons of product to waste with pencil eyeliners!

The formula is good–it could stand to be a little creamier–it has a very dense, not quite hard but not silky soft, feeling against the lash line. It doesn’t pull or tug, and it leaves behind rich color without having to go back and forth over and over again. Bobbi Brown says it has “special polymers that melt at skin temperature,” which appears to be true, though I don’t know if this is really and truly special. It feels like many other pencils that naturally get creamier and glide-on better when they’re warmed up.  Since most of these broke soon after I attempted to use them, I did have plenty of chances to use the included sharpener, which worked well and had minimal waste.

If you want to smudge these, you can definitely can, but they do set after ten to fifteen seconds and stay put after that. I clocked in wear around ten hours that was lovely, and after twelve hours, it was still pretty good with some light fading but no smudging or migration. Though I didn’t see anything that said these were safe for the waterline, I wore the shimmer-free shades on the waterline as well and had surprisingly good results of eight hours. I tested Black Navy, Black Plum, Hunter, Jet, and Mahogany (the only shade I didn’t test specifically was Smoke), and they all wore similarly (give or take a few minutes!).

The Glossover

product

Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Pencils Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
Having five of the six pencils have their tips break off on the first or second use was really frustrating! The formula wears really well and long, which is the most important factor when it comes to a long-wearing eyeliner! It could have a slightly creamier consistency, though.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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