Friday, May 3rd, 2013

Illamasqua Harem Nail Varnish
Illamasqua Harem Nail Varnish

Illamasqua Harem Nail Varnish ($17.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “bright mauve pink.” It’s a cool-toned, light-medium lavender-pink with blue undertones and a creamy finish (almost looks like a jelly, because it has a plush, squishy look to it). MAC Vagabondage is pinker and darker. MAC Saint Germain is pinker. MAC Pinkly Fresh is lighter, grayer. MAC Ice Cream Cake is darker and pinker. Essie French Affair is softer, pinker.

I was totally surprised that I couldn’t think of any dupes for Harem–it pulls very lavender/lilac, but there’s still quite a bit of pink in it, so it’s neither lavender nor your expected cotton candy pink. The formula is excellent; no streaking, pooling, or bubbling. It applied fluidly and evenly, and it was fully opaque after two coats of polish (nearly opaque in a single coat, actually). It dries to a glossy finish, and the consistency wasn’t too thick or too thin (just right). Illamasqua really nailed the formula of their latest shade releases–I continue to be impressed (but still sad over the recent price increase!). I typically get at least seven days of fantastic wear out of their formula, but I’ve worn many shades as long as fourteen days with minor tip wear but no chipping.

P.S. — The brush was splayed on this one, but I don’t remember having this issue on any of the other Nail Varnishes I’ve swatched (and there have been a fair number) so it’s either never happened or seldomly happened, so I think this is just a one-off.

The Glossover

P
product

Harem

A+
Illamasqua really nailed the formula of their latest shade releases--I continue to be impressed (but still sad over the recent price increase!). Excellent formula, pigmentation, and wear.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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! Continue reading →

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

MAC Sun Dipped Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder
MAC Sun Dipped Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder

MAC Sun Dipped Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder ($30.00 for 0.42 oz.) is described as a “dirty red tone.” It’s a subtly warm-toned, medium-dark tan brown with a slight gray cast and a golden shimmer-sheen finish. Illamasqua Disobey is warmer and matte. MAC Golden is lighter.

Sun Dipped is just as fantastic as Nude on Board, which is always a good sign, because consistency is really an underrated characteristic. It has the same creamy, buttery, silky-smooth texture that elevates this product from good to great. The pigmentation is buildable, as described, and can be applied sheerly, semi-sheerly, or more moderately. This particular shade almost has a shadowy tint to it, so it might work as a contour for some (though I hesitate to mention that, because it is shimmery and contour powders tend to be more matte, but as this blends out, the shimmer turns into a very subtle sheen so it looks rather natural). When I wore Sun Dipped yesterday, it wore well for a full nine hours and only had slight fading after ten hours.

The Glossover

LE
product

Sun Dipped

A+
The texture is phenomenal; so soft and silky but never powdery. It sits well on the skin and looks natural. Plus, it wears well!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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! Continue reading →

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Zoya Destiny Nail Lacquer
Zoya Destiny Nail Lacquer

Zoya Destiny Nail Lacquer ($9.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “coral metal sparkle” with a Pixie Dust finish. It’s a warm-toned, coral-orange with gold sparkle and shimmer with a sparkly, textured finish. It’s this finish that makes it hard to dupe (at least for the moment!), and while looking through corals for something that at least had the shimmer/sparkle factor, there wasn’t much! Zoya Myrta is all orange and less sparkly. Nubar Sun Gold is a duochrome that goes from gold to copper with a coral-hued base, so it has a similar “feel” in a way, but it’s just not enough to be a dupe. Zoya Tanzy has a lot of sparkle and glitter, but it’s more metallic, more orange, less of a coral.

I’ve found some of the Pixie Dust polishes to be mostly opaque in two, but Destiny is one that does need the three thin coats as Zoya recommends (and since they clearly state that, it’s totally fine!). It seemed rather opaque to me when I was photographing, but once I opened the photos, I was able to see a hint of visible nail line. Without a top coat, it’s textured, sparkling, and a mixture of matte and metallic. With a top coat, it looks like a shiny, sparkling coral. I like that you can get to two distinct looks out of it, and the top coat doesn’t impair the way it looks or behaves. Zoya’s Pixie Dust formula wears incredibly (and impressively) well for a full seven days with no chipping and only minor tip wear–and the tip wear is more like it dusting off at the edge, but it’s not as noticeable as normal tip wear.

The Glossover

P
product

Destiny

A+
Zoya's Pixie Dust formula wears incredibly (and impressively) well, plus it's nicely pigmented, easy to apply, and versatile.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

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! Continue reading →

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

MAC Nude on Board Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder
MAC Nude on Board Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder

MAC Nude on Board Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder ($30.00 for 0.42 oz.) is described as a “bronzy yellow tone.” It’s a warm-toned, medium tan brown with a subtle golden shimmer-sheen. Dior Coral Glow Bronzer is more orange, brighter. Illamasqua Disobey is similar, slightly browner, and totally matte. Burberry Summer Glow is warmer, browner. MAC Give Me Sun is not quite as warm-toned.

I LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. the Pro Longwear Bronzing Powders, and I’m so happy to see their return this year. The first thing you’ll notice is how utterly silky-smooth the texture is. It’s buttery, creamy, lightweight, and extremely finely-milled. It’s so soft, but it’s not powdery. Nude on Board blends out effortlessly, and it sits well on the skin without emphasizing pores. It’s supposed to give “sheer-low transparent coverage,” plus long-wear and with a natural finish.

Just to double-check the awesomeness that is the Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder formula, I re-tested wear, and I didn’t have any noticeable fading until the tenth hour.  The color payoff is buildable, and it’s a subtle bronzer but it can be layered to more intense payoff, if desired.

The Glossover

LE
product

Nude on Board

A+
I would recommend Nude on Board for those who prefer warmer bronzers (particularly those with naturally warm undertones).

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

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! Continue reading →

Monday, April 29th, 2013

Zoya Beatrix Nail Lacquer
Zoya Beatrix Nail Lacquer

Zoya Beatrix Nail Lacquer ($9.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “tangerine metal sparkle” with a Pixie Dust finish. It’s a warm-toned, medium-dark orange base with twinkling tangerine shimmer and sparkle that gives it a metallic, foil-like sheen, plus a textured finish overall. The closest shade I could think of, which isn’t a dupe at all, was Sinful Cloud 9, which similar coloring and shimmer, but it isn’t textured and is much more subdued. There are some other tangerine-hued polishes, but they were all creams.

With two coats, Beatrix was mostly opaque (there’s a hint of visible nail line from further away and with enough light coming through the free edge of the nail). Zoya recommends one to three thin coats, with three being used for full coverage for the Pixie Dust polishes. They also recommend waiting up to ten minutes per coat. I experienced drying time of five to seven minutes per coat, and I did thin to medium ones. Zoya’s Pixie Dust formula wears incredibly (and impressively) well for a full seven days with no chipping and only minor tip wear–and the tip wear is more like it dusting off at the edge, but it’s not as noticeable as normal tip wear. Another thing I like is that these are versatile; you can always apply a top coat and get a glossier, shinier effect if the textured look isn’t your cup of tea. It’s beautiful either way!

The Glossover

P
product

Beatrix

A+
Zoya's Pixie Dust formula wears incredibly (and impressively) well, plus it's nicely pigmented, easy to apply, and versatile.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

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! Continue reading →

Monday, April 29th, 2013

Too Faced So Berry Sexy La Creme
Too Faced So Berry Sexy La Creme

Too Faced So Berry Sexy La Creme ($21.00 for 0.11 oz.) is described as a “fuchsia berry.” It’s a brightened berry-pink with a very subtle pink pearl shimmer. MAC Deliciously Forbidden is darker, redder. Guerlain Extrait de Rose is more shimmery and sheerer. Revlon Raspberry Pie is slightly redder/darker. MAC Speak Louder is warmer. MAC Full Fuchsia is brighter, redder.

It has an incredibly creamy consistency that feels like it’s melting against your lips as you apply it. The formula has a slickness to it, though it doesn’t bleed or feather on me. All of that creaminess means that it is also very comfortable to wear, as well as nicely hydrating from start to finish. The color payoff is fantastic with opaque color coverage. So Berry Sexy lasted five and a half hours on me, which is longer than the average lipstick (but a little short for a color like this) and a good wear for such a slick formula. It also left behind a soft stain.

The Glossover

P
product

So Berry Sexy

A+

So Berry Sexy has incredible color payoff, a smooth, creamy consistency that makes for a very comfortable and hydrating formula--and it wears long and well, too!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

5/5

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! Continue reading →