Friday, August 24th, 2012

China Glaze Jungle Queen Nail Lacquer
China Glaze Jungle Queen Nail Lacquer

All Hail the Jungle Queen

China Glaze Jungle Queen Nail Lacquer ($3.00 to $7.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “smoky violet.” It’s a dusty, subdued plum-brown with soft violet shimmer. Dior Shadow is redder and has brighter, red-copper shimmer. MAC Festive Finery is lighter and has a cream finish. Cult Nails Enigmatic is similar but a smidgen browner with silver/white shimmer. China Glaze Below Deck is much lighter. This is very similar to Chanel Paradoxal, except Chanel seems a little grayer.

I have to admit: after reviewing several of China Glaze’s summer hues, I was worried about the formula, which was more problematic. I hoped it was a problem with neons in general, rather than the brand, and I’m so happy that it seems to be so!  The fall collection is much, much better and more like what I expect from one of my favorite polish brands.  Jungle Queen is opaque in two coats, and it’s not too thick or too thin–just enough thickness to be pigmented and flowing, but not so thick that it pools.  I normally find that China Glaze polishes do not chip on me and wear well for a week (with minor tip wear).  Their polish retails for $7, but you can easily find bottles for $3-4 at various e-tailers.

The Glossover

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Jungle Queen

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It's a lovely shade for fall; subdued but dark, nuanced but not too intense. It will be flattering on both warm and cooler skin tones.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

Bobbi Brown Twilight Night Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner
Bobbi Brown Twilight Night Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner

Bobbi Brown Twilight Night Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner ($22.00 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “black plum and golden pearl.” It’s a blackened purple with flecks of gold sparkle. When it’s sheered out, it tends to look grayer and almost brown-ish with only a hint of purple. MAC Ash Violet is much lighter and more of a real purple hue. Make Up For Ever #6L is lighter, more red-toned, no gold shimmer. MAC Added Goodness is similar–perhaps a little browner.

This shade is new for fall but has been added to the permanent range, so there’s no rush to grab it before it sells out. Bobbi Brown’s Gel Eyeliner formula is supposed to be long-wearing, water-resistant, and crease- and smudge-proof. There’s a reason why this formula is a cult favorite, and that’s simply because it’s good–it wears for hours and hours and doesn’t move until you remove it. It sets fairly quickly; fast enough that you don’t feel like you’re waiting for it to set in place. It’s housed in a small glass jar with a black screw-top lid. I’ve had some for years, and I haven’t encountered any that have dried out over time.

I will note that nearly all variations with shimmer in them are not quite as top notch as the cream-based ones. They’re still really good, high-quality eyeliners, though. The slight difference is the pigmentation is typically not as rich. Here, with Twilight Night, it’s nicely pigmented but doesn’t apply fully opaque in a single stroke (I’d say you get to about 90 to 95% as you pull your brush across the lash line). The shimmer doesn’t travel, though. When I tested the wear, it managed to stay intact without fading or smudging for a full eight hours.

The Glossover

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Twilight Night

A
It's an interesting take on not-quite-black. It's softer, but still nuanced enough to work with a variety of looks and provide definition.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

Burberry Blossom Blush
Burberry Blossom Blush

Burberry Blossom Blush ($42.00 for 0.24 oz.) is a coral-orange–there is the merest hint of pink in the background–with a natural finish, just a smidgen of a sheen. It’s a lot like the just-reviewed MAC Supercontinental, which is barely lighter. MAC Fleet Fast is darker, redder. Chanel Tweed Brun Rose is more orange. Tarina Tarantino Feather is pinker and lighter. Tarte Blissful is brighter, pinker. Tom Ford Flush is more vibrant and a bit pinker. MAC Ripe Peach is more orange, lighter.

Burberry’s Light Glow Natural Blush is a formula designed to have good color payoff, easy application, and yield a healthy glow. A lot of the great coral blushes are limited edition, which means once they’re gone, they’re gone for good.  Blossom is a wearable coral that’s not too pink, but not so orange that it ventures into a reddish area. The texture is as soft as silk, smooth as butter; it’s something you have to touch and feel to appreciate. I didn’t even realize just how soft this powder is until I had played with a few other blush formulas–this was one of the softest, most finely-milled powders.

The finish has a faint sheen, which looks natural and glowy without being shimmery–it doesn’t emphasize pores in the slightest. It actually seems to soften the appearance of them (superficially, not actually).  It applies with good color, no need to be careful but you don’t have to spend awhile building up the color if you have a deeper complexion.  Because of the soft feel, it blends like a dream. When I tested this shade for wear, I was able to get a full eight hours of wear, and it started to fade after nine hours.

The Glossover

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Blossom

A
The texture is as soft as silk, smooth as butter; it's something you have to touch and feel to appreciate. I didn't even realize just how soft this powder is until I had played with a few other blush formulas--this was one of the softest, most finely-milled powders.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

Bobbi Brown Bronzed Heather High Shimmer Lipgloss
Bobbi Brown Bronzed Heather High Shimmer Lipgloss

A Shimmering, Wearable Brown-Hued Lipgloss

Bobbi Brown Bronzed Heather High Shimmer Lipgloss ($23.00 for 0.20 fl. oz.) is described as a “pink nude with gold flecks.” This is a plummy brown with a hint of mauve and multi-colored shimmer–it almost looks holographic at certain angles. Holographic or not, it is chocked full of shimmer, though, as the formula might lead you to believe. Revlon Rosegold is pinker, warmer. MAC Blessedly Rich has more orange and copper in it. Bobbi Brown Beach is sheerer and has more gold/bronze shimmer. MAC Social Light is similar. MAC Explicit is a bit lighter. MAC Spree is browner.

I feel like a broken record, because I’m in love with nearly every single shade within the formula’s range. New for fall (but staying in the line), Bronzed Heather is no exception. It has semi-sheer to semi-opaque coverage, though the color itself is more semi-sheer with such a hefty amount of shimmer that it’s almost semi-opaque. There’s a noticeable translucency that enables your natural lip color to come through. The gloss has a lightweight consistency that’s not too thick or too thin, spreads evenly, and when tested, this shade wore four hours. It’s hydrating, and the shimmer doesn’t travel to parts unknown.

The Glossover

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Bronzed Heather

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I can almost guarantee that any time I'm not testing a lip color and I'm not wearing lip balm, I'm wearing one of Bobbi Brown's High Shimmer Lipglosses. I have three in my purse right now!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Monday, August 20th, 2012

OCC Nylon Lip Tar
OCC Nylon Lip Tar

Does It Get Any Brighter Than This?

OCC Nylon Lip Tar ($16.00 for 0.33 fl. oz.) is described as a “neon pink.” This color is electric–it’s absolutely a bold, bright neon pink with subtle blue undertones. I really think this is the brightest pink I own. MAC Dear Diary is darker, less bright. MAC Candy Yum Yum is a bit more magenta and less bright but comes the closest.

OCC’s Lip Tars are supposed to have the wear of a lipstick with the ease of a gloss–long-wearing, lightweight, and satin-matte in finish.  Nylon is insane. It’s blindingly bright.  True to form, a little goes a long way for opaque color coverage.  There is a learning curve with Lip Tar, but if you apply with a brush, you’ll learn quickly and easily. It’s just such a pigmented formula that if you over-apply, you’ll end up with too much product, which will end up on your teeth and will be prone to feathering.

The texture is a creamy liquid, not so thin that it’s watery, but not thick or heavy. On the lips, it feels lightweight and sets after a couple of minutes to the satin-matte finish (initially, it may look a wee bit glossy, depending on how much product you’ve applied).  When I wore this, it lasted for eight and a half hours–and there was still a pink-y stain left behind.  (It stained my arm when I did a swatch for it, and it couldn’t have been on my arm for longer than a few minutes.)  It lasted through a meal and two coffees. The best part, aside from the awesome wear, was that it wasn’t drying.

Quick note: this launches tomorrow on Sephora, so you won’t see it up ’til then. :)

The Glossover

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Nylon

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If you want blindingly neon pink lips, Nylon should make your list of shades you have to check out. It is crazy-insane-bright, and it wears for hours and hours!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Saturday, August 18th, 2012

MAC Styleseekers Mattene Lipstickes
MAC Styleseeker Mattene Lipsticks

Why Aren’t Mattenes Permanent?

MAC Styleseeker Mattene Lipsticks ($15.00 for 0.08 oz.) includes five shades: Camden Chic (rich brick red), Delectable (orange-beige), Eden Rouge (bright blue-red), Fashion Nomad (bright red orange), and Fun Finds (light nude pink). All five shades are limited edition.

  • Camden Chic is a brown-red with a natural sheen. The color is opaque on. NARS Amsterdam has less brown in it. MAC Extended Play is more red than brown. MAC Unknown Pleasures is several shades darker, less brown. MAC Legendary is a smidgen darker. Shiseido Mystery is very comparable.
  • Delectable is a peachy orange with opaque color and a natural sheen. This shade, while still creamy, was a bit less forgiving on the lips. MAC Peachstock is lighter, less orange, more beige. Bobbi Brown Bare Pink is more beige. Cle de Peau Calliope is similar but not quite as orange.
  • Eden Rouge is a blue-based medium bright red with opaque color coveage and a natural sheen. Edward Bess Midnight Bloom is very similar. MAC Red Racer is similar, not quite as bright. CoverGirl Hot is also close. MAC Russian Red is a bit darker.
  • Fashion Nomad is a bright medium-dark orange with red undertones. The color coverage is opaque, even, and finishes with a natural sheen. We have seen this color over and over again by MAC. MAC Morange is similar–perhaps jsut a smidgen darker. MAC Booyah!!! is a bit more subdued. MAC Good to Go is close. MAC Neon Orange is also similar. Illamasqua Flare is more matte but close in color.
  • Fun Finds is a pale pink-beige with a mostly matte finish. This was the least creamy of the five, and it was definitely the least forgiving. It tended to emphasize any imperfections on the lips (and I actually swatched this first out of the Mattenes–I go light to dark if there are any potentially staining shades, like Eden Rouge, in the line-up). MAC Ruffian Naked is pretty similar, perhaps a little more gray-toned. MAC Myth is a bit pinker. MAC Innocence, Beware! is lighter, less pink.

Mattenes are supposed to deliver rich color, semi-matte finishes, and be hydrating and creamy to apply while still maintaining that semi-matte finish. These are very creamy; they glide-on and yield opaque color coverage in a single stroke–and even color at that.  Delectable and Fun Finds were the two shades that didn’t look really nice on; I think it’s the lighter color combined with the matte formula that makes it harder to really nails these types of colors–they just tend to be less forgivingo n the lips and accentuate the natural texture of my lips.  None of the five shades are particularly unique, though I liked the overall feel and look of Camden ChicEden Rouge, and Fashion Nomad (this one being the most dupeable).

Because Delectable and Eden Rouge have both been released previously, I tested those recently using the previous iterations I had, though the swatches and photos are of the most recent release.  Camden Chic wore for five hours, Delectable wore for four, Eden Rouge for six, Fashion Nomad for five, and Fun Finds for four.  While three were somewhat hydrating, Delectable and Fun Finds were just a little drying.  These are vanilla-scented and come in slim matte black tubes and contain just a bit less product than regular MAC lipsticks (0.08 oz. vs. 0.10 oz.).

The Glossover

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MAC Styleseeker Mattene Lipsticks Review, Photos, Swatches

A
I continue to be surprised that this formula doesn't get added to the permanent range, because I think there's a market for them and people who covet the formula.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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