Friday, July 22nd, 2011


Bobbi Brown Sand Tortoise Shell Eye Palette

Bobbi Brown Sand Tortoise Shell Eye Palette

Bobbi Brown Sand Tortoise Shell Eye Palette ($60.00 for 0.32 oz.) contains eight eyeshadows: Ivory (creamy white), Hot Stone (medium brown), Terracotta (warm golden nude), Desert Sand (golden beige), Antique Rose (warm pink nude), Black Chocolate (black brown), Sandy Rose (brown bronze), and Gold Bar (pale gold).

Here’s a quick breakdown of Bobbi Brown’s finishes: regular eyeshadows have a matte finish, which means no shimmer; sparkle eyeshadows are glittery and have a translucent base to allow it to glide onto the lid; metallic eyeshadows are richly pigmented with a bright sheen; and shimmer wash eyeshadows are sheer and lightly pearlized.

  • Ivory is a pale, creamy white with a matte finish. There is a softness to it that keeps it from being powdery or chalky. This is a regular (matte) eyeshadow and is part of the permanent range. Inglot #351 is similar but less warm.
  • Hot Stone is a medium-dark brown with a hint of gray. This is a regular (matte) eyeshadow and is part of the permanent range. It’s a little darker than MAC Omega but lighter than MAC Charcoal Brown. Inglot #361 is less brown but similar.
  • Terracotta is a lightened orange with a matte finish. This is a regular (matte) eyeshadow. MAC Samoa Silk is lighter and brighter. Inglot #368 is closer, but it’s more orange.
  • Desert Sand is a pale champagne-gold with a bright, metallic sheen. This is a metallic eyeshadow. Urban Decay Blunt is similar but more golden. MAC Retrospeck also seems similar.
  • Antique Rose is a medium-dark peach-beige with a matte finish. This is a regular (matte) eyeshadow. Inglot #337 is similar but not as pink.
  • Black Chocolate is a blackened brown with a matte finish–it looks more charcoal than brown, though. This is a regular (matte) eyeshadow and is part of the permanent range. I couldn’t think of a dupe for this, just because it’s more gray-black than black-brown, but it’s very, very dark.
  • Sandy Rose is a soft, light beige-taupe with a metallic sheen. This is a metallic eyeshadow. Inglot #402 is a bit darker but still similar.
  • Gold Bar is a sheer white gold with lots of fine gold shimmer. This is a sparkle eyeshadow. Sparkle eyeshadows are supposed to be sheer, but this felt a little dusty and uneven overall–not just sheer. MAC Nylon is similar but has a whiter base color.

Overall, I think this palette is better than the Bronze Tortoise palette, because it has a better variety in finishes as well as the shades are more diversified, which makes it a more versatile palette in comparison.  The only troublemaker was Gold Bar, which despite the Sparkle finish, seemed uneven, and it was prone to fall out.  Ivory and Terracotta seemed a touch under-pigmented but just barely.

Unfortunately, the product sample I received to review did not come with a box, and the label on the back of the compact had sample labeling, so I couldn’t get an ingredients’ list or how much product was in it. I called my local Bobbi Brown counter and asked, and they said that the regular eyeshadows (mattes) contain 0.04 oz., sparkle finishes contain 0.02 oz., metallic finishes contain 0.05 oz., and shimmer wash finishes contain 0.05 oz. This palette contains 5x regular, 1x sparkle, and 2x metallic, which ends up being the equivalent value of: $50 in regular eyeshadows, $3.69 in sparkle eyeshadows, and $20 in metallic eyeshadows. All in all, this palette contains $73.69 worth of product.

The Glossover

palette

Sand Tortoise

B+
There is a good mix of mattes and shimmers in this palette, which is always nice to see. If you've been looking for a neutral palette with more matte eyeshadows, you might consider this. It's cooler in overall tone compared to the Bronze Tortoise palette. The only eyeshadow that had real issues was Gold Bar.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, July 19th, 2011


Laura Mercier Cedar Sateen Eye Colour

Laura Mercier Cedar Sateen Eye Colour

Laura Mercier Cedar Sateen Eye Colour ($22.00 for 0.09 oz.) is described as a “warm brown with shimmer.” The Sateen formula is designed to be a “lightweight eyeshadow with a creamy powder texture” with “intense, luminous color” that has “superior blending” and “long-wearing, crease-resistant application.”

First things first: yes, the eyeshadow is broken; it slipped out of the bubble wrap it was shipped in, and this was the result, but the damage was contained, so I could still give you some idea of the color and quality of the product, even if it might be hard to look at.

Cedar is a warm, medium-dark brown with subtle gold shimmer and satin sheen. It has excellent color payoff, and it applies smoothly and evenly. The wear is great over a primer with no fading or creasing, but the formula is described as long-wearing and crease-resistant without mention of a primer, so I did try it that way as well. I get about seven hours or so without a primer, which isn’t bad, but it’s not a full day of wear. The creasing is very subtle, but the fading is more noticeable. I would still recommend wearing it over an eyeshadow base to get solid wear throughout the day.

It’s a lot like MAC Swiss Chocolate, except Cedar has a little shimmer. NARS Galapagos is a bit darker, while Inglot #327 is a matte version. Milani Rich Java is a bit more red-based.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Laura Mercier Cedar Sateen Eye Colour Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
I would still recommend this--overall--as long as you wear an eyeshadow primer underneath, which I imagine most of us do already! This product lost the majority of points from failing to be long-wearing and crease-resistant on its own as claimed.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, July 18th, 2011


NARS Bali Eyeshadow

NARS Bali Eyeshadow

NARS Bali Eyeshadow ($23.00 for 0.07 oz.) is described as a “neutral taupe.” That description is rather apt–it’s a dark, gray-tinted brown, which is what taupe is. It has a matte finish, and the color payoff is good overall. It applies smooth for the most part, and it’s not too cool or warm, so it’s a color that should work well on a variety of skin tones. Bali makes for a nice crease color as well as a subtle way to line the eye.

NARS’ eyeshadows are supposed to be long-wearing and crease-resistant. When I wear them alone, I tend to get around seven to eight hours of wear before there is a faint amount of creasing. It’s decent wear, and when it begins its descent, it’s a slow fall, but I’d recommend a primer for all-day wear (especially for those with oilier lids, as I have normal-to-dry lids). In my experience, matte shades wear longer alone than shimmery or glittery shades, so Bali edges out more around eight hours of good wear.

NARS’ packaging is very slim, compact, and even the single eyeshadows include a mirror when you flip it open. Rubberized packaging ensures it won’t slip out of your hand, and it helps absorb any impact if you accidentally drop it. The downside to the rubberized packaging is that it can easily show powder debris if you keep it in your makeup bag. I keep my NARS in drawers, and everything is nice and clean.

The Glossover

product

NARS Bali Eyeshadow Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
Bali would make a great staple color to reach for when creating more neutral looks. It's dark enough to be used in more dramatic looks but soft enough that it would be useful in subtler looks, too.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Saturday, July 16th, 2011

MAC Craving Lipstick<
MAC Craving Lipstick

MAC Craving Lipstick

MAC Craving Lipstick ($14.50 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “burst of plum” and has an amplified creme finish. It’s a plummy pink with a subtle shine that applies opaque with very little product needed.

The amplified creme finish is designed to deliver opaque color coverage with a creamy texture and shiny finish. MAC Lipsticks are vanilla-scented but taste-free. Amplified cremes typically last four hours when I wear them, as they are more opaque and have a tendency to cling to lips (but are not drying).

Maybelline Bit of Berry is similar–less plum. Hourglass Nocturnal is redder. Guerlain Bee is darker but still similar in overall color.

The Glossover

P
product

Craving

B+
Pink-plums are great for fall when lip colors move towards the darker end of the spectrum--they're noticeable, darker, but they're not overwhelming.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Thursday, July 14th, 2011

MAC Brick-o-la Lipstick<
MAC Brick-o-la Lipstick

MAC Brick-o-la Lipstick

MAC Brick-o-la Lipstick ($14.50 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “mid-tone berry” and has an amplified creme finish. It’s a creamy berry pink with a subtle shine and opaque color coverage. The creaminess in the texture allows for easy glide across the lips and little product is needed to achieve full color. This shade is part of MAC’s permanent range.

The amplified creme finish is designed to deliver opaque color coverage with a creamy texture and shiny finish. MAC Lipsticks are vanilla-scented but taste-free. Amplified cremes typically last four hours when I wear them, as they are more opaque and have a tendency to cling to lips (but are not drying).

MAC Capricious is similar but less pink, and the finish makes it appear a bit different on lips. Cle de Peau #117 is slightly redder and darker, but it is in the same family. Chanel Etole is redder and more muted. Hourglass Nocturnal comes close but is a bit more plum.

The Glossover

P
product

Brick-o-la

B+
It's a softer way to wear a dark color--it's plum, pink, and berry--and none of those really dominates, which makes it easy to wear with a variety of looks. It should work well on both cooler and warmer skin tones, as well as light to dark.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, July 13th, 2011


Urban Decay Super-Saturated High Gloss Lip Color

Urban Decay Super-Saturated High Gloss Lip Color

Urban Decay Super-Saturated High Gloss Lip Color ($19.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a new-for-fall product, which is exclusive to Sephora. This product claims to deliver long-wearing opaque color without feathering and all with a glossy shine–oh, and they’re supposed to be moisturizing, too. There are currently five shades: F-Bomb (bright red cream), Punch Drunk (bright orange cream), Adrenaline (bright fuchsia sparkle), Crush (hot pink), and Big Bang (bright pink with sparkle).

  • F-Bomb is a bright, medium-dark red with subtle ruby shimmer. It’s opaque, and it does stain a little (but surprisingly, not as much as some reds). It does have a subtly glossy shine. Overall, it leans a touch blue, but it’s not strongly blue-based. Make Up For Ever #44 is similar but not quite as dark. Guerlain Gwen is less vibrant. NYX Hero is not as opaque, slightly darker. Burberry Hibiscus seems a touch lighter. Chanel Dragon is a bit darker and has more shimmer.
  • Punch Drunk is a vibrant, darkened orange with creamy finish and subtle shine. It’s completely opaque. MAC Strut Your Stuff ius similar, perhaps not as dark. Giorgio Armani #405 is similar in vibrancy, but it is brighter, less red-based. Dolce & Gabbana Sheer is very similar.
  • Adrenaline is a darkened raspberry red with ruby and pink shimmer and glitter. I did not find that this was really glossy at all–it felt a little dry when I applied it, and it looked more like a regular lipstick than a gloss. MAC Quite the Thing is similar, more iridescent. Estee Lauder Wild Violet is slightly redder. NYX Chloe is similar in base color but has more iridescence.
  • Crush is a creamy blue-based fuchsia pink with a glossy shine. It’s nearly opaque in color. NARS Schiap is pinker, not quite as blue-based. MAC Florida is similar in color but lighter.
  • Big Bang is medium-dark raspberry pink with fuchsia glitter. It is lighter, less opaque, and not nearly as red as Adrenaline. This is cooler-toned as well. MAC Pink Burst is very similar, while MAC Quite the Thing is darker.

The majority of these shades are vibrant and rich in color, which means they definitely wear longer rather than shorter. Shades like F-Bomb wear three to four hours with a subtle shine, but the color itself lasts through a meal and still looks presentable six hours later. I only tested the wear on F-Bomb and Big Bang, so I could test out different finishes. Both Adrenaline and Big Bang have a fair amount of glitter (“sparkle”) in their finishes, and as a result, they have a slightly gritty texture, which becomes more noticeable over time, as the creaminess of the product wears away. It doesn’t travel too much, but as fun as the sparkling glitter might be, it is more troublesome than the creamier finishes. I did get four hours of wear with Big Bang.

Crush was the only shade that had a high gloss shine–the kind expected from these–while the others fell a little flat. Adrenaline was the only shade that I felt really missed the shine. F-Bomb, Punch Drunk, and Big Bang all had a subtle shine. After I wore them, I’m pleased to report my lips did not dry out, so they delivered on their ability to moisturize while worn. I also did not experience any bleeding while wearing F-Bomb, which is the most likely to bleed as it is a rich red.

This product is easy to sharpen, but you’ll waste doing so (from what I can tell, 1-2 uses), and you won’t particularly enjoy cleaning out your sharpener afterward. It shaves off the actual product, while it sharpens, and because of the creaminess of the formula, it smears easily when you attempt to clean. I tested it twice by removing the entire sharpened portion (so initially, the entire tip, then I sharpened until about 3mm of product was exposed, removed that, repeated).

Aside from the sharpening issue, the new pencils are rather good–as long as you don’t mind the lack of glossy shine. They look more like lipsticks than glosses (except for Crush). It falls short of that particular claim, which is reflected in the product rating, but it is certainly something that may be easily overlooked.

The Glossover

product

Urban Decay Super-Saturated High Gloss Lip Color Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
It's long-wearing, moisturizing, and four of the five deliver mostly opaque color coverage. Depending on how often you expect to use the lip pencil, the amount you lose from sharpening may be concerning.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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