Friday, September 26th, 2014

MAC Scone Bronzing Powder
MAC Scone Bronzing Powder

MAC Scone Bronzing Powder ($27.50 for 0.17 oz.) is described as a “neutral tan.” It’s a medium, subtly warm-toned brown with a hint of sheen–it’s almost matte. Tarte Park Ave. Princess #2 (LE) is lighter, yellower. MAC Sculpt (P, $16.50) is darker, grayer. NARS Paloma Contour (P) is slightly grayer. Urban Decay Bronzer (P) is warmer, lighter. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

MAC describes it as a “lightly frosted, tinted powder that gives skin sheer, natural colour effects and highlights.” Initially, it had a stiffer, harder surface, but after a couple of swatches, the powder seemed to give and became softer and easier to use. It had semi-sheer color payoff that was buildable to mostly opaque color coverage, if desired. It had a lightweight feel, didn’t look powdery on, and blended easily on the skin. The bronzer wore well for eight hours before fading on me. I was disappointed that the compact only contained 0.17 oz., whereas a full-sized Bronzing Powder (from the permanent range) contains 0.35 oz. If you prefer your compacts with mirrors, note that this one doesn’t have one.

The Glossover

LE
product

Scone

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

Gucci Cherry nectar Sheer Blushing Powder
Gucci Cherry nectar Sheer Blushing Powder

Gucci Cherry Nectar Sheer Blushing Powder ($49.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a warm, muted coppery red with a very delicate dusting of gold shimmer that gives it a satin finish. Tom Ford Beauty Contour (Softcore) (LE, $55.00) is lighter, more muted. MAC Glamour Feast (LE, $21.00) is cooler-toned, cream. NARS Soulshine #3 (LE, $29.00) is pinker. NARS Realm of the Senses #2 (LE, $29.00) is more shimmery. NARS Taos (P, $29.00) is very similar–a touch less red. NARS Seduction (P, $29.00) is cooler-toned. NARS Lovejoy (P, $29.00) is more muted, browner. MAC Hidden Treasure (LE, $21.00) is very similar. Illamasqua Allure (P, $26.00) is more muted. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The formula is supposed to “softly illuminate” with a “veil of color.” The bullet point list calls out its “sheer texture” that “blends effortlessly” and has “buildable color.” The blush has an incredibly soft, silky, and smooth texture that feels like a luxurious powder product. It’s not at all sheer–it’s quite pigmented and would highly recommend a light hand and a feathery tool for application, even on medium and darker skin tones. A little goes a very long way, and in that aspect, it’s difficult to get just a “veil of color.” To get sheer color, I get the smallest amount on my brush, tap of excess, tap it once on the back of my hand, and then apply–otherwise it’s a pretty significant amount of color on my medium complexion! It may be a happy accident for some, but for those who prefer sheerer or more buildable formulas, this shade isn’t that (and neither was the other shade I bought, but maybe others in the range are sheerer/more buildable). It’s just not really in line with how they’ve described (and named!) the formula.

Applied, the finish was satiny but not shimmery or luminous, just not ultra-flat like a true matte finish would look. This shade didn’t blend as readily as you’d expect, given the texture, and for as rich and pigmented as it is, it would have been fantastic to have that superior blendability there. On me, Cherry Nectar wore well for eight and a half hours before fading. I didn’t notice any scent or fragrance to the powder.

The Glossover

P
product

Cherry Nectar

B+

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

L'Oreal Highlighter (230) Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner
L’Oreal Highlighter (230) Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner

L’Oreal Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner ($8.99 for 0.03 oz.) is described as a long-wearing, smudge-proof formula that will glide on smoothly and last for 16 hours You can see the first three I reviewed here. I’m quite fond of this formula overall, but that wear claim is substantial and these just don’t make it even close to it–the best wear I get is about ten hours. There is still visible eyeliner on after as long as fourteen hours, but it’s much, much thinner and less vibrant. The color payoff and glide-on consistency are the most impressive aspects of the formula, even with their brighter, more colorful shades.

L’Oreal Highlighter (230) Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner ($8.99 for 0.03 oz.) is a pink-peach with a frosted sheen. It had good color payoff in a single stroke and remains that way even if layered. It wears nine hours on me, though that’s not the full 16-hours as marketed. The consistency is creamy, easy to apply, and doesn’t tug on the lash line. Marc Jacobs Beauty Obey-ge (66) (P, $25.00) is more sparkly. Tarina Tarantino Broken Doll (P, $15.00) is pinker. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

L’Oreal Green Ivy (270) Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner ($8.99 for 0.03 oz.) is a medium-dark, olive green with warm undertones and a golden shimmer-sheen. It had mostly opaque color coverage in a single pass. This one I had to be careful applying, as too much layering seemed cause uneven application, but it is quite pigmented in one go, so it isn’t necessary. The consistency is lightly creamy and glides right on. It lasted for nine and a half hours on me before thinning down. Marc Jacobs Beauty O(vert) (56) (P, $25.00) is cooler-toned. Sephora Collection Snakeskin Dress (17) (P, $9.00) is lighter. MAC Forever Green (P, $16.00) is lighter. bareMinerals 10AM (LE, $15.00) is warmer, browner. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

L’Oreal Silver Sky (290) Infallible Silkissime Eyeliner ($8.99 for 0.03 oz.) is a brightened, sparkling silver. It had semi-opaque color coverage in one pass, but it was never fully opaque no matter the layers. This was my least favorite out of the six I’ve tried (I hope to buy the others when I see them on sale). It glided on, but it had more texture due to the sparkles in it. It wore well for eight hours. Urban Decay Cuff (P, $19.00) is very similar. MAC Silver Skates (LE, $16.00) is lighter, less sparkly. Bobbi Brown Chrome (LE, $24.00) is similar. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

P
product

Highlighter (230)

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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P
product

Green Ivy (270)

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
P
product

Silver Sky (290)

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Sunday, September 21st, 2014

Too Faced Beauty Wishes & Sweet Kisses Palette
Too Faced Beauty Wishes & Sweet Kisses Palette

Too Faced Beauty Wishes & Sweet Kisses Palette ($34.00 for 0.55 oz.) includes three eyeshadows, two bronzers, and a lip gloss. You may recognize the eyeshadows from Too Faced’s The Chocolate Bar. Both bronzers have routinely been featured in other palettes and are available individually as well. The lipgloss is a new formula called “La Creme Lip Gloss” that will officially debut next spring. The palette has a strong, chocolaty scent, so if you don’t dig sweet chocolate smells, you may want to look at other Too Faced offerings this holiday.

I think they could have chosen a more versatile set of shades, as I found the three odd to combine; the matte didn’t play as well with the shimmery shades, and when I tried to layer, it tended to look a little powdery/chalky. I think perhaps a more satiny finish for the lightest shade would have helped for combining the three, and if the darkest shade was darker, you could get more versatility out of these three. I just don’t love the way this is done, though the quality is good with the exception of the lip gloss, which was a total miss for me.

White Chocolate is a pale, light beige with subtle, warm undertones and a matte finish. It had a soft, silky consistency that had good color payoff without being powdery. However, when it layers or blends with the more shimmery shades like Creme Brulee and Haute Chocolate, it seems to make them appear a little chalky at times. I think the thinner texture (in comparison to the other two shades) also makes it less easily blended with them. It wore well for eight hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Creme Brulee is a brightened, medium-dark gold with a frosted, metallic finish. It is a little drier and thinner compared to the version in the Chocolate Bar, though the pigmentation was still good. It wore well for eight hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Haute Chocolate is a meidum-dark, bronzy brown with a frosted sheen and warm, reddish undertones. It had good color payoff, and the texture was soft and blendable, though it wasn’t as buttery or as dense as the version in the Chocolate Bar. It wore well for eight hours. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Chocolate Soleil (Bronzer) is a medium-dark, tan brown with warm, yellow-ish undertones and a satin-matte finish. It’s a permanent product in Too Faced’s range, and it’s in nearly every holiday palette from them this year (and was often included in their various palette/sets released in the past). The texture is soft, silky, lightly powdery, but blendable and fairly pigmented. It lasts about eight hours on me. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Snow Bunny (Bronzer) is a warm, light-medium gold with orange tones and a frosted sheen. It had a slightly thinner texture, but it was still smooth and blendable on the skin. The more frosted sheen did emphasize pores somewhat, so that may be a deal-breaker. I like it better dusted lightly over Chocolate Soleil as a highlighter, as that lighter application helps to minimize how much gets emphasized on the skin. It wears seven and a half hours on me. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Naked Dolly (La Creme Lip Gloss) is a pink-peach with a cream finish. It had semi-opaque color coverage, but it settled into lip lines and applied unevenly. The texture was somewhat thick, and it was tacky on the lips. The gloss lasted two hours, and it was neither drying nor hydrating. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

LE
palette

Beauty Wishes & Sweet Kisses

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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P
product

White Chocolate

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
P
product

Creme Brulee

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

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Thursday, September 18th, 2014

Illamasqua Exquisite Sheer Lipgloss
Illamasqua Exquisite Sheer Lipgloss

Illamasqua Exquisite Sheer Lipgloss ($24.00 for 0.20 fl. oz.) is described as a “pink oyster.” It’s a milky, warm-toned pink with an iridescent pink-to-peach sheen. Chanel Songe (191) (LE, $29.50) has a lesser duochrome that shifts to more of a green-ish-mauve. bareMinerals Heartbreaker (LE, $18.00) has no duochrome. Giorgio Armani #700 (P, $29.00) is lighter, less pink. Revlon Orchid (P, $7.49) is similar on but has no duochrome. Bobbi Brown Pink Gold (P, $24.00) is similar, less duochrome. Bobbi Brown Firefly (P, $24.00) is lighter. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

It looks more like a duochrome at times, but often, it just looks like a light pink. I always get excited for these types of glosses but find they have a very limited range of viewing/angles where it really looks as cool in person as it does swatched on your arm/hand (probably because you can really move and angle your arm/hand a lot more than your face!). It has a light-to-medium-weight consistency that feels creamy and comfortable to wear without being tacky. It had semi-sheer color coverage where the natural lip color is visible and will alter how this looks if you have more pigmented lips. It lasts for four and a half hours, and I never felt the shimmer while applying or as it wore away. It was lightly hydrating. The gloss is on the milkier side, so there is a little bit of settling, and if you press your lips together, it can create “lines” as the product moves around.

Again, it appears that Illamasqua is no longer available at any U.S. retailers, which means the only way to purchase their products is through their website. The press release I received for the Once… collection is for the US, and the pricing reflected what we saw in stores, but converting to “$ USD” on their website changes the price on this to $26.77 (but you will pay in £ at checkout). On non-polish and fragrance orders, shipping is free over £50.

The Glossover

P
product

Exquisite

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Clé de Peau Cosmic Aura (308) Eyeshadow Quad
Clé de Peau Cosmic Aura (308) Eyeshadow Quad

Clé de Peau Cosmic Aura (308) Eyeshadow Quad ($55.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a set of four shades that run cooler-toned with a purple bent. I knew I had to see just how well (or poorly) the brand could do purples, as this is a color range that many brands under-deliver on. Unfortunately, this quad did fall short: two of the purple-hued shades were slightly powdery in texture as well as weaker in pigment. This is a more unique set of shades, relative to Stellar Gaze (307) that I reviewed earlier, though the second shade is one that a few brands do.

Each of the eyeshadow quads is available as a “refill” so it is just the set of eyeshadows, and you can purchase the case (here) for $25, which comes with two dual-ended sponge-tipped applicators. I put all of my eyeshadow quads into a Z-palette (see a photo of it here), but I do have two cases from the two eyeshadow quads I received as samples (I bought the other six quads myself, which is a statement on how enamored I was after trying two), so you’ll see it in the post for those interested in purchasing the two together.

Cosmic Aura #1 is a dark, slightly cool-toned purple with a violet shimmer-sheen. It had semi-opaque color coverage, but it wasn’t fully pigmented, and the texture was slightly powdery. This made it harder to get the same intense color payoff on the lid in practice. This shade lasted for seven and a half hours on me. Disney by Sephora Sea Witch (LE) is less shimmery. MAC Warm & Smoky (LE, $15.00) is very similar. MAC Banafsaji (LE, $15.00) is bluer. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Cosmic Aura #2 is a dirty, cool-toned beige with hints of green and an iridescent pink-to-green shimmer finish. The duochrome is subtle, though. The texture was slightly powdery, and it had had mostly opaque color coverage. The eyeshadow stayed on well for eight hours before fading. theBalm Sandbar (LE, $16.00) is slightly warmer. Make Up For Ever I542 Pink Ivory (P, $21.00) is warmer. Makeup Geek Rockstar (P, $5.99) is similar. bareMinerals Iridescent Iris (LE, $14.00) is darker. Make Up For Ever #940 Star Powder (P, $20.00) is similar. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Cosmic Aura #3 is a muted, medium-dark eggplant purple with subtle, warm brown undertones and gold and plum shimmer. It had fairly good pigmentation, and the texture was soft, buttery, and smooth. The color lasted for eight hours applied to the eye before fading. Ardency Inn Disco (P, $21.00) is more shimmery. Chanel Tisse Camelia #4 (P) is darker. Too Faced Rhinestone (P, $16.00) is similar. Giorgio Armani #16 (P, $32.00) is darker. Too Faced Candied Violet (P, $16.00) is less shimmery. Too Faced Bluff (LE, $16.00) is cooler-toned, more shimmery. Dior Constellation (864) #5 (LE) is warmer. Clinique Lavish Lilac (P, $17.00) is a cream product. Urban Decay Rapture (LE, $18.00) is darker. Urban Decay Rockstar (P, $18.00) is darker. MAC Winterized (LE, $21.00) is similar. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Cosmic Aura #4 is a muted, navy blue with hints of purple and navy micro-shimmer for a satin finish. It had decent color payoff, but I wish it had been as intense as it looked in the pan. theBalm Pipeline (LE, $16.00) is lighter, bluer. Dior Atlantique #3 (LE) is less shimmery. Too Faced De La Mer (P, $16.00) is darker. Givenchy Bleu Soie (4) (P, $23.00) is a cream product. theBalm #5 (P, $6.50) is slightly darker. Chanel Apparition (LE, $36.00) is a cream product. Too Faced Badass (LE, $16.00) is purpler. Tom Ford Beauty Cobalt Rush #2 (P) is similar. Le Metier de Beaute Sapphire (LE, $30.00) is brighter. Urban Decay Half Truth (LE, $18.00) is slightly purpler. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

P
palette

Cosmic Aura (308)

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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P
product

Cosmic Aura #1

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
P
product

Cosmic Aura #2

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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