Thursday, November 3rd, 2011


Estee Lauder Modern Mercury Eyeshadow Duo

Estee Lauder Fall 2011: Modern Mercury Eyeshadow Duo

Estee Lauder Modern Mercury Eyeshadow Duo ($30.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a limited edition duo from fall’s Modern Mercury collection (but it’s still available!). Estee Lauder’s Pure Color Eyeshadow formula is purported to be long-wearing, crease-resistant, and fade-proof (without a primer). In my experience, they manage to get to eight hours with minor fading but no creasing.

The lightest shade is a white-silver with a soft shimmer-sheen; it’s not too metallic, which is nice to see as many silvers tend to be full-on metallics. Bobbi Brown Iced Blue is cooler-toned. MAC Forgery is brighter. I wish the color payoff was better–it’s a bit sheer and doesn’t apply as smoothly as I’d like. The darker shade is a silvery gray with a shimmer-sheen finish. Inglot #339 is a bit darker but similar in tone. It has a slightly powdery texture, so it does not apply smoothly. It has decent pigmentation but could use more intensity to yield true-to-pan color.

The Glossover

palette

Estee Lauder Modern Mercury Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

B
The colors coordinate well with each other for a softer smoky eye, but the quality is so-so. It's not too impressive for such a basic combo; you're better off investing in really excellent basic shades like these.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Monday, October 31st, 2011

Illamasqua Ambition Shimmer Blush
Illamasqua Ambition Shimmer Blush

Illamasqua Ambition Shimmer Blush

Illamasqua Ambition Shimmer Blush ($24.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as “neutral pink with shimmer.” It’s a muted pink-plum with golden sparkle. The color is soft and light but buildable enough to provide true-to-pan color as well. MAC Pink Cult is pinker, while Estee Lauder Radiant Berry is plummier. Burberry Cameo is a touch more neutral.

I thought the color was pretty as it could be, but the texture is dry, which may be a nice feature for oilier skin types, but on normal-to-dry skin, it’s not my favorite texture in a blush because it emphasizes skin unevenness. The sparkle could be finer; it seems to sit on the surface of the blush, so it translates as more of a sparkle than a real shimmer-sheen. I found the formula wore well, though, so that it was still visible after eight hours of wear.

The Glossover

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Ambition

B-
If you have oilier skin, I think this could definitely work for you--and it may wear longer than the average powder blush. If you have really dry skin, I'd skip this in lieu of a softer, less dry-textured powder blush.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Saturday, October 29th, 2011

NARS Mandchourie Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Mandchourie Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Holiday 2011: Mandchourie Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Mandchourie Eyeshadow Duo ($33.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a new shade for the holidays described as a “gold-infused denim” and “rich navy.” It will be added to the brand’s permanent range. NARS line of pressed powder eyeshadows are supposed to be “highly pigmented, long-wearing, and crease-resistant.” They don’t wear all day on me without a primer, though some perform better than others. I typically get around eight hours with subtle creasing and marginal fading, but the usage of a primer will get me to twelve hours without any creasing or fading.

The first shade is a medium-dark navy blue with indigo undertones and golden shimmer. It had decent color payoff, but it wasn’t perfectly opaque, though the softness of the powder itself made it extremely easy to blend. The hue reminded me instantly of MAC Blue Spruce, though the two are noticeably different; Blue Spruce is greener and has more of a copper-colored sparkle, whereas Mandchourie is golden and distinctly blue.

The other shade is a dark navy blue with subtle indigo undertones and a matte finish. Make Up For Ever #147 is the only shade that seemed to compare at all, but it is shimmery and not quite as dark. Like the first shade, the texture is silky soft and smooth, but it is so soft that it is a little powdery. It blends easily, and you can tap it on for better color payoff on the lid, but be wary of fall out. I’d recommend doing the eyes first and foundation after when using this particular duo.

The Glossover

palette

NARS Mandchourie Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

B
There's a fine line between soft and powdery, and this duo seems to be caught between the two. The softness gives a beautiful, smooth application that's easy to blend out, but it also makes it prone to sheering out and powdery fall out during application.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, October 27th, 2011


MAC Sultry Iced Delights Lip Bag

MAC Ice Parade: Sultry Iced Delights Lip Bag

MAC Sultry Iced Delights Lip Bag ($38.00) includes three full-sized lip products: Deelight (mid-tone neutral), I Love Winter (passion fruit), and Boldly Bare (dirty red brown). I’m not sure how they managed it, but the lip pencil is listed as 0.05 oz., which is full-sized!

  • Deelight is a fleshy pink with semi-sheer color; it mostly gives my lips a pinker, lusher look overall without a lot of color. This is part of the permanent range.
  • I Love Winter is a medium-dark pink with a hint of coral (just the barest amount!) with opaque color coverage. It has a cremesheen finish, which I do find to be a little drying and less creamy. Chanel Empire is brighter and more vibrant. Giorgio Armani #507 is a touch lighter. MAC Mehr is less glossy and a bit lighter.
  • Boldly Bare is a orange-toned neutral brown.

The value of the the smaller kits is good–you get three full-sized lip products (~$42), so you’re getting more than what you’d receive if you purchased them individually (assuming you could). The Cremesheen Glass formula is not very long-wearing (two hours or so with a shade like Deelight), while the Cremesheen lipstick formula is a bit drying and doesn’t have as much glide as is ideal.

The Glossover

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MAC Sultry Iced Delights Lip Bag Review, Photos, Swatches

B
Cremesheens tend to be drying on me, so the formula doesn't get the highest marks from my experience. I wish Cremesheen Glasses had better staying power, but they seem to disappear within two hours usually.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, October 26th, 2011


MAC Warm Snowglobe Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Ice Parade: Warm Snowglobe Eyeshadow Palette

MAC Warm Snowglobe Eyeshadow Palette ($38.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a limited edition holiday compact that features six eyeshadows: Winterscape (bright taupe pearl), Magical Mist (sparkle concrete), Patina (taupe brown with golden pearl), Buckwheat (bark brown), Gaelic Gold (gold), and Midnight Flurry (dark warm black).  The MAC Ice Parade Collection launches October 27th, 2011 in-stores.

  • Winterscape is a shimmering, sparkly white. It’s warmer than the white in the cool-toned palette, but they’re still similar–and they’re both sheer. This has a lustre finish. There are other white eyeshadows that are better.
  • Magical Mist is a grayish-toned brown with warm, reddish undertones. This has a lustre finish, and it is a repromote, though the good news is it seems to be more pigmented than last year. Urban Decay Wreckage is warmer and browner. Bare Escentuals A-Ha is similar but richer. MAC Era is lighter and not quite as grayish, but it is still similar.
  • Patina is a light-medium brown with a hint of gray and a golden sheen. This has a frost finish, and it is part of the permanent range. It has good color payoff and a very smooth, soft texture.
  • Buckwheat is a medium-dark brown with warm, red undertones and a shimmery finish. This has a frost finish, and it is a repromote. The pigmentation is good with a smooth texture. MAC Make Your Mark is similar but perhaps not as red toned.
  • Gaelic Gold is a vibrant, medium-dark gold with yellow undertones and a shimmer-sheen finish. This has a veluxe pearl finish, and it is a repromote. It also had good color payoff and a smooth feel. Le Metier de Beaute Chameleon is not as yellow and a bit darker. Inglot #404 is very similar but perhaps a touch darker.
  • Midnight Flurry is a dark, gray brown with a little burgundy hue. This has a matte finish. It’s dry and on the sheerer side. theBalm Mahna-Mahna is deeper and richer, though browner. Wet ‘n’ Wild Comfort Zone has shimmer but the base color is similar. MAC Smut is blacker and has shimmer.

The Warm palette was the best of the three six-pan eyeshadow palettes from MAC’s holiday collection. It had the least amount of duds–the only total dud in this palette is Winterscape, which was sheer and not as smooth as the other shades in the palette. Midnight Flurry was a bit stiff to work with and lacked the intensity in the formula to yield true-to-pan color, but the other four shades were better with decent to good color payoff and smooth textures.

The Glossover

palette

Warm Snowglobe

B
This was the best palette of the three eyeshadow palettes from MAC's holiday collection this year. There is only one shade that really didn't work, while the others were more workable.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, October 20th, 2011

MAC Glitter & Ice Dazzleglass
MAC Dressed to Dazzle Dazzleglass

MAC Glitter & Ice Dazzleglasses

MAC Glitter & Ice Dazzleglasses ($19.50 for 0.06 oz. each) include six limited edition shades: Dressed to Dazzle (pale dirty pink red and gold pearl), Glitter & Ice (light nude with white and gold pearl), Love Alert (raspberry red with red pearl), Pleasure Principle (clear white violet, teal, and white pearl), She-zam (sheer silver with silver and red pearl), and Spanking Rich (raspberry pink with red and gold pearl). The collection is slated to hit stores on October 27th.

  • Dressed to Dazzle is a pale, pink-tinted gloss with silver sparkle. It adds a pink tinge but mostly glossy shine and some sparkle.
  • Glitter & Ice is a pale, beige-tinted gloss with silver sparkle. On me, it doesn’t impart much color, but it gives shine and sparkle.
  • Love Alert is a pinky-red with fuchsia sparkle. This is one of the more opaque Dazzleglasses, and it is semi-opaque on me. This is part of the permanent range.
  • Pleasure Principle is a yellow-tinted gloss (which shows up virtually clear) with multi-colored sparkle (the sparkle matches the nail polish from this launch). This one has the most interesting sparkle, because it is multi-colored so it dazzles more than the others.
  • She-zam is a clear color base with silver sparkle. It gives my lips a cooler-tone overall.
  • Spanking Rich is a darkened raspberry red with silver and fuchsia sparkle. It is semi-sheer with less color payoff than Love Alert but more than the other four. Dior Outrageous Fuchsia is similar but seems less pink.

Dazzleglasses have a medium-thick consistency with micro-glitter and shimmer. They tend to be sheerer in color with more oomph coming from the dazzle than the base color. The big catch with Dazzleglasses is that despite the seemingly-large tube, each contains only 0.06 oz. (as compared to 0.17 oz. in a Lipglass). When it comes to dupes, just browse through the Sheer Lipgloss Swatch Gallery, because they are, inevitably, similar to each other. I think Pleasure Principle is the most complex of the six, and it will be nice for layering. Love Alert is better for those who want a punch of color, while She-zam may get you closer to foil-like lips for the holidays, so it’s a fun shade.

The Glossover

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MAC Glitter & Ice Dazzleglasses Reviews, Photos, Swatches

B
I think Pleasure Principle is the most complex of the six, and it will be nice for layering. Love Alert is better for those who want a punch of color, while She-zam may get you closer to foil-like lips for the holidays, so it's a fun shade.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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