Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

China Glaze Unpredictable Nail Lacquer
China Glaze Unpredictable Nail Lacquer

How Much Do You Like a Duochrome Polish?

China Glaze Unpredictable Nail Lacquer ($4.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “multi-dimensional gorgeous green.” It’s a seafoam-like green that flashes from true seafoam green to darker, almost forest green (but there’s still some aqua to it that it’s not true forest green). The only similar shade I could think of was OCC Chimera, which matches the darker green color you see at an angle. If you know of a dupe, please share it with us!

The consistency of this one was a little thin, and it wasn’t as pigmented as other shades in the collection or China Glaze’s polishes in general. After two coats, there was a very slight translucency in places, because it was somewhat streaky when applied. I would recommend going with three coats on this shade to get full color coverage. There are noticeable brush strokes, and they were fairly easy to control. I typically get a week of wear out of China Glaze’s formula with minor tip wear but no chipping.

The Glossover

LE
product

Unpredictable

B
I wish it was more pigmented so it would be opaque after two coats and not look so streaky. The consistency of the formula could definitely use some improvement!

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, September 27th, 2012

MAC Legendary Blush
MAC Legendary Blush

Will This Be the Next Legendary Coral?

MAC Legendary Blush ($22.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “pale soft coral.” It has a satin finish. The color is a subdued pink-coral with a subtle golden shimmer-sheen. Bobbi Brown Desert Twilight is very similar. theBalm Don’t You Want Me is darker. Tarina Tarantino Feather is similar. MAC Immortal Flower is pinker and has no shimmer. MAC Supercontinental is much more orange and brighter.

The texture was soft but a little stiff. It had decent color payoff, though I did need to build up the color to get it to show up on my coloring (about NC30, for reference).  What was nicest about the blush was its finish; it gave just a glimmer of sheen and glow, but it didn’t emphasize pores or look frosted.  The finish was natural and lovely.  I wore this yesterday after swatching, and it managed to last seven hours without fading but after another half hour, it looked faded around the edges.

Keep in mind, online retailers like Nordstrom, Macy’s, Dillard’s, and Bloomingdale’s will also launch the collection online. These retailers typically launch close in time to the in-store release date (October 4th).

The Glossover

LE
product

Legendary

B
If it was a little softer, it would be easier to blend and apply better. I also wish it wore for a full eight hours! I think this works best on light to light-medium complexions.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Saturday, September 22nd, 2012

NARS 413BLKR Eyeshadow Duo
NARS 413BLKR Eyeshadow Duo

Beautiful Combination, Less Lovely Execution

NARS 413BLKR Eyeshadow Duo ($34.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “shimmering amethyst” and “black with red pearl.” This duo was launched to celebrate Fashion’s Night Out this year.

The shade on the left is a grayish-mauve with a satiny sheen. The color payoff is so-so to good; it seemed to have more color when applied to the lid, but it wasn’t quite fully pigmented. The texture, however, was very soft and finely-milled. NARS Flower 1 is a bit less plum, more purple. Giorgio Armani #27 is more metallic and darker. MAC Universal Appeal is warmer, pinker. NARS Charade is darker and more matte. MAC Hypnotizing is a smidgen grayer. Tarina Tarantino Fantastical is very similar. NARS Lhasa is darker. Wet ‘n’ Wild We’re Blasting Off is similar.

The shade on the right is a blackened burgundy with red sparkle. The base color has a matte finish, and the sparkles get lost between the pan, your brush, and your eye for the most part. It has a slightly dry, stiff texture that doesn’t make blending effortless–it takes some work, but it’s doable–and the color tends to look browner the more you blend it out. Tarina Tarantino Saw Dust Heart is quite similar when applied. Wet ‘n’ Wild We’re Blasting Off is similar. Giorgio Armani #2 has a similar composition, but it has a lot more shimmer.

It’s saddening that both shades were somewhat problematic (but the darker one was more so), because they look stunning together in the compact. There’s a lot of contrast but still common threads between both shades, so they would work well for a plummy smoky eye.  It’s decent but not the best duo by NARS.  I wore both shades together, and I had minor fading with the darker shade after eight hours without a primer (but the lighter shade was fine).  When I used a primer, both shades wore without fading or creasing for eight hours.

The Glossover

palette

NARS 413BLKR Eyeshadow Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

B
It's saddening that both shades were somewhat problematic (but the darker one was more so), because they look stunning together in the compact. There's a lot of contrast but still common threads between both shades, so they would work well for a plummy smoky eye. It's decent but not the best duo by NARS.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Saturday, September 1st, 2012


NARS Satellite of Love Highlighting Blush

Reach to the Stars for a Satellite of Love

NARS Satellite of Love Highlighting Blush ($28.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “sparkling gold sand.” It’s a peachy brown with a hint of orange and pale gold shimmer and sparkle. It adds warmth, a little tan coloring, and noticeable sparkle and sheen to cheeks. Chanel Lucky Stripes is similar but more shimmery than sparkly. NARS Miss Liberty is lighter, more beige. MAC How Beautiful! is very light and beige. Chanel Empreinte de Chanel is more golden, yellower.

The Highlighting Blush formula is supposd to impart a “luminous glow” that can be worn alone or paired with other cheek products.  This particular shade has a bit more sparkle than sheen, though a lot of the sparkle gets lost between the pan, your brush, and your cheek, but it did emphasize my pores just slightly.  It has decent color payoff (it’s about what you see in the pan) and buildable to the color you see in the pan.  Because it is a lighter shade overall, on deeper complexions, it is going to add very subtle warmth but not visible color–more a highlighter than anything else. Lighter complexions can use it as both a highlighter as well as a blusher (well, probably bronzer).  The texture was a bit on the dry side, but it was nice and blendable on the cheek.  It wore for seven hours before there was noticeable fading.

The Glossover

LE
product

Satellite of Love

B
I think the color is a nice pop of warmth for most complexions, but the larger sparkle seems to emphasize pores to a noticeable degree, while the drier texture is less forgiving on cheeks. It is blendable and buildable, though.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Illamasqua Opulent Intense Lipgloss
Illamasqua Opulent Intense Lipgloss

Dress Your Lips in Opulence

Illamasqua Opulent Intense Lipgloss ($20.00 for 0.20 fl. oz.) is described as a “rainbow beige.” It’s a golden-beige with multi-colored shimmer (almost holographic but not quite) that reads mostly champagne, gold, copper, and pink once applied. NARS Albatross looks a bit lighter on the lips. MAC Bubble Lounge is lighter, less beige. MAC Luxure has a similar sparkle but is more silvered.

Now, the tube I have (which is a sample) indicates this is a Sheer Lipgloss, but online, Illamasqua has it listed as an Intense Lipgloss and again on their Facebook (when they posted promos)–so I’m going to go off of their websites. Intense Lipglosses are supposed to be rich in color, non-sticky, and have a high-shine finish.  The color coverage is semi-sheer to semi-opaque; there’s noticeable sheerness in the color, but there is enough sparkle that it still delivers a noticeable change in lip color. I didn’t initially feel the glitter/sparkle, but after a half hour, there was a definite grittiness and I could feel the edges of the sparkles.  Opulent wore for four hours, which was good and consistent with most glosses. The texture was non-sticky, and the finish had plenty of glossy shine.

With Generation Q, I noticed that Illamasqua has changed the packaging on their lipglosses. They used to be slanted, squeeze-tubes, but now they’re clear plastic with a black screw-top that twists and reveals a brush-type applicator. Both of the glosses I receive with this type of applicator had several splayed bristles, which made application more difficult. The bristles could be a little softer, as they seemed to be a touch scratchy against the lips as well as created some brush strokes. I’m not sure if I just happened to get two exceptionally messed-up brushes or if a lot of them are going to be that way. For now, we’ll assume that because these were samples, they were an early run, and perhaps not pristine, but I don’t think the applicator is ideal for this gloss formula–a regular doe-foot would be easier to maneuver around the lips and be less likely to cause visible brush strokes. I also detected a fruity scent.

The Glossover

product

Illamasqua Opulent Intense Lipgloss Review, Photos, Swatches

B
This product works well for layering, and on its own, it's okay, but I think it lacks the opacity as described for the Intense Lipgloss formula, so it's a bit of a let-down. I don't like the grittiness that develops.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Illamasqua Allure Powder Blusher
Illamasqua Allure Powder Blusher

A Blendable Blush is Key

Illamasqua Allure Powder Blusher ($24.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “dusky rose pink shimmer.” It has a just barely softened appearance to the color–it’s still rather intense, because it’s on the darker end of the spectrum–but “dusky” is an apt description. The color itself is a rosy red with flecks of gold shimmer.  The shimmer doesn’t really transfer to the skin–it looks mostly matte when applied. MAC Hidden Treasure is darker, redder. MAC Ring of Saturn is warmer and has more golden shimmer/sheen. Tom Ford Savage is browner.

The texture of this felt soft, fairly finely-milled, and it returned excellent color payoff that applied smoothly and evenly when swatched. It had a drier overall texture, consistent with Illamasqua’s formula.  When I applied it to my cheeks (and I used MAC’s 116 blush brush), the results were less impressive.  It was difficult to blend, and with the intensity of this color, that made for a rather frustrating application. I’d apply the barest amount of product, and then the color would blend and disappear but blend unevenly.  This kind of hue needs to be blendable and apply evenly, otherwise it gives cheeks a ruddy or sunburned look–not at all attractive.  I tested the wear, and it lasted eight hours with only a smidgen of fading.

The Glossover

P
product

Allure

B
It's not a very blendable, easy-to-use blush. It will take some patience, a deft hand, and an excellent blending brush to get even color that flatters rather than accentuates any natural redness/unevenness in the skin.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

3/5

Results
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