Thursday, January 6th, 2011


Make Up For Ever Metal Lab Shine Lipglosses

Make Up For Ever Lab Shine Lipglosses: Metal Finish

For spring (although, these have been available at Make Up For Ever boutiques since last June), Make Up For Ever launches new Lab Sine Lip Gloss ($18.00 for 0.09 oz.) in three finishes with 35 shades in total.

I reviewed the Metal Lab Shines several months ago, when I first purchased the Lab Shines. My intention was always to review all of the ones I purchased (which is all except for three, which they did not have in-stock at the time), but I was never able to get through lip swatches for all of the new glosses. I do still hope to do lip swatches for them in the future, but for now, please enjoy swatches and photos.

The Metal Collection includes 9 shades and contains Make Up For Ever’s Metal Powder. This finish is supposed to have an intense chrome, mirror finish and be more opaque. All of the lip glosses have both hyaluronic acid and Camelina oil for help moisturize lips and improve elasticity. It is a non-sticky gloss with a slight, tropical fruit kind of scent. The scent is not overwhelming, and it doesn’t smell synthetically sweet. They are packaged in thick, clear tubes with a black cap and a brush-type applicator.

The shades included in this finish are: M0 (chrome onyx), M2 (chrome grey pearl), M4 (chrome tobacco), M6 (chrome hazel brown), M8 (chrome brown), M10 (chrome morello cherry), M12 (chrome sienna), M14 (chrome candy), and M16 (chrome frozen pink).

  • M0 is a semi-opaque black with silver sparkle. In the swatch, it’s certainly black and glossy, but it’s not 100% opaque, so on its own, it looks a bit messy. Definitely needs a very dark liner to make it look opaque.
  • M2 is a metallic warmed-up pearly silver. It’s very much the color of pearl, with a little silver cast. Kind of like a platinum shade. It’s semi-opaque with a frosty finish. Surely not designed to be an ultra wearable shade, but I could see it working for some more avant garde looks or layered over a darker lipstick.
  • M4 is a soft peachy brown with champagne beige and gold shimmer.
  • M6 is a darker brown than M4 but not by much. I had some streaking issues with this one – the color just didn’t want to lay down nicely for me. It has light copper and gold shimmer.
  • M8 is a plummy brown with multicolored shimmer and a semi-opaque look.
  • M10 is a raspberry red with fuchsia and ruby shimmer.
  • M12 is a metallic red with ruby sparkle.
  • M14 is a brightened pinked-coral with lighter pink shimmer.
  • M16 is a pale peach-pink with peach-gold shimmer.

Metal Lab Shines have a very smooth texture; they’re thick without being goopy, but they are very comfortable to wear. They’re some of the more moisturizing glosses I have tried, and with these lighter shades, I get about two to three hours of wear. With some of the darker shades, I have gotten up to four hours of wear. I’d love ‘em more if they wore longer (three to four is average for me, two is below), but I do love that they have a huge shade range (that’s permanent!).

My big complaint is that these only have 0.09 oz. in them–the average lipgloss has about 0.20 oz., and even Make Up For Ever’s Fascinating Lipgloss contained that much, but they halved the size and kept the price. I understand these are a completely different formula and contain their various powders (Diamond, Star, and Metal), but whether that really merits what is in essence over a 50% price increase is up for debate.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: These are very nice gloss basics; they’re non-sticky, comfortable to wear, and there are lots of shades to choose from. The Metal finish definitely has a chrome look to it, and they are more opaque. If you’re after a sheerer or less metallic finish, I suggest Diamond or Star.

WHERE TO BUY: Sephora.com

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, January 6th, 2011


Make Up For Ever Diamond Lab Shine Lipglosses

Make Up For Ever Lab Shine Lipglosses: Diamond Finish

For spring (although, these have been available at Make Up For Ever boutiques since last June), Make Up For Ever launches new Lab Sine Lip Gloss ($18.00 for 0.09 oz.) in three finishes with 35 shades in total.

I reviewed the Metal Lab Shines several months ago, when I first purchased the Lab Shines. My intention was always to review all of the ones I purchased (which is all except for three, which they did not have in-stock at the time), but I was never able to get through lip swatches for all of the new glosses. I do still hope to do lip swatches for them in the future, but for now, please enjoy swatches and photos.

The Diamond Collection includes 12 shades and contains Make Up For Ever’s Diamond Powder. This finish is supposed to be transparent and natural-looking with a shimmering shine. All of the lip glosses have both hyaluronic acid and Camelina oil for help moisturize lips and improve elasticity. It is a non-sticky gloss with a slight, tropical fruit kind of scent. The scent is not overwhelming, and it doesn’t smell synthetically sweet. They are packaged in thick, clear tubes with a black cap and a brush-type applicator.

The shades included in this finish are: D0 (shimmering diamond), D2 (shimmering amethyst), D4 (shimmering grenadine), D6 (shimmering magenta), D8 (shimmering baby pink), D10 (shimmering fresh pink), D12 (shimmering quartz rose), D14 (shimmering Indian pink), D16 (shimmering beige), D18 (shimmering copper), D20 (shimmering tangerine), and D22 (shimmering papaya). Below are my descriptions of the shades, with the exception of D2, which was not available for me to purchase at the time.

  • D0 is a clear gloss with white-silver shimmer.
  • D4 is a sheer, pink-plum with soft pink shimmer.
  • D6 is a sheer, fuchsia pink with magenta shimmer.
  • D8 is a sheer, pale pink with silver and pink shimmer.
  • D10 is a sheer soft yellow-based pink with light pink shimmer.
  • D12 is a sheer milky pink with gold shimmer.
  • D14 is a sheer neutral pink with champagne shimmer.
  • D16 is a sheer, peach-beige with copper shimmer.
  • D18 is a semi-sheer, peach base with a heavy dose of light an dark copper shimmer.
  • D20 is a sheer, juicy tangerine orange with soft gold shimmer.
  • D22 is a milky rose pink with pale pink shimmer.

Diamond Lab Shines have a very smooth texture; they’re thick without being goopy, but they are very comfortable to wear. They’re some of the more moisturizing glosses I have tried, and with these lighter shades, I get about two to three hours of wear. With some of the darker shades, I have gotten up to four hours of wear. I’d love ‘em more if they wore longer (three to four is average for me, two is below), but I do love that they have a huge shade range (that’s permanent!).

My big complaint is that these only have 0.09 oz. in them–the average lip gloss has about 0.20 oz., and even Make Up For Ever’s Fascinating Lipgloss contained that much, but they halved the size and kept the price. I understand these are a completely different formula and contain their various powders (Diamond, Star, and Metal), but whether that really merits what is in essence over a 50% price increase is up for debate.  With the thicker nature of the gloss, I could see these being used up more quickly than other glosses, too.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: These are very nice gloss basics; they’re non-sticky, comfortable to wear, and there are lots of shades to choose from. The Diamond finish is a very sheer range, and if you are looking for something more pigmented, you are better off looking at the Star or Metal finish (the latter being the most pigmented/opaque).

WHERE TO BUY: Sephora.com

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

Estee Lauder Wild Storm Nail Lacquer
Estee Lauder Wild Storm Nail Lacquer

Estee Lauder Spring 2011: Wild Storm

Estee Lauder Wild Storm Nail Lacquer ($19.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is a steely gray with a hint of bluish-teal micro-shimmer with a faint metallic-frost finish. The blue-tinge is very subtle–it’s more noticeable in the bottle than it is on the hands. The blue comes out strongest in natural light (or low light), but it is there. I only need two coats for an opaque result, and it applied smoothly and fairly evenly, despite minor brushstrokes showing up under flash lighting.

I was initially reminded of Chanel Steel, but it’s nothing like it–it is far too black to be similar. Then, I thought perhaps it was in the same vein as Chanel Black Pearl, but Black Pearl is much more teal–not so much silver or blue. It is like a darker version of NARS Full Metal Jacket. It is also like Zoya Kelly–with shimmer.

The formula itself wasn’t too thick or thin and applied smoothly without any issues. Drying time seemed average, and there was a soft glossy shine, but I’d still recommend a top coat. The amount in the bottle is a little below average, I’d say, while the price tag is a bit hefty.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: While I’ve been really impressed with the uniqueness in some of Estee Lauder’s polishes lately, Wild Storm doesn’t quite hit those notes for me.

WHERE TO BUY: Estee Lauder

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Thursday, December 30th, 2010

MAC Mickey Contractor Lipglass
MAC Lipglass: Flesh, Lust

MAC Mickey Contractor: Flesh & Lust

MAC Lipglass ($14.50 for 0.17 oz.) sees two shades as part of the MAC Mickey Contractor Collection. Flesh (dirty nude brown) is limited edition, while Lust (soft muted pink) is permanent.  Lipglass is a thicker, stickier gloss with a range of finishes and opacities.  They are vanilla scented.

  • Flesh is a orange-tinged medium beige with a creamy look and subtle micro-shimmer. It seems to lean green on me, which is not exactly flattering for me! It has a creamy consistency, so it does settle into lip lines, but on the plus side, it is more pigmented and is semi-opaque. I can’t think of a dupe, though I’m not convinced there isn’t one.
  • Lust is a muted rosy beige with a creamy consistency and finish. It does settle into lip lines, and it’s nearly opaque as far as glosses go. Since it is a thicker, more opaque shade, even though it does settle, it is less noticeable from afar. I see this shade being a lot more wearable than Flesh for many skin tones.  This is a permanent shade.

P.S. — On eyes, I am wearing Jaan eyeshadow on the lid, Vivah eyeshadow on the outer lid/crease, Folie in the crease, Burberry Trench to highlight, Ivy fluidline on upper lash line, Urban Decay Perversion on lower water line, Jaan eyeshadow on lower lash line. On cheeks, I am wearing Sur Blush.

MAC Mickey Contractor will be available on January 6th at select North American stores and January 2011 for select international stores. It will be available online on approximately January 4th but may not be available until the 6th.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: Flesh might work better on those with darker skin tones as well as those with more olive complexions.  It might be one of those try before you buy shades… too bad distribution is so limited.

WHERE TO BUY: maccosmetics.com

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Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

MAC Athma Eyeshadow Quad
MAC Athma Eyeshadow Quad

MAC Mickey Contractor: Athma Eyeshadow Quad

MAC Athma Eyeshadow Quad ($36.00 for 0.21 oz.) is new and limited edition from MAC Mickey Contractor. It includes four shades: Jaan (light neutral with soft gold pearl), Folie (reddish-plum brown), Vivah (brown with gold pearl), and Carbon (matte black).

Jaan is a peachy beige with soft gold sparkle. The pigmentation was nice, but I did experience some fall out when applying this on my lid. This has a lustre finish. It is a darker, sparkly version of Bamboo; or a lighter, sparkly version of Soft Brown.

Folie is a red-toned medium-dark brown with a soft, pearly sheen. It never swatches very nicely, but it is quite nice when used. This has a satin finish and is permanent.

Vivah is a lightly warmed up medium-dark chocolate brown with peach-gold sparkle. There was nice color pay off, but like Jaan, I did experience noticeable fall out. This has a lustre finish. It has a less frosted finish and less red undertones, but it is somewhat similar to Sable. It is a warmer, sparkly version of Courduroy. It also seems similar to Bobbi Brown Copper Sand (which I don’t own).

Carbon is a medium black. It works nicely to darken shades, even though it doesn’t swatch very well. It’s one of those better-in-practice mattes. This has a matte finish and is permanent.

I don’t typically like lustre eyeshadows, because the glittery bits are prone to ending up under your eye rather than on it, and these don’t do much to convince me otherwise. I recommend patting, rather than sweeping, on lustre eyeshadows, possibly with a damp brush for particularly fussy shades, to minimize fall out. If you do your eye makeup before your face makeup, then it will be easier to clean-up, too.

Initially, I thought this might be similar to Urban Decay’s Naked Palette, but there is not much shade overlap. They’re both neutral palettes, but there are not any direct dupes.

MAC Mickey Contractor will be available on January 6th at select North American stores and January 2011 for select international stores. It will be available online on approximately January 4th but may not be available until the 6th.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 10/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: With two lustres that did prove to have some fall out along with two permanent shades, I can’t comfortably recommend this eyeshadow quad, as much as I do feel these are very flattering, easy-to-wear neutrals. I’m happy that both lustres are rather pigmented and don’t also suffer from sheerness like some lustre-finish shadows do. (Please note that this product scores high on value, which boosts up the overall rating by a third of a grade.)

WHERE TO BUY: maccosmetics.com

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Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

MAC Ivy Fluidline
MAC Ivy Fluidline

MAC Mickey Contractor: Ivy Fluidline

MAC Ivy Fluidline ($15.00 for 0.10 oz.) is new and limited edition from MAC Mickey Contractor, and MAC describes it as a “bright green” with a frost finish. Ivy is a brightened teal-tinged emerald green with subtle yellow undertones. It’s not quite as pigmented as other fluidlines; I didn’t have any skipping when I tested it on my upper lash line, but it did not go on as opaque as I’d like. I had to do a second pass to get better results, but on the upside, it wore beautifully without smudging, fading, or migrating (eight hours of wear).

I thought Jadeye might be comparable, and though I don’t own it, looking at various swatches showed it to be significantly tealer (in fact, back in its original launch, which was in Jewelescent in’ 06, I described it as teal–win!). Make Up For Ever #22 Aqua Cream is a reasonably yellower green, so they’re not quite dupes.

MAC Mickey Contractor will be available on January 6th at select North American stores and January 2011 for select international stores. It will be available online on approximately January 4th but may not be available until the 6th.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: I really dig the shade itself, but I wish it was more pigmented. If you’re a fluidline fan, I think it’s worth at least a look-see, but I expect the fluidlines to sell out quickly.

WHERE TO BUY: maccosmetics.com

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

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