Saturday, May 4th, 2013

MAC Soft Sand Bronzing Powder
MAC Soft Sand Bronzing Powder

MAC Soft Sand Bronzing Powder ($25.00 for 0.35 oz.) is described as a “golden bronze with fine gold pearl.” It’s a yellowy, medium-dark tan brown with a golden shimmer-sheen finish. Illamasqua Disobey is a browner and has no shimmer. Too Faced Bronzed & Poreless is warmer, more orange, and matte.

As I mentioned in my review for MAC’s Refined Golden, there were some serious texture issues (oddities?) with the regular bronzing powders in this collection. A few readers chimed in and said they had similar issues with past limited edition releases of the normally-permanent shades. That, of course, worries me, because I was originally chalking it up to being one-off, because the permanent versions have a normal, powder-like texture. The texture of Soft Sand almost felt like plastic–almost like a very stiff cream bronzer that didn’t give much payoff at all. I took a paper tough and just went to town getting the first few layers off, and that seemed to help quite a bit. I was able to get it to pick up on my brush after that and had it show up well on my skin. It lasted just under eight hours well without fading.  I had issues with the texture of last year’s Soft Sand, too; there were very similar issues but this felt even worse and even harder to get to work.

The Glossover

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Soft Sand

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I had issues with the texture of last year's Soft Sand, too; there were very similar issues but this felt even worse and even harder to get to work.

Product

5/10

Pigmentation

4/10

Texture

3/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

3.5/5

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Sunday, April 21st, 2013

Bobbi Brown Pink Rose Blush
Bobbi Brown Pink Rose Blush

Bobbi Brown Pink Rose Blush ($25.00 for 0.13 oz.) is described as a “dusty pink.” It’s a softened, medium-dark pink with subtle cool undertones and a matte finish. NARS Mata Hari is a bolder, brighter version. MAC Prom Princess is darker and cooler-toned. MAC Subtle Breeze is a smidgen cooler-toned.

It’s supposed to be a “silky-sheer powder blush that … gives cheeks a … natural-looking pop of color” with a matte finish and long-wear. It can be applied as a veil of sheer color, and in fact, does better when applied that way, but it is buildable to heavier color. Pink Rose had a stubborn texture; dry, stiff, and difficult to work with. It was challenging to dislodge enough product to get even, consistent color, and the powder didn’t want to blend easily on the cheeks, either. I really felt like I had to jab at the surface to get any color payoff or product out of the pan. It’s a shame as the color cold be very workable on both cool and warm-toned skin as a subtler, everyday kind of shade but also as something more dramatic once built up. The product managed to wear mostly intact for about eight hours, but it was hard to determine, as it looked patchy initially (so, so difficult to blend!).

The Glossover

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Pink Rose

F
The color could have been very versatile, but the texture prevented this blush from working well -- it was stiff and dry, which made it hard to get color to apply and then even harder to blend it out.

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

6/10

Texture

4/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

2.5/5

Results
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Monday, April 8th, 2013

Estee Lauder Sinister Stay-On Shadow Paint
Estee Lauder Sinister Stay-On Shadow Paint

Estee Lauder Sinister Stay-On Shadow Paint ($24.00 for 0.14 oz.) is medium-dark black with silver sparkle. MAC Blackground has a warmer base and smaller shimmer. Urban Decay Oil Slick is also a bit warmer (and a powder product). Buxom Black Lab is similar but has multi-colored sparkle.

It had so-so color payoff; it is more easily applied as a sheer wash of color (so then it turns into a dark gray), and if you attempt to build up the color, it doesn’t work out so well. It tended to bunch up and layer in odd ways so that it didn’t give you a smooth, even result. The texture was smoother than Steel, but it had a very dry, almost flaky texture once it dried down. The color came off in chunks throughout the day. I tested it twice just to be sure, but it was the same: splotchy color, fall out, and then light creasing after eight hours.

The Glossover

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Sinister

F

I wish this had better color payoff, was more buildable, and actually wore for at least eight hours without flaking off and creasing.

Product

5/10

Pigmentation

6/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

5/10

Application

2.5/5

Results
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Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013

Estee Lauder Steel Stay-On Shadow Paint
Estee Lauder Steel Stay-On Shadow Paint

Estee Lauder Steel Stay-On Shadow Paint ($24.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a steely gray with gold and silver sparkle. It’s like a silvered pewter with a lot of sparkle and shine. Chanel Epatant is warmer, greener. Inglot #454 is warmer, less sparkly. Maybelline Audacious Asphalt is grayer, darker.

I can’t tell you how utterly fascinating this color is, only to be supremely disappointed at the quality of the product as a whole. It sparkles, dazzles, shimmies and dances in the light. It is so brilliant on the skin when I swatched it. On the lid, it is a mess; spotty color payoff, uneven color and texture, and looks creased from the get-go. The application is gritty, chunky, and never looks smooth. It made my lids look heavy and wrinkled. The disappointment didn’t stop there, though, because the fall out from this as it flaked off my lid throughout the day was painful and messy.  I tried finger-tips, sponge-tip applicators, a variety of brushes, and nothing worked even decently.  The only good thing I can say about the product is the color and way it sparkles is beautiful, but you never really get to see or enjoy it because it just doesn’t work well in practice.

The Glossover

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product

Steel

F
The only good thing I can say about the product is the color and way it sparkles is beautiful, but you never really get to see or enjoy it because it just doesn't work well in practice.

Product

2/10

Pigmentation

6.5/10

Texture

6/10

Longevity

3/10

Application

1/5

Results
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Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

Wet 'n' Wild Maldives Sky Photo Op Eyeshadow Palette
Wet ‘n’ Wild Maldives Sky Photo Op Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Maldives Sky Photo Op Eyeshadow Palette ($4.99 for 0.19 oz.) consists of five shades: aqua, purple, dark gray, bluish-teal, and blue. The formula is supposed to be “ultra-pigmented,” “crease-resistant,” and “last all day.”

Maldives Sky #1 is a light-medium aqua with a soft, frosted finish. It had good color payoff, but it was slightly powdery and almost looked chalky when applied to the lid. Inglot #345 is greener. Jasmine Blue Oasis is matte but close in color (slightly bluer). NARS Debbie Harry #4 is darker. Sugarpill Mochi is darker. MAC Aqua is slightly greener and matte. This particular hue is not well-known for being nicely pigmented, regardless of brand, which is not a justification but worth noting that it’s hard to get it right.

Maldives Sky #2 is a dark purple with subtle cool undertones and a mostly matte finish. It had sheer color payoff, but the worst part was how dry and stiff the texture was. Wet ‘n’ Wild Drinking a Glass of Shine #4 is very similar but more pigmented. Wet ‘n’ Wild Shimmer the Night Away is shimmery. Inglot #379 is brighter, bolder.

Maldives Sky #3 is a dark gray with a matte finish and neutral undertones. You may notice a pattern developing here: sheerer color payoff, dry, stiff texture. Urban Decay Desperation is cooler-toned. MAC Scene is similar but satiny. Chanel Gris Exquis is darker. Inglot #339 is similar.

Maldives Sky #4 is a medium-dark teal with blue undertones and a slight dusting of silver pearl. It is dry, chalky, and sheer. Wet ‘n’ Wild Sparkle ‘Til Morning is less blue, frosted. Sugarpill Mochi is lighter. Sephora Curacao Punch is more glittery, brighter. MAC Robin’s Egg is more teal-hued.

Maldives Sky #5 is a medium-dark blue with a satin-like finish. It had decent to good color payoff, but it still had a drier, stiffer texture that made it hard to apply and harder to blend out. It is fairly comparable to Wet ‘n’ Wild Shimmer the Night Away #8. MAC Switch to Blue is similar but a cream product.

I had a lot of trouble working with this palette; so much so, that I really just gave up after awhile, because the colors weren’t applying with much intensity, consistently disappearing, and had no desire to blend with each other. It was an exhausting exercise in frustration. Wet ‘n’ Wild’s Color Icon formula is so much better than this one, and that formula is such a winner and well-reviewed that I’m truly mind-boggled why they’d use something else (and one that was inferior).  When I wore what I did manage to apply, it wore well for about six hours before starting to fade.  It’s such a shame, because the colors they chose would be beautiful together, if only they were pigmented, soft, and smooth. You’re better off taking your $4.99 and buying one of the existing Color Icon palettes.

The Glossover

palette

Wet 'n' Wild Maldives Sky Photo Op Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

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It's such a shame, because the colors they chose would be beautiful together, if only they were pigmented, soft, and smooth.

Product

4/10

Pigmentation

5/10

Texture

3.5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

2/5

Results
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Sunday, March 24th, 2013

Bobbi Brown Pastel Pink Blush
Bobbi Brown Pastel Pink Blush

Bobbi Brown Pastel Pink Blush ($25.00 for 0.13 oz.) is described as a “pink rose.” It’s a light-medium, cotton candy pink with blue undertones and a satiny finish–not quite matte but not quite a full-on sheen. NARS Gaiety is cooler-toned, bluer-based. NARS Angelika is darker, sparkly. MAC Pink Tea is more shimmery. MAC Peony Petal is cooler-toned. Tarte Dollface is a touch lighter. Bobbi Brown Nude Pink is more muted, slightly lighter.

Normally, I like Bobbi Brown’s blush range for a formula that’s mostly matte, pigmented, and blendable, but Pastel Pink was so dry and stiff. This was another shade from the collection that I had to scrape off layers of color just to get a “heavy” swatch of color.  I really had to swirl and pack on the color to get enough payoff to show up on my skin tone for photographs and testing. If you have any scratchy brushes, I’d recommend using it with this, because it will help dig into the product to yield more payoff.  While I can appreciate that fairer skin tones often prefer a blush that’s not so intense so they can use it with ease, the texture makes this one hard to use even if all you want is soft color.  It’s not very blendable and really needs to be buffed and worked into the skin as it has a tendency to stick and look splotchy.  It lasted for seven hours well, and after eight hours, there was noticeable fading.

The Glossover

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product

Pastel Pink

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I felt like I was in the twilight zone, because this blush almost felt as if I were trying to swatch from a plastic pan of color instead of a pan of powder. It did not want to yield anything! The texture is just so dry and stiff that it makes it such a total pain to use.

Product

4/10

Pigmentation

5.5/10

Texture

4/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

2.5/5

Results
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