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Mariella's Reviews

Cashmere Coat

Sephora
Review posted 1 week ago
product

Sadly, for no reason that makes any sense, Sephora decided to discontinue this wonderful basic. I rely on Cashmere Coat to define my crease when I'm wearing a light/more natural eye look because it never looks heavy or obvious but still does a very good job of contouring. If I'm wearing a darker eye but don't want the whole eye area to look like two black sockets in my face, Cashmere Coat is, again, great for subtle definition and for blending out. The pan is huge, which means I won't have to worry about replacing this for years and years. Sephora has some really excellent shadows but the problem is that they discontinue them without any warning and they get rid of some of their best stuff while retaining shades that aren't necessarily as wearable or as well-performing, which is the case with Cashmere Coat.

Buildable
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Great-value
Travel-friendly

Infrared

Smashbox
Review posted 2 months ago

I am not a fan of matte lipsticks. For the most part, I just don't like how they feel on my lips (dry and parching) or how they can look, showing up every flaw. But I got this in the shade Infrared based on the stellar reviews on MakeupAlley and I am really pleased with it. For starters, it isn't quite as drying and uncomfortable feeling as some matte lipsticks can be. It is such a glorious, flattering red that I am willing to make the effort to wear this (using a lip scrub and Bite's lip mask overnight to prep my lips). The colour is a true red with no traces of orange and while it is bright, it is very wearable. I still wear this with a bit of balm underneath both for comfort and because I like the look of a slightly more "juicy" lip. And while I wouldn't say this lipstick is moisturizing, for a matte lipstick, it IS "non-drying".

Highly-pigmented
Smooth
Thick
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Long-wearing

Kush

Urban Decay
Review posted 2 months ago
product

I missed out on MAC's Fresh Flare (in their very first Pro Longwear eyeshadow release) and really regretted it. Kush is a very similar colour - a beautiful clear green that is bright but still very wearable. I can tone this down for work or just for my more subdued style by pairing it with mid-toned brown shades like MAC Wedge or UD Naked or Buck and end up with a look that, for me, is a bit different and more colourful than my usual eye looks but still within my comfort zone. I have this in one of UD's larger palettes (BOS 3, maybe) so it's not the most travel friendly but that's not a big deal to me.

Buildable
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing

Duraline

Inglot
Review posted 3 months ago

Such a great, must-have product. It rescues cream shadows that dry out and makes them usable again. It is a shadow transformer, allowing you to turn any eye shadow into a liner. Also, if you mix a drop with your foundation, it will make your foundation longer wearing. It's affordable and has so many uses.

Easy-to-use
Effective
Must-have
Travel-friendly

Winter Sky in London

Sephora
Review posted 4 months ago

The actual name of this eyeshadow is "Winter Sky in London". How evocative is that? I think the name was at least half of my reason for buying this but it's a great eyeshadow and an example of how excellent some of Sephora's eyeshadows really are. This is a beautiful shimmery dark grey but the shimmer finish keeps it from looking too dark or intense. Great pigmentation and blendability. I've had this shadow since it first launched, so probably 3 years (it's now June of 2017) but, sadly, Sephora has included this beauty in its most recent batch of shadows that are marked down and on their way to being discontinued so I would suggest getting this at the sale price while it's still available. Like all of Sephora's single shadows, it's packaged so it can be easily taken out of and even returned to its "case", making it ideal for travel since you can put it into a Z palette, move it around and then put it back into its single container over and over again.

Highly-pigmented
Buttery
Creamy
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Great-value
Travel-friendly

Photo Finish Primer Water

Smashbox
Review posted 4 months ago

I'll admit that when I first saw this primer "water" spray, I thought it was a gimmick. I got a travel size to start with and I was surprised to find that it's actually a really effective primer that helps keep my foundation or CC cream from breaking down by the end of the day. The downside would be waiting for this to dry enough that I can move ahead with applying my foundation product and my eye makeup. The mist is very fine and distributes nicely but I always end up with lots of this on my eyelids and so have to wait for it to set. I'm keeping my little travel bottle to refill it from the full size so that this can be "travel friendly" (and the plastic cap on the lid helps in this regard too). I'm not sure if this can also be used as a setting spray and plan to try that one of these days but as a primer, as I said, I was really delighted with the results.

Lightweight
Long-wearing
Great-value
Travel-friendly

Rosy Cheeks

MAC
Review posted 5 months ago
product

Oh my, oh my....this is my new favourite blush (among a whole bunch of "formerly favourite" blushes). I was waiting for my local MAC store to restock and was unsure whether to get this one or Wrapped Candy so tried one on each side of my face and Wrapped Candy turned surprisingly warm on me so the choice was an easy one. This blush is SO beautiful and natural looking on me and has the loveliest finish - not overly frosty or reflective but somewhat sheer and with a dewy looking sheen. I do plan to get 2 more of these (probably including Wrapped Candy, though I do have several dupes for that one, and certainly Into the Pink) but I think of all of the new releases, this was the best choice for me. I was planning on getting some of the Becca blushes but these from MAC are actually better colours for me and they're also a few bucks less costly so it's "win/win".

Creamy
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Luminous
Great-value
Travel-friendly

Violeta

Anastasia
Review posted 5 months ago
product

I am so surprised by how much I like this shade, which I thought would go untouched in the "Mario" palette. It looks so warm and brick-red brown but when I apply this, it "cools down" and becomes the most terrific shade of blackened, shadowy brown. A total surprise and a winner.

Buildable
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Great-value
Travel-friendly

Thunderbird

Urban Decay
Review posted 7 months ago
product

I waited and waited for Thunderbird to arrive in-store at my local Sephora and it was so worth the wait. This is a rich, glowing dark bronze/brown and has the black base that Christine described. The beauty of this black base is that if I pat and press Thunderbird onto my mobile lid and then use a fluffy blending or crease brush to buff out the edges, I get a murky "almost black" shade in my crease. Using just this one shadow gives the effect of having used 2 shades for a sultry effect. Buxom Bronzed Bod is listed as a dupe for Thunderbird. I have it, and it has the same effect - intense bronze when patted or pressed but blend it out and you get the black base acting as a great crease/contour shade.

Highly-pigmented
Creamy
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Great-value

Mysterious Influence

MAC
Review posted 7 months ago
product

While the idea behind these might seem like a gimmick (and it is) and you don't get a lot of product for your money (you don't), I love this shadow and I'm sorry I missed out on Dynamically Charged (it was sold out when I picked up Mysterious Influence). I have a real weakness for this type of colour - murky bronzey olive type shades - and even though I have about 5 dupes of this, I just couldn't resist. It applies and blends so nicely and even works with regular shadows that don't have the magnetic thing going on.

Buildable
Buttery
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Too-little-product

Hell Ya

Smashbox
Review posted 7 months ago
product

Probably my favourite colour in a palette of favourite colours (I love the Cover Shot Smoky palette!). This is such a flattering and wearable shade of brown for me. It's not surprising that I have several of the listed dupes for it, as I just love eyeshadows in this colour range. The texture is very smooth and it blends like a dream. The slightly reflective finish is very flattering.

Buildable
Creamy
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Great-value
Travel-friendly

Habanera #1

NARS
Review posted 9 months ago

I've owned the Habanera duo for years. I'm pretty sure it was the first Nars eyeshadow duo I ever purchased. The left side (#1) is a watery, dreamy silvery aqua shade - very cool and watery looking and a colour I especially love wearing in the heat of summer because of its cool, reflective finish. While it seems a unique shade (and is, in many ways), two virtually identical dupes for it are UD's Money (LE but it's been in a few palettes, so you might already have it if you own either Mariposa or BOS 3) and Nars Parallax (from the Hardwired grouping which might be LE). This isn't a neutral or "natural" looking shade but it really is lovely when the weather is hot and steamy and you want a look for your eyes that isn't dull or warm looking and you can hardly bear to put much on your face.

Highly-pigmented
Buttery
Creamy
Smooth
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing

Moonstone

Becca
Review posted 9 months ago
product

I love this stuff mixed with my foundation or CC cream. I love how it lightens the texture of IT CC Cream, making it apply more easily and effortlessly and also imparting a bit of dewy glow. What's funny is that I also have the "Illumination" formula of IT CC Cream but I much prefer using the original and adding a half pump of Moonstone to a pump of the CC cream. I have also used Moonstone as a highlighter in the traditional way - cheekbones and other high planes of my face and it is very easy to use this way and blends in seamlessly. A really lovely and sort of multi-purpose highlighter.

Buildable
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Long-wearing
Luminous
Natural
Travel-friendly

Master Palette by Mario

Anastasia
Review posted 10 months ago
palette

I hem'd and ha'd about getting this palette and was really on the fence about it. My main motivation for wanting it was that I have 5 or 6 ABH shadows I really like and I also regret not getting the Self-Made (as opposed to self-made) palette. My only complaint with the Mario palette (besides the Kardashian connection - I personally abhor that entire bunch) is that there is no light ivory highlight in the palette. Several of the mid-toned warm shades are similar enough that they could have taken out one of them (maybe Hollywood) and put in a true brow-bone highlight shade, which make this a perfect travel palette as well as an every day one. As it is now, I have to reach for something else to highlight my brows and brighten my tear-duct area. A few of these are prone to a bit of fall-out, but nothing dreadful and it's easy to remove (unlike Urban Decay Maui Wowie's fall-out, for example). I'm a huge fan of murky neutral eyeshadows so colours like Bronx and Paris lure me in every time. I also love sheen so Marina, Muse and 5th Avenue just make me happy. I really enjoy this palette but one little tweak and it would have been perfect.

Buildable
Highly-pigmented
Buttery
Creamy
Easy-to-apply
Long-wearing
Easy-to-use-product
Great-gift
Great-value
Travel-friendly
Versatile

I550 Olive Gray

Make Up For Ever
Review posted 10 months ago
swatch

When MUFE launched their newly reformulated eyeshadows a few years ago, I went a bit "overboard" buying them and it sort of goes without saying that I loaded up on the sorts of neutrals that are pretty much the core of my collection but they are the shades I use 99% of the time. I think Olive Gray was one of my very first purchases and I may even have 2 of these (a single and in the Nudes You Need palette?). This is a great eyeshadow that can be applied more heavily for a slightly darker look or more lightly for an every day, easy look. This shadow is one of those wonderful "one and done" shades because you can use it lightly across the lid, more heavily in the crease/outer corner and then blend it and buff it out to almost nothing toward the brow bone.

Buildable
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Travel-friendly

Gritty & Glow

The Estee Edit
Review posted 10 months ago
palette

I was a little obsessed with buying this duo of palettes and didn't want to miss out on it so I didn't even wait til the VIB Rouge sale. While I could happily have passed on the face palette, I am really happy with the eyeshadows. The colours are GORGEOUS in colour, finish (such lush sheen) and pigmentation. They are smooth in texture and apply beautifully. My only complaint would be the absence of a brow highlight colour (is this a new trend? the last couple of palettes I've bought or considered buying are all lacking in a nice pearly beige or satiny ivory highlight shade). And I do have more black eyeshadows than I could ever need so replacing the black with an highlight shade would have worked for me, though the black in this palette (Mood) is rich and lovely and because it's not matte, it is a bit easier to wear and use to darken up my lash line or outer corner. My 2 favourite and most used shades are Swerve, which is a very reflective, almost liquid looking dark golden shade, and Burn, which Sephora describes as "burgundy bronze" but I find it more of a rich bronzed brown. It's not "burgundy" enough to look red. The other shades are all stunners. The "face" shades are all eye safe and can be used as shadows as well and the lightest shade (Snowlit) is great as a highlight but it is very frosted. I really do not need any more face highlighters but wanted the shadows so much that I'm willing to use these though the dark ones are too dark to work as highlighters but too reflective to use as bronzers. But I think they would be absolutely stunning on darker skin tones. And I plan to use them on bare legs in the summer.

Highly-pigmented
Buttery
Creamy
Easy-to-apply
Great-gift
Great-value
Travel-friendly
Versatile

Bronzed Bod

Buxom
Review posted 11 months ago
product

Bronzed Bod is such an unusual shade. When I pat/press it onto my mobile lid, it is a beautiful rosy, bronze shade and highly reflective and shiny. BUT...when I blend it upward toward my crease, the colour changes almost unbelievably. It becomes a cool dark greyish brown smokey shade, not unlike Anastasia's eyeshadow in Smoke or MAC's discontinued Keep Your Cool or Legendary Black. It really is surprising but also wonderful since I can totally skip a crease/outer corner shadow and just use Bronzed Bod and something for my inner corners if I want a lighter shade there. The texture of this shadow is great, as is the wear-time (I always use primer, however) and it blends easily though, as I say, the "shade shifting" is an unforeseen delight for me. If you want the pan colour on the crease, that is easily achieved - just pat and press rather than blend, blend, blend.... MAGIC!

Highly-pigmented
Buttery
Creamy
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Great-value
Travel-friendly

Cashmere

Viseart
Review posted 11 months ago
palette

I received this from my kids for Mothers' Day and I've been loving it ever since. These shadows are just my sort of colours and they apply beautifully and look elegant and sophisticated. It's a perfect palette for travel because it's so small and yet so jam packed with everything I need for how I want to look 95% of the time. (and now that I've written a review, I'm hoping that the "vanity" icon will actually show up for me, even though this IS in my Vanity! Weirdly on-going problem for me).

Buildable
Highly-pigmented
Buttery
Creamy
Easy-to-apply
Long-wearing
Easy-to-use-product
Great-gift
Travel-friendly
Versatile

Constructivist

MAC
Review posted 11 months ago
product

When I use Constructivist, I ask myself why I ever wasted my money on Chanel's Ebloui. Constructivist is one of those reliable, easy to wear products that is a great, not too red brown and is wonderful as a "one and done" lid shade (I blend it up into the crease and fade it out from there) and it also makes a terrific base for other shadows if you want to give them a bit of a boost. And unlike Ebloui (which I think was discontinued not too long after the Id'O shadows first launced), it lasts in the jar for years without drying out.

Buildable
Highly-pigmented
Smooth
Blendable
Easy-to-apply
Crease-resistant
Long-wearing
Great-value

Tartelette Tease

Tarte
Review posted 11 months ago
palette

This is a great little palette for travel and for every day as well. It's small but "mighty" and great for creating neutral looks from natural to more intense. The two middle shades are shimmery but not madly glittery and all 6 shades are wearable and of very good quality. I like that there's not a lot of wasted space as well.

Buildable
Buttery
Creamy
Easy-to-apply
Long-wearing
Easy-to-use-product
Great-gift
Great-value
Travel-friendly
Versatile