What was the last product you bought in spite of poor reviews? How was it?

I can’t recall! I have the privilege of buying products as they release so I am typically reviewing before lots of review come out. But I love reading answers to these types of questions!

— Christine


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Erica Avatar

Tbh I don’t really look at reviews before purchasing an item. I buy what I want and couldn’t care less if another loved or hated it. I’m sure there are more that others hated but I bought still but the recent that come to mind is the ABH Subculture, Prism and Norvina palettes. Don’t care what others think but to me these are fantastic palettes. Love them all and use them regularly. All give me unique and beautiful looks. These are my go to palettes!

Mariella Avatar

There have been a few but the ones that comes to mind is the new(er) Smashbox trio in Showmance (it scored a B here, which isn’t bad, I guess) and also the ABH Mario palette. I was so conflicted about that one but I’m glad I got it. FWIW, the reviews here are pretty much the only ones that carry any weight with me when I’m shopping. Yours are the only reviews I really take into account at all because they are the most reliable and trying to sort through all the gushing from a lot of other bloggers and reviewers just clogs up my head but doesn’t really serve me any good purpose at all.

Sue Avatar

Got the Morphe palettes Bling Boss and Dark Magic the other day, and the internet seems totally mixed on these. Best palettes for the money ever. Worst palettes ever. The mattes don’t work but the shimmers do. The shimmers are terrible but the mattes are good. They’re all re-done palettes. They’re old palettes that were supposedly destroyed.

I don’t know what to think, except the shadows seem usable with finger swatches only; I can’t pick up anything with a brush or applicator. Weird. Still debating whether to return them to Ulta or not.

Alice Avatar

I generally won’t buy anything that gets below a B here or that people in the PhyrraNyx facebook group say they’ve had bad experiences with.

I DID however buy the Lunatick Vampira palette and UD vice glitter topcoat in Monarchy. Vampira was just as bad as everyone said, swatches nice but applied muddy and sheer. Monarchy works for me because I use my fingers to apply it rather than the brush and I always use it as a top coat.

Mindy Avatar

I don’t think the necessarily got poor reviews, but definitely “meh,” but I have a few of the Benefit They’re Real eyeshadow duos. Yes, there is some fallout with a couple of them and a lot of people hate the applicator, but I really like them and they are my go to when I need to get out the door or play it more neutral.

Alecto Avatar

I’m trying to remember if I’ve bought anything that had a poor review. What’s a poor review from Temptalia? “C” and below? (I don’t read or watch reviews anywhere else.)

I just went back and looked at a few purchases this year that I thought I remembered as being graded lower, but they’re all in the B range. Stumped on this one. I feel sure I bought something that was graded lower on Temptalia, but I can’t think of what it would be.

Christine Avatar

I feel like it depends on the category, though C and below seems safe to say was definitely not a GOOD review (unless one was looking for some opposite that it was rated against, e.g. sheer blush that was supposed to be pigmented or perhaps a 24-hour wear claim wreaked havoc on the rating) from me – not when there are so many As and Bs to choose from.

Thu Avatar

I bought the Subculture palette, and actually, seeing the problems people were having with fallout and powderiness gave me a heads-up, so I was very gentle when using it myself. And it’s fine, as long as I’m careful about it.

Serena Avatar

KVD Glimmer Veil in Televator: it’s perfect on me, lasts ages without touchups, draws heaps of compliments every time I wear it. I’m super glad I bought a backup before I decided not to buy her products anymore.

Celesta Avatar

ABH Subculture palette, because I love the color scheme. The reviews did help me to know how to treat the eyeshadows and it works fine for me. The shimmers in the palette, especially the duochrome ones, did dry out and I can barely pick up the pigment now, however. I still really like the mattes and have dupes for the duochromes tho, so it’s not a big deal IMO.

Seraphine Avatar

Here’s the dumbest one: Too Faced White Chocolate Chip Palette (I know, I know!)

I had found it for about $8 (possibly Nordstrom Rack?) awhile back. It is as awful as the review said it was (well, duh), but I do like the matte gray shade (not great, but usable). A big thunk on my head for that purchase!

Blue tea Avatar

Seraphine – I bought this palette too despite all the hate – but I am so glad I did! It’s not my favorite palette by any stretch, but I do like it because: I am very fair so the colors show up on me; I typically wear one shade of shadow at a time, so no muddiness in blending; and I have had no issues with fading or creasing. My only gripe is there are a couple of shades that are very chalky and with little pigment, such as Lavender Cake, which was one of my favorites, but 11 workable daytime shades out of 14 is a success to me!

Agona Avatar

Tarte’s Buried Treasure—it got an F here but mixed reviews elsewhere. I use it for work and I love the sheer shimmeriness of it. It’s sheerness is the only reason I can get away with shimmer for work and I love it for that reason.

AB Avatar

I’ve never knowingly bought something that reviewed poorly or even less than a B- here.

I did purchase MJ highliner without checking here first, to find it after the fact it got a D+; I understand why it got that rating, but on me I find it works out ok for me.

That’s a fluke though, as even when I’ve bought something with a B+ I’ve ended up feeling at best so-so about it (ex: Smashbox Cover Shot palette in Ablaze).

Nicole D Avatar

I don’t necessarily wait for the reviews if I really want to buy a product. Also, I don’t buy many makeup products in a year and I usually plan my buying. I prefer to buy from brands I’ve tried in the past and which worked for me. For instance, I check some European beauty platforms (blogs, Instagram) towards the end of the year; they usually have the info re: release of the new collections from brands like Chanel, Dior, Guerlain, etc. way in advance of the North America so I can plan my buying accordingly. Usually when these collections launch in UK, they are available the day after at Hudson’s Bay and sometimes at Holt Renfrew. I can’t afford to wait for the reviews as they sell out by the time the first reviews come out (i.e. Chanel). So if I really want a product from a new collection, I trust my instinct and buy it and I’ve never been disappointed so far.

The fact that a product gets a high mark does not mean that I like it. A product may get an A from a reviewer but I might not like the fact that it’s too glittery for my taste or I don’t like the colour or some of the ingredients or where it’s made. It depends on the environment where the product is tested (if the product is tested indoor vs outdoor as well, especially for foundations and powders). It’s also true that I can’t recall having bought products knowing they got bad reviews from people I trust.

Pearl Avatar

I have happily been in a makeup slump as of late, so nothing is really exciting me and I’ve just been shopping my stash. I can’t remember the last thing I bought despite poor reviews but if I were to do that, it would probably be for MAC. They are one stop shopping for me and they are the one brand for which I don’t wait for reviews. BUT – I am way, way more discerning now in my collecting, so things like Nicopanda and Jeremy Scott, even Aliyah (don’t hate me – I had a terrible experience with the Selena collection. I’m sure MAC learned from that as well but it was such a terrible buying experience that I will never go through that again.) just passed right on by.

I’m beginning to think that I’m only interested in holiday and summer releases from brands, anymore. I don’t like the pastel-washed spring themes and only get so much mileage out of vampy fall looks. And this megaglo highlighter trend . . .not for me either. No shade, just am really aware of what will and won’t work with my preferences on my skin. I guess t’s just going to be holiday glitz and summery bronze for me!

Maggie Avatar

Milk Makeup Blur Foundation. I have a problem with foundations oxidizing on me. And this one has a lot of reviews claiming that and annoyance with it needing to be shook up.

However it’s now my go-to foundation. I mix with a skincare serum to apply and it looks amazing.

Deborah S. Avatar

I don’t remember having purchased too many things that received poor reviews. I do know that I picked up the Smashbox Photo Edit Trio in Nudie Pic Fair and I believe they received mixed reviews here on Temptalia. I purchased after seeing Alana Davidson do an eye look with it on YT. It performed okay for me. It wasn’t stellar but since it was a trio of neutrals it worked for a quick look but not long after I purchased it I went to use it and it was completely smashed. I know it was okay when I put it into the drawer but I don’t know if closing the drawer caused it to crumble, (I don’t think I close drawers that forcefully) but it wasn’t salvageable. I have not repurchased.
I know I purchased a Dior Quint last year that received poor reviews but can’t remember which one it was. I remember commenting that Dior shadows work for me regardless of how they are reviewed. I use them a lot and have probably 20 or so and haven’t had issues. I think that to a certain extent, individual preference plays a large role in whether a poorly rated product is going to work for someone. There are lots of shadows that I like simply because of the reason they got poor reviews such as poorly pigmented or wear time. I don’t need my eye shadow to last more than 5-6 hours and most of the time, not even that. I am retired and I rarely go anywhere requiring that type of longevity so if the palette has shades I like and the formula blends on the lid okay then I am happy. As far as pigmentation goes, I like softer eye shadow looks most of the time.

Nancy T Avatar

For poorly reported on products that were fixed by their respective companies: ABH Subculture, possibly Dominique Lemonade, too. So far, I’ve been able to use both without much of an issue. ABH SC very cautiously, but have consistently gotten beautiful looks from it. Dominique Lemonade Palette is a stunning and unique color palette, whose only real issue I’ve found is that the shimmers seem heavy on silicone. A little “slippery”, yet not heavy or dense, either. Only one shade has given me an issue so far, Peach.

For a product that not only didn’t get exactly glowing reviews, nor was it ever improved upon: UD Naked Smoky. Almost got hit by lightning 10-15 minutes after I bought it, and this palette seriously wasn’t worth getting soaked head to toe, nearly being fried, having to freeze my butt off going home on the bus, or the price. It sits in a drawer, hardly ever brought out to play!

Astrid Avatar

I rarely buy a product that reviews poorly. However, I do remember buying some of the Urban Decay heavy metal eyeliners when they were on sale for 50% off.

Also, I don’t know if this particularly counts, but the Mac Nicopanda collection reviewed poorly as a whole (as do most Mac collections nowadays). I did buy a lip gloss from the collection because I’m a sucker for glitter lips, and that particular lip gloss had a decent review.

Chelsea Avatar

The Becca Apres Ski palette! I hesitated cause of the bad reviews, then bought it on sale. I actually really like it, but don’t use it as much as I thought I would.

Yolanda Avatar

Too Faced Sweet Peach palette. I waited a long time to get it, I even swatched it in store and thought the shadows swatched terribly and didn’t show up well on my skin tone. But for some reason, I had to have it. I’ve probably used it all of 5 times because it is one of the worst palettes I’ve purchased-and I paid full price-so I ended up depotting the few shades that are okay and chucked the rest.

Tiffany K Avatar

So interesting! I love that palette and find it great for use every day. The one thing I could see someone not liking about it is the scent, but I don’t mind it.

Holly Miller Avatar

The Urban Decay 24/7 Waterline pencils. They work well for me. They don’t cloud my contacts. They don’t stay as long as the Marc Jacobs Highliners, but I was allergic to those. Best option I’ve found that don’t irritate my eyes.

Reka Avatar

I bought one of the Kat Von D blush duos (though, in my defense, it was something like $4) and Christine was in no way wrong about the poor pigmentation! It seriously sucks, the swatches that look good must have been very heavily layered. On the other hand, the color seems to be a lot more interesting than the pictures were here and closer to the “ultra violet” and “lilac” in Kat’s description (maybe it fades nicely?) I’m actually glad I got it because the color is wonderful (and a surprise), but I would have been pissed if I’d spent anything over $10 on it. The only one I actually wanted was Morticia and Gomez (old goth here), but I think I’ve backed off from competing for it as it’s price never goes down much and now 100% positive that the pigmentation sucks (as opposed 95% positive from Christina’s review).

Molly Avatar

The Urban Decay Backtalk palette got a lot of negative reviews for poor color payoff and a powdery formula. I purchased it anyway because I loved the colors. I haven’t had the same complications that so many people claimed. It might be that I’m extremely fair? I really enjoy using that product.

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