Jan 20, 2016

REVIEW & SWATCHES | MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette (Limited Edition)

15 Artist Shadow Palette

 This 15-shade palette featuring the breakthrough Artist Shadow formula lets you create endless eye looks with infinite combinations. The advanced gel-powder formula blended with ultrafine pigments provides vivid color payoff and superior blendablilty. An artists favorite, Artist Shadow leaves a smooth, even finish that gives lids super-saturated, lasting color. Arranged into five easy-to-apply color trios, this extensive collection ranges from soft, subtle neutrals to daring bolds and brights. The included step-by-step leaflet lets you effortlessly create endless holiday looks. 




Shades:


          I550 Olive Gray         I524 Pinky Beige        I916 Frosted Mauve      D236 Lagoon Blue      S102 Onyx 
          S522 Pinky Nude      D826 Fig                 D830 Black Rose        S228 Petrol Blue         S114 Pearl Gray
          I528 Pearl               I662 Amber Brown     I922 Electric Purple     ME216 Electric Blue      ME122 Snow 

 Size:  15 x 0.06 oz

Price: US $59.00
($221 value)








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The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette retails for $59 for 15 x 0.06 oz of product. For reference typical small eyeshadows on the market are 0.05 oz each - think MAC and Urban Decay eyeshadow pans.

The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette is a higher priced palette, however, it is still competitively priced alongside other mid-end brands on the market. The single shadows from Make Up For Ever are $21 for 0.07 ~ 0.08 oz of product - which means this palette contains a product value of $221 (0.9 oz).  

One thing to note, is that this palettes does not come with a bonus item such as an eyeshadow brush or deluxe primer sample, etc. Some more palettes do include these add-ons which somewhat 'balance out' the price. There is, however, a step-by-step guide/look book which shows a few inspired looks with guides on how to achieve each look from the shades in the palette.



 


 
The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette is available for purchase in store and online at the following location:
  • Exclusively at Sephora Stores and on the Sephora website - LIMITED EDITION

 
 
The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette comes in a black hard cardboard packaging with a beautiful bright orange glittery front cover.

The glittery cover it not at all gritty to the touch since it has a glossy overcoat that secures the glitter in place....bonus since the glitter won't flake off and cause a sparkly mess! The front cover also has the Make Up For Ever brand name and the *new* red lip with brush logo which I personally adore. 

On the back of the palette is a grid of the shadow numbers and function - eyeshadow or blush (there is one 'blush' shade in the palette) - along with the size and company/manufacturer details. The shadow grid lines up with the shades inside the palette but I would prefer if the numbers were printed inside the palette instead.  

Inside, the shadows are laid out in 3 rows/5 columns on a basic matte black background...which gets really messy over time and is difficult to wipe clean. The 5 columns are arranged in trios to coordinate with the included step-by-step guide. 

There step-by-step guide/look book, included in the box, shows 5 different looks based on each set of 3 shadows. You can use this as inspiration when determining how to incorporate and mix the shades in the palette.

The palette itself is quite weighted (heavier than I expected) and is held closed by a magnetized tab. There is also a medium sized mirror in the lid that I don't particularly find useful due to the size.



 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Front Cover ��


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 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Back ��


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 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Palette + Step-by-Step Guide (Overall View) ��


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 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Palette + Step-by-Step Guide (Overall View) ��


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 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette

��  Step-by-Step Guide ��


 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Step-by-Step Guide (Nude LOOK) ��


 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Step-by-Step Guide (Bronze LOOK) ��


 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Step-by-Step Guide (Orchid Aura LOOK) ��


 MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Step-by-Step Guide (Mosiac Blue LOOK) ��


  MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette
��  Step-by-Step Guide (Smoky LOOK) ��





 
"The advanced gel-powder formula blended with ultrafine pigments provides vivid color payoff and superior blendablilty. An artist’s favorite, Artist Shadow leaves a smooth, even finish that gives lids super-saturated, lasting color."

COLORS/SHADES
The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette has a good variety of shades with a mix of neutrals with bright, bold shades mixed in. The selection of colors are more on the neutral cool side of the spectrum so if you prefer pinks, greens, golds, etc., you probably won't like the shades here. There are a few highlight shades and smokey shades also mixed in for good measure.


TEXTURE & FINISH 
The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette included various finishes from satin and iridescent to metallic to diamond from the Make Up For Ever line up. The one finish that is missing is matte which I think should be included in any palette to make it an all-rounder.  


PIGMENTATION 
The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette  are overall nicely pigmented with/without a primer or eyeshadow base. 

APPLICATION & WEAR 
The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadows have a great formula which applies well, blends easily and wears beautifully throughout the day without fading and fallout. 

While I had no issues using natural or synthetic bristle brushes with these eyeshadows, I did find that a more densely packed brush worked best for the non-matte shades. Also, be careful not to press too hard on the eyeshadows as they can get a bit crumbly and more difficult to apply.The non-matte shades also have a tendency to get crepe-y so less is more - start with a little and build up from there.

The diamond, iridescent, metallic and satin shades do have a strong silicone (dimethicone) base which allows for slip and high sheen. However, this can also leave to clumping of the product and even creasing. I always recommend using an eyeshadow primer with oily lids and in this case I highly recommend it! Personally I didn't have issues with creasing and I do have ridiculously oily eyelids!




 
The MAKE UP FOR EVER 15 Artist Shadow Palette is a great way to jump build your Make Up For Ever collection. The price is phenomenal when you consider the individual costs of each shadow. I also really like the packaging - minimal but beautiful. Overall, I think this palette that will appeal to the majority of tastes since it includes neutrals and pops of bright shades. I only wish they included some mattes this time around...I mean come on they have an abundance of them in the range.



GRADE: A-


Have you tried this palette?  Interested?


 




(after the break…)


Jan 14, 2016

REVIEW & SWATCHES ♫ ⋆NEW⋆ from Urban Decay ♫ UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks


We developed everything in the limited-edition UD | Gwen Stefani collection in close collaboration with Gwen. Wende and our product development team spent countless hours at Gwen’s house, talking makeup and working with her on every detail of the collection.

Gwen even directed the packaging design, which was inspired by her love of black-and-white graphic prints and antique gold accents. We created everything with Gwen, filling a void by developing all of the perfect shades she always wished she had in her collection. And with these products in your arsenal, you’ll have all the essentials to recreate her signature looks for yourself.





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LIPSTICKS
(8 SHADES)




Gwen knows how to rock a bold lip. Luckily, she was game to get down and dirty with us to mix her perfect shades and ideal textures. She’s worn every lip color in the book, and these are her must-haves. The lineup: eight NEW shades (including two exclusives you can only find here)—from a bright red matte to a shimmering sheer nude and a creamy deep fuchsia. This collection includes our first-ever shade in a finish we’ve dubbed Mega Matte—a super-intense matte that lays down a lot of color in one coat. Every shade features our proprietary Pigment Infusion System™—for a super-creamy texture, rich payout and superior color dispersion. 

 Ex-Girlfriend - sheer nude-rose with pink shimmer
Firebird - deep fuchsia cream
714 - bright red mega matte
Rock Steady - deep wine red cream
Spiderweb - satin red cream
Wonderland - dark pink-red cream
Phone Call - sheer bright pink (UD Exclusive)
Plaid - sheer deep berry (UD Exclusive)

Price: $18
Size: 0.11 oz.








The UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks retail for $18 and contain 0.11 oz of product. Interestingly these lipsticks are actually $4 cheaper than the existing lipsticks in the Urban Decay lineup and contain 0.02 oz more product.


 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks come in a black two piece case and tubes with gold abstract striping with the UD x Gwen Stefani logo printed in the middle. 

The lipstick packaging is kept closed by integral tabs at the base of the tube that fit into the case (cap). The bottom ledge of the tubes are thin so gripping them to remove the caps is a bit awkward. 

The inside tubes are all black with the Urban Decay logo embossed on the side. The lipstick bullets themselves are the traditional shape and are also embossed with the UD logo in the center.

On the bottom of each tube is a color coded label with lipstick name - it's quite handy when grabbing a shade from a size-able collection. 






 
"Every shade features our proprietary Pigment Infusion System™—for a super-creamy texture, rich payout and superior color dispersion."

COLORS/SHADES
The UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks comes in 8 shades of pinks and reds with a sheer nude tossed in for good measure. The shade selection came as no surprise to me based on Gwen Stefani's personal makeup style. 

There are a few varying shades of red here so I don't think any one person needs them ALL but for sure you can find a shade here that is right up your alley.

TEXTURE & FINISH 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks feature various finishes from a Mega Matte (new finish to Urban Decay) to creams and sheer finishes. 


PIGMENTATION 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks have various levels of pigmentation based on the shade and finish - see more under the swatches.


APPLICATION & WEAR 


The UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks vary in wear time based on the shade and finish - see more under the swatches. Overall they all glide on smoothly without skipping or being patchy.




 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Lipsticks are the highlight and most versatile part of the entire collection. There are shades here that will suit the full spectrum of skin tones. If you are not interested in bold red shades then these may not be up your alley...but if you are on the market for a great red tone or you just love red shades on your lips, then this collection is sure to have a fun shade for you.



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Jan 12, 2016

REVIEW & SWATCHES ♫ ⋆NEW⋆ from Urban Decay ♫ UD | Gwen Stefani Blush Palette


We developed everything in the limited-edition UD | Gwen Stefani collection in close collaboration with Gwen. Wende and our product development team spent countless hours at Gwen’s house, talking makeup and working with her on every detail of the collection.

Gwen even directed the packaging design, which was inspired by her love of black-and-white graphic prints and antique gold accents. We created everything with Gwen, filling a void by developing all of the perfect shades she always wished she had in her collection. And with these products in your arsenal, you’ll have all the essentials to recreate her signature looks for yourself.




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BLUSH PALETTE



 



Gwen let us in on her best tricks (she’s big on defining and highlighting), and together we created her perfect blush palette. Get her glowing, contoured skin with six shades of blush, bronzer and highlighter that are versatile enough for any skin tone. Our extremely blendable, finely milled Afterglow formula goes on sheer and provides eight long hours of wearable, streak-free color. Luxurious and lightweight, it has a soft, creamy texture that always applies beautifully and feels amazing. 

We developed everything in the limited-edition UD | Gwen Stefani collection in close collaboration with Gwen. Wende and our product development team spent countless hours at Gwen’s house, talking makeup and working with her on every detail of the collection.

Gwen even directed the packaging design, which was inspired by her love of black-and-white graphic prints and antique gold accents. We created everything with Gwen, filling a void by developing all of the perfect shades she always wished she had in her collection. And with these products in your arsenal, you’ll have all the essentials to recreate her signature looks for yourself.

Shades:


 Cherry - light pink satin
Easy - deep rose w/gold shimmer
Angel - champagne-nude shimmer
Lo-Fi - soft bronze matte
Hush - medium pink w/gold shimmer
OC - soft pink w/peach shift

Price: $45
Size: 6 x 0.09 oz.



 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Blush Palette retails for $45 for 6 blushes each containing 0.09 oz of product. This price is typical for blush palettes in the lineup of mid-end cosmetics. You are getting 6 shades in this palette for the price of less than 2 full sized blushes from Urban Decay.


 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Blushes are housed in a hinged white plastic palette with a golden multi-circle cutout design in the lid. There is also a faux brushed metal plate secured on the front of the palette with the UD x Gwen Stefani logo.

Inside there is a large sized mirror in the lid with "Magic's in the Makeup" written in gold at the lower right-hand or left-hand corner - depends on how you view it really.  There are 6 blush shades arranged in 2 rows of 3 on a shiny black insert. Each blush shade had the name printed in pink at the top. 

The palette is kept closed by a magnetized tab at the front on the palette. On the back of the palette is a label with product details. 




 
"Get her glowing, contoured skin with six shades of blush, bronzer and highlighter that are versatile enough for any skin tone. Our extremely blendable, finely milled Afterglow formula goes on sheer and provides eight long hours of wearable, streak-free color. Luxurious and lightweight, it has a soft, creamy texture that always applies beautifully and feels amazing."

COLORS/SHADES
The UD | Gwen Stefani Blush Palette has 6 shades that are meant to be used as blushes, bronzer and highlighters. These are very subtle and subdued shades that would suit the neutral lover out there. 

However, these shades are NOT versatile enough for any skin tone as the product information states. These are best suited for light to light-medium skin tones rather than the full spectrum. On darker skin tones these will translate mostly as highlighters and perhaps not the most flattering on warm undertones.

TEXTURE & FINISH 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Blush Palette includes various finishes from matte to satin and shimmery frost shades. The shimmery shades have visible glitter particles so I wouldn't say they are particularly finely milled. 


PIGMENTATION 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Blush Palette features the Urban Decay Afterglow formula which declares a sheer blendable finish and I find this to be spot on....it is sheer and takes quite a few layers for the shades to show up on darker skin. This is not necessarily an issue since when it comes to blush colors less is mostly best. However, these are again best suited for light to light-medium skin tones rather than the full skin tone spectrum.


APPLICATION & WEAR 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Blushes are decent shades with sheer color payoff and are blendable without being overly patchy. They wear well for 5-6  hours without fading and then fading is minimal thereafter. 




 
The UD | Gwen Stefani Blush Palette is a decent blush palette in gorgeous packaging. I am not particularly impressed by the shade selection of the formula of the palette. This one is a potential skip unless you are in love with the subtlety of the shades and/or are of light to light-medium skin tone.


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