As the summer approaches, my thoughts turn to bullet-proofing my makeup to last the course of a hot, tiring day.  I don’t know about you but despite my dry skin, the first to make a dash for freedom is any and all makeup down the bridge of my nose.  Then my eyeliner melts into my tear ducts, developing into hugely attractive eye bogies before the last of my foundation gives up the ghost and literally puddles in the area where my nose meets my face (hello face).  If it’s really hot, my eyeliner will also strive for symmetry and create matching lines across my upper eyelid where the “hoods” rest gently on the lash-line.  It’s a beautiful sight to behold.

Bobbi Brown’s new Long-Wear Eye Collection promises to stay the distance without letting you down or showing you up.  The eye pencils from the new collection are richly-coloured and deeply-pigmented.  They’re creamy and have that soft, gel formula reminiscent of my beloved Avon Mega Impact/Supershock Gel Eyeliner (whatever they’re bleedin’ being called at the moment).

The Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Pencils* are available in six shades: Jet, Mahogany, Black Navy, Black Plum, Hunter and Smoke, providing a colour option whatever your personal taste.  I really like an off-black range that carries the density of an inky black but without the harshness on maturing features.  Not that my features are maturing, shutup.

These pencils haven’t given me any trouble sharpening, the uber-softness of the Avon ones means that I do need to chill them in the fridge for half an hour prior to sharpening, total pain when you need a pencil stat.  I didn’t have to do this with the Bobbi Brown pencils.

Mahogany is swatched on the left, Smoke on the Right.  You can see the density of pigment is really quite impressive.  It’s a teeny bit less pigmented than the Avon offerings (which are insanely pigmented) but as I said earlier, they do provide a little more precision during application thanks to a firmer texture.

Here are the same swatches after scrubbing the back of my hand with soap and water for a good 30/40 seconds.  I was impressed that they didn’t smear or transfer as I swiped and rubbed.  You can see that the pigment has eroded in places but if you imagine that swatch as drawn across your lash-line, I think you’d be fairly happy to emerge from the swimming pool 3-hours later with that much still intact no?

Unfortunately, whilst I think these pencils are brilliant.  This is where the praise ends.

I’ve been comparing these all along to the Avon SuperShock Gel Eyeliner pencils (which don’t come in as many shades admittedly) simply because the Avon ones are my benchmark and indeed, my daily staples.  As I swatched both alongside one another, I expected the Bobbi Brown ones to outlast the Avon.  They don’t.  They wear identically both on the back of my hand and on my waterline, around 5 hours.

The Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Pencils are priced at £17 each.  The Avon SuperShock Gel Eyeliner pencils are currently priced at £4 each.  And there’s the rub, I’m not going to recommend that you spend extra money needlessly… both are fabulous long-wearing, densely pigmented pencil liners.  The Avon ones are substantially cheaper.

The Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Eye Pencils are available to buy on counter and online from BobbiBrown.co.uk

* press samples


Kiss Me Heroine Make Smooth Liquid Eyeliner

Posted by Lipglossiping On October - 24 - 2011

I’ve heard SO much about this eyeliner over the past couple of years and following my semi-disappointment with my Illamasqua Precision Ink, I was in the market for trying out something new.  Combine this with a late night mooch around eBay, and the rest (as they say…) is history.

Kiss Me Heroine Make Smooth Liquid Eyeliner is the finest-tipped eyeliner pen I’ve used.  It’s a brush tip rather than a felt tip and the bristles hold together tightly to provide a very tight line.

I find the formula to be quite watery and it can bleed a little but thankfully dries very quickly.  For a very dark line, you’d need to make a couple of passes which is a shame.

I paid around £10 for mine (inc. shipping) which brings it well under high-end prices but toward the top end of high street.  It does fade throughout the day and I’m not going to give this holygrail status simply because I’m not completely sold on the formula.  The precision brush though?  Well, it’s an absolute dream for winging out.

The above photo shows one pass and you can see that it could do with a second swipe, there’s a hint of feathering but check out that sharp wing!

Kiss Me Heroine Make Smooth Liquid Eyeliner is available to buy on eBay (prices vary).

What’s your favourite eyeliner at the moment?

 

Review: Smashbox Soft Focus Powder Eyeliner

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 27 - 2011

I fished the Smashbox Soft Focus Powder Eyeliner in Gunmetal out of a press day goody bag a couple of months ago and promptly fell in love.  Deeply pigmented with a lovely hint of sparkle, it ticked many of the boxes that the Guerlain powder liners have never been able to do for me — number one being a soft, flexible tip that doesn’t fill me with fear everytime it comes within 2 inches of my eyeball.

I think that these powder eyeliners are a love ’em/hate ’em type affair and after buying and giving up on the Guerlain Kohl, I thought I was in the latter camp along with all the other haterz.

Not so.

Yes, there’s fall out.  Obviously more so than any other kind of liner but I remedy this by applying before foundation and it doesn’t bother me.  You can (if you’re careful), apply without dropping a speck but if you manage it consistently, you’re a better woman than I am.

The ‘nib’ of the wand is a flexible, soft sponge that holds enough rigidity to run along the waterline but is also soft enough to provide a good application to the lashline.  I feel that the Smashbox shades are inferior to Guerlain’s which are generally, simply beautiful — but I can work with these happily.

The Gunmetal on the left contains more sparkle than the Black.  The fall out is visible and I didn’t take any care here to minimise it.   I went out and bought the Black because I loved the smoky definition that the Gunmetal provided but wanted something a little more dramatic to wear in the evenings.

My favourite thing about the Smashbox Soft Focus Powder Eyeliner is the way they wear after a few hours, the line fades evenly and cleanly – if you want something sharply defined that will look the same at 6pm as it did at 8am, these won’t be for you.  Over the course of the day, they soften and melt without straying too far and give a nicely ‘lived in’ look, not as dramatic as the whole rock-chick thing but heading in that direction.

The Smashbox Soft Focus Powder Eyeliners are priced at £19.50 each (yes, expensive) and are available instore at Debenhams, or you could save a few pennies and buy online from JustBeautyDirect.

Do you wear loose powder eyeliner?  Love it or Hate it?

Urban Decay 15-Year Anniversary 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil Set

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 1 - 2011

This here post be ALL about the pictures…

The Packaging…

Read the rest of this entry »

Avon SuperShock Gel Eyeliner – Review & Comparison

Posted by Lipglossiping On October - 15 - 2010

So, the other day/week/month…. whenever it was (they’re blurring)… I told you about the new Avon SuperShock Gel Eyeliners that I’d had a look at during the Avon Christmas collex launch.   I also told you about not being able to remove them with plain ol’ soap and water which resulted in me looking a bit grubby while I was on an overnighter in London.

I thought I’d compare it a little more closely to some of the other eyeliners I have in my stash that are generally well-regarded throughout the blogging community… so without further ado…

It’s got that fancy-schmancy luxe lace packaging going on… I’ve noticed that these eyeliners have currently disappeared from the website, so I’m guessing that’s ‘cos they’re about to be relaunched in the new packaging for Xmas.

Not retractable or any of that jazz, just your standard-looking eye pencil!

The black is VERY black.  Pigmented to the max and easily the softest eye pencil I own.  I barely need to touch this to my eyelid to create a defined and solid line.  Can you say impressive?  As with most soft/glidey eyeliners, it does mean that this needs more frequent sharpening than it’s counterparts… but your poor sensitive eyelids will thank you for the drag-free application.

Here’s 4 of some of the most highly regarded pencil eyeliners available.  I think you might be able to clearly pick out which packs the biggest punch in terms of pigmentation no?  The above artistic squiggles show one swipe each.

How about lasting power?  I swiped MULTIPLE times over my entire hand with a wet wipe…

Urban Decay… as much as I love you… you fail.

GOSH?  Close… but no cigar.

MUFE performed slightly better than Avon in the longwear test (conducted whilst I was wearing something that looked nothing like an official lab coat – probably my pyjamas) but the pigmentation just wasn’t there to begin with.

So… finally… how about a price comparison?

MUFE – £11.50
Avon – £6.00
GOSH – £4.99
Urban Decay – £11.50

There are a few other factors to take into consideration.  Of all ranges, Avon has the least shades available… I think there are only around 3 or 4, so great coloured eyeliners will still have to be sought elsewhere…

…But if you’re looking for a fabulously pigmented, long-lasting black eyeliner that won’t break the bank.  Better make friends with your local Avon lady (or yano, do the modern thang and head here).

ETA:

I received a sample of the Avon SuperShock Gel Eyeliner in Silver as a few of you requested swatches… here are the pictures.  I really do recommend these liners without hesitation.

Sleek MakeUP Kajal Eyeliner

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 18 - 2010

Ringing up the till at £3.99, one of Sleek MakeUP‘s latest product releases is the Kajal.  A deeply pigmented eyeliner made with smudgy smoky looks in mind.

Based on the traditional Southern Asian kohl… Sleek MakeUP’s kajal is a much waxier, crayony affair.  It’s an eyeliner that never needs sharpening and is ready to go with a quick twist of the tube.  Compared to PURE’s now discontinued version, I find Sleek MakeUP’s version a little waxier… not quite so soft to apply but perhaps a touch more waterproof as a result.

I was sent the version in matte Black (Nocturnal).  The Kajal is also available in purple (Odyssey).

As already mentioned, the eyeliner twists up to reveal it’s full length.  It tapers to a smooth point, which is great for applying along the waterline and depending on how you angle the eyeliner during application… you can achieve different effects and amounts of ‘smokiness’.

The swatch on the left shows the Kajal applied directly from the tube, whilst on the right… I’ve smudged the line.  It smudges readily and thus I would only recommend this eyeliner for when precision is not important.  I don’t have particularly watery eyes and found that the Kajal remained happily on my waterline for many hours.

If you’re wanting something soft, easy to apply and richly pigmented for a ‘rock chick’ look (I hate that expression)… then beat your way down to your local Superdrug and pick one of these babies up!

Paris Berlin Eyeliner Pen

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 2 - 2010

I picked this Paris Berlin Eyeliner Pen up sometime late last year when I made an online Kryolan order.  I can’t remember where I bought it from, but I paid less than £5 for it.

I like to have a “felt tip” type eyeliner pen available to me as I find them my favourite to work with when I’m attempting a more structured look.  By structured, I mean one that usually involves a flick, lots of mascara and a bright lip!

The packaging is plain, simple and functional and the pen is solidly constructed with a standard, easy to hold barrel.  The tip is beautifully precise without being too sharp.  I love the way the fibres of the tip flex under pressure which avoids dragging or scratching over the eyelid.  However, they hold together with no splaying… keeping the line straight and true.

I think the formula could do with being just a touch darker, it’s so close to being a true oily black… but close isn’t quite good enough.

Pigmentation is pretty solid, I usually go over twice to build up colour to an optimum level.  I haven’t found a problem with this liner smudging at all – it fades quite evenly over time.

Overall, it’s a great liner for less than a fiver and better than any of the high-street branded versions that I’ve tried.  It’s a pro product which you should be able to find online with a quick google search.  I’ve had this about 6 months now and it’s showing no signs of drying out.

Do you have a favourite liquid liner pen?

ELF Studio Cream Eyeliner in Coffee

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 7 - 2010

My last foray into ELF’s eyeliners was not a successful one.  About a year ago, I picked up a couple of the liquid liners they do and HATED them.  Scratchy and lacking in pigmentation made them a huge fail for me so I was ready to be disappointed when I accepted the offer to try a liner from the new ELF Studio Cream Eyeliner range.

I chose Coffee, a medium brown shade.  There are currently 4 shades in the line up: Coffee (medium brown), Black, Midnight (dark blue) and Ivory (off white pearl)

The packaging fits in nicely with the rest of the Studio line, the jar is plastic with a solid, chunky feel.  The lid screws on with a satisfying click when it’s fully tightened.  Lightweight and portable, it’s not the sleekest eyeliner in the world, but it’s fully practical.

The texture of the liner is *incredibly* soft, perhaps a little too soft.  When I dip my brush, the fibres sink downward straight into the product which makes it a little hard to stroke across the surface without picking up too much product.  A couple of times, I’ve picked up a whole clump of eyeliner on the brush instead of an even coating.

You can see the tip of the brush sinking straight into the product in the shot above.  Whilst this might mean it takes a little more care to load your brush, it makes for the smoothest application of any liner I’ve ever used.  And I’ve used a lot.  Note, that this only applies to this particular shade as I know texture can vary between products in the same line.

Pigmentation is medium, I needed to go over the line twice to build it up to my desired strength, but when a liner glides as smoothly as this one does, it’s not a problem.

The above swatch shows 3 swipes of the liner.  It takes about a minute to set before becoming truly transfer proof.  Even on my hooded eyelid it stuck fast for hours, by bedtime the line had faded to about half it’s original intensity, but the fading was even.

I’ve also used it as a cream base which worked really well thanks to it’s super-soft texture.  Blending was a delight and I love wearing it under greens to create a more ‘old gold’ kinda shade.  I haven’t noticed it partcularly increasing longevity on eyeshadows though, so I still combine with a slick of eyeshadow primer underneath.

I’m amazed by the quality of my ELF Studio Cream Eyeliner, and at £3.50 you really can’t go wrong.

Not so Sleek

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 19 - 2010

I was recently sent two products from Sleek Makeup‘s range, focusing on a couple of shades that are suited to this year’s Spring trend.

On the left we have the Dip It in Pastel Green and on the right, an Eye Dust in Livid Lilac.

I’m a beauty addict with eclectic tastes and try not to discriminate based on price or accessibility of products.  So, I approach this review with a fully open mind.  Even when I held the Dip It pot in my fingers, twirling it…. marvelling at how incredibly cheap Sleek had managed to make it look.

The eye dust packaging doesn’t fare much better.  I mean, they’re both obviously plastic, but they’re SO lightweight I’m surprised that they’re not defying the rules of gravity.

Having said that, I ultimately only really care about how it looks if I’m gonna be seen in public with it (shallow soul that I am), how about the actual contents?

How ABOUT those contents…

Well, there they are.  In all their ‘spilled across my new desk cos the sifter fell out when I tapped the bottom of the pot’ glory.  You can only imagine how much I was loving that purple Eye Dust at this point.

When I grumbled about my little dust-spilling incident on Twitter, it turned out that I wasn’t the only one who had nearly ended up with a lapful of Livid Lilac.  Something for Sleek Makeup to investigate perhaps?

Anyway, the colour is pretty… it’s more vivid in the pot than it is swatched, a good thing seeing as it’s called ‘Livid Lilac’ afterall and looks thoroughly ‘Royal Purple’ in the container.

The top swatch shows the Dip It liner in Pastel Green.  It’s an opaque mint, and really does look like a fabulous shade for Spring.  Livid Lilac is far softer once swatched (dry) and slightly metallic.  I was really impressed with the choices for this season’s shades.

Application of the Dip It was a bit tricky.  The wand and narrow tip allowed for a precise sweep across the eye lid, but as I was drawing the line, I found that the applicator dragged at the pigmentation leaving the line of colour less pigmented in the centre than at the edges.  To be fair, nothing that a second coat didn’t remedy.  The liner dried almost instantly without transferring to the hooded part of my eyelids.

I had no issues applying the Eye Dust, it blended smoothly and the colour depth was nicely buildable.

Here’s a FOTD, don’t laugh… the shades are a bit bright for me, but I enjoyed playing!

Unfortunately, that’s where the fun ended, 20 minutes later, I looked in the mirror and saw that the eyeliner had begun to flake…

Bits of Dip It kept getting caught in my eyelashes, so I ended up using an eyeshadow brush to work back and forward until I’d dislodged all the flakes.  I wasn’t left with much.

Fast forward to bed-time and my cleansing routine.  I cleansed with my ever faithful cleansing oil and a blob of Cetaphil to finish, towelled my face dry and then shrieked at the mirror when I saw a matching pair of pink-dyed eyelids looking back at me.  I would have photographed them for the comedy value, but it was kinda late and I’m kinda lazy so you’ll just have to use your imagination instead.

On the plus side, it showed that my sense of symmetry has improved.  Those dyed patches were perfect.

Overall, I was disappointed at the quality of the 2 products I was sent by Sleek Makeup which is a shame, because in the past I’ve been mostly impressed (how ’bout them 12 pan palettes eh?).

Sleek Makeup products are available from selected Superdrug stores, the Eye Dusts and Dip Its both retail for £2.99 each.

MUFE Aqua Eyes 25 years Collection

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 13 - 2010

I picked this little set up at IMATS (I gave up on the collective haul post – they’ll be coming at you one by one I’m afraid!) from Guru Makeup Emporium who were offering a very decent discount!

5 mini versions of the very popular Aqua Eyes Pencils housed in a litle collector’s tin.

Colours included are: Matte Black (0L), Pearly Brown (2L), Blue with Green Highlights (12L), Shimmering Plum (4L) and Champagne (23L).

The pencils are heavily pigmented and apply smoothly on the waterline.  The champagne will make a lovely eye-brightener, and the blue is simply to die for.  They don’t budge from my lashline and sick to the waterline for a good few hours.

These are my first ‘pencil purchase’ since I went through my stash binning everything that wasn’t GOSH. I won’t be binning these 😉

Do you wear coloured pencils?

I paid £10 for the set.  MUFE Aqua Eyes Pencils retail in the UK for around £11.95 each.

Is it that you are a minger?

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 5 - 2010

Wondering whether you should be throwing out that favourite discontinued lippie lurking in the back of your drawer? Cosmetic guidelines have always been quite stringent with regards to shelf life…

Judy regretted not throwing that old cream foundation away…

Do you follow the guides?

Have a look… (red denotes how long it takes me to dump stuff)

  • Oil-Free Foundation: 1 year (if it looks/smells and feels ok, I’ll still use it)
  • Cream or Compact Foundation: 18 months (12 months… I have a “thing” about cream compacts)
  • Concealer: 12-18 months (if it looks/smells and feels like new, I’ll still use it unless it’s in a compact…)
  • Powder: 2 years (indefinitely)
  • Blush and Bronzer: 2 years (indefinitely)
  • Cream Blush: 12-18 months (12 months… it’s the whole compact thing again)
  • Powder Eye shadow: 2 years (indefinitely)
  • Cream Eye shadow: 12-18 months (compact? 12 months)
  • Eyeliner: 2 years (gels – till they inevitably dry out, pencils – indefinitely)
  • Liquid eyeliner: 3-6 months (um, till they run out?)
  • Mascara: 3 months (till they run out or become unworkable – yes, cardinal sin I know!)
  • Lipstick: 2 years (till they get that funky crayon smell)
  • Lip liner: 2 years (indefinitely)
  • Lip gloss: 18-24 months (yeah, probably no more than 2 years)
  • Nail Color: 1 year (till they become unworkable)

I think that a little common sense goes a very long way in situations like this.  If you live in a warmer climate, your cosmetics aren’t going to last as long.  If you buy mostly natural products containing less preservatives, you’re going to want to have a clear out more often.  If you share your cosmetics with your sister or best friend, then I’d be far more vigilant.  If anyone touches mine… they die.  I say trust your nose!

The oldest item in my collection is this 6 year old Bobbi Brown Palette:

My eyeliner obsession started with my Bobbi Brown Shimmering Eye Kohl palette which I bought back in 2004… I’ve dropped it twice (as you can tell – sob)

Tell me about your oldest cosmetic item? What is it and why do you still have it?

Dior Style Liner Xmas 09 Sparkling Purple

Posted by Lipglossiping On December - 29 - 2009

As part of my Dior haul, I also purchased the Dior Sparkling Liner in the Xmas ’09 LE Shade Sparkling Purple.

I actually had no intentions to pick this up until I swatched it on the stand… oh my.

It’s a beautifully iridescent purple liner with a brush that ensures a precision fine line.  It’s massively pigmented and perfect for winter.

Look at that… it just glows and reminds me of stained glass.  I’ve been pairing this up with grey shadows on my lids and have worn it once or twice on it’s own with lots of black mascara.

I’m so pleased I picked it up!

I think I paid around £20.  Do you wear coloured liners?  Any preferences or tips on shade selection for a chick with grey/green eyes?

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