Eyeliner Road Test! Giorgio Armani vs. Stila vs. Tarte - New Video!

 Eyeliners from our road test.

Eyeliner technology has really advanced.  I used to never be able to wear eyeliner for fear of raccoon eyes, but the chemistry that goes into these products has really improved.  Waterproof isn't just a dream anymore.  Some products really do resist smudges, tearing and actually stay put.  I took three different brands with similar gel-style formulas and tested them against each other.  See the video to see who won!

Giorgio Armani's La Femme Bleue Long Wear Waterproof Eye Pencils are limited edition for Spring 2011.  KarlaSugar raved about these, so I had to check them out for the road test.  These are $27 each, which seems pricey for an eyeliner, but considering how much product you actually get in comparison with these other two brands, it's actually a better value.

Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eyeliner and Tarte emphasEYES Aqual-Gel Eyeliner both boast long wear and high pigmentation.  But, if you watch the video, you will see that the Armani beats them out in value and beats the Tarte in wear.

Let's geek out for a moment and do a math break down:
Giorgio Armani - $27 for 0.04oz, 1.2g = $22.50 per gram
Stila - $20 for 0.01oz, 0.28g = $71.42 per gram
Tarte - $18 for 0.003oz, 0.1g = $180 per gram

 We tried them out.... check the video for results!

  Black, Bark Brown, Leaf Green.
 Black, Bark Brown, Leaf Green.
GA's Bark Brown on the eye.

Giorgio Armani La Femme Bleue Long Wear Waterproof Eye Pencils are $27 for 0.04oz, 1.2g and available at www.giorgioarmanibeauty-usa.com.

Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eyeliner is $20 for 0.01oz at ulta.com and stilacosmetics.com.

Tarte emphasEYES Aqual-Gel is $18 for 0.003oz, 0.1g at tartecosmetics.com and qvc.com.

Tarte The Jewelry Box Palette - Swatches and Review - Holiday Gift Guide Series

In part with our Holiday Gift Guide series, here is Tarte's The Jewelry Box palette. You may have seen our first look here, but now here are swatches and our review.

Price: $52
Available at Sephora (exclusive)
This set contains:

- 16 x 0.06 oz full-sized shimmering eyeshadow
- 16 x 0.06 oz full-sized matte eyeshadow
- 8 x 0.03 oz lip gloss
- 0.21 oz Mineral Powder Bronzer in Park Avenue Princess
- 0.25 oz highlighting powder in soft pink
- 5 x 0.02 oz long-wearing eyeliners

This palette also comes with 1 detachable chain necklace for festive holiday wear.

The palette opened.

(Matte eyeshadows are below shimmering ones that wing out). There isn't a button, clasp, anything to keep this palette closed, which is one complaint I had about this palette. There is a magnet, but it's not strong enough to keep everything in place in case your palette should go any direction but flat. I would not take this out of my bedroom/bathroom (wherever you apply your makeup).

The eyeshadows

Overall, I was really excited about this palette! I loved how the palette split the shadows into shimmer and mattes. Some of Tarte's previous palettes have tended to lean to cooler tones. This palette was a nice mix of cool and warm shades. Lots of everyday shadows (1, 4, 5, 7, 9, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26) and some fun vibrants for party looks (28, 31, 32). The texture of these shadows was good but not superb. Tarte's Eye Couture palette, which came out a couple years ago and is still available at Sephora, had a smoother, silkier quality to their eyeshadows. Not to say that The Jewelry Box's shadows are poor quality, but let's just say it went from being a 9 to about an 8. And if we are talking dollars and cents, Tarte's Eye Couture palette is 10 eyeshadows for $44 vs The Jewelry box that has a whooping 32 shadows for $52 (not to mention the bronzer, the highlighter, the eyeliners, the lipglosses and the necklace).

Level 1: Shimmers, left side.

Level 1: Shimmers, right side.

Level 2: Mattes

Level 2: Mattes

The mattes were definitely less saturated than the shimmers, but still overall a good shadow. The quality of all these shadows wasn't butter-smooth (like Shiseido, Inglot), but it was definitely on par with some other high-end brands. The colors are buildable and have decent color pay-off.

The value of 32 eyeshadows for $52 is great. The pan size (0.06 oz) is larger than that of a MAC single eyeshadow (0.05 oz for $14.50 each).

Now onto the rest of the palette.

Soft Pink Highlighting Powder and Mineral Powder Bronzer in Park Avenue Princess

The highlighting powder is definitely a great universal shade. Some darker skin tones (maybe anyone above the MAC 40's range) may not be able to use this palette's bronzer for blush or bronzer, but the shimmer in it would be great for highlight, contour.

Again a note on the value of this palette, $52 for all those eyeshadows + 0.21 oz of Bronzer? A single Mineral Powder Bronzer retails for $29 for 0.32oz. So if you do the math, you are getting $19.03 worth of Bronzer in the Jewelry Box.

Here are the lipglosses. I was impressed by how pigmented they were. I love the festive holiday red!

I *love* these pencils. Very very smooth. But most of all I love the colors selected. A shimmering black, military shimmering green, bronze, deep purple and matte black.

Pros: Good value! You can create a complete look with this 1 palette: eyes, lip, cheeks. Eyeshadows had a good mix of matte and shimmer/cool and warm. Lipglosses are highly pigmented. Pencils are smooth.
Cons: Shadows are okay but not uber pigmented. Previous Tarte palettes had better shadow quality. Packaging is pretty, but there isn't a way to keep it closed or keep layers from sliding out unless lying flat.

Overall grade: A-

First Look: Tarte - The Jewelry Box Palette for Eyes, Lip, Face Holiday 2010 - Gift Guide Series

Holiday season is coming soon! I know in this economy everyone wants to get the best bang for their buck, so I have decided to start a Gift Guide series comparing similar products to take all the guess work out of beauty gift giving this year.

Here is a first look at Tarte's The Jewelry Box palette exclusive to Sephora. It retails for $52 and is limited edition. This is just one of a few all-in-one palettes that I will be reviewing for Beautyburg's Gift Guide.

This set contains:

- 16 x 0.06 oz full-sized shimmering eyeshadow
- 16 x 0.06 oz full-sized matte eyeshadow
- 8 x 0.03 oz lip gloss
- 0.21 oz Mineral Powder Bronzer in Park Avenue Princess
- 0.25 oz highlighting powder in soft pink
- 5 x 0.02 oz long-wearing eyeliners

It also comes with 1 detachable chain necklace for festive holiday wear.

The necklace.

The eyeshadows.
Top layer has the shimmers. The bottom is all matte.

Layer 1: The shimmers. I love how they are #'ed!

The left side of shimmer: 1, 2, 5, 6, 9, 10, 13, 14.

The right side of shimmer: 3, 4, 7, 8, 11, 12, 15, 16.

The mattes: 17-32.

Below the eyes are cheeks and lips.

8 lipglosses (I was surprised by their pigmentation. Swatches to come.)
Right: Highlighting powder in soft pink.
Left: Tarte's best-selling bronzer in Park Avenue Princess

Next layer: the eyeliners!

5 eyeliners

Would you like The Jewelry Box by Tarte under your tree this holiday?

I will be comparing this to Sephora's famous Blockbuster palette and LORAC's seasonal holiday palette offering. If there is something specific you would like to see me evaluate this against, please let me know either by email beautyburg@gmail or leave a comment below!