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.

MAC Peacocky Mega Metal Eyeshadows - Comparisons, Summary and Final Review!

Hand it to MAC to come out with fifteen limited edition eyeshadows all at once.  I'll keep this brief since there are a photos to get through.  Mega Metal eyeshadows are a new formulation of pressed eyeshadow created by MAC for the Peacocky collection.  They have great texture, color payoff, pigmentation.  They are large than regular MAC eyeshadow pans (3.4g, 0.11oz vs 1.5g, 0.05oz), and they are also more expensive, $19.50 each vs. $14.50 each.  However, they are a better value.  

Math Breakdown (Makeup Geek Out Time)
MAC Mega Metal Shadow $19.50 each for 3.4g, 0.11oz =  
$5.37 per gram, $177.27 per oz.
MAC Eye Shadow $14.50 each for 1.5g, 0.05oz =  
$9.66 per gram, $290 per oz.

But if you are like me and know that you will never finish a pan.  To save $, I would skip lighter, paler shades and go for the richer, more vibrant colors.  In summary, get these; you will be happy

Here are some comps for you.  I apologize in advance.  I don't own that many MAC perm colors.  I don't think I had ever felt before that I didn't have a lot of eyeshadows before, but when trying to comp, I really felt like I was in short supply.  I tried to keep these in the MAC world of eyeshadows, but many are LE or HTF (hard to find).  I just put this together for those who may have some of these past LE's and may want to skip colors because they own something similar.  But if you just love swatches, as I do, go ahead and knock yourself out too.

There went trying to keep things brief.  I'll be quiet now.  Enjoy the photos.  If you missed other swatches and pictures, here are the links:

*Unless noted, all of these eyeshadows swatched are by MAC.  Captions label swatches left to right.  Formulation is indicated when known.  If it's not there, then I wasn't sure (sorry!).
Peek-At-You, Gold Dusk (Pig.), Provence (Pig.), Femme-Fi (VP).

Prance, Shoreleve (VP), Shimmertime (Pig.), Your Ladyship (Pig.).

Dalliance, Retrospeck (L), Creme Royale (VP).

Paparazz-she, Firespot (VP), Off the Radar (Pig.), Rushmetal (Pig.).

Sexpectations, Bravado (VP), Star Violet (VP).

Tweet Me, Jardin Aires (Pig.), Melon (Pig.), YSL Eclat de Givre #2, Pink Bronze (Pig.).

Ego, Gulf Stream (F), Steel Blue (Pig.), Odalisque, Parrot (F), Teal (Pig.)

Dandizette, Silver Fog (F), Blue Flame (VP), Waft.

Noir Plum, Top Hat (SF), Satellite Dreams, Grape (Pig.). 

Mating Call, Stars & Rockets, Lotusland (SF).

Top of the Posh, Apricot Pink (Pig.), Revved Up (Pig.), Pink Venus (L), Gateaux (F).

Spectacle of Yourself, Chocolate Brown (Pig.), Goldstroke (Pig.)

Centre Stage, Magnetic Fields (VP), Mauvement (Pig.)

Unflappable, Smoke + Diamonds (SF), Moth Brown (F), Sweet Sienna (Pig.).

To Review:

MAC Mega Metal Shadow $19.50 each for 3.4g, 0.11oz are limited edition at MAC counters and www.maccosmetics.com
Pro: Pigmented, large pan, good value, great color payoff, lovely texture.
Con: (For some, the pro might be con) Large pan.  Limited edition. Paler shades don't have the same level of color payoff. Pricier than regular MAC shadows (albeit larger).
Overall Beautyburg Rating: A

Hello Kitty by Sephora Liquid Nail Art - Blueberry and Minty

Hello to cute nails!!!

Minty and Blueberry.

As part of the upcoming and highly anticipated Hello Kitty by Sephora line, here are two nail colors from the collection.  If you missed our first look, click here. Sephora had a two day private shopping event online for VIBs, and even when I got to the sale on the first day, many of the items were sold out.  I was able to grab two of the Liquid Nail Art ($10) colors in Minty, a pastel Shamrock Shake green, and Blueberry, a blurple creme, and a set of Nail Art Stickers ($5) in Classic Icons.

I was hoping that this line's products would have some substance, and it wouldn't be all about the packaging.  Generally, I steer away from bottles that are short.  The short neck leads to a short brush, short handle, meaning less control of the overall application.  I also found the formula a little thick.  I couldn't find the exact amount on the bottle, but it does seem small. 
Hello Kitty Blueberry and Orly Snowcone.

These two are similar but not a complete exact match.  Blueberry has a little bit more of a purple base.  Snowcone is just more of a straight up medium blue creme.  

Blueberry with Classic Icons Nail Art Stickers.
Nail Art Stickers in Classic Icons

The Nail Art Stickers come in four varieties Classic Icons, Lace, Modern Icons, and Rhinestone Flowers and are $5 each.
Hello Kitty Minty and Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Mint Sorbet.

Now these were **exact** dupes.  I swatched them on alternating fingers and could not see any difference what so ever.  I prefer the Sally Hansen however.  The application and formula are just a lot nicer.  Also a bottle is only $2.99.

 All Minty.

 Left to right: SH Mint Sorbet, HK Minty, Mint Sorbet, Minty.
Can you tell the difference?  I can't!

So is this line all about the packaging?  At $10 a polish, for not such a great polish, I would say yes. 

When does cute packaging mean more than quality product?  Or does it all have to come together?

Say Hello Palette in Super Fun coming soon!

MAC Cham-Pale Soirée Nail Lacquer vs. Orly Rage - Comparison & Possible Dupe?

Are we related? MAC Soirée and Orly Rage.

I recently picked up the two nail lacquers from MAC's Cham-Pale collection (see my review here).  One from the collection, Very Important Platinum, was an epic application fail.  Streaky, thin, blech.  Reminded me of how bad MAC used to be at nails.  Then was Soirée a pretty dusty-rose metallic foil.  Very pretty on, but it seemed somewhat familiar.

Digging through my stash, I found Orly Rage.  A gorgeous rosy silver foil from a few collections ago and still easily available.

I decided to do a side by side comparison since one is about half the price of the other.  From the bottle, they seem almost identical.  You can see that Orly's Rage is more silvery and the duochrome particles seem finer.  Soirée seems more rosy and dustier, but overall they are very, very, very close.  Maybe fraternal, not identical, twins.

Left to right: Soirée, Rage, Soirée, Rage.

I think the ring finger shows off Soirée's dusty, copperiness best.  However, from a distance (of 6 inches), they look almost the same.  I think most people wouldn't even notice a difference.  Click on the photo to enlarge.

 A photo of all Soirée.  
You can see the copper and dustier elements in the shade here.

All Soirée.  Let's party! 

MAC Soirée is $13 for 10ml 0.34oz, limited edition at MAC counters and MAC online.
Orly Rage is about $7 (depending on store) for 0.6oz and available at salons and Sally Beauty supply.

If you missed the review of Soirée and Very Important Platinum, click here.

How close does a dupe, comparable have to be to cancel out the original?  Do you go by price difference, meaning the cheaper one?  Or sometimes do you just have to have it?

Orly Cosmic FX - Lunar Eclipse with Comps

I am having a love affair with all of the Cosmic FX. I love staring at each bottle and watching all the duochromes change in the light. Here is Lunar Eclipse from the collection. It is a vibrant sapphire blue with purple/pink duochrome. I thought out of the entire range of the Cosmic FX collection that it would be most matchable to something I own already. I found a couple colors to comp to, but after the comparison, I think that Lunar Eclipse is worth having on its own.

Left to Right: Orly Lunar Eclipse, Sally Hansen HD Laser, Sinful Colors Femme Fatale

Left to right: 2 coats of Lunar Eclipse, 4 coats Sally Hansen HD Laser, 2 coats Sinful Colors Femme Fetale.

The Sally Hansen Laser is more similar to Lunar Eclipse in duochrome-ness and overall effect but lighter and doesn't apply as densely. The Sinful Femme Fatale is a closer shade match but doesn't have all the cool light catching, falling a trance, staring at your nails all day effect of Lunar Eclipse.

Bottle shot: Orly Lunar Eclipse is more pigmented and thicker in the bottle vs. SH HD Laser.

Bottle shot all three in daylight.

Thanks for looking.

Chanel Paradoxal vs. Castledew 9289

Chanel Paradoxal (Index and Middle), Castledew 9289 (Ring and Pinkie)

Chanel Paradoxal (Index and Middle), Castledew 9289 (Ring and Pinkie)

I know that everyone is always looking to dupe Chanel. For $23-25 per bottle (at retail), you could be getting 4 or more other polishes for the same price. Castledew is a Korean brand. They don't have a website that sells in the states, but I found a counter at a Korean supermarket in LA and thru third party sellers associated with Ebay. I paid $6 per bottle, but I'm sure it's less in Asia. 9289 is described on Castledew's site as "Galaxy Charcoal Brown." I could see that as accurate. It is slightly more shimmery than Paradoxal, but I found in opacity and application to be a very good dupe. The question is what's easier to find? For those in the states, the answer might be the Chanel