Category Archives: Dupes

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Review and Swatches

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e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

This is my first post of 2016, and I am very excited to show you the e.l.f. Illuminating Palette today. You may remember that e.l.f. released a Studio Ambient Palette back in June that disappeared almost instantly.  It was obviously meant to be a dupe for the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette and I wonder if e.l.f. may have run into some legal issues with using the word “ambient” because after months of nothing but questions, the palette returned under a new name.  The Illuminating palette is here to stay, so now I can show it off to you.  I have had the palette for about six weeks now, and have thoroughly tested it and am ready for the review.

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

The e.l.f. Illuminating Palette comes in the same packaging as the new(ish) Contour, Blush, Bronzer (etc.) palettes.  They have the large square mirror that is very good quality and the four pans of product that can be popped out.  If you have several of these palettes, you can pop out and mix the pans to create a custom face palette with the blush, bronzer, and now highlight that you use most.  E.l.f. is not currently selling replacement pans, but I think it is inevitable with this new system.  I think the packaging is functional and I really like the mirror.  I am interested to see what else e.l.f. does with this format.

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette

Here is what e.l.f. has to say about the Illuminating Palette: “This beautiful illuminating palette holds 4 gorgeous complementary shades to mix and match for a custom blended radiance that captures, diffuses, and softens the way light reflects on the skin. The soft-focus powders are great for highlighting around the eyes and on cheekbones to enhance the skin with a luminous effect. Perfect for all skin tones.”  The highlighters in this palette are really lovely.  They are not super sparkly highlights like theBalm Mary Lumanizer, for instance, but they give the skin a gorgeous sheen.  I really appreciate that.  I do not like highlighters that make me look like I got up close and personal with a unicorn.  These shades give me a radiant glow without making me look like a disco ball, and I am a fan.  I don’t think that there is any doubt that this is being marketed as a dupe for the extremely popular Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette which retails for $58.00.  The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette features three of the Ambient Lighting Powders in one palette and e.l.f. shades 2, 3, and 4 are the shade dupes from the Illuminating Palette. I do not own the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette, but I do have two of the Ambient Lighting Powders and can confidently compare the quality between the two palettes.  Let’s look at swatches first.  I numbered the shades because there are no shade names.  Please keep in mind that the swatches below are very heavy so that they would show up on camera.  You would not wear them this heavy on the skin.
e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Swatches

e.l.f. Illuminating Palette Swatches

Shade 1 is an opalescent highlight that packs a decent punch.  The first two shades are definitely brighter, and this shade is the brightest in the palette.  There is no noticeable glitter or shimmer, though, and it is still universally wearable in my opinion.  This shade works wonders as an inner corner highlight to brighten the eyes.  Shade 2 is an icy pink highlight in the same color family as Benefit Highbeam.  It is my least favorite shade and I think the weakest link of the palette, quality-wise.  It does not seem as finely milled as the other three shades, and I think it is a bit chalky.  It is a bright, bold highlight as far as this palette goes, and I am sure that many people will like it, but it is not the shade for me.  This is supposed to dupe Incandescent Light from the Hourglass palette.  Shade 3 is a subtle champagne highlight.  I love this shade so much and think it is worth it to buy the palette just for this shade.  I prefer subtle highlights, and this is perfect for me.  Color-wise this is very much like Hourglass Dim Light.  Shade 4 is a warm golden peach shade.  It is also a subtle highlight and because it is so warm and so dark, it will not work for everyone.  I love it as a blush topper, and will wear it more as a highlight in the warmer months to give my skin a golden glow.  This shade is close to Radiant Light, though it isn’t as close of a shade match as the other two.

The e.l.f. Illuminating Palette is a wonderful highlight palette, but it is not Hourglass.  While I think the e.l.f. highlighters are finely milled and good quality, they are softer than Hourglass and they kick up more powder than Hourglass.  They are not as extremely finely milled or as silky as Hourglass.  I can use Diffused Light all over my face like a setting powder because of its satin finish, but I couldn’t do that with any of the e.l.f. shades.  The Hourglass powders also have a smoothing effect that e.l.f. didn’t manage to replicate.  If you really want to know if this palette can replace Hourglass as an exact dupe, then the answer is no.  Though e.l.f. did manage to dupe the shades in the Ambient Lighting Palette, they did not dupe the formula.  But you know what?  That’s okay.  Not everyone needs Hourglass quality.  The Illuminating Palette is really good.  Most people will find that it meets their needs and will be perfectly happy with it.  If Hourglass is too expensive for you but you like the shades, then this palette is a great option.  The e.l.f. Illuminating Palette is $6.00 at eyeslipsface.com, and I think that it is absolutely a worthy buy.  With the exception of the pink shade, I think the highlighters are stunning and the formula could easily fit in with many mid-range brands.  I absolutely recommend the Illuminating Palette.

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Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit: Review and Swathes

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Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

Happy December y’all!  The magical season of Christmas is upon us, so what better time to talk about a Holiday exclusive.  Today I have the Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit to show you.  Though it is hard to tell on the website, this is a limited edition set that Ulta put out for the Holidays.  The Artistry Eye Shadow Kit retails for $20 and contains three small palettes with 5 shades each.  I had to get this eyeshadow set.  The palettes are pretty, and moreover this is an obvious attempt at duping a high end product so I had to try them. The Artistry Eye Shadow Kit is Ulta’s attempt to dupe the Hourglass Modernist Eyeshadow Palettes.

Hourglass Modernist Eyeshadow Palette

Hourglass Modernist Eyeshadow Palettes

The seven Hourglass Modernist Eyeshadow Palettes launched in January 2015 and I was very tempted to get them until I saw the $58 price tag.  Even I couldn’t justify $58 for five shadows, but I thought that they were gorgeous.  When reviews started rolling in, the Modernist palettes weren’t quite the smash Hourglass intended.  The shadows didn’t perform as well as they should have for the hefty price, and they left a lot of customers disappointed.  Still, their beauty won a lot of people over despite the flaws in formulation.  Enter Ulta’s Artistry Eye Shadow Kit.

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

Here is what Ulta has to say about this set: “Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit includes 3 eye shadow palettes. Each palette combines a range of matte and shimmer textures for all occasions. Beautiful wave pressing pattern makes this set an extra special gift or luxurious treat for yourself.”  The palettes are very small.  If I lay all three down next to each other (top to bottom) they are the size of my iPhone 6 Plus.  I don’t own any of the Hourglass palettes, so I can’t truly compare the two brands, but I would say that Ulta’s version might be a dupe in that it is also disappointing.  The three palettes are pretty hit and miss.  Each palette contains a mix of mattes, satins, and shimmers.  The matte shades straight up suck.  All of them are truly terrible.  The shimmer shades are all pretty decent, and the satin finish shades vary in quality.  The palettes themselves also vary in quality.  The blue palette is the worst, which funnily enough I believe is also true for the Hourglass line.  I like the green palette and, while the shades aren’t the most unique, I think most of the shadows perform well.  The plum palette is a mixed bag, but I can get a good look out of it if I am willing to work for it.  Let’s take each palette individually from worst to best.

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

There are two matte shades in the blue palette, which is unfortunate because they aren’t very good.  The five shades from left to right are as follows:

  • Matte cream shade- This shadow came with a hard layer that is sometimes found on cheap matte shadows.  Even after scraping down through the layer of film (or whatever), it had no pigmentation and I had to layer the hell out of this to get it to show up on my skin for the photo.  It is completely useless.
  • Gold shimmer/glitter shade- This is a very pretty gold, but it is more of a glitter than a shimmer and can apply a bit patchy.
  • Sheer dark brown matte- This shade confuses me.  It looks like it is a dark slate in the pan, but it swatches like an extremely sheer brown with no pigmentation.  It’s patchy and difficult, not worth the effort.
  • Blue metallic shimmer- This stormy blue shade is actually not bad at all.  It’s a lovely smoky tone, but you have to love shimmer.  It is probably the best shade in this palette, though that’s not saying a lot.
  • Icy Taupe shimmer- This cool-toned icy taupe is another good shade and more wearable than the blue.
Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit Blue

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit Blue

Two good shades out of five is pretty terrible.  This blue palette is garbage.  Luckily the other two palettes do better.

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

The plum-toned palette is an improvement over the blue palette for sure, but there are still some dud shadows here as well.  The five shades are:

  • Icy lilac shimmer- This is the only palette that doesn’t have a matte highlight shade and it is much better for it.  This icy lilac shade is subtle, but pretty.
  • Off-matte mauve toned plum- Again, a sub-par matte shade, or rather off-matte finish.  This mauve toned plum is a lovely color, and it can be built up to a certain extent like it is here in the swatch, but the lack of pigmentation makes it a frustrating shade.
  • Sugar plum shimmer shade- It is hard to describe the color of this shade.  It’s like a mauve toned plum and a rose gold had a love child.  It is beautiful, and a winner.
  • Royal purple shimmer- A true purple shadow is actually a lot harder to produce than one would think, so I am astonished that this set got it right.  It is lovely.
  • Sheer mauve satin finish- Ulta, you are killing me with these sheer shades.  What is that about?  This satin mauve could have been great but, again, I find the lack of pigmentation frustrating.  It just ends up looking like my eye is bruised.
Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit Plum

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit Plum

There are two fantastic shades in this palette, one good shade, and two disappointments.  I do find that I can work with this palette much better than the blue one, even with the duds.  If I didn’t have any other shadows in these shades, I may consider keeping this one.  Ultimately, though, I have these shades in better formulas.  I don’t think it’s trash like the blue palette, but I am probably not keeping it.

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit

The final palette in this set is actually pretty good.  There is one dud, but the remaining four shades are pigmented and smooth.  Here are the five shades:

  • Matte cream shade- I think this is the exact same shade that is in the blue palette, and it is just as useless.  This one also had that hard layer or “film” on top and scraping down through it still wasn’t enough to help this crappy shadow.
  • Khaki satin-shimmer- I really like this shade on the lid.  It has a subtle shimmer and is a unique and rather unexpected color.
  • Brown shimmer- This is a simple brown shimmer shade, but it is done well.  There are subtle bronzy undertones.
  • Metallic olive- I love this shade.  It is a beautiful olive green with emerald undertones and golden micro-shimmer.  Great pigmentation, and it applies well.  Winner-winner chicken dinner.
  • Soft black shimmer- This is a simple soft black shade with subtle shimmer.  You can tell in the pan that it is not meant to be pure black, so I am okay with the charcoal tones.  It’s a good shade.
Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit Green

Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit Green

With the exception of the matte cream shade, I am a fan of this last palette.  I am a sucker for these earthy tones, so I am probably keeping this palette despite my hordes of green and brown shadows.  I have created a couple different looks with this palette, and I liked them quite a bit.  It definitely works and is the best of the set by a large margin.

I am sure that it will be no surprise that I do not recommend the Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit.  I am not sure why it is so highly rated on the website.  I got it on sale for almost half the price, and I still don’t think it was worth it.  It looks like a great gift idea and can be broken up into three really pretty stocking stuffers, but unless you are buying for a very young girl who doesn’t need a lot of pigmentation and won’t know any better, skip them.  There are so many other options available for even less money that would be better than this.  I had high hopes, but the Ulta Artistry Eye Shadow Kit is too much of a mixed bag for me to approve.

Have You Seen This? e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette

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e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette

e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette

Earlier this month, I showed you a ton of new products from e.l.f. for their Summer/Fall 2015 line.  They have released several new palettes, that have created quite a buzz, especially with the e.l.f. Studio Contour Palette.  Well, e.l.f. just added another new face palette to the line up, the e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette.  According to e.l.f., “This beautiful ambient palette holds 4 gorgeous complimentary shades to mix and match for a custom blended radiance that captures, diffuses, and softens the way light reflects on the skin. The soft-focus powders are great for highlighting around the eyes and on cheekbones to enhance the skin with a luminous effect. Perfect for all skin tones.”  I don’t think that there is any doubt that this is being marketed as a dupe for the extremely popular Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette

The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette features three of the Ambient Lighting Powders in one palette.  Here is the blurb from Sephora, if you aren’t already familiar with them: “Ambient Lighting Powder is a groundbreaking collection of finishing powders that capture, diffuse, and soften the way light reflects on skin. Unlike traditional powders, which merely cloak imperfections, Ambient Lighting Powder utilizes photoluminescent technology to filter out harsh light and refine the appearance of the complexion. The powders deliver a multidimensional luminescence to every skintone, making it appear softer and lit from within. The finishing powders enhance skin in any type of light, including flash photography. With three universal shades available in the Ambient palette, you can create any desired effect.

e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette

e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette

Sound familiar?  I can not wait to see the reviews come out for the e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette.  I really appreciate the effort to try to dupe such a popular high-end product.  The Hourglass palette retails at $58.00 for 0.35 oz. of product.  E.l.f.’s version, if it is consistent with other similar palettes, retails for $6 and you get .56 oz. of product.  Here’s the thing though, I own one of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders (not the palette), so I know how high quality they are.  There is a reason why the powders and the palette are so popular, despite the high price tag.  I have never seen e.l.f. put anything out that is even remotely so finely milled and smooth as those powders.  The e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette may be a fantastic palette of highlighting and finishing powders, but I can not see it ever being a true dupe for the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette.  That being said though, I still can not wait to see what e.l.f. has come up with.

You can find the e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette at eyeslipsface.com and it is currently listed as limited edition.  The palette is not in stock yet, but hopefully it will be available soon.  Please keep in mind, as previously discussed, e.l.f. has chosen for some ridiculous reason to exclude all new items from their sales and promotions.  So, you will be paying full price on any product under the “What’s New” category.  What do you think of the e.l.f. Studio Ambient Palette?  Have you tried the Hourglass powders?  Are you excited about this possible dupe, or are you assuming that e.l.f. can’t possibly reach such high quality?  Let’s discuss in the comments below.

Coastal Scents Revealed 3

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Coastal Scents Revealed 3 Palette

Coastal Scents Revealed 3 Palette

There is a new Revealed palette in town.  Coastal Scents is launching the new Revealed 3 Palette today at coastalscents.com.  Both the Original Revealed Palette and the Revealed 2 Palette are very popular, and have been hailed by beauty bloggers and Youtubers as less expensive dupes for the three Urban Decay Naked palettes.  This time around though, to my knowledge Coastal Scents isn’t trying to dupe anything with the Revealed 3 Palette.  It is designed to stand on its own.  Let’s take a closer look.

Coastal Scents Revealed 3 Palette

Coastal Scents Revealed 3 Palette

According to Coastal Scents, “The Revealed 3 palette features twenty all-new elegant eye shadows, in a stunning variety of hues and textures. Discover infinite possibilities with a combination of looks, perfect for every eye color.”  The Revealed 3 is similar to the first two Revealed palettes in that it is housed in slim and sturdy cardboard packaging.  Coastal Scents still has yet to add a mirror to the Revealed line, but they have kept their price of $19.95 consistent with the other two Revealed Palettes.  This palette looks a little schizophrenic to me at first glance.  There are some warm bronzes and golds for classic neutral looks, but there are also quite a few pinks, purples, and burgundy shades for dramatic smoky eyes.  When you take a closer look and start to create combinations in your head, you realize that the Revealed 3 is actually a very versatile palette that can create a wide range of looks in those color families.  Unfortunately, there are only three mattes in the entire palette.  They are highlight and transitional shades, which will be quite useful, but it would have been nice if more than just the three out of twenty shades had been matte.  The rest of the shadows are a mix of glitter, shimmer, and satin finishes.

Coastal Scents Revealed 3 Palette

Coastal Scents Revealed 3 Palette

So, what do you think of the Coastal Scents Revealed 3 Palette?  I don’t think it will have quite the universal appeal of the first Revealed palette that had so many dupes for UD Naked 1 and 2, but I think it is a decent palette on its own.  If you like pinks and purples, this is going to be a great option for you.  Otherwise, though, you may have more luck with one of the other Revealed palettes.  I also feel like the Revealed 3 is too similar to Revealed 2.  The shades are not the same, but they are similar enough to make me wonder if you need both.  I would have preferred to keep those smoky purples and add in some navys, more grays, and dark greens, for an all smoky palette that would have set Revealed 3 apart from the other two.  I have a feeling that the Revealed 3 is going to be a love it or hate it kind of product.  I think that if you respond to these particular shades then you will love the Revealed 3.  I just don’t think it was the same wide range of appeal as the previous 2 Revealed palettes did.  Here is a pic of all three Revealed palettes together.  What are your thoughts?  Let’s discuss in the comments below.

CS revealed 1,2, and 3

CS revealed 1,2, and 3

 

New from e.l.f. Spring 2015

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There are several new products available on eyslipsface.com for e.l.f.’s Spring 2015 line up, and I wanted to show some of them to you today.  I think that e.l.f. has really been trying to step it up over the last couple years and cater to a more sophisticated crowd.  I think these products fall right in line with that goal.  I am interested to see how well e.l.f. did with the quality of these items because some of them look like good options for an inexpensive alternative to other brands.  Let’s take a look.

e.l.f. Skincare

e.l.f. Skincare

First off, let’s talk skincare.  E.l.f. has launched a new skincare line.  According to e.l.f.: “Purified water and essential nutrients help hydrate and nourish for glowing, healthy looking skin. These products are infused with skin nourishing Jojoba, Aloe, Vitamin E, and Cucumber to sooth and protect delicate skin.  They are also rich in antioxidants such as Shea Butter, Grape, and Orange.”  Currently e.l.f.’s skincare line includes four products:

  • e.l.f. Skincare Illuminating Eye Cream- $10.00
  • e.l.f. Skincare Soothing Serum- $12.00
  • e.l.f. Skincare Daily Hydration Moisturizer- $8.00
  • e.l.f. Skincare Nourishing Night Cream- $12.00

E.l.f does plan on introducing more products into the line as time goes on, including makeup remover cloths and even a BB cream.  You can buy any the four products individually at the prices listed above, or buy all four at once in the Full Skincare Regimen Set for $42.

e.l.f. Studio Lock On Gel Liner

e.l.f. Studio Lock On Gel Liner

Next up is the new e.l.f. Studio Lock On Gel Liner.  E.l.f. says: “This unique gel-based eyeliner is smudge-resistant, fade-proof, and lasts all day. The creamy formula can create bold lines or can be blended with the sponge-tip applicator for a smoky look. Provides a long-wearing, high-performance look on both the inner rims and eyelids.”  So, one side of these gel pencils have an attached sponge tip smudger for smokey looks.  The Lock On Gel Liner retail for $3.00, and shades include:

  • Yes to Nude
  • Get it Green
  • Want it Brown
  • Plum Please
  • Need it Navy
  • Crave it Black
e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Kabuki Brush

e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Kabuki Brush

Something that I am particularly interested in is the new e.l.f. Studio Ultimate Kabuki Brush.  “A true beauty multi-tasker, this brush works for blending, highlighting, contouring, and stippling.The densely compacted bristles distribute powder evenly to create a smooth and soft-focused finish. Flat edges fit the contours of your face while curved corners allow for targeted, precise application. The soft bristles of this Taklon brush are vegan-friendly and easy to clean.”  This is a little pricey for e.l.f. at $10.00, but it is a unique brush for this price point and cheaper than similar brushes on the market.

e.l.f. Studio Intense Ink Eyeliner

e.l.f. Studio Intense Ink Eyeliner

Next up is the e.l.f. Studio Intense Ink Eyeliner. According to e.l.f.: “This quick-dry formula instantly enhances the lash line with rich and long-lasting color. The felt tip pen allows you to create a sleek or bold line with complete precision. It glides on smoothly without smudging, feathering, or running!”  The Intense Ink Eyeliner retails for $3.00.  I wonder how the formula differs from the Essential Waterproof Eyeliner pen.  This version is a thicker pen, so it will definitely handle differently if nothing else.

e.l.f. Studio HD Mattifying Balm

e.l.f. Studio HD Mattifying Balm

There are other products like the new e.l.f. Studio HD Mattifying Balm on the market, but they have had varying success, so it will be interesting to see how e.l.f.’s version does.  According to e.l.f., the Studio HD Mattifying Balm “Minimizes the appearance of pores, mattifies skin, and absorbs excess oil for a shine-free, flawless look. The clear formula is infused with Vitamin E, Jojoba, Almond, and Grape to help nourish the skin. This portable mirrored compact is perfect for oil control touch ups on-the-go.”  It retails for $6.00.  If you are a fan of the Mally Face Defender (for example) then definitely try this one out for much less money.

e.l.f. Essential Instant Lift Brow Pencil

e.l.f. Essential Instant Lift Brow Pencil

The last product I have to tell you about today is the e.l.f. Essential Instant Lift Brow Pencil.  I would like to try it to see how it compares to the It Cosmetics Brow Power pencil, because they look quite similar.  Here’s what e.l.f says: “This slim mechanical pencil shapes, defines, and fills in brows for a natural, polished look. The dual-sided design applies color with the fine tip liner on one side and tames and combs brows with the other to create natural and defined-looking eyebrows.”  The Instant Lift Brow Pencil comes in three shades: Taupe, Neutral Brown, and Deep Brown and retails for $2.00.

Those are a lot of new products to explore from e.l.f.’s Spring 2015 lineup.  Everything that I mentioned today is available at eyeslipsface.com.  I don’t know when or if they will be released to Target stores.  I don’t know about you, but I am interested in most of these products.  I think e.l.f. is being pretty smart with the items that they are introducing lately.  They are definitely trying to appeal to a wide audience.  It also looks like they have updated some of their Essential line brushes.  I vastly prefer the Studio line over the Essential line and don’t really even bother with the latter, but it is worth a mention for those who use the Essential brushes.  Did any of these new products catch you eye?  Are you thinking of placing an order?  Have you already gotten any of these items and have an opinion on them?  Let me know in the comments below.

E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee

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E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee

E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee

E.l.f. has a new line of bronzers out that I mentioned last month, and now I have one of them to show you.  This is the e.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee.  I really like the somewhat new Pressed Mineral Blushes, so I am very excited that e.l.f. has released bonzers in the Pressed Mineral line.  I had heard that Tan Toffee was a matte shade, and I was anxious to see how closely it resembles Too Faced Chocolate Soleil bronzer.  I have some comparison swatches at the end, but first let me talk about this bronzer.

E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee

E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee

Here is what e.l.f. has to say about the Pressed Mineral Bronzers: “Create a healthy looking glow year-round with this sculpting bronzer. The silky smooth texture of this pressed formula is blendable for everyday wear. Infused with Vitamin E and Grape to help nourish the skin for a more revitalized feel.”  I really like this formula.  It feels silky soft and goes on smoothly and evenly.  It actually has a higher end feel, in my opinion.  The pigmentation is great, and it lasts on my skin all day.  The only issue I have with the e.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer is that it is so soft that you have to be careful what brush you use with it.  If you have a good soft brush, you should be fine.  Just remember to tap off before you apply.  If your brushes are a little coarse, or if you have a heavy hand, you can kick up a lot of product in the pan.  You should never have to “dig” into a product, and if you feel you do, then you should probably be using a better quality product.  If you use a light hand, you shouldn’t have much of an issue, but otherwise things can get a little messy.  That issue aside, the formula is fantastic.

E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee

E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee

E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee is a medium bronze shade with subtly warm undertones.  It is not actually matte.  It’s more of a matte-satin with just the slightest sheen.  It is difficult to detect the sheen on the skin, but it is there if you look very closely.  I feel that it is matte enough for me to contour my cheeks and forehead, but not my nose.  I don’t find it too warm for me, but my skin has a warmish-neutral undertone.  People with cooler toned skin, especially if it is also fair, may find Tan Toffee too warm for contouring.  I am not someone who contours on a daily basis, and like to just warm up my face with bronzer, so Tan Toffee is a great color for me.  If you have medium-tan skin or darker, Tan Toffee will be too light for you.  It should work well for anyone with light-medium skin or lighter.  Now, let’s see how it stacks up against other well-known bronzers.

L-R: NYC Sunny, E.l.f. Tan Toffee, Too Faced Chocolate Soleil

L-R: NYC Sunny, E.l.f. Tan Toffee, Too Faced Chocolate Soleil

Here I have swatched NYC Sunny, E.l.f. Tan Toffee, and Too Faced Chocolate Soleil.  I don’t want to just compare color, but also quality.  These three products were swatched exactly the same way.  As you can see, NYC Sunny, the cheapest of the three by far, looks patchy.  It doesn’t look at all like the other two.  The e.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee swatches just as smoothly as the much more expensive Too Faced Chocolate Soleil bronzer.  I have never had issue with NYC Sunny, and think that it is a good drugstore bronzer, but you do have to work with it to get the same color payoff as the other two bronzers.  As far as color goes, Tan Toffee is darker than NYC Sunny, and also not as warm.  If NYC Sunny is too warm for you, Tan Toffee may be a good option.  Chocolate Soleil is pretty darn close in color to Tan Toffee.  They have similar pigment and depth, but Tan Toffee is warmer toned than Chocolate Soleil.  The E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer retails for $5 and is .14oz.  A full size Chocolate Soleil is $30 for .35oz.  If the two products were the same size, e.l.f.’s bronzer would retail for $12.50, still a significant savings to the higher end alternative.  Are the formulas exactly the same?  No.  But they have enough similarities to make e.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee a worthy alternative.

Overall, I am very pleased with E.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzer in Tan Toffee.  I think that the formula is great, and the color works with my skintone.  I definitely recommend taking a closer look at the e.l.f. Pressed Mineral Bronzers.  I believe the lightest shade is a peach highlight, but the two darker shades are definitely bronzers.  If you have lighter skin with a warm or neutral undertone, give Tan Toffee a try.  It is only $5, full price, and it stands up against higher end products of its kind.  I you plan to order online, be sure to take advantage of one of the many sales e.l.f. has going.  You may be able to pick it up for even less.

E.l.f. Limited Edition Mineral Pearls

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E.l.f. Limited Edition Mineral Pearls

E.l.f. Limited Edition Mineral Pearls

E.l.f. has a fun new limited edition product out for the Fall, the Mineral Pearls.  These Mineral Pearls are supposedly an e.l.f. dupe of the very popular Guerlain Meteorites, which retail for around $60 for 0.88 oz.  I have no experience with the original, but for $8 the .53 oz jar of e.l.f. Mineral Pearls may be worth checking out if you are a fan.  E.l.f. Mineral Pearls come in two shades, Skin Brightening and NaturalSkin Brightening is a mix of pastel shades that you see here, similar to e.l.f.’s Tone Correcting Powder (formerly Complexion Perfection).  Blue neutralizes orange, the green neutralizes red, the pink neutralizes grey and the yellow brightens and also neutralizes red.  Natural, pictured below, is a mix of mostly skin toned shades.

E.l.f. Mineral Pearls in Skin Balancing

E.l.f. Mineral Pearls in Skin Balancing

Here is what e.l.f. has to say about the Mineral Pearls: “Indulge in a glistening sheer wash of color with illuminating, radiant Mineral Pearls, designed to complement any skin tone. 6 multi-colored pearls blend together to mattify skin for a flawless, radiant look. Choose from Natural to boost your natural radiance, or Skin Balancing for a more even complexion. The Vitamin A, B, C & E infused formula conditions and hydrates the skin for a soft, silky feel.”
E.l.f. Mineral Pearls in Natural

E.l.f. Mineral Pearls in Natural

The e.l.f. Mineral Pearls are limited edition, and I am not sure how long they will be available.  I also don’t know if they will be released in stores, so your best bet of snagging them is on the website.  Go to eyelipsface.com for more information and to purchase the e.l.f. Mineral Pearls.  Are you interested in this type of product?  I have not used Guerlain Meteorites.  I personally am not a fan of powder pearls like this.  I also think that $8 is a little steep for e.l.f., though I admit that this is somewhat innovative for the drugstore price point.  I know Physicians Formula has put out powder pearls like this, but I can’t think of another drugstore brand that has.  What are your thoughts?  For me, I am going to pass on the little balls.  😉