Saturday, June 22, 2013

Milani Shadow Eyez Pencils Review & Swatches

L-R: Royal Purple, Brown Deluxe, Cafe Au Lait, Sand Dunes, Almond Cream
Milani is a brand that has been on my radar for a few years. It's a difficult brand to find in Canada and so I was never much interested in it. Lately however, Milani has been really stepping up their game and has released a Limited Edition Shadow Eyez collection that's been getting rave reviews, and so I decided to see what all the fuss was about.

Close-up of the products
The shades I picked up (in two separate shopping experiences) are Royal Purple, a matte rich medium-dark purple shade; Brown Deluxe, a shimmery bronze with a gold tone to it; Cafe Au Lait, a matte medium neutral brown shade; Sand Dunes, a super shimmery beige-gold; and Almond Cream a matte pale beige.

Let me start off by saying that these blow me out of the water! Everything you've heard about them is likely true, except maybe the ability to bring Unicorns to life- the jury is still out on that one.

Seriously though these I can see easily becoming a staple for me. They're creamy and easy to blend with, simple to apply, portable and highly pigmented. Plus once they dry down these do not budge. You can get them wet and they won't smear or rub across them (which I did) and they won't smear once they've set. They also can be applied without any primer straight to your eyelid and it won't crease all day. Just swipe, blend and go. Ahh, the pure simplicity!

In function they are much like the Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Shadow Pencils. In fact they may even be better due to how creamy they start out being and the blendibility of them. Just make sure the little plastic lids are on securely and they'll stay this way too. 

(Click on any of the photos to make them bigger).
Natural Light, L-R: Royal Purple, Deluxe Brown, Cafe Au Lait, Sand Dunes, Almond Cream
Indoor Light, L-R: Royal Purple, Deluxe Brown, Cafe Au Lait, Sand Dunes, Almond Cream
A bit about the individual shades:

Royal Purple applies the patchiest of the shades I own, but it isn't so bad that I won't use it. Just swipe it again and the problem is solved.

Sand Dunes as far as I can tell is actually lacking a base pigment at all and is all shimmer- there isn't a matte or metallic base portion to the colour at all as compared to Deluxe Brown. That being said you can barely tell this as the shimmer is so dense it appears like it may be one. Creates a lovely sparkle effect that is almost airy. Very pretty.

Deluxe Brown is the best pigmented of the bunch. Not that the others aren't pigmented (they are) but this one seems to apply itself. Smouldery and rich this one makes me this of metal goblets and medieval embroidered gowns. Makes a very easy brown smoky eye.

Almond Cream is my favourite (only slightly) because it can be blended to match my skin colour perfectly. Very creamy, very pigmented, it works well as a highlight and to just even my skintone on and around my eyes. Even if you are darker than this shade it will work well as a highlight.

Cafe Au Lait is very neutral in it's undertone- it doesn't lean red or yellow. I can see this being a nice staple item for the crease for me as it's not too dark. If this is close to your skin colour I recommend it!

To remove these you're going to want to use a good eye make-up remover, water isn't going to work, and soap will work but not well. I recommend finding one that is oil based and made specifically for eye make-up removal so you don't agitate your eyes. 

Lastly I wanted to see how these worked as a sticky base for other powder eyeshadows. I don't know if the crease-free all day feature will still apply with another shadow on top but I wanted to see how they'd look. I had to work a bit quicker than normal but not so fast that I felt too rushed. The results are below.

I used a variety of different finishes and pigmentation-levels in my powder eyeshadows for this. Each line is a different Milani pencil shade with two shadows swatched on top of them with the original pencil colour peaking out the bottom for comparison.

On the left is Almond Cream with Too Faced Satin Sheets over top and Wet n' Wild's Blue Lagoon Color Icon Single in the middle. Satin sheets is usually a light semi-sheer pink with gold duochrome. Blue Lagoon is normally a medium shimmery blue.

On the right is Cafe Au Lait with Too Faced Like A Virgin on top with Mac* Sumptuous Olive in the middle. Both stayed true to colour pretty much as Like a Virgin is a matte grey and Sumptuous Olive a shimmery khaki green shade. 

On the left is Royal Purple with Urban Decay's (old sheerer formula) Asphyxia on top and Too Faced Poison Plum in the middle. Asphyxia is a sheer shimmery lavender with blue reflect. Poison Plum is a charcoal-purple with purple glitter.

On the right is Brown Deluxe with Urban Decay's Zodiac on top and Too Faced Push-Up in the middle. Zodiac is a dark sooty green with a massive amount of green glitter, and Push-Up is a Metallic pink-bronze shade.

Basically with the darker shades you are going to get some of the base pencil colour showing through, however sometimes this seems to enhance the shades as seen with Cafe Au Lait and Sumptuous Olive, or Asphyxia and Royal Purple. They also hold glitter well eliminating the need for a separate sticky eye base. I know I plan to rock both Zodiac and Poison Plum (my glittery shades) with these for bases.

One thing to take note of though is that to apply the shadows overtop I found you had to pat them into the pencils instead of swiping the powder shadows on. If you swipe the creamy base moves and doesn't work.

Overall, I can't say enough good things about these shadow pencils. They're portable, easy to use, last all day and are reasonably priced. They cost $6.99 on the Milani website. The only real downfall is that some of the shades are limited edition- including my favourite Almond Cream, as well as Cafe Au Lait and Sand Dunes.

If you are interested in getting the Limited Edition Shades Click Here. The link isn't sponsored it's just to the Milani website page where I ordered mine from. It's kinda difficult to find on their website for some weird reason.

Rating: 10/10

Would I buy it again? Yes. In fact I want another Almond Cream for back-up, and I am eyeing up the  other shades too!

What about everyone else, have you spotted these before? Do you like pencil shadows?

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Top items I'll be bringing out for Summer!

If you are at all like me in the summer I need to bring out products that not only hold up to the heat and sweat but also the sun, water, and fit the brighter colours of the season! Overall, that is quite a few different products from my normal routine, especially when I'm at the cottage which only has one air conditioning unit which isn't very good.

So I've made a list of my top sun and fun products in no particular order. You can click the names for the full reviews I've made of them in the past.

1) Marcelle Hydra-C Ultra Thin Matifying Fluid 
I love this product. Absolutely adore and I don't know what I'd do if they discontinued it. This is my main moisturizer which also mattes my skin and keeps it that way for hours. It comes in a great bottle, it is comfortable on and it actually has some skin enhancing ingredients.

2) Blinc Tubing Mascara
For those of you who have been reading this blog for a while, you've likely heard me mention this mascara. I adore it because due to my allergies I'm always touching my eyes, and this mascara won't smear and come off when I do that. It also lasts though Yoga, biking, crying and napping. Plus it comes off easily with warm water. I have this in both the black shade and the purple one (which you can't really tell is purple without looking really closely. Overall I love this product though, and a major part of easily looking great in the summer all day.

3) Urban Decay 24/7 Eyeshadow Pencils and Milani Shadow Eyez Pencils
These are pretty much the same thing at lease formula-wise. Creamy, high pigment pencil eyeshadows in a long lasting waterproof formula. They last all day, only fade the slightest bit with wear and don't crease even without a primer. There is a huge difference in price but the Urban Decay has a larger selection of colours. There are some dupes in Milani range though so be sure to take note!

4) Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Blissful
I love this blush in the summertime! A beautiful pigmented bright coral shade that lasts a ton better than any of my other powder blushes last ( as in hours instead of mere minutes). Has a lovely uplifting sun-touched feel to it.

5) Smashbox Bronzer-Blush in Intermix*
Unfortunately since I received this Smashbox has started selling in China, and thus now tests on animals.  Note: Apparently they signed with PETA saying they aren't selling in China and thus are still considered cruelty-free (excluding their brushes which are real animal hair). It is just the other Estee Lauder companies that are still selling in China that are no longer cruelty-free.
Another lovely light bronzer-ish shade that really brightens and lifts your face with a sun-kissed glow. The only bronzer I've ever liked on my pale skin. Will be attempting to find a replacement for this eventually that is cruelty-free.

6) Glycolix Elite Sunscreen SPF 30
I'm super pale with very sensitive skin. This means I burn easily and sunscreen makes my face a super greasy mess. I really like this sunscreen however. It's matte on and because it's Zinc Oxide based it doesn't aggravate my acne. LOVE that it also goes easily under make-up. (Full review to come)

7) Bite Beauty High Pigment Matte Pencil or Tarte Lip Surgance Matte Lip Tint
I really like both of these pencil types. Both have twist up mechanisms which is great, but my favourite part of them is that they both are highly pigmented and the Tarte one in Hope that I have lasts because it's matte. Long lasting colours are what I want in this warm weather! (Full review to come)

8) Urban Decay Eyeshadows
Urban Decay eyeshadows are what got me into cosmetics. They're smooth and highly pigmented. They also have some amazing shades that really pop. Flipside and Jinx are two bright blueish colours that scream summer pool party to me. Just using a little to line the lower lash line brightens my whole face.

What are some of your favourite summer products?

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Google Friend Connect is Ending :(

Hello all. Just wanted to make a quick post about how if you follow the blog through google friend connect, Google is unfortunately getting rid of this service sometime within the next month.

However all hope is not lost! You can follow Hebridean Sprite Beauty still (as well as other blogs) through bloglovin or you can subscribe by email, so any posts I make will pop up in your inbox.

There is also an automatic update through Twitter as HebrideanSprite and through networked blogs on facebook. You can see all the subscription options above by clicking the tab.

Have a good day everyone!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Urban Decay Desperation 24/7 Glide-on Pencil

I've neglected you my blog followers and for that I am sorry. I'm hoping the muse for blogging will be returning now that some more awesome products have crossed my radar. *fingerscrossed*

One of these excellent products is my new Urban Decay 24/7 Glide on eyeliner pencil in the shade Desperation.  I've been searching for a lightish grey eyeliner pencil for years it feels like and this fits the bill. It's not so light it looks strange but it's not so dark that it looks super harsh on my pale skin like most grey or charcoal pencils look, let alone black. It's a colour I can wear during the day that gives a smokey look but doesn't seem out of place like I'm going to a night club.

It glides on super easily and though it doesn't go on full pigmentation in the first swipe I like that I can have it a bit softer if I want but can easily build it to full in one other swipe. The grey of this is also very neutrally based, meaning it leans neither brown nor blue. I prefer that too as too blue based and it looks blue and makes my eyes look brown and too brown based and I no longer like the colour. So win-win for my pickiness.

The price is a bit of a down-side as Urban Decay is quite expensive in my humble opinion at $20 USD or the even steeper $23 CND not including 13% sales tax (bleh Canadian price schemes). You only get 0.04 oz but it is a beautiful pencil- and I've yet to actually finish an eye pencil so I guess that says something.

The only thing I really dislike about this is the fact it isn't a twist up. I hate having to sharpen eye-pencils ending with wasted product. Other than that though I am so glad I bought this. A neutral staple in my stash.

Rating: 8.5/10 Could be a twist-up, better pigmented and better priced but a good solid product with excellent consistency.

Would I purchase it again? Yes. I can see myself using this a bunch.