The damage this time 'round, with after discount prices:
- L'Oréal Color Riche La Palette Nude in Beige ($17.97)
- L'Oréal Color Riche La Palette Nude in Rose ($17.97)
- Essie Grow Stronger Base Coat ($10.77)
- Essence Quick & Easy Sponge Nail Polish Remover ($3.69)
- Rimmel Magnif'Eyes Double Ended Shadow + Liner in Kissed by a Rose Gold ($10.17)
- Essence Studio Nails Nail Polish Corrector Pen ($3.33)
- Essence Eyeliner Pen Extra Longlasting ($3.06)
- Models Prefer Brow Highlighter ($5.99)
In my mind, it was either this whole bunch of stuff, or the Too Faced Peanut Butter and Jelly Palette (notwithstanding the fact the Too Faced is $58 at Mecca Maxima and therefore a good $15 cheaper, plus basically impossible to get). I still mentally settled for having more "drugstore" products than one high end item.
Let's start off with the two most exciting additions ... the L'Oréal Color Riche La Palette Nude eyeshadow palettes in Beige and Rose. It was definitely an indulgence to have bought both, but it was more of an all or nothing situation. I didn't need either and while I would have opted for Rose if forced to pick between the two, at 40% off, I thought ... why not. I didn't want to buy one, be happy with it, then become fixated on hunting down the other palette the next day, unsatisfied until I had both.
It actually took me a while to realise these weren't the same palettes released in the US that I've heard many an American YouTuber rave about. The shades are completely different. It's super confusing. Over there, they're known by the same name (Color Riche La Palette Nude), but they're numbered 1 (the more beige option) and 2 (the pinker one). The palettes are made in the US and contain a whopping 17.5 grams of product across 10 pans. The packaging is also different — it's bigger and there's a clear window at the front so you can see the shades. The European version, released in the UK and also in Australia, has vastly streamlined packaging. It's a pretty compact unit. There's only 7 grams of product (but still 10 shades) and the palettes are made in China. I don't have the US version so I can't comment on quality/pigmentation differences, but just from online swatches and reviews, it does seem the eyeshadows in the US version have more colour payoff and vibrancy.
Onto the swatches:
L'Oréal Color Riche La Palette Nude in Beige (first half of palette)
L'Oréal Color Riche La Palette Nude in Beige (second half of palette)
L'Oréal Color Riche La Palette Nude in Rose (first half of palette)
L'Oréal Color Riche La Palette Nude in Rose (second half of palette)
Generally, the pigmentation is decent but not amazing. The Rose one is better than the Beige. Better colour selection, better pigmentation. Seriously, if you had to get just one, go with the Rose — especially if you already have Urban Decay Naked 1 or Maybelline The Nudes. I only really love the shimmery bronze in the Beige (the 8th colour across), but it's so common that I'm sure if I had a proper dig around my collection, I could find 5 dupes (or 50). The first half of the Beige palette is very light and not that pigmented, so I question how much use I'll get out of it. I also actively dislike the pale yellow gold (the fifth shade), as it's so watered down and sheer and unflattering that I can't see myself ever wanting to reach for it. It had so much potential to add something special to the palette if it were darker, more molten and reflective, or ultra sparkly with a warmer base colour.
The defining feature of these palettes are the texture of the eyeshadows and the way they apply. It's a drier texture so there's minimal fall out, which is a good thing, despite the sacrifice in colour payoff. It's not that they're not pigmented, it's that they give a more subtle, softer, hazy effect. They're hard to overdo unless you apply layers and layers and really build up the pigmentation. I suppose on occasion, extremely pigmented eyeshadows can be trickier to deal with since they require more work with blending, and can be a little too loud and OTT for the daytime. These L'Oréal palettes offer an alternative. I especially like the mattes since they're smooth, easy to blend and give an even, seamless wash of colour over the lid.
I also bought a couple of nail things. Another base coat from Essie (I'm almost done with my First Base which I was very happy with, but I wanted to try something different) and a nail polish remover pot from Essence (I was planning to get the Maybelline one again, but I figured the Essence was a third cheaper and couldn't be that much different). Out of sheer curiosity, and because it was so affordable, I purchased the Essence Studio Nails Nail Polish Corrector Pen. I've never used anything like it before, but I'm excited to try it next time I paint my nails since my existing method of cleaning up areas I've overpainted involving a toothpick and hand cream is tedious to say the least and desperately inefficient.
Finally, some more eye products. I completely disregarded everything else in this haul. No base, no cheeks, no lips. Just eyes and nails. I couldn't resist getting another Essence eyeliner (I'm using the waterproof version at the moment as detailed in my current makeup menu and learning to get along with it), because at $3, how could I go wrong. I also bought Rimmel Magnif'Eyes Double Ended Shadow + Liner in Kissed by a Rose Gold. Their ScandalEyes Shadow Stick in Bad Girl Bronze is basically one of my favourite products of all time, so I had high confidence in how good it would be. I bought it even without a tester and wasn't disappointed. This shiz is pigmented, man.
Rimmel Magnif'Eyes Double Ended Shadow + Liner in Kissed by a Rose Gold (002)
I mean, just look at it. Absolutely magnificent.
I'm becoming super lazy with my eyeshadow and heavily reliant on eyeshadow crayons/sticks to do the job, so another high performing addition is undoubtedly welcome. Especially when it's double ended with two shades — one for the lid/inner corner, one to add definition and line.
Models Prefer Brow Highlighter
I've been eyeing the Models Prefer Brow Highlighter ever since I started watching Jordan Liberty's videos a few months ago. I noticed he regularly uses Benefit High Brow to highlight the brow bone, bridge of the nose and cupid's bow. Every time he applied it on the model, it looked out-of-this-world ethereal. The Models Prefer seemed like a fairly blatant attempt to dupe High Brow, so I gave it a shot. It looks like the colour of the Models Prefer is darker and more shimmery than High Brow, which is matte and whiter/lighter. Still, I don't think I have anything like it in my whole collection, even if I have something similar colour-wise. I appreciate the ease of use, control and precision of a pencil, and the pearlescent pink gives a girly, angelic touch.