Since the beginning of the year, I have collected metallic shadows from 3 companies to try out their very popular formulations. The shadow is so soft that your fingertip will leave a noticeable dent & the colors look deeply metallic and iridescent in the packaging. I was hoping the shadows would look as incredible on the lids as they did in the many photos, swatches, and videos I saw showcasing them.
I have a big problem with all eye shadow: my slightly oily lids. The shadows look gorgeous when swatched with fingertips. Once applied to my actual eyelids, the shadows have maybe half the intensity that they did on my hand & tend to wear off easily. There are ways around this: starting with an eye primer/base and adding a matte shade or setting powder before applying the shadow. That is a lot of product and a lot of work! I selfishly gravitate towards shadows that do the job without the extra steps.
The Brands & How They Fared:
Makeup Geek Foiled Eyeshadow ($9.99, shipped in pans that require additional storage):
A birthday gift from my sister, these have turned out to be my absolute favorite. They give amazing color pay off in one application, the shadow is creamy & smooth, and they have the longest lasting power of the 3 brands. I prefer using my fingertips when applying to the whole lid; small firm brushes work great for the crease or inner eyelid application. The colors look like the product in the pan on my eyes. They are vibrant, metallic and are extraordinarily beautiful. I reach for them a lot. My favorite shade is “In The Spotlight,” the perfect peachy/gold with a hint of pink.
NYX Prismatic Shadows ($6.00:)
These shiny beauties come in the most adorable packaging! The Prismatic Shadows are the most firm in texture but still soft & easy to apply. They are slightly powdery compared to the other two brands but that can make them easier to apply. Sometimes the super-soft metallic type shadows can ball up or clump up, making it harder to apply. These are decently pigmented but the lighter shades appear sheerer & require the extra application. These shadows are decent but do not last as long as the MUG.
I tried out 3 shades of the ColourPop shadows in the metallic and ultra-metallic finishes. If I had not tried out the ultra-metallic “Liberty,” I would have nothing nice to say. The metallic shades I bought were pastel shades, but I still wanted to see some color pay off! They were extremely sheer, the color fades immediately, and all that is left behind is a spreading mass of greasy glitter wash. There is so much glitter in these shades that they almost appear frosty (not what I wanted!) I would try other finishes and deeper shades, but “Flipper” and “Eye Candy” were a total fail.
The ultra-metallic “Liberty” is phenomenal. It stands out from all other metallic shadows I have tried. It looks like liquid silver when applied, lasts longer than the metallic shades, and is what you have been hoping for in all of those other shadows when applied–this one is truly metallic without any glitter mess.
I hope my experimentation with these metallic shadows can help you choose wisely in your purchases. Makeup is a lot of fun & I tend to enjoy a little sparkle in my look but I never wanted to look glitter covered & frosty. I don’t mind adding several applications of shadow to get the color I want but I refuse to use makeup that has worse color pay off than children’s makeup. 🙂 As a final note, only the NYX shadows can be found in stores (drugstores, Ulta.) The MUG & ColourPop are sold exclusively on their websites.
Update 11/25/2015: Thank goodness I did not give up on ColourPop! For me, the metallic shades are still hit or miss but I have consistently found that shades that are described more as metallic than glittery will work much better for me. I like the two matte shades I purchased but they are lower in pigmentation than the rest of the line. I still adore their Ultra-Metallic shades: Liberty (silver,) Game Face (bronze,) and LaLa (rose gold.) I have done two more reviews & they have been much more positive. I personally love their Creme Gel Colours & Liners!
September Review: ft. assorted eye, cheek, and lip products
November Review ft. Creme Gel Colours (pots) in Timber (grey) and Get Paid (rose gold,) new shadow in LaLa (ultra metallic rose gold) and Cricket (mid-range metallic purple with glitter,) and Creme Gel Liner in Kicker (true silver.) I have since started to use the Creme Gel Liner in Stomper (medium brown) to fill in my brows with a small angled brush with great, long-lasting, natural-looking results!