Review: Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Gel Liner

If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you might remember this post in which I compared MAC’s Fluidline gel liner in Blacktrack with a drugstore gel liner from Maybelline. It didn’t really work out so well. I haven’t bothered with drugstore liners since then. But to be honest, I don’t really think Blacktrack is that great either, even though people seem to swear by it.

Recently I started looking into what gel liners my favorite bloggers were loving, and the main one that kept popping up again and again was the Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner in Jet Black. I decided to pick it up from Sephora, just in case I hated it so I could return it.

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I took it for a trial run on Tuesday just passed. Tuesdays are pretty long days for me in terms of makeup-wear. I get ready for work around 9am, work 11am – 7pm then I have trivia which usually ends around 10-1030pm. So that is more than 12 hours of makeup wear.

But first – application. I’m not gonna lie; I was impressed with this product from first swipe. I picked up a tiny amount on my Real Techniques Bold Metals 202 Angled Liner Brush and carefully made my first line, following the lower outer lashline in an angled flick. I gasped. It was black, it was dark, it was sharp, it was opaque… ok ok let’s not get too excited. I did the other side, same thing. I made a line nice and close to my lashes along my upper lashline.. still dark black. Not too messy.

Here’s a two-swipe swatch:

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The edges look messy, but I wasn’t as careful as I would be if I was doing it on my eyelid.

This is a comparison of MAC’s Blacktrack (top) and the BB liner:

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The BB is blacker and more opaque. I also noticed while doing these swatches that it was more liquidy, and therefore harder to keep neat and clean.

Ok so, I know what you want to know. How did it look, and how long did it last?

Here’s a pic of my wingy liner look from that day, about 1 hour post application (I was about to leave for work, hence the scrubs):

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When I got home from trivia, I looked at my liner in the mirror. My eyelids were very oily which usually means that my liner is a mess. They were so oily that I could see a dome shaped hole in my lid makeup (which was just some concealer), literally eyelid shaped. But what happened to my liner? Absolutely nothing. Even Ray noticed. Even my friend who was, self-admittedly, 2 wines-on-an-empty-stomach down noticed.

Bottom line, I’m SO impressed with this eyeliner. The MAC liner is getting backburnered, or binned (KonMari style, thanks for your service, Blacktrack). I get the hype. 5 out of 5 stars. You can pick it up for $26 from Sephora, and I recommend you do. You won’t regret it!

Thanks for reading!

F&V

Playtime Wednesday: Mineral Makeup, Black Liner, Lipstick and Unboxings..

This is going to be a bit of a mishmash!

A couple of weeks back, one of my lovely friends, Evelyn, who created Mineralis Cosmetics – an indie makeup brand based in the UK, asked if she could send me some of her products. I told her that would be lovely, as long as it was okay with her that I was 100% honest in my blog. Evelyn happily agreed, she has a lot of faith in her products.

With good reason. They arrived this week and I used them the next day for a full day of work. Evelyn sent 2 shades in case I needed to mix them and a translucent powder in a gorgeous little purple drawstring bag. Cutest!

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Mineral makeup has always been a bit of a mystery to me. I don’t get it. It’s just a powder? How does it work? Do you just dust it on? Do you mix it with water (yes, I literally thought this)? Evelyn patiently explained that I should apply it with a flat topped brush, after applying a dusting of the translucent powder in my oilier areas. So that’s what I did. I used no primer, just some moisturizer which I put on half an hour before I applied the makeup. I mixed the two shades together, which gave the perfect shade (well done Evelyn!). I dusted a little translucent powder again over the top. I used no concealer at all. Below is a picture of the freshly applied makeup and the 6pm appearance – no touchups.

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Different light – sorry! I tried!

There’s a totally normal amount of shine on my nose and the makeup has absorbed into my face a little bit but again that’s totally normal – my face likes to eat makeup. Even the absolute best and longest wearing makeup would be failing by that point. My t-zone is oily and makeup is not infallible despite what L’Oreal likes to tell us!

I played again today this time just adding a little bit of under-eye concealer before I put the foundation on. I did a before and after so you can see the amount of coverage with just a single “layer” application. Not bad for ground up rocks, huh?

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Before and after mineral makeup application

I’m going to keep trying this stuff out and seeing how it goes. So far I’m super impressed. These foundations are 6GBP which is drugstore prices for a great quality product. The translucent powder is 6.5GBP and you only need such a little bit, it’s a bargain. I really recommend checking Mineralis out! Link in first paragraph.

I decided after that that I’d play with the Maybelline Kajal black liner. I hardly ever line my entire eyes anymore, so as not to make my eyes look smaller. I then used a pencil brush to smudge everything out. Fun!

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Wow such dark so mystery

Then I dug around in my lipstick collection and re-discovered MAC’s “All Fired Up” retro-matte lipstick. This lipstick is SO MATTE that I sometimes find it hard to wear, which is why it doesn’t get pulled out very often. But the color is great so I put a bunch of balm on, waited a bit then applied the lipstick and it’s wearing really nicely so far.

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I mean look at this color. It’s like a light, pinkyish red. I blurred out the edges with a q-tip, I’ve been into that lately, just to make the edges a little less stark.

I got my BoxyCharm today which was, tbh, kinda disappointing. It’s meant to be a luxury box and maybe it is but the only exciting thing to me is the Oscar Blandi silk serum. I waited all damn month (they billed me on the 1st of June) for this?!

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Ipsy was way better and half the price. But I might just be saying that because the Ipsy bag came with a brow pencil by IT Cosmetics which is a brand I like. It’s a great pencil too! I don’t like the nail polish though. I disagree with the “gel effect” claim, it chipped like less than 24 hours after wearing it.

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Anyway that’s my Wednesday of playing around and trying things out, and revisiting some favorites. I hope yours was nice! Have a great week, readers.

Love+++
F&V

Tips and Tricks: Stress-less Winged Eyeliner

You guys know I’m always looking for ways to make this particular process easier. I’ve researched all kinds of ways, and previously was using the stickytape or page-marker flag method but I think I found a way that’s even easier and doesn’t involve sticking tape on your face. Score!

The biggest obstacle I face when doing this is getting both of the angles looking similar (remember, they’re sisters, not twins!) on both eyes. If they’re TOO different, you can look a bit strange!

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Bioderma micellar water, pointy q-tip, Sephora matte black shadow, Kat Von D Ink Liner in “Trooper”, Real Techniques angled liner brush

All you’ll need for this trick is some matte black eyeshadow (a lot of palettes will have one of these, or you can buy an extremely cheap one), a slanted or flat eyeliner brush (not a pointed one) and your choice of either gel or liquid liner. It’d also be handy to have some makeup remover or micellar water and a cotton bud (q-tip – gotta get used to the US words!). If you have those sharp/pointy-ended q-tips that’s even better!

The best way I have found to get the angles looking “right” is to basically continue the line of your lower lashline. Just pretend it keeps on going up towards the tail of your eyebrow.

So for this trick, what we are basically doing is drawing a “guide-line” in the most literal sense of the word.

It’s up to you if you want to do this before or after your foundation routine. Sometimes when I know I’m gonna be wearing a tonne of eye makeup that will have a lot of fallout, I will do my eye makeup first. Again, totally up to you.

Pop some primer or concealer on your eyelids first if that’s a thing you do. Give it a bit to dry, then grab your slanted or straight brush (doesn’t really matter I just find slanted ones a bit easier to use) and lightly press the very ends of the bristles into the black eyeshadow.

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Like so.

Tap off the excess and press it off a bit too, either onto your hand or on a tissue etc. I just pressed it off onto my background paper. You don’t want your brush to be too loaded.

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Now, with your eyes open (important) and without pulling your eye skin around, use the flat bristle-end of the brush to draw a line from the very outer corner of your eyelid towards your brow, ensuring you “continue” the line of your lower lid. I have found the easiest way to do this is to do a “stamping” motion. Stamp the shadow on and then, if you want the line a little longer, drag it lightly up and out continuing that same line.

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It’s true, I’m not wearing a skerrick of other makeup. SOZ NOT SOZ

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Close up! You can see the line basically follows my lower lashline.

Put the brush down and check your line. If you are happy with it, hooray! That’s the hard part over. If you’re not, dip the end of your q-tip into your makeup remover and remove the line you made, or part of it if you just made it too thick (this is where those pointy ones come in handy). Easy peasy – it’s just eyeshadow, not waterproof liner, it won’t make a mess. No biggie at all! This is the true genius of this method. It’s so easy to fix.

Note: If you want, you can actually draw in the entire eyeliner path – not just the wing line. I just do this bit, because it’s the part I really struggle with.

Repeat for the other eye.Once this is done, you can use your actual eyeliner to go over the line you drew. Start with the wing line, then keeping nice and close to the upper lashline and starting from the midpoint(ish, personal preference), use small strokes of eyeliner to meet the wing line.

As mentioned earlier, I really feel that it’s quite important to not pull your eyelid around or squint hard while you’re doing this. At some point you will probably have to at least partially close your eye to line the upper lashline but if you squint too much or pull your eyelid around, you will really warp the line that you’re trying to make. This might seem like stating the obvious, but it was a huge realisation for me, I’ve always pulled my eye around like a crazyperson, trying to make the skin tight so the line is straight. ??? Anyway..

I found this amazing graphic on J’Adore Glitz‘s blog (whether she made the diagram or not is unclear) which explains what I mean quite well. These are the lines you want to draw in.

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In the above graphic, she draws in the upper line of the wing immediately after the lower line. That’s fine of course, and a lot of people do it that way. I just don’t because I like to make it gradually thicker rather than committing myself to a wing that might be “too much”. I also think that bringing the liner all the way to the inner corner like she has can make one look a bit intense, and doesn’t really suit that many people. Unless you have quite wide set eyes, in which case go nuts! Do you, boo!

That’s pretty much it! I hope this was helpful and my bare-faced, hair-not-even-combed visage did not alarm you too much.

Next blog will be my April favourites and I am really excited about it! Lots to talk about. Stay tuned!

Love+++

Is it a dupe? MAC Fluidline vs. Maybelline Gel Liner

Phew, what an emotional rollercoaster this was!

First up, sorry for the terrible photo quality. I’m really trying to work out how to best use the cameras that I have access to, but it’s hard. The pictures I took with my Lumix point and shoot are garbage so I scrapped them. Sometimes I’m slack for setting up my dSLR but that might be something I look at doing for the moment. Anyway – onward!

I was watching a tutorial by Jaclyn Hill about gel liners and she mentioned that she thinks the Maybelline Gel Liner is blacker and better than MAC’s Fluidline in Blacktrack. I found this compelling because Jaclyn is a huge MAC fan and used to work for them for many years.

So off to Priceline I went and grabbed the Maybelline product in “Blackest Black”.

First up, I put a very basic face on. I just used these products plus a brow pencil, I didn’t bother spraying with setting spray or anything too dramatic because I was only going to have makeup on for a very short time.

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Bourjois Healthy Mix foundation, Maybelline Fit Me concealer, Bourjois Healthy Balance powder, Wayne Goss Holiday Brush, Real Techniques Expert Face Brush

Now, onto the stars of the show.

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Real Techniques eyeliner brush, MAC Fluidline in “Blacktrack”, Maybelline Gel Liner in “Blackest Black” + matching brush

First, I tested the products on the back of my hand. Please note, for the sake of accuracy I used my Real Techniques angle liner brush for the MAC one and for the Maybelline product I used the brush that came in the package.

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Maybelline on bottom, MAC on top

Now, I did this at a super zoom because I wanted to make it very clear how on the back of my hand, the Maybelline appears to have itĀ over the MAC one. Maybe it’s a brush issue (I don’t think so), but I found it hard to get good opacity with the MAC product. I had to brush over it a few times and brushing over it sometimes seemed to make it worse. Anyway, back of the hand isn’t really that important right? Onto the eyes.

I used the MAC liner on my left eye first. The application was okay. I felt like I needed to go over the black line quite a few times. It dried super fast which is a good thing and a bad thing. It meant that it was hard to work with and went a bit cakey fairly quickly. But it did not transfer AT ALL onto my upper lid.

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Yes, I was watching youtubes while I was doing this. What of it?

Looking pretty good, apart from the wonky bottom of the line, like a blown out tattoo. Regardless, it’s a thick straight dark black line so that’s what we want. NEXT

First impressions on the Maybelline gel liner were mostly to do with the brush. I thought it was a bit strange. It is small and fine, not like a traditional thin liner brush but more like a cross between one of those and an angle brush. It’s almost wedge-shaped. Perplexing. However! I loved it. I thought it was great! It was tiny and fine, it didn’t have the big drag that some of the angle brushes have, it was super easy to work with! A happy surprise.

The gel liner itself went on like a dream. Thick, black, fantastic opacity, I didn’t have to go over any lines (apart from neatening up the bottom line of the flick itself). I was squeeing on the inside about how much I loved this liner!

It wasn’t until I looked at the pictures I had taken that I saw that it had transferred to my upper lid.

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NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

In saying that, I didn’t put any eye primer on at all and my eyelids were slightly oily, it’s near the end of the day after all. I’m definitely going to give this one another go, because I loved the application and the brush and how gosh-darn BLACK it is! It’s a really great product, I feel the transfer is user error.

MAC’s Fluidline will set you back AU$32, the Maybelline liner almost exactly half the price at $16.95. Even with the transfer, the Maybelline product is the clear winner here ladies and gentlemen. Please stand by for how it goes through an entire day of wear at work tomorrow.

Edit: unfortunately it transferred a lot. Even with primer. Sigh. You win this round, MAC.

Peace!