Thursday, September 6, 2012

Review: Maybelline Color Tattoo Cream Eyeshadow

I am a huge fan of cream eyeshadows. I just love how you can build them up or use them as a wash, and that most of the ones I've been partial to are long wearing. They are great when you are in a rush, delivering fantastic pigmentation, gliding on smoothly, and staying in place all day. At least, the high-end brands I've tried (Bobbi Brown, Make Up For Ever, Benefit) have yet to disappoint. I also like that you can use them as a long wear eyeliner.

Naturally, when I stumbled upon the Color Tattoo cream eyeshadow by Maybelline, I was excited at the prospect of a long-wearing, creamy eyeshadow, at a fraction of the price. I picked this up at CVS for $6.99 -- quite the bargain for someone who is used to paying upwards of $20 for a single shadow.  I chose the color Rich Mahogany. I love a good brown shadow, it's neutral, goes with everything, and makes my blue eyes stand out.

What's absolutely beautiful about this color is that is has a gorgeous pink iridescent sheen that isn't picking up on camera in my swatch (below), but you can see better in the photo of it on my eyes. I didn't notice the pink iridescence until I started wearing it. It's subtle, but it's there, and it looks really pretty. I like using a dusty pink as a blending crease color with this shadow - it works really well, especially with the pink undertone.  You may be able to see it if you squint at the picture below, but it's really quite subtle and doesn't compete with the brown at all.

Using my finger, this product swatched quite easily and that performance translated to the brush. I like to apply my cream shadows using a stiff blending brush. Some options include the MAC 217 and its dupes from Coastal Scents (read my reviews here and here) or the Sonia Kashuk crease brush. You can also apply it with a flat synthetic brush and then blend it out with a fluffy brush -- although I find that its quicker and easier to just go with a stiff blending brush because it can pack on color and blend simultaneously.  I did notice that my Sigma E25 was a bit too fluffy (more on this later). Or you can always use your fingers, it's just my preference to use a brush.

I've road tested the eyeshadow both on its own and with primer and I noticed some differences that you might want to know about:

  • With and without primer, and applied with my E25, I got a light wash that eventually faded by the end of the day. I was nearly ready to give up on the shadow, but decided to give it another shot using a different application tool.
  • Without primer and using stiffer blending brushes or my finger the shadow applied smoothly and I got a deeper color (obviously because I packed on more product). The shadow glided onto my lid, and blended well but felt like it moved around on my lid a little before it set. I had to keep building to get the depth I wanted. But nothing major that would detract me from using it. 
  • With primer and using the same stiffer brushes or my finger, it still applied smoothly and blended well, however the product didn't move around as much so I felt like I had to dip into the jar less to get the same effect. In fact, I got a little more color pay off with the primer underneath. 
You can see the difference in the photo below, which also picks up the pink undertones of the shadow (I took the picture on the bottom right after application and the top photo about four hours later). 

Wearing the shadow yesterday (one side primed, one not) was my last ditch road test before I decided whether to give up on this shadow or not. I have to say, I'm happy to report this one is staying in my collection. I was hoping it would. Here's how each side performed after I wore the shadow for 11 hours  (mind you, the product claims 24 hour wear, but I'm not road testing it that long because I just don't ever wear my makeup for 24 hours so it's not realistic):
  • No primer: I didn't experience any creasing and only had minimal fading, nothing to really complain about. 
  • Primer: I also had no creasing, but didn't experience any fading. In both cases I think that packing on more product helped it last a lot longer than just applying a light wash of color. 
Overall, I think Maybelline did a great job with their Color Tattoo shadow, but I don't think it was meant to be subtle, since I got much better performance when I packed on more product. But that's fine with me, I'll accept it as a high-impact shadow.

What do you think of Maybelline Color Tattoo cream shadows? Have you tried the brighter shades? Have you experienced similar performance? 

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