Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Review: Barbie Loves Stila smudge pot in Little Black Dress

I've been eyeing off the Stila smudge pots for ages, but was always turned off by the price, as we often are for certain cosmetic brands here in Australia. In particular, the Barbie Loves Stila special edition smudge pots caught my eye because they're such bright and bold colours. The smudge pots retail for $42 at Mecca Cosmetica (ouch), while they're US$20 overseas. You can see why I was hesitant to part with that sort of cash!

I nabbed a regular smudge pot in purple on an overseas trip a few years ago and I think I paid something like US$16 for it at the time. Looking at the Stila web site, it appears they no longer have a purple one, apart from the Barbie Loves Stila smudge pot in Purple Pumps. The one I got was much darker than that, however.

I really like the texture of the smudge pots. It's essentially a gel eyeliner and shadow, depending on how you apply it. I did find that once I applied it, I had to work fairly quickly to smudge it, if that was the look I was going for, otherwise it would set and it became much harder to work with. On that front, it's fantastic for not smudging (no pun intended) once it's set.

A couple of months ago, I was looking for a dark eye base to make some of my lighter mineral eyeshadows stand out more. I was thinking about getting a MAC Shadestick or something like that and I'd completely forgotten about the old smudge pot. I was suddenly reminded when watching a video on YouTube from one of my favourite makeup gurus, hollyofmirkwood2. She'd done a haul video and raved about the Barbie Loves Stila smudge pot in Little Black Dress - a black with tons of magenta glitter.

Being a total sucker for glitter, I did some online research and saw how totally awesome it looked on other people. I caved. I ended up turning to eBay and got it for $20 including postage. That's less than half the retail price! I use the excuse that it's really inconvenient for me to get myself down to Mecca on lunch breaks because it's nowhere near my work.

So having used it for a while, I'm glad I got it. As an eyeliner, it's just gorgeous because the black isn't too inky and the magenta sparkles really give it that something extra. I find that it sets even faster than the old smudge pot, however, which is something I'm not too keen on. For those in a hurry to do their makeup, this could be a good thing. I still prefer to apply the liner all along my lashline and then go back and blend or smudge it out. I ended up having to do a little bit at a time, smudging as I go. I've gotten faster at applying it now, so this isn't a big issue.

I've also worn it all over my eyelid as a dark base. Wow! It completely transformed the colour of the pale mauve eyeshadow I wore over the top, with the glitter again another dimension. It was so smooth and soft to apply. Sweeping loose eyeshadow over it once it had set was no problem and I didn't find it lumpy or uneven. Blending eyeshadow over the top was possible, but took a little work. The gel formula really is fantastic. I still see myself needing a plain black base, though, because as much as it pains me to admit it, pink glitter isn't a look for every day. With a fairly subtle eyeshadow and worn just as an eyeliner, it looks amazing.

The only real problem with it is when it comes time to remove it. My trusty eye makeup remover will get off all my eye makeup in flash, smudge pot included, although even when I wash my face after that, I find pink sparkles all along my lashline. The rest of it comes off fine, but the glitter still remains. I don't like scrubbing my eyes too much (I have precious few eyelashes as it is), so I've often just left it. I've even had some glitter remaining the next morning, also after washing my face. The glitter is so fine that it doesn't get into my eyes or irritate them, which is great because I wear contact lenses every day.

At the end of the day, I love the effect of this smudge pot and am happy to live with a little residual glitter at the end of the day. Maybe I'll even get the plain black smudge pot since the Barbie Loves Stila smudge pot in Little Black Dress is so good. I wonder if I have any of my purple one left?

I love how Barbie winks at you. Very cute packaging.

Check out all those sparkles!

Left: with flash. Right: no flash.
Trust me, it's really black, but isn't showing up well in the photos.