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Monday, August 22, 2011

Review and Swatchfest: e.l.f. Beauty Encyclopedia | Basic Eye Edition

This was one of the finds I talked about in my TJ Maxx/Marshalls haul video. There were a few Beauty Encyclopedias to choose from, but, being the creature of habit I am, I gravitated toward the basic eye edition because of the rich and shimmery neutrals it contained. For $4.99, this kit gives you 12 eyeshadows, two cream eyeshadows, a black eye pencil, and a double ended brush (that looks pretty substantial).

As with a lot of e.l.f.'s products, my main gripe is not with the product itself, but rather with the accuracy of the product picture. For a site that does the bulk of their sales online, their pictures and colors aren't always accurate and you can't make returns. While you can often find their products at discount stores like Marshalls or TJ Maxx, I often find them boogered up with the eyeshadows cracked, or worse, ground to a fine powder. But, the gripe ends here because I found a really well stocked and maintained TJ Maxx and Marshalls! Now on to the good stuff.

A general guide for application

Bottom Row

Click any of these pictures to make bigger!
Far left: A more opaque champagne with white shimmer
Mid left: A more orange-y copper with copper chimmer
Mid right: A mauve with a slight golden shimmer
Far right:A matte dark grey-taupe

Middle Row

Far left: A slightly pink-white with white shimmer
Mid left: An English rose color with white shimmer
Mid right: A color that is slightly darker and more purple than the color to the left with white shimmer
Far right: A matte dark brown-leaning purple

Top row

Far left: typical shimmery white
Mid left: light tan-taupe with matching shimmer
Mid right: Golden bronze similar to Woodwinked
Far right: A dark purple-tones brown with matching shimmer

Right Shimmer: A white cream similar to the Shimmering Facial Whip in Spotlight
Left Shimmer: A pink cream similar to the Shimmering Facial Whip in Camilia
 The cream eyeshadows are similar to what you will find in the studio highlight palette. So, while I used them as a brow bone highlight today, I will definitely see how they wear as all over face highlighters. Their consistency isn't too greasy, but they don't dry as a powder on me. If you have oily lids or cheeks, I wouldn't recommend using these.

Also included is a black eyeliner and double ended eyeshadow brush. The eyeliner isn't anything special but the brush looks substantial with a dense brush on one end and a standard sponge on the other.

Now the review: I am always surprised at how pigmented e.l.f. eyeshadows are! I was also pleasantly surprised to find a Woodwinked dupe in here (yay!). Overall, these shadows are great! The mattes are the teensiest hard to blend, but nothing I can't get over for the $5 price tag. The colors are also great for every day looks, however, you could definitely build them up to create a nighttime/more dramatic look.

I 100% recommend this palette as a source for every day looks because it has wonderful neutral staples in it. I don't think it leans warmer or cooler (it has both warm golds and coppers as well as cool plums and mauves) so it is great for a wide range of skin tones. I will have a back-to-school tutorial using this entire palette (tools included) to show its utility and versatility.

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