Thursday, 25 March 2010

Illamasqua Week - Powder Eyeshadow Review

This is one of the hardest reviews i've hard to write because... well i just don't know what to say about these eyeshadows. They're not bad at all, but then they're not amazing either. I personally find it hard to compare eyeshadows to other brands because unless you have the same basic colour the colour, finish etc is going to be variable on purpose. By this i mean you could buy 2 peach shadows and one could seem much more pigmented and bright, but maybe that's just because the lighter one is designed to a paler colour.

Anyway these eyeshadows come in tonnes of colours (there must be over 100) ranging from pale neutrals to near neon so i'm sure there's something for everyone. The majority of colours are matte but there are a few shimmers too, I'm actually pleased about this as i love matte shades and the majority of brands seem to favour shimmery or pearly shadows. They are £15 each and you get 2g. They come in the same exact packaging as the cream eyeshadows, so i'm not going to bother describing it again :)

Firstly i have 8 of the shadows but bought them second hand from Rhamnousia so got them for £6 or £7 each, instead of 15. The colours are (from left to right)
top:  Grope, Succumb, Dizzy, Lick
below:  Courtesan, Can Can, Creep, Geisha
 And swatches: Succumb, Grope, Dizzy, Lick, Geisha, Creep, Courtesan, Can Can

As you can see some of the colours are not very bright, but this is because i chose some pale colours boardering on neutrals as i honestly don't have any in my collection. When used in looks they certainly don't look dull, they are actually quite pigmented, they just don't look it here (if that makes sense)

I also bought (this time actually from Illamasqua at full price) the Dystopia collection palette in Pink Smoke which contains Quantum, Matter, Synth and Rasp shadows. This cost £29 and you get 4 shadows at 1.5g each. As a single shadow is 2g for £15 i think this is pretty great value. Illamasqua used to make custom palettes where you could choose any 4 of their cream or powder eyeshadows for the same price as this. I loved this idea and, after going a-swatching a few months ago, i had a list of colours i wanted to make into several palettes but sadly before i could order mine they discontinued the custom palettes. If anyone from Illamasqua happens to read this PLEASE consider bringing them back.

The packaging is basically the same as with the single eyeshadows only giant and without a window in the lid. Instead it has a really nice big, good quality mirror. Again i really like the packaging, it's very sophistiated and yet has a bit of an ususual, slightly gothic 'edge' with it's shiny black plastic and curved sides. One problem i have with it is that it doesn't say the colours of the actual shadows, it just says 'Pink Smoke' which is the name of the palette. This has caused a problem in actually knowing which colour is which.2 of the colours in the palette (Rasp and Quantum) aren't available seperately, Synth is and it's easy to tell which colour it is as it's a pearlescent white colour, Matter is on available seperately too but it is one of the 2 greys in the palette so i can't figure out which is which. I just have guessed that 'Rasp' is the pink shade because it hints at 'raspberry' but i might be completely wrong. And then out of the two greys i've just decided 'Quantum' is the lighter one and 'Matter' is darker as on the website it describes it as 'gunmetal'.

Swatches (sorry they're blurry).
Matter, Quantum, Rasp, Synth (or so i assume)
These colours are shimmery, except for Rasp. 

Now for the quality of these. Personally i think they are great. They blend wonderfully, the mattes are just as blendable as the shimmers and i have no problems with them at all. The wear of them is great, on me even without primer, these last all day without any creasing and with very little, if any, fading. The shimmery ones do have a little bit of fall out but nothing terrible. I really like the colours i have and, while they aren't the brightest eyeshadows around, they are well pigmented and very very pretty.

So would i repurchase? I'm not really sure to be honest. The eyeshadows are fine, wear well, blend brilliantly, and are very pretty colours. However they're not really particularly unusual and honestly i don't think they're worth £15. I might purchase again if i find a colour that's really new and different, or if they have a sale. I do, however, really like the shadows i've got, i certainly wouldn't discourage anyone from buying them as they are good quality in my opinion.


  1. errrmmm... 15 pounds is quite steep for an eyeshadow, even in US DOllars. I'm not sure I'm prepared to pay that much for something like that, unless its like I HAVE TO HAVE IT OR ELSE

  2. Mattes ftw! They dont get enough love from cosmetic brands :(

    I dont think I can ever be arsed to buy an Illamasqua shadow, especially since there were so many negative reviews a while back on their colour payoff. That Pink Smoke quad looks pretty though, and I want to try some of the other products you've covered :)

  3. Y:
    Yeah i agree, they're too pricey for me at their full price. You can find so many colours in good quality from cheaper brands.

    Completely agree, i think a good quality matte is the best in my opinion. I do love shimmers too but mattes are so versatile because you can pair them with shimmery topcoats and things.
    Apparently the negative reviews was caused by some fault so Illamasqua changed the formula and they're better now. Because i got these from a blog sale i don't know if these are before or after the formula change. The pink smoke quad i love though and i do think they're good shadows but... not worth £15.


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