Thursday 1 October 2009

Lime Crime Makeup Dilemma

I'm really torn between whether or not to buy some new makeup (not now, i have no money, but in the future) from Lime Crime makeup ( Specifically this problem has come up with her new line of lipstick.
The reason i am torn is that on the plus side the colours are beautiful and, as far as i can tell, the formulas look lovely. I want nearly every single one, probably not the neon pink, red or black because i have those colours already. But all the rest are really truly unique looking and stunning.

However the downsides are really really bad.
Firstly i think that, while they look quite high quality, it's a bit much to charge $16 for a lipstick when you're only just starting in the business, Mac charge LESS than that, and they are formulated by a whole team of professional make-up artists with years of experience, not just some girl who has decided to try her hand at it.

But the main reason is simple. She has pesonally insulted me and my family in the past.
I don't know if anyone remembers, but Lime Crime used to be a fashion line, ultimately it didn't work out which is why Xenia has now moved on to makeup. My Mum bought a dress from her and when it arrived we were shocked to find it was hemmed with Gaffa tape (Duct tape) but we still left good feedback and so on because we don't like to make a fuss.
Anyway a while down the line a friend saw this dress and decided to take photos and post them on an internet forum dedicated to bad DIY fashion. Now this wasn't kind or anything, but fair enough, it was bad DIY and my friend didn't otherwise slag her off. I didn't know she had done it until after the fact.
Anyway Xenia commented on the post defending herself, which was fair enough, but said (i'm paraphrasing as she deleted her comments) 'I sold a shoddy dress. Someone bought it for $100. Who's the real asshole here?'.
So well, as you can imagine i was furious. Even if she weren't actually calling my mother an 'asshole' it's terrible to say that to anyone. She was basically saying 'theres nothing wrong with me selling crap merchandise because people will be gullible enough to buy it'.
After i got angry and told her off for being rude she sent me a long email basically about how hard her life was at that point but not apologising or offering any real excuse. I found it very irritating as she just used to whole thing to try and get pity for herself.

Even if this hadn't been directed at my family, i would have been extremely put off. And so now really i'm dubious of the quality of anything she might make in the future. This has been bolstered by several bad reviews of her eye dusts on youtube. Apparently she sent larger pots of product to several gurus for free and gots lots of good reviews, but the actual product you buy is tiny. I've also heard that the pigmentation is not actually that great, and that a lot of it (or indeed all of it) is just bought from other mineral makeup websites, repackaged and sold for about 10x the original amount, if not more.

While i've loved the look of her eye dusts and so on since they came out, I've never been tempted to buy before. For one thing you can get a lot of good dupes (or indeed exactly the same pigments) from a lot of cheaper comapanies on the net. But Lipsticks are my ultimate passion, i love having every shade of lipstick and i really really would love these if they came from anyone else.

So i guess this comes down to whether or not i can forget about my personal problems with her and just enjoy what does look like a really good product.
If she had just apologised once, even if she didn't mean it and was just doing it to save her face, then i would have forgotten this long ago and probably would have rushed out and bought anything from her without a second thought. I don't like to give money to companies with ethics i dislike, and while her company seems ethically fine and i don't know her well, she could be a lovely person, i just don't know if i can fund someone who's called my mum an asshole :(


  1. Christ, she's worse than I thought! It's interesting to know that she's been in the business of peddling crap for money for a while.

    I hope you won't mind if I amend my post slightly and include a link to this.

  2. Oh not at all! Go right on ahead.

  3. I followed you from Ana's blog. All I have to say is wow. Not a good wow, an annoyed wow. The more I learn about her, the more I just feel cheated. Luckily I have never bought from her, but I feel cheated for all of those who have.

    Duct tape?! Seriously. That is horrible. But I find it kinda hilarious, in a dark, twisted humor kinda way.

  4. Yeah, we did to! It became a bit of a joke in our house because i was learning to sew at the time, so i'd be like 'well i'll just grab the gaffer tape!'. It was quite funny because it just seemed so stupid.
    But then her being so rude really soured it. Like i said we never even complained to her, so it wasn't like i was making a huge fuss.
    She acts as if anyone who negatively reviews her stuff has a huge vendetta against her, but she really shouldn't give us such fodder!
    If she's changed her tune now with the lipsticks then that's great, but i just can't believe anything she says anymore.

  5. It's good you can look back and giggle at it.
    But, yeah, she wasn't only rude but unprofessional.


  6. Pfff, I don't think you should go for the lipsticks!

    From personal experience, I'd try Barry M's lipstick line as a reasonably priced alternative -

    It's a "proper" company and though they're UK based I believe they deliver internationally.

  7. I don't think you should go for lipsticks either...

    I find the Limecrime products too expensive, the lipsticks look nice though. But I'd never buy, because these is not even samples available (tiny samplebaggies are fine).

  8. *shocked silence* I really want to like, punch this girl in the face. Is that horrible?

    I can't believe anyone would say something like that! She's obviously not even PROUD of anything and, yes, like everyone else, I was "swindled" too into her f-ing "image".

  9. Sarah:
    thanks for your advice. I'm in the UK actually and love Barry M. The problem is i9 love really odd lip colours like her light blue and the lilacs and things, but i've been thinking about Stargazer, which have an amazing range of colours and are only about £3. The formulas aren't so great but i think my morals won't allow me to buy from her no matter how i lust for those lip colours! Besides all the pictures look like theyre heavilly photoshopped, so who knows what they are really like?

    Nea: I comletely agree, even if her eye dusts weren't just repackaged cheap mineral makeup they'd still be far too expensive, especially as the first product a company brings out. And the lipsticks are just ridiculous. I can't believe they cost $2 more than Mac lipsticks!

    Lisa Kate: I don't think it's horrible because i'd like to as well. Did you hear about the fake charity auction she did once?

    I can imagine someone being nasty and saying that sort of thing in public, but how stupid was she to say it in public! Not only was she going against the golden rule: 'the customer is always right' but she was actually insulting her own business!
    I couldn't be swindled by her, because i've known about her for over 6 years, when she was called 'Thunderwear' never wore makeup and dressed like Wednesday Addams.
    This is an odd thing to say, but thank you for understanding what a completely horrible thing it was for her to say!

  10. if your really into the light blue shades i saw Phyrra from Fresco Phyrra wearing a blue lipstick/gloss (cant remember which sorry) in one of her posts...
    ill try to send u a link to it asap!
    please dont waste your money on LC i did once and i still regret it =( i have so many similar shades from other makeup companies for half the price and twice the amount of product that its ridiculous

  11. she bought the shade Ice Queen from Morgana Minerals
    they have lots of interesting shades so i definatly think you should check them out


  12. I never heard about the fake charity auction, but I definitely believe it! This disgusts me. I'm also posting this link on my blog because I think it's important to get the word out! There are SO MANY wonderful people out there making makeup to support themselves or their families that actually deserve our money and have a product worth it!

  13. I am once again disgusted with her shady antics!
    I work my butt off on my line and barely make enough to keep my site up. I do it because I love it and I want good products that are affordable.
    People like her make the rest of us look bad and make people leery of small cosmetics companies.
    Some people really will do anything to make an easy dollar. I'm just glad that Karma will eventually catch up with her!
    Thank You for posting this!

  14. I'm in shock. Well, I shouldn't be, after all she blames that people are out to get her when you ask if her makeup is re-packaged pigments but still. I think this thing with insulting your family really takes the cake.

    I would steer of Lime Crime entirely if I were you. I don't think it has anything to do with personal vendetta. It's more to do with consumer awareness. Fyrinnae has some very interesting Lip Lustre shades and I think they are of good quality. Plus, the guys really create them themselves, not just buy things from a supplier and sell it in a fancy jar!

    I e-mailed Xenia earlier today and told her that I'm taking my money elsewhere because I'm not willing to support a person who has based her business on a lie.

    Thanks for this post and forget about the crap that is Lime Crime.

  15. Angie: thanks so much for your recommendations, I've checked out Morgana Minerals and i'm so impressed. Not only do they have lovely colours, but you can order samples of lipsticks, i've never seen it before!
    And you're right, i think i'd end up regretting it if i did buy anything from her. Even though i'm pretty sure the lipsticks aren't just repackaged, i would hate to give money to someone who'd fooled so many innocent people.

    Lisa Kate: firstly i must say the fake-charity thing was never PROVED, maybe she was telling the truth all along, but i'll tell you all the details i know and you can decide yourself.
    Basically a few years ago Limey put a raffle on her blog, saying all the proceeds would go to a charity auction. People asked what animal charity she was going to donate to and she refused to answer, claimed people were trying to 'provoke' her by asking and then deleted the comments. Finally she said that she hadn't even decided what charity she was going to give the money to yet, even though she'd been taking the donations from her readers. She then said she'd decided to donate to 'The Brooklyn Shelter' after research people could not find a shelter with that name, but did find a list of animal shelters in Brooklyn so asked her which one it was. She refused to answer and again deleted all the comments and locked the entry so other people couldn't comment. Then people got paypal onto her to check she was being legit, and then she changed the closing date of her raffle, perhaps to avoid anything happening if paypal shut down her account. Which they did after investigating, so something dodgy must have been going on anyway.
    you can see a lot of the suspicious evidence in these forums:
    Anyway thank you for spreading the word. I really would like as many people to know as possible. Her ripping people off is just terrible, and she's been doing it for years!

  16. Evil Angel:
    Thank you so much for your comment. I completely agree, she's completely out of line and for a while it did put me off a lot of other mineral makeup sites. Luckilly though while researching her i've found a lot of great websites that actually sell custom blends and great products for a reasonable price, yours being included (i absolutely love your lip glosses and as soon as i've got some money i'm gonna get myself some) :) . At least places like Beauty From The Earth have now admitted that they repackage, but also provide their own custom colours, while she just continues to claim that she made up the colours and wholesalers who have been around for years have been copying off her! I've also been looking into making my own cosmetics (just for myself, not as a line as i don't know nearly enough to be able to sell) and her mark-up is just ridiculous. I unbderstand of course that companies need to make a profit, but offering something that can be bought for way under $5 and selling it for over $15 is just plain greedy. Lots of other websites, again like yours, have actually gone to the trouble of creating new and exciting colours and products and still only charge slightly more than the wholesalers.

    Thank you for your comment. I love how her excuse for anything bad she does is that 'people are out to get her' (in fact during the time she insulted my family she claimed that my complaint at her rudeness was be 'looking for another reason to get in her face' when beforehand i hadn't said a single nasty thing about her!)
    I would never have brought up this whole dress thing again if she weren't again fooling people into buying less than they thought they were. If she's turned a new leaf and was just trying to start a new business then i have no reason to try and bring her down, but once again she's obviously just interested in making a quick buck.

    I've seen some really sad posts and videos about all this, where poeple have been so disenchanted with her and are genuinely upset because she's fooled them. It's really terrible, she has this really cool image (i admit, if i hadn't known about her dodgy dealings before her 'blogazine' i would have been completley taken in too) that seems to be aimed at teenagers or at least young people, and she's just ripping them off.

    Thank you very much for the recommendation of Fyrinnae, i've had a look and their lip lustres do look lovely! Even if Lime Crime is making the lipsticks herself i don't want to give money to a business that is so overpriced and deceiptful.

    By the way i read your post on the subject, and i love how again while claiming the competition had stolen ideas from her (even though they've been around for years) she puts in a plug for her lipstick! It's just shameless!

  17. You can get turquoise lipstick from Stargazer. Actually, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if it turns out Xenia's new lipstick line is just Stargazer lipsticks repackaged:

    $2.85 is a pretty unbeatable price! Sure beats $16 any day.

    The swatches on Stargazer's site aren't very good, but you can order it directly from them too:

    Pleeeeease don't support Lime Crime after what she did to you. You can't even be sure of the quality of her lipsticks, since all the colors have been approximated in Photoshop! Note she uses the same two lip photos in every picture, and all the swatches are the same photo adjusted in Photoshop too.

  18. LOL, after I posted my comment, I saw that you had already commented right above about Stargazer's turquoise lipstick.

    Even if you tried it and didn't like the quality, can you really trust Xenia's quality either? Her product only exists in photoshop at this point!

  19. I posted this on Anastasia's blog, but in case you missed it, I found even more striking similarities between LC and Stargazer lipsticks:

    LC D'Lilac:

    LC Cosmopop:

    LC Countessa Flourescent:

    And finally,

    LC Great Pink Planet = SG Baby Pink
    LC Retrofuturist = SG Neon Red
    LC Styletto = SG Jet Black
    LC No She Didn't = SG Turquoise

    There is also a neon orange lipstick from Stargazer (#102) that could possibly be "My Beautiful Rocket" but I can't find a photo of it.

    So there's pretty much her whole lipstick line except for a pink and a purple, which I'm sure match up with Stargazer lipsticks too but I'm tired of squinting at my monitor LOL!

    Stargazer has been around since she was in diapers. I'd like to see her try to accuse them of copying her too!

  20. Take the : off the end of the Amazon link =)

  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

  22. I agree with everyone who thinks Xenia is the biggest scam artist out there. But I think using her ex-boyfriend as another excuse to hate her might be going too far. Lord knows I would hate to be judged by some of the jokers I have dated LOL! I don't care about her personal life, but I do care that she's lying about her product to rip people off.

  23. This is so interesting and good to know because I too have been tempted by LimeCrime's lipsticks.

    I don't know if you know about OCC's lip tars Technically I could recreate all those Limecrime lippie colors myself so why pay $16 for a lipstick?

    - Lili

  24. Purple Cutie:
    thanks very much for sending me those links! Even if the Stargazer's aren't the same as hers they're damn close dupes (or at least dupes of her photoshopped pictures) and seeing as they're only £3.50 over here you can't really go wrong!

    I noticed too that her swatches looked remarkably like Macs too. Also she's taken about 3 photos of her lips and then photoshopped the colours on top. So i don't think i've actually seen any true colour, theyre all just approximated.

    I'm glad you got to find out about her. I really feel bad for all these people who have been taken in by her and still think she's amazing and lovely.
    I just saw the OCC lip tars recently and am now desperate for some! I also saw some mixes people had made and a few looked pretty good dupes for some of her colours. Thanks for your comment!

  25. This is really shocking. I've never purchased anything from Lime Crime (hey, it's apparently int the name!) but I do like checking out Doe Deere Blogazine.
    If something like what happened to you and your mother ever happened to me, I'd never be helping the person. She not only insulted you with the comment, but by sending you a piece of crap. I mean, duct tape? My 9 yr old brother could make something even better!
    So please steer far away from the makeup line. If you want some unique lippies, check out Stargazer (which I think someone mentioned in the comments) or Fresco Phyrra's blog, where she mentions a couple of interesting mineral makeup brands.

  26. I have to say, despite the fact that they are extremely overpriced, the lipsticks do come out beautiful. I bought some for a friend and some for myself, when a work bonus coincided with the presale for her lipsticks. They are long lasting and really pigmented, they actually look very close to the images on the website. And the packaging makes all of my other lipsticks look sad, I wish more make up was so beautifully packaged.

    That being said, I think it's deplorable to rip people off for their money. If she was up front and honest about it, that would be one thing, but she isn't. And when I think about the amount of money I dropped on "her" eye shadows, I cringe. I can understand you not buying her product based on your past experience with her.

    I have never had a problem with any of her product not being wonderful make-up, but I thought I was paying more for that quality because you couldn't find it for less, and I thought I was helping the underdog. I feel stepped on.

    While I will cherish the lipsticks I bought from her (truly they are lovely) I will not be buying from her again...

  27. Marce:
    Thank you for your comment. After finding out more and more about her (at the time i wrote this i was giving her the benefit of the doubt that she'd changed her ways since what she did to me) i've realised that there is no way i could support her, even if the lipsticks were actually unique and amazing. I've found a lot of websites, including the ones you recommended, that do even more bright and exciting colours than she does!


    I've heard some people giving the lipsticks wonderful reviews, some saying they're just ok and some saying they're like kids play makeup! I've seen pictures and i must say that some of the colours i've seen do look beautiful (others just look ordinary) and i do like the packaging.
    I think what your last paragraph is very sensible. No point in getting rid of, or not using what you've already bought out of anger towards her, but again don't give her more money!

  28. She's been doing shady things for quite some time. I recall an LJ post about a job she got where she lied about her past (work and education) and spent quite a few posts laughing about how she fooled them all.

  29. Well, I think everyone's got their less elegant moments. In this case, if the story is true, Xenia seems to have been a little off-putting in the past.

    But think of it like this; that was years ago, she was new to the artsy business, probably not experience on how to deal with clients nor on how to make this work the best for all.

    Now she's been around with Lime Crime for a long while and I simply don't think she would answer you like that ever again. People grow up, you know.

    Plus, I've heard great things about the lipsticks.

    P.S.; maybe your mom should have looked at and tried the dress on better before buying it. I mean, when I buy something DIY, I make sure it's all right and according to my taste, otherwise I won't pay for it to start with.

  30. Agathe:
    While what most of what you said was true (when this happened Xenia was about 3 to 4 years into running her fashion line, so she wasn't 'new' to the business) the fact is i'd still rather buy makeup from someone who hasn't been accused of refusing to give refunds, stealing money meant for charities, repackaging makeup and called my mum an asshole.
    I've heard mixed reviews about the lipsticks, some very good, some very bad and some mediocre.
    I agree she probably wouldn't talk to people like that now (though she has insulted new customers, but not in such a direct way) but does that excuse her from doing it before?

    Once i sold a vintage clothing pattern on etsy, listing it as uncut because i thought it was. The person i sold it to emailed me to say it was cut (but still useable). I apologised profusely and refunded her entire payment, allowing her to keep the pattern.

    Xenia sold my mother a faulty dress then called her an asshole.

    And thank you for your criticism of my mother, that's just charming. It was an ebay auction, so there was nothing my Mum could have done to check the dress before she bought it.

  31. Hi there! :D I know this is a bit of an old post, but I was linked it, and want to thank you for the info. I knew about this Lime Crime drama before this, but brushed it off and thought it was just the repackaging that people were concerned about. Following that, I read her blog, and absolutley loved her. Now I see this, and can honestly she how rude she is, I'm really taking that back and wished I could have seen sooner.

    Also, sorry if this is asking a bit much, but do you have a picture of the dress? Not a big deal, but I would like to see what her "fashion line" was.

  32. I was just going to blog about LC in a positive way. I'm so glad I came across this post. I have a few things from LC but I will never buy anything from her again!

  33. Thats such a shame! Her makeup is so unique and of a pretty decent quality, but now i dont want to give someone with such unprofessional business practices my business...

  34. Also, if you want some really unique lip colors go for OCC lip tars.

  35. i know this is an old post but for some great colors, try MUFE (Makeup For Ever, at it's a bit pricey but so pigmented, it doesn't budge, and they make both bullets and pots of amazing colors, WITH matching gel liners.
    you should also try Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics lip tars... talk about outrageous colors! they literally go on like tar, and dry lusciously, not goopy, and are mixable so you can make your own shades like the idea of the blue that LimeCrime has (you can wear it alone or use it as a base to cool down other colors or make other colors appear different). i only recently discovered LC this year, and didn't know about all the drama but i own almost ever LC lip color and lots of her eye dusts and must say, the pigmentation is great, overall the whole product is great, in both the lip and eye products. but, i hope you find what you need! and i am so sorry you had to go through such a crappy ordeal...

  36. I own a few of her lipsticks, and I find all of them to be drying (granted I have fairly dry lips, but it's bordering on ridiculous). Although they go on smoothly at first, they feel pretty thick and in less than an hour they dry up and collect in the cracks of my lips. They are definitely not worth the 16 dollars they go for, so you are not missing out in my opinion.

  37. that is amazing! that is very nice and interesting article, thanks for publishing this article.

  38. Anyone who is rude to your mum, doesn't deserve much respect from you.

  39. Is it really a dilemma? I dont't see any problem in it.


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